Talk:Norwegian dialects

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Getting started[edit]

This is a very long subject, and I suspect that I've used many wrong linguistic terms for the distinctions. We should come up with a map to illustrate many of the points. Having said this, I'm not sure this is a topic that has widespread interest. --Leifern 21:30, 27 Dec 2004 (UTC)

I believe the e-ending has risen, due to contact with the Low German Hansa merchants, and first became popular in Denmark. The a-ending is older and more native. If I'm correct, the article should make clear such matters.
The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk • contribs) 00:59, 14 February 2005 (UTC).Reply[reply]

Deleted the following sentence: "Some remnants remain in standard Norwegian, e.g., han gikk til fjells as opposed to han gikk på fjellet."

Til fjells is actually a genitive case, not a dative. Bogfjellmo 20:26, Mar 6, 2005 (UTC)

It is not, it is movement towards! No one owns the mountain or the sea--and this is the way it is taught in Norwegian today. I don't know where this fits, though, as it is a pretty minor feature. However, an interesting comparison would be the use of the word "på" and "i", where Norwegians are far more "på" than Danes, for example.Extraends (talk) 20:38, 21 February 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]

East and West Scandinavian[edit]

The Norwegian dialects are variously classified as East Scandinavian, others are West Scandinavian, hence I suggest a split.
Sarcelles 21:49, 22 Apr 2005 (UTC)
Could someone reference the claim that some Norwegian dialects are classified as East Scandinavian?
Peter Isotalo 20:54, 23 July 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Most such claims are based on the basis of:
1. Norwegian was originally a (the) West Scandinavian language.
2. Modern Norwegian (all dialects) resembles modern East Scandinavian languages more closely than other West Scandinavian languages.
3. Western dialects have generally kept more traits associated with old West Scandinavian.
4. Bokmål is based on Danish, a East Scandinavian language.
5. Nynorsk is based most on the diaclets with most old West Scandinavian traits.
We can ignore 4&5 when discussing dialects. (Though in a 'what is a language' context it may still be intresting)
Language genealogy is based on, well genealogy, so the makes Norwegian a West Scandinavian language.
(This confuses people because of the close similarity to Swedish and Danish.)
Personally I think it makes more sense to describe all Norwegain dialects as transitional between West and East Scandinavian.
The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk • contribs) 14:33, 23 January 2006 (UTC).Reply[reply]

From what I can tell, the distinction between West and East Scandinavian is a bit misleading when it comes to Norwegian dialects, and is not typically emphasized in Norwegian linguistics. There is no dividing line between one and the other, and there is general recognition that influences have come from several directions. --Leifern 14:49, 23 January 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Actually, the distinction between East Scand. and West Scand. is somewhat misleading for traditional dialects spoken in Sweden as well, since many western traits once were spread all the way to the Baltic sea. Only the traditional dialects in Gotland may be regarded as 100% East Scand. similar to how Iceland is the only 100% West Scand. speaking area. Between the Atlantic ocean coast in Norway and the Baltic sea coast in Sweden there is a continuum of dialects where the degree of being West (East) Scand. drops in the eastern (western) direction. It is quite pointless to say that all dialects west (east) of some specific border are West (East) Scand. Only the island dialects (in Iceland and Gotland) are pure in this sense. (Though modern Gotland dialects have become more and more western, i.e. have become closer and closer to standard Swedish which is not pure East Scand. If it were, one would e.g. write 'Jerk, hjär jär jag med min jäld!' more or less like in the traditional Gotland dialects, not 'Erik, här är jag med min eld!'; cf. Nynorsk 'Eirik, her er eg med elden min!' completely lacking breaking of 'e' here.)
My general impression is that - at least in Sweden - the traditional dialects have adopted both western and eastern novational traits quite early, though not to a complete extent. Especially the dialects in the central parts of Scandinavia have stabilized to have a near-balance mix of western and eastern novational traits. (A typical example here is Älvdalen speech which on one hand has a lot of nt > tt assimilations, even where most western norwegian dialects have lost them, and on the other hand has a lot of e > je breakings, even where most east swedish dialects have lost them.) On the contrary, the standard languages have been reluctant to adopt these novational traits. Or rather, one has based the written language on a tradition going back to a time where the novations weren't used amongst literate upper class people. Remember that the novations were, and still are, considered as belonging to illiterate peasants with degenerate speech. At least if the novations weren't produced in Denmark. Novations from Denmark have had a more easy life to spread even amongst nobles.
Jens Persson jepe2503 at hotmail dot com ( 19:02, 15 February 2006 (UTC))Reply[reply]


A table of some sort would help clarify this article greatly I think

Fornadan 03:27, 11 May 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Different comments[edit]

  1. A lot of Norwegian words are left untranslated. It would help if someone translated them.
  2. It looks strange that vi(we) and oss(us) are marked as different words, when they are used in different cases, just as in English. If some dialects are using oss for all cases, the text should make that clear.

