The University of Wisconsin Press

Foreign Language / Reference / German Studies / Linguistics


Word Atlas of Pennsylvania German
Lester W. J. Seifert
With an Introduction by Mark L. Louden

This is the most extensive reference work documenting linguistic variations in Pennsylvania German (also known as Pennsylvania Dutch), the dialect now spoken primarily by Old Order Amish and Old Order Mennonite communities in the United States.

This Word Atlas displays more than 160 maps showing regional variants for a word or grammatical form throughout the former German-speaking regions of southeastern Pennsylvania, as well as helpful maps of Pennsylvanian geographical features and political boundaries. One of the pioneers in linguistic research on this dialect, Lester W. J. Seifert of the University of Wisconsin–Madison and his colleague Carroll Reed of the University of Washington interviewed almost 100 native speakers in these regions during the