Dalecarlian language

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Native toSweden
RegionDalarna County
EthnicityDalecarlians (Swedes)
Early form
Latin (Dalecarlian alphabet)
Language codes
ISO 639-3None (mis)
Individual code:
ovd – Elfdalian

Dalecarlian (dalmål in vernacular and Swedish) is a group of dialects or unofficial languages spoken in Dalarna County, Sweden. In the northernmost corner of the county, i.e. the originally Norwegian parishes of Särna and Idre, a characteristic dialect reminiscent of eastern Norwegian is spoken. Otherwise, the different Dalecarlians can be regarded as Swedes and join the Swedish dialect group (in Gästrikland, Uppland, and northern and eastern Västmanland). But they also show some similarities with the objectives of the other counties bordering Dalarna. One usually distinguishes between the Dalecarlian mountain dialects, which are spoken in south-eastern Dalarna, and Dalecarlian proper.[2]

Geographical distribution of Dalecarlian proper[edit]

Dalecarlian dialects are generally classified geographically:

Very independent are Dalecarlian proper (especially in Älvdalen, Mora and Orsa, to some extent also in Ore, Rättvik and Leksand), as well as western Dalecarlian. Elfdalian is the one of the Dalecarlian dialect that best kept their archaic features. This language already attracted the attention of research early on, as it deviated very significantly from other Swedish dialects. In many respects, it is very archaic. In other respects, it has distinguished itself from the ancient language and developed special features that are rare in other languages. Characteristic of the "Dalecarlian dialect" is a pronounced split in a number of narrowly limited and easily distinguishable local dialects, which often only cover a single village or even part of a village.

For strangers, Dalecarlian is virtually incomprehensible without special studies. However, this does not apply to the same extent about the Rättvik and Leksand dialects. They are more easily understood and can be considered to form a transition from the more archaic dialects. Such transition goals are also the goals of Ål, Bjursås and Gagnef. The Gagnef dialect approaches the western Dalecarlian dialects, which to some extent can also be regarded as transitional dialects, but which in many respects take on a more independent position, especially in the upper parishes. They may show similarities with neighbouring Norwegian dialects.

From Gagnef, the leap is quite large to the Stora Tuna dialect, which belongs to the Dalarna mountain dialects, a relatively uniform and fairly normal Swedish dialect complex that covers the entire southern Dalarna (Stora Kopparberg, Hedemora and Västerbergslagen). The most deviant within this complex are the Svärdsjö and western mountain dialects, which are approaching Hälsingemål and the western Dalecarlian language (over Grangärde and Floda). Mountain dialects are also spoken in the northern part of Västmanland. The mountain dialects connect quite closely with neighbouring Uppsala dialects, perhaps most with Eastern Västmanland's dialects.

In everyday speech, many with Dalecarlian often also refer to regionally coloured "national languages" from Dalarna, that is, a lexical and morphologically "nationally" Swedish with a Dalarna characteristic intonation and prosody. In linguistics, one distinguishes between regionally coloured national languages and genuine dialects, and Dalecarlian is used exclusively for dialects in the latter sense.

Dalecarlian phonology[edit]

As with most dialects in northern and central Sweden, the Dalecarlian dialects have a supradental heavy-r and a cachuminal (with the tip of the tongue towards the trough) have thick-l. However, superdental numbers are more limited than usual, for example, rs often becomes ss (for example, Dalecarlian koss, Swedish kors, English cross), rn in southern Dalarna becomes r (for example, Dalecarlian bar, Swedish barn, English child, Dalecarlian björ, Swedish björn, English bear, up to and including Rättvik, Leksand and Västerdalarna). In Dalecarlian proper is often nn, and rt, rd preserved without assimilation (from Gagnef northwards). l is not usually cachuminal after i and e, except in Dalecarlian proper, which in the case of l has gone its own way and can even partially use cachuminal l at the beginning of words, for example låta. Dalecarlian has, in the usual way, lost -n and, as a rule, -t in unstressed endings, for example, Dalecarlian sola or sole, Swedish solen, English sun, Dalecarlian gâtu, Swedish gatan, English street, Dalecarlian biti, Swedish bitit, English bitten. Like other Upper Swedish dialects, they often have i in endings for the national languages e, for example Dalecarlian funnin, Swedish funnen, English found, Dalecarlian muli, Swedish mulet, English cloudy, Dalecarlian härvil, Swedish härvel, English härvel (winding yarn on), has g-sounds, not j, in rg and lg, for example Dalecarlian and Swedish varg, English wolf, long vowel in front of m in many words, where the national language has short, for example Dalecarlian tima, Swedish timme, English hour, Dalecarlian töm, Swedish tom, English empty. j has not disappeared without trace after k, g in words such as Dalecarlian äntja, Swedish änka, English widow, Dalecarlian bryddja, Swedish brygga, English bridge. As in the northern Swedes and in the northern dialects, g, k have also been softened to tj, (d) j, for example Dalecarlian sättjin or sättjen, Swedish säcken, English bag, Dalecarlian botja or botje Swedish boken, English book, Dalecarlian nyttjil, Swedish nyckel, English key. These traits characterise all Dalecarlian dialects.