惑乱 分からん 12:29, 15 March 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

What about Nordfjord and Sunnfjord?[edit]

In the general description of the different dialects inner Sogn og Fjordane and outer Sogn is mentioned, but the Nordfjord and Sunnfjord dialects are not mentioned. Where do they fit? North-West Norwegian, South-West Norwegian or neither? Inge 13:26, 26 April 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

"Tense" in Syntax section[edit]

Can someone clarify the word "tense" in the following section? From context I wonder if "emphasis" might be the intended meaning - "tense" usually refers to how the time of an event is marked on a verb, and that doesn't seem to be what's being referred to here:

Syntax can vary greatly between the dialects, and the tense of the sentence is important for the listener to get the meaning. For instance, a question can be formed without the traditional "asking-words" (how, where, what, who..)

ex. the sentence Hvor mye er klokken? (literally: "How much is the clock?") i.e. "What time is it" can be put in the following forms: E klokka mykje? (Is the clock much?) (tense is on "the clock"), E a mytti klokka? (Is she much the clock?) (tense on "is")

--Zeborah 06:48, 9 November 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

remove cleanup-ipa tag?[edit]

I don't see any parts of the article that use phonetic notation that is non-IPA. Some of it is unusual (e.g. /øy/ really is /øy/ and not a mis-written /øj/) but it appears to all be authentic. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 17:54, 19 December 2006 (UTC).Reply[reply]

Maybe a silly question, but...[edit]

...what do they speak on Svalbard? Normally, considering the tenuous population and relatively short colonisation history, I would assume that everyone spoke the standard language, but since there isn't really such thing as Standard Norwegian, I just wondered... Steinbach (fka Caesarion) 13:37, 11 December 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I guess they speak whatever dialect they had upon moving there - presumably with a northern 'tint'. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 02:44, 2 April 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]

They would probably speak the same dialect as where they came from, since, as you mention, the duration of most peoples time there are normally limited. However, it might be en interesting question to ask about the children staying there. One might think that they are more likely to adapt to each other than the adults. In that case, I would assume that whatever group is numerically dominant would have the strongest influence on their way of speaking. --Oddeivind (talk) 18:21, 28 December 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]

It's relatively well known that there is an unproportiately large number of Northern Norwegians in Svalbard compared to the rest of the country. But the national and international migration to and from the islands doesn't, which is large in numbers and diverse in area of origin, makes it so that that accent gains a foothold as a standard, and probably as there dialects with more speakers than Northern Norwegian, there might only be higher proportion of inhabitants from with those dialects, not actually a higher overall figure. I strongly urge anyone with numbers or experiences to come forward and shed some more light on this. - Bjørnar Munkerud, native of mainland Norway, the 23. of June 2013 — Preceding unsigned comment added by 2A00:C440:20:1116:2110:C4EA:C39F:C8B2 (talk) 19:50, 23 June 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

About western dialects, and my shitty editing skills[edit]

I assume Bergen Norwegian is a part of western Norwegian. I would like to add the forms "Når, Kortid, Kotid" to the table, under When, and Western Norwegian. I do however not know how to do that. I tried, but I kept breaking the table. If someone could do it for me, I'd be glad. "Når" and "Kotid" are used in Bergen, and Kortid are used in the surrounding countryside at least.

Sorry, I forgot to sign... :( (talk) 18:07, 16 May 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Done (don't know what you tried; but a '||' without quotation marks indicates a new column). --Harald Khan Ճ 17:06, 20 May 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]
You two be careful about considering how to spell dialectical forms, though, and dont overflow the tables because the occasional oddball has a different pronunciation, either. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 19:52, 23 June 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

"Radical" forms of Oslo dialects[edit]

The article talks about so called "radical forms of Oslo dialects". This is a rather strange phrase. What exactly is "radical" here? Actually it is those who conform to the written language who might be said to have a "radical" speech, as this speech is strongly different from what is in fact the traditional form of speech in the area. Thus, their form of speech deviates radically from the traditional form of speech in the area and might therefore be considered to be "radical". --Oddeivind (talk) 20:49, 17 August 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Possessive pronoun; "its"[edit]

This is a problematic word to translate, unlike "his" or "hers". In Bokmål, the translation is "dets", while in Nynorsk and in many dialects there is no simple translation. Any ideas on how to solve this? --Harald Khan Ճ 11:35, 22 December 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Alveolar Trill or Tap[edit]

Here it says that most Norwegian dialects use an alveolar trill. However, in Norwegian phonology it says they use an alveolar tap. Which is it? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 18:49, 29 November 2010 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Good article![edit]

