Speech : Germanic Sound Shift : Plattdeutsch

Do you know how many languages are spoken in Germany?  5 Plattdeutsch, Friesisch, Sorbisch, Romani, Danisch. On Monday 3rd September we were introduce to Germanic Sound Shift and Plattdeutsch by Holger. Wordsmith Holger gives us a brief history of Germanic Sound.

The presentation dealt with the so called Germanic sound shift which happened in several phases during the late Ancient times and the early Middle Ages. (4th century a.d. till 10thcentury a.d.)

A sound shift is a change of certain letters in a large number of words. (e.g. the “p” becomes a “pf”, “t” becomes a “s”)

Since that period the standard German (Hochdeutsch) differs more from English than before.

However, some areas of German territories and later the Holy Roman Empire did not undergo that shift. This applies for North Germany (cf. Benrather Line), where still Plattdeutschn (lower German)  is spoken, and also the Netherlands.

Therefore, the similarities between English, Dutch and Plattdeutsch are more significant than between English and standard German. (e.g. English apple, Dutch/Plattdeutsch appel, German Apfe