Characteristic of the vocal system in especially Upper Dalarna, with the exception of Dalecarlian proper, is the use of open and end a, which is used in a completely different way than in the national language: the open can occur as far and the closed as short, for example hara hare with open a in first, end in second syllable, katt, bakka, vagn with end, skabb, kalv with open a; open å sound (o) is often replaced by a sound between å and ö; The u sound has a sound similar to the Norwegian u; ä and e are well separated; the low-pitched vocals often have a sound of ä. Among the most interesting features of the dialects in Älvdalen, Mora and Orsa is that they still largely retain the nasal vocal sounds that were previously found in all Nordic dialects. Furthermore, it is noticed that the long i, y, u diphthongs, usually to ai, åy, au, for example Dalecarlian ais, Swedish is English ice, Dalecarlian knåyta, Swedish knyta, English tie, Dalecarlian aute, Swedish ute, English out. v has the Old Norse pronunciation w (like w in English)[3], l is usually omitted in front of g, k, p, v, for example, Dalecarlian kåv, Swedish kalf, English calf, Dalecarlian fok and such Swedish folk, English folk, people. h is omitted, for example, Dalecarlian and, Swedish and English hand (in the Älvdals-, Orsa- and Mora dialects, as well as in Rättvik and parts of Leksand). In the same way, many words have been added as h:n such as häven, hälsklig, hägde. These features have the common Dalecarlian in common with the older Uppland dialects.

A pair of ancient Nordic diphthongs remain in the western Dalecarlian dialects in Lima and Transtrand. The diphthong au, which in the Swedish state has pronounced ö, has in these areas a slightly changed form, ôu, for example dôu (Swedish död, English death). The ancient Swedish diphthongs ei and öy (which in Swedish became e and ö respectively) have been pronounced äi, for example skäi (Swedish sked, English Spoon) and here (Swedish , English hay), respectively.[4]

Dalecarlian morphology[edit]

In the form theory in the valley target in southern Dalarna (mainly in the rock stroke), weak five are noticed. on - u : vikku week, fly fly, ladu e1. sound barn (on the other hand wrap , if the stem has a long sound), weak mask. on - a : hara , staka , tray . Certain shapes are mask. boat boat, tidy (south Dalarna to Gagnef) electricity. clear back, five. sunbathing , botja (southern Dalarna through parts of Leksand and Västerdalarna), sole , botje ("valley goal"), mask. haran el. harn the haren, five. wick week, neutr. houses house, tatji (southern Dalarna to Gagnef) or tatje roof; obese. plur. and strong five. - are , for example horses horses (less often horses ), socks parishes, priests (el. priests ) priests, weak five . - from (most southern Dalarna), for example flickering girls, neutr. tak tak, ditjen dikes (d: o). Best. plur. the horse (ä) , the priest (ä) (southern Dalarna up against Tuna and Falun) el. the horse (north of Falun), the sock (ä) el. socknan , flicker (ä) (south D.), flicker el. flick con (northbound).

In Upper Dalarna, the declination has developed a peculiar development, in particular through the coincidence of different types of declination. In parts of Gagnef, for example, almost all nouns have the same inflection in plur: "" chorus "" men, "" chick "" girls, "" baror "" children, "" apple laurel "" apples; Requests. f. the guy, the flick, the baran, the apple . Instead, at least the "valley goal" (including parts of Leksand and Djura) and the western valley goals have preserved the old case-inflection, in particular the dative forms, for example "" in bu (d) about "" and d. In the sheds. (Also, otherwise, these many age-old features in terms of word-bending - as in the sound system - show, but these are not described here.)

In the adjective inflection in southern Dalarna, plural is used without endings, for example all hands all hands, many walks many times, adj. on - in : rolin calm, on u (g) : toku (g) tokig. Me, you, are usually called "" mug, dough, say "", "" springtime, andråm "" (southern Dalarna) are five. of ours, another. Verbs often lose - a in infinitive, for example running race, tar horses . Caste and similar verbs have in the present chestnut as well as encounter encounter. The imperfect is usually called throw . It is called where, where electricity. vuri been, havi el. hävi had, been, wurti became, became.

In Upper Dalarna the verb inflection is peculiarly developed, in the actual valley goal it is in some respects very old-fashioned. Regarding the vocabulary, a large number of peculiar and otherwise rare words are noticed, especially in the upper parishes.

In southern Dalarna it is more normal. The moon is everywhere called the moon and spring is called the box (cf. Gotlandian the charge !), Words that include. a. Used by Dalarna's skull, Erik Axel Karlfeldt. Itji el. tji can be used instead of not . Adverbs on - e usually end in - a : inna, nera, ôppa as in Västmanland and Gästrikland. Mil is neutrum and trolley feminimum. The name tag is characteristic: the old farm names are used as family names and put before the baptismal name, for example Back Pär Erssa.



  1. ^ Hammarström, Harald; Forkel, Robert; Haspelmath, Martin, eds. (2017). "Dalecarlian". Glottolog 3.0. Jena, Germany: Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History.
  2. ^ Bengt Pamp, Svenska dialekter, Lund 1978, sid. 111
  3. ^ Elias Wessén, Svensk språkhistoria (åttonde upplagan), del 1, Lund 1969, sid. 37-38
  4. ^ Nationalencyklopedin, band 4, sid. 352


  • Adolf Noreen "Dalmålet. I. Inledning till dalmålet. II. Ordlista öfver dalmålet i Ofvansiljans fögderi" ur Svenska landsmålen IV, Stockholm 1881 + 1882
  • Carl Säve "Dalmålet" 1903
  • Lars Levander "Dalmålet: beskrivning och historia I-II", Uppsala 1925-28
  • Bengt Pamp, "Svenska dialekter", Lund 1978

Further reading[edit]

  • Noreen, Adolf (1911). "Dalmålet". Spridda studier. Samling 2 [Scattered studies. Collection 2] (in Swedish). Stockholm. pp. 96–108. 482241.

External links[edit]