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Sursilvan (; also ''romontsch sursilvan'' ; Sursilvan,
Vallader Vallader (Vallader, Sursilvan Sursilvan (; also ''romontsch sursilvan'' ; Sursilvan, Vallader Vallader (Vallader, Sursilvan, Puter, Surmiran, and Rumantsch Grischun: ''vallader'' ; Sutsilvan: ''valader'') is a variety of the Romansh la ...
,
Surmiran Surmiran (Surmiran, Vallader Vallader (Vallader, Sursilvan, Puter, Surmiran, and Rumantsch Grischun: ''vallader'' ; Sutsilvan: ''valader'') is a variety of the Romansh language spoken in the Lower Engadine valley (''Engiadina Bassa'') of sou ...
,
Sutsilvan Romansh (; sometimes also spelled Romansch and Rumantsch; Sursilvan Sursilvan (; also ''romontsch sursilvan'' ; Sursilvan, Vallader Vallader (Vallader, Sursilvan, Puter, Surmiran, and Rumantsch Grischun: ''vallader'' ; Sutsilvan: ''valad ...
, and
Rumantsch Grischun Romansh (; sometimes also spelled Romansch and Rumantsch; Sursilvan Sursilvan (; also ''romontsch sursilvan'' ; Sursilvan, Vallader Vallader (Vallader, Sursilvan, Puter, Surmiran, and Rumantsch Grischun: ''vallader'' ; Sutsilvan: ''valad ...
: ''sursilvan''; Puter: ''sursilvaun'') is a group of dialects of the
Romansh language Romansh (; sometimes also spelled Romansch and Rumantsch; Sursilvan Sursilvan (; also ''romontsch sursilvan'' ; Sursilvan, Vallader Vallader (Vallader, Sursilvan, Puter, Surmiran, and Rumantsch Grischun: ''vallader'' ; Sutsilvan: ''valad ...
spoken in the
Swiss Swiss may refer to: * the adjectival form of Switzerland , french: Suisse(sse), it, svizzero/svizzera or , rm, Svizzer/Svizra , government_type = Federalism, Federal semi-direct democracy under an assembly-independent Directorial ...

Swiss
district of
Surselva Surselva Region is one of the eleven administrative districts Administrative division, administrative unitArticle 3(1). , country subdivision, administrative region, subnational entity, first-level subdivision, as well as many similar terms, ar ...
. It is the most widely spoken variety of Romansh with 17,897 people within the Surselva District (54.8%) naming Romansh as a habitually spoken language in the Swiss census of 2000. The most closely related variety is
Sutsilvan Romansh (; sometimes also spelled Romansch and Rumantsch; Sursilvan Sursilvan (; also ''romontsch sursilvan'' ; Sursilvan, Vallader Vallader (Vallader, Sursilvan, Puter, Surmiran, and Rumantsch Grischun: ''vallader'' ; Sutsilvan: ''valad ...
, which is spoken in the area located to the east of the district. The name of the dialect and the Surselva District is derived from 'above' and 'forest', with the forest in question being the ''Uaul Grond'' in the area affected by the Flims Rockslide. The word itself has fallen out of use in modern Sursilvan, with the most common word for forest being , an
Old High German Old High German (OHG, german: Althochdeutsch, German abbr. ) is the earliest stage of the German language German ( Standard High German: , ) is a West Germanic language mainly spoken in Central Europe Central Europe is an area of Euro ...
loanword. is only used for in a few more recent terms such as 'forestry', 'forest officer', or '
Long-eared owl The long-eared owl (''Asio otus''), also known as the northern long-eared owlOlsen, P.D. & Marks, J.S. (2019). ''Northern Long-eared Owl (Asio otus)''. In: del Hoyo, J., Elliott, A., Sargatal, J., Christie, D.A. & de Juana, E. (eds.). Handbook o ...

Long-eared owl
'.


Distribution

Sursilvan is used across most of the Surselva District, with the exception of the
Walser The Walser are the speakers of the Walser German Walser German (german: Walserdeutsch) and Walliser German (, locally ) are a group of Highest Alemannic Highest Alemannic is a branch of Alemannic German Alemannic, or rarely Alemannish ('' ...
villages of
Obersaxen Obersaxen ( rm, Sursaissa) is a former municipality A municipality is usually a single administrative division having Municipal corporation, corporate status and powers of self-government or jurisdiction as granted by national and regional law ...
,
Vals
Vals
, St. Martin and
Safiental Safiental is a municipalities of Switzerland, municipality in the Surselva Region in the Cantons of Switzerland, canton of Graubünden in Switzerland. The municipalities of Valendas, Versam, Safien and Tenna, Switzerland, Tenna merged on 1 Januar ...

