6

Swiss-German sounds a bit "different" to ears accustomed to most forms of German. But it is usually recognizable because most Swiss German words have equivalents in other forms of German.

But Swiss German is spoken in a country that is "home" to French, Italian, and Romanche, among Latin languages. Inevitably, there will be words of "Latin" origin that will creep into Swiss German that are not found in other forms of German. Are questions about such words on topic on this site?

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Questions on the finer points of the German language are all we are about.

Swiss German is one of the many variants of the modern German language spoken today. As such I do not see any reason why this should be less on topic than any other questions on spoken German including all dialects that exist in Germany or elsewhere.

Many of the questions on Swiss German are indeed very interesting as much of the linguistic roots of German are preserved. This often gives interesting insights on the evolution of German, and may help to understand certain regional peculiarities. This also includes influences from other languages which are not only found in Switzerland. Sometimes they considerably differ in regional usage.

Yes, questions on Swiss German are welcome here.

4

I want to expand Takkats answer, since there are two different kinds of German spoken in Switzerland, and neither the question, nor Takkats answer addresses this difference:

Swiss Standard German

In German: »Schweizerisches Deutsch« or »Schweizer Hochdeutsch«
This is one of the three standard variations of German. It is a standard language, which means, that it is taught in schools, and it is used in official documents. There is a set of clear rules that defines whether a word or a sentence in correct Swiss Standard German or not. (For example: »parkieren« is correct, but »groß« is not)

Swiss German

In Standard German: »Schweizerdeutsch«
In Swiss German: »Schwizerdütsch«, »Schwyzerdütsch«, »Schwiizertüütsch«, (and much more different writings)
This is a group of Alemannic German dialects spoken in Switzerland. It is not a standard variation of any language. This means: It is not taught in schools, and it is not used in official documents. And there is not a well-defined set of rules which you could use to decide if a word or sentence is wrong or right.
And: It is not one dialect, but a group of many different dialects.

But Swiss German (the group of dialects) and Swiss Standard German (the standard variation of German) are so different, that it is hard to understand the other language, if you know just one of them.

And also very important: Swiss German is used only to talk, not to write.
Swiss Standard German is used only to write, not to talk.
Well, this is simplified, because when for example something official has to be said by a politician, then he/she might use Swiss Standard German for talking too, and also some teachers talk Swiss Standard German when teaching students. And swiss people write Swiss German in internet boards.

Which is on-topic?

Both are on-topic.

  1. German Stack Exchange is dealing with modern Standard German in all of its three variations.
  2. German Stack Exchange is dealing with old forms of German (i.e. Old High German and others).
  3. German Stack Exchange is dealing with any German dialect.

(1) includes Swiss Standard German, and (3) includes Swiss German.

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