Hessian dialects

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Native to Germany
Native speakers
(this article does not contain any information regarding the number of speakers)
Language codes
ISO 639-3
Glottolog hess1239[1]
Central German dialects
  (4): Hessen

Hessen (Ger.: Hessisch) is a West Central German group of dialects of the German language in the central German state of Hessen. The dialect most similar to Hessen is Palatinate German (Ger.: Pfälzisch, pronounced [ˈp͡fɛlt͡sɪʃ]) of the Rhine Franconian sub-family. However, the Hessen dialects have some features which set them somewhat apart from other West-Central German dialects.


Hessian can be divided into four main dialects, namely those of:

Northern Hesse (around the city of Kassel),

Central Hesse (including the Marburg and Gießen areas),

Eastern Hesse (around Fulda),

Southern Hesse (around Darmstadt).

To understand this division one must consider the history of Hesse and the fact that this state is the result of an administrative reform.[2]

Southern Hessian[edit]

Changes to consonants

Consonants are often softened, as outlined by Carsten Keil in his document "A Quick Guide to the Language of Frankfurt". For instance the German "Äpfel" (apples) becomes "Ebbel" in Hessian.[3]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Nordhoff, Sebastian; Hammarström, Harald; Forkel, Robert; Haspelmath, Martin, eds. (2013). "Hessen Middle High German". Glottolog. Leipzig: Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology. 
  2. ^ The German Dialects, a practical approach, Wolfgang Näser, retrieved 19 July 2011
  3. ^ A Quick Guide to the Language of Frankfurt, Carsten Keil, retrieved 19 July 2011

External links[edit]