Safiental
. Outside of the Surselva District,
Flims Flims ( rm, Flem) is a municipalities of Switzerland, municipality in the Imboden Region in the Switzerland, Swiss Cantons of Switzerland, canton of Graubünden. The town of Flims is dominated by the Fil de Cassons, Flimserstein which one can see f ...
is also part of the Sursilvan dialect area. In addition, Sursilvan was previously used as the written Romansh language of parts of the
Sutsilvan Romansh (; sometimes also spelled Romansch and Rumantsch; Sursilvan Sursilvan (; also ''romontsch sursilvan'' ; Sursilvan, Vallader Vallader (Vallader, Sursilvan, Puter, Surmiran, and Rumantsch Grischun: ''vallader'' ; Sutsilvan: ''valad ...
dialect area. When a separate Sutsilvan written language was introduced in 1944, the villages of
Bonaduz Bonaduz ''( Romansh: Panaduz)'' is a municipality A municipality is usually a single administrative division having Municipal corporation, corporate status and powers of self-government or jurisdiction as granted by national and regional laws ...

Bonaduz
,
Rhäzün s
Rhäzün s
,
Domat/Ems Domat/Ems ( rm, Domat ; german: Ems) is a municipalities of Switzerland, municipality in the Imboden Region in the Switzerland, Swiss Cantons of Switzerland, canton of Graubünden. History Domat/Ems is first mentioned in 765 as ''colonia de Amed ...
and
Trin Trin is a municipality A municipality is usually a single administrative division having Municipal corporation, corporate status and powers of self-government or jurisdiction as granted by national and regional laws to which it is subordinat ...

Trin
retained Sursilvan as their written language. In addition, Sursilvan was previously used in the
Surmiran Surmiran (Surmiran, Vallader Vallader (Vallader, Sursilvan, Puter, Surmiran, and Rumantsch Grischun: ''vallader'' ; Sutsilvan: ''valader'') is a variety of the Romansh language spoken in the Lower Engadine valley (''Engiadina Bassa'') of sou ...
dialect area as the language of church, but has now been replaced by Standard Surmiran and
Rumantsch Grischun Romansh (; sometimes also spelled Romansch and Rumantsch; Sursilvan Sursilvan (; also ''romontsch sursilvan'' ; Sursilvan, Vallader Vallader (Vallader, Sursilvan, Puter, Surmiran, and Rumantsch Grischun: ''vallader'' ; Sutsilvan: ''valad ...
. Most municipalities in which Sursilvan is the traditional language still have a Romansh-speaking majority today. The exceptions are
Flims Flims ( rm, Flem) is a municipalities of Switzerland, municipality in the Imboden Region in the Switzerland, Swiss Cantons of Switzerland, canton of Graubünden. The town of Flims is dominated by the Fil de Cassons, Flimserstein which one can see f ...
,
Laax Laax ( rm, Lags) is a municipality A municipality is usually a single administrative division Administrative division, administrative unitArticle 3(1). , country subdivision, administrative region, subnational entity, first-level subdi ...

Laax
,
Schnaus Schnaus is a former Municipalities of Switzerland, municipality in the district of Surselva (district), Surselva in the Switzerland, Swiss Cantons of Switzerland, canton of Graubünden. On 1 January 2014 the former municipalities of Schnaus, Castri ...

Schnaus
,
Ilanz Ilanz ( rm, Glion) is a former municipality A municipality is usually a single administrative division Administrative division, administrative unitArticle 3(1). , country subdivision, administrative region, subnational entity, first-leve ...
,
Castrisch Castrisch () is a former Municipalities of Switzerland, municipality in the district of Surselva (district), Surselva in the Switzerland, Swiss Cantons of Switzerland, canton of Graubünden. Until 1943, it was officially known as Kästris. On 1 Jan ...
,
Surcuolm
Surcuolm
, and
Duvin Duvin (german: Duvin ), rm, Duin ) is a former municipality A municipality is usually a single administrative division having Municipal corporation, corporate status and powers of self-government or jurisdiction as granted by national and reg ...
. In all of these, except for Flims, however, a majority of people reported using Romansh daily in the 2000 Swiss census, even if only a minority named it as their language of best command. In about half of the Sursilvan villages, Romansh is the language of best command of over 70% or 80%. The highest percentage is found in
Vrin Vrin () is a village and a former municipalities of Switzerland, municipality in the Lumnezia. It belonged to the circle of Lugnez/Lumnezia (circle), Lugnez/Lumnezia in the district of Surselva (district), Surselva in the Cantons of Switzerland, c ...
with over 95%. As a daily language, it is used in nearly all municipalities by at least 70%, in about half by more than 80%, and in a third by over 90%. Overall across the Sursilvan dialect area, in the census of 2000, 70.1% named Romansh as a habitually used language, while 58.3% named it as their language of best command.


Orthography

Sursilvan spelling mostly follows a phonemic system.


Morphology


Nouns

Sursilvan nouns distinguish two genders (masculine and feminine) and two numbers (singular and plural). Nouns in -a are overwhelmingly feminine (with few exceptions such as duca 'duke'). Nouns in consonants or other vowels can be either masculine or feminine. Plurals are formed with the suffix -s. Nouns already ending in -s do not add this plural ending, but nouns in -z and -sch follow the general rule. Nominalised past participles in -au have a plural in -ai. In addition, nouns may show vowel alternations or other irregularities:


Collective plurals

In addition to the normal plural in -s many nouns also show a collective plural in -a. These forms typically occur with natural substances (rocks, wood, plants etc.) and human body parts. Syntactically these collective plurals behave like feminine singular nouns: ''La crappa ei dira.'' 'The rocks are hard. / The rock (= material) is hard.' (with f.sg. dira 'hard' agreeing with the subject la crappa 'the ') and may best be considered as an intermediate formation between inflection and derivation (Liver 1999:132).


Articles

Sursilvan has both a definite and an indefinite article. These are preposed and agree with their noun in gender and number. (The indefinite article only has singular forms.) Forms may differ depending on whether the following word starts with a vowel or a consonant:


Indefinite Article


Definite Article

The definite article contracts with a number of prepositions:


Adjectives

The adjective agrees with its noun in gender and number and (as in other Romance languages) usually follows it. A peculiarity of Sursilvan is that the adjective distinguishes an attributive and a predicative form in the masculine singular: ''in um vegl'' 'an old man'
''igl um ei vegls'' 'the man is old' The predicative masculine singular form is morphologically identical with the masculine plural. The ending of the masculine plural is -s. Feminine adjectives suffix -a in the singular and -as in the plural. The attributive masculine singular often differs from the other forms in its vocalism.


Pronouns


Personal pronouns

* Modern Sursilvan has no unstressed proclitic personal pronouns appearing in preverbal position (as in French 'I have seen him') and only uses the (historically) stressed forms, which appear in the same position as nouns: 'I have seen him'. * In the 1Sg and 2Sg the special dative forms and exist, which are used after the preposition ' 'to'. In the 3Sg is occasionally used instead of . * In the 3rd person Sursilvan has a neuter pronoun ( before 'is'): 'it rains', 'it is late'. This pronoun is also used as an expletive pronoun in sentences like 'there emerges it: it comes outa dragon with seven heads'. The same form can be used with 3Pl verb forms as a gender-neutral 'they/people' (French , German ): 'they/people say'.


Demonstrative pronouns

* The proximal pronoun 'this' and the distal pronoun 'that' have different forms in the masc. sg. depending on whether they are used adjectivally with a noun or pronominally on their own (referring to a masculine noun): 'he goes to this old man, and this one says...'. * and have pronominal neuter forms and (formally identical with the adjectival masculine forms). * , which in other Rhetoromance dialects serves as proximal demonstrative, is in modern Sursilvan limited to fixed expression such 'this year', 'this evening'.


Sample

The fable The Fox and the Crow by
Jean de La Fontaine Jean de La Fontaine (, , ; 8 July 162113 April 1695) was a French fabulist and one of the most widely read French poets of the 17th century. He is known above all for his '' Fables'', which provided a model for subsequent fabulists across Euro ...

Jean de La Fontaine
in Sursilvan, as well as a translation into
English English usually refers to: * English language English is a West Germanic languages, West Germanic language first spoken in History of Anglo-Saxon England, early medieval England, which has eventually become the World language, leading lan ...

English
, the similar-looking but noticeably different-sounding dialect Sutsilvan, and Rumantsch Grischun.


References


Bibliography

* Bernardi, Rut, & H. Stricker, & Società Retorumantscha, & Verein für Bündner Kulturforschung (1994), ''Handwörterbuch des Rätoromanischen : Wortschatz aller Schriftsprachen, einschliesslich Rumantsch Grischun, mit Angaben zur Verbreitung und Herkunft''; erarbeitet auf Initiative von Hans Stricker ; herausgegeben von der Società Retorumantscha und dem Verein für Bündner Kulturforschung. Zürich: Offizin. * Cahannes, Gion, & Ligia romontscha (1924), ''Grammatica romontscha per Surselva e Sutselva'', Ediziun della Ligia romontscha. Mustér: Stampa da G. Condrau. * Da Sale, Flaminio (1729), ''Fundamenti principali della lingua retica, o griggiona, con le regole del declinare i nomi, e congiugare i verbi, all'uso di due delle principali valli della Rezia, cioe di Sopraselva e di Sorset che può servire alli italiani per imparare ..', Disentis : Francesco Antonio Binn. [Online
copy (1)

copy (2)
] * Decurtins, Alexis (2001), ''Niev vocabulari romontsch sursilvan - tudestg / Neues rätoromanisches Wörterbuch surselvisch-deutsch'', Chur. . * Eichenhofer, Wolfgang (1999), ''Historische Lautlehre des Bünderromanischen.'' Tübingen: Francke. * Gartner, Theodor (1883), ''Raetoromanische Grammatik''. (Sammlung romanischer Grammatiken.) Heilbronn: Gebr. Henninger. [Online
copy (1) copy (2) copy (3)
] * Gregor, D.B. (1982), ''Romontsch : Language and literature : The sursilvan Raeto-Romance of Switzerland''. (Oleander language and literature ; 11). Cambridge: Oleander. * * Janzing, Gereon (2006), ''Rätoromanisch Wort für Wort'', Reise Know-How Verlag Rump. (Deals in spite of its title only with Sursilvan). * Liver, Ricarda (1982). ''Manuel pratique de romanche : Sursilvan-vallader : Précis de grammaire suivi d'un choix de textes''. (Romanica Raetica ; t. 4). Chur: Ligia Romontscha. * Liver, Ricarda (1999), ''Rätoromanisch : Eine Einführung in das Bündnerromanische''. (Narr Studienbücher). Tübingen: G. Narr. * Lutz, Florentin, & Dieter Strehle (1988), ''Rückläufiges Wörterbuch des Surselvischen = Dicziunari invers dil romontsch sursilvan''. (Romanica Monacensia ; 29). Tübingen: Narr. * Nay, Sep Modest, & Ramun Vieli, & Ligia romontscha (1948), ''Lehrbuch der rätoromanischen Sprache (deutsch-surselvisch)''. (2. Aufl. / im Auftrage der Ligia Romontscha besorgt von Ramun Vieli. ed.).
hur Hur or HUR may refer to: People * Hur (Korean name), also spelled Heo * Hur (Bible) Hur (also spelled Chur) ( he, חור) was a companion of Moses and Aaron in the Hebrew Bible. He was a member of the Tribe of Judah. His identity remains unclear ...
Ligia Romontscha. * Spescha, Arnold (1989), ''Grammatica sursilvana'', Lehrmittelverlag Graubünden, Chur. (This grammar is entirely written in Romansh.) * Vieli, Ramun (1938), ''Vocabulari scursaniu romontsch-tudestg,'' redigius da dr. Ramun Vieli. Ediziun della Ligia romontscha 1938. Mustér: G. Condrau. * Vieli/Decurtins (1994), ''Vocabulari tudestg - romontsch sursilvan'', Lia Rumantscha. Sursilvan literature is published among others by the in
Chur , neighboring_municipalities= Arosa , neighboring_municipalities= Alvaneu Alvaneu (''Romansh language, Romansh: Alvagni'') is a former municipalities of Switzerland, municipality in the district of Albula (district), Albula in the Cantons of S ...

Chur
.


External links


Crestomazia Retorumantscha Digitala / Digitale Rätoromanische Chrestomathie

MyPledari. Pledari rumantsch-englais. English-Romansh Dictionary.

Niev vocabulari Sursilvan ONLINE
{{Authority control Romansh dialects Languages of Switzerland