Grammatical Areality in the Nordic Countries and Northern Germany (GrammArNord)

Prof. Dr. Steffen Höder (principal investigator)
Sabrina Goll M.Ed., Nina Sternitzke M.A. (researchers)
Sarah Paetzke (student assistant)

The project is funded by the German Research Foundation (since March 2020).

Grammatical Areality in the Nordic Countries and Northern Germany (GrammArNord)

There are close historical ties between Northern Germany and the Nordic Countries, especially the Scandinavian mainland. This is primarily due to factors such as the immediate geographical closeness and the resulting stable and intensive language contact on the German-Danish (language) border, the economic contacts via the North Sea and Baltic Sea trade routes since the Hanseatic era, Germany’s cultural role model function for northern Europe for centuries, and Schleswig-Holstein’s long political affiliation with Denmark.

Low German (and indirectly also North German High German) and the Nordic languages (not least Danish dialects) share many linguistic similarities due to their common history. While in particular contact-induced lexical innovations in Scandinavian are well-documented, the project focuses on other linguistic levels, especially morphology and syntax.

GrammArNord analyses areal and contact linguistic relationships between Nordic and (North) German varieties from an areal and contact linguistic perspective. The aim is to develop an areal-linguistic database that includes languages and varieties in Northern Europe and Northern Germany with a focus on geotemporal referencing. This allows grammatical features to be analysed in their distribution in what is conceptualised as multidimensional communicative space and described in detail with regard to relevant contact linguistic scenarios.