Found hardly any mistake in there, very good research work guys! Even the (usually omitted) bit about Oslo region adopting the uvular r is in, wow! Ever heard of Klovner I Kamp? :) Probably not if you hate hip-hop, but wth. I can still remember this line from their 2000 track I Oslo bys kulisser kan du skimte nattens sønner. You can hear the R sound of this region perfectly in this song. I think it's even rather an /ɾ/ in the Oslo region, because it has got these slight "flapping" characteristics. -andy (talk) 22:32, 23 December 2010 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I don't think Klovner i kamp (and yes, that's how you capitalise it), is the go-to place for secure information about pronunciation. Both it's members have recent foreign roots, and then there's also internal dialectical and sociolectical differences and generational linguistical change. Secondly, it's common to affect other pronunciations in song (including in rap) in Norwegian as it is in English, usually to make it either easier to sing, easier to understand, or both. - Bjørnar Munkerud, a native of the area, the 23. of June 2013 — Preceding unsigned comment added by 2A00:C440:20:1116:2110:C4EA:C39F:C8B2 (talk) 19:43, 23 June 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Grammars and syntax: split infinitive[edit]

The term split infinitive is potentially confusing: here it seems to refer simply to infinitives having to parts (å plus the verb), whereas in everyday use it refers to putting something between the "two halves" of an English infinitive.

Is it the standard linguistic term for Norwegian infinitives with å? If so, a note pointing out the difference would help. If it's not official terminology then it would make sense to change it to something less confusing---the standard term if there is one, or else something like two-part infinitive or å-infinitive.

Also it could be seen an inaccurate term: in both English and Norwegian it can be argued that to or å isn't part of the infinitive, but a separate marker which precedes it. In that case split infinitive becomes nonsensical, since the infinitive is just a single word which is still in one piece. Musiconeologist (talk) 14:15, 10 September 2012 (UTC)Reply[reply]

In Norwegian, most verbs can have an infinitive ending, which is the vowel that follows the "root" of the verb (a small number of verbs, such as sjå ('see') have no infintive ending, regardless of dialect; the vowel å is part of this verb's "root"). Split infintive refers to the phenomena where there is one group of verbs that have one ending, (-a), while the other group have a different ending (-e or -Ø (none)). Perhaps my edits made this a bit clearer. å is simply the infinitive marker and has nothing to do with the split infintive; it could probably be dropped from the examples altogether. Njardarlogar (talk) 22:08, 10 September 2012 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I feel the text makes clear what forms the infinitive takes; my point is that to someone whose first language is English and who isn't familiar with linguistics, the term split infinitive has an unambiguous, but in this case wrong, meaning: insertion of a word or phrase between to and an infinitive.
So the issue is whether split infinitive is a standard linguistic term for the forms of Norwegian infinitive it describes in the article. If it is, then the difference from everyday usage needs explicitly pointing out. A comment like "Note that split infinitive here is a technical term unrelated to the practice of 'splitting' English infinitives" would do the job. If it's not a specialised technical term but merely descriptive, then it can be replaced with something that's less misleading to the average reader. Musiconeologist (talk) 01:14, 12 September 2012 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I suppose a book in English on the Norwegian language could tell. "split infinitive" is a direct translation of kløyvd infinitiv, but could also be the word commonly used in English. Njardarlogar (talk) 09:59, 16 September 2012 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Parts of the former are badly written, not to mention the fact that the whole section lacks inline citations.

For instance, are the first symbols the Old Norse pronunciations?

/ei/ > [ai] (probably Old Norse, SEN [æi])

/uː/ > [eu] (probably Old Norse; SEN [ʉː])

/oː/ > [ou] (probably Old Norse; SEN [uː])

The same problem is with the following:

/oː/ > [ou] (probably Old Norse; SEN [uː])

/uː/ > [eʉ] (probably Old Norse; SEN [ʉː])

Then there's another problem, namely: are monophthongized Old Norse /ei/, /øy/ and /au/ really short? Unless the vowel length is not phonemic in the monophthongizing dialects, this looks somewhat dubious.

Plus, the vocabulary section needs IPA. — Peter238 (v̥ɪˑzɪʔ mɑˑɪ̯ tˢʰoˑk̚ pʰɛˑɪ̯d̥ʒ̊) 22:05, 3 January 2015 (UTC)Reply[reply]

1. Ok, I figured it out. It's all Old Norse. — Peter238 (v̥ɪˑzɪʔ mɑˑɪ̯ tˢʰoˑk̚ pʰɛˑɪ̯d̥ʒ̊) 09:16, 4 January 2015 (UTC)Reply[reply]
2. It can be either short or long. — Peter238 (v̥ɪˑzɪʔ mɑˑɪ̯ tˢʰoˑk̚ pʰɛˑɪ̯d̥ʒ̊) 09:56, 4 January 2015 (UTC)Reply[reply]