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Northern Low Saxon
North Low Saxon, North Saxon
Native toGermany, Northeastern Netherlands, southern Denmark
RegionLower Saxony, Bremen, Schleswig-Holstein, Hamburg, Groningen, Drenthe
Language codes
ISO 639-2nds
ISO 639-3nds (partial)
Glottologostf1234  North Low Saxon
nort2628  German Northern Low Saxon

Northern Low Saxon (in Standard High German: Nordniedersächsisch, also Nordniederdeutsch,[1] lit. North(ern) Low Saxon/German; in Standard Dutch: Noord-Nedersaksisch) is a subgroup of Low Saxon dialects of Low German. As such, it covers a great part of the West Low German-speaking areas of northern Germany, with the exception of the border regions where South Low Saxon (Eastphalian and Westphalian) is spoken, and Gronings dialect in the Netherlands.


Northern Low Saxon can be divided into Holsteinian (Holsteinisch), Schleswigian (Schleswigsch), East Frisian Low Saxon, Dithmarsch (Dithmarsisch), North Hanoveranian (Nordhannoversch), Emslandish (Emsländisch), and Oldenburgish (Oldenburgisch) in Germany,[2] with additional dialects in the Netherlands such as Gronings.[3]

Holsteinisch is spoken in Holstein, the southern part of Schleswig-Holstein in Germany, in Dithmarschen, around Neumünster, Rendsburg, Kiel and Lübeck.

Schleswigsch (German pronunciation: [ˈʃleːsvɪkʃ]) is spoken in Schleswig, which is divided between Germany and Denmark. It is mainly based on a South Jutlandic substrate. Therefore, it has some notable differences in pronunciation and grammar with its southern neighbour dialects. The dialects on the west coast of Schleswig (Nordfriesland district) and some islands show some North Frisian influences.[citation needed]

Oldenburgisch is spoken around the city of Oldenburg. It is limited to Germany. The main difference between it and East Frisian Low Saxon, which is spoken in the Frisian parts of Lower Saxony, is the lack of an East Frisian substrate. Oldenburgisch is spoken in the city of Bremen as "Bremian", which is the only capital where Oldenburgisch is spoken.




c) [6]

Emsländisch and Oldenburgisch are also grouped together as Emsländisch-Oldenburgisch, while Bremen and Hamburg lie in the area of Nordhannoversch (in a broader sense).[7][8]


The most obvious common character in grammar is the forming of the perfect participle. It is formed without a prefix, as in all North Germanic languages, as well as English and Frisian, but unlike standard German, Dutch and some dialects of Westphalian and Eastphalian Low Saxon:

The diminutive (-je) (Dutch and East Frisian Low Saxon -tje, Eastphalian -ke, High German -chen, Alemannic -le, li) is hardly used. Some examples are Buscherumpje, a fisherman's shirt, or lüttje, a diminutive of lütt, little. Instead the adjective lütt is used, e.g. dat lütte Huus, de lütte Deern, de lütte Jung.

There are a lot of special characteristics in the vocabulary, too, but they are shared partly with other languages and dialects, e.g.:

See also


  1. ^ a b Reinhard Goltz, Andrea Kleene, Niederdeutsch, in: Rahel Beyer, Albrecht Plewnia (eds.), Handbuch der Sprachminderheiten in Deutschland, 2020, p. 191
  2. ^ Noble, Cecil A. M. (1983). Modern German dialects, New York / Berne / Frankfort on the Main, Peter Lang, p. 103-104
  3. ^ Hammarström, Harald; Forke, Robert; Haspelmath, Martin; Bank, Sebastian, eds. (2020). "North Low Saxon". Glottolog 4.3.
  4. ^ Wolfgang Lindow, Dieter Möhn, Hermann Niebaum, Dieter Stellmacher, Hans Taubken and Jan Wirrer, Niederdeutsche Grammatik, 1998, p. 18f.
  5. ^ Heinrich Thies. Fehrs-Gilde (ed.). " Sog. Nordniedersächsisch (Nordniederdeutsch)". Retrieved 21 September 2023., in: Heinrich Thies. Fehrs-Gilde (ed.). "SASS Plattdeutsche Grammatik". Retrieved 21 September 2023.
  6. ^ C. A. M. Noble, Modern German dialects, 1983, p. 117
  7. ^ Michael Elmentaler and Peter Rosenberg (with the collaboration of others), Norddeutscher Sprachatlas (NOSA). Band 1: Regiolektale Sprachlagen, (series: Deutsche Dialektgeographie 113.1), Georg Olms Verlag, Hildesheim, 2015, p. 89 (map: Karte 1: Untersuchungsregionen und -orte des Projekts „Sprachvariation in Norddeutschland“), 97 (map: Karte 6: Vergleichskorpus (2): Sprachdaten aus dem KÖNIG-Korpus (1975/76))
  8. ^ Jan Wirrer, Sprachwissen – Spracherfahrung: Untersuchungen zum metasprachlichen Wissen sprachwissenschaftlicher Laien, (series: Deutsche Dialektgeographie 116), Georg Olms Verlag, Hildesheim, 2021, p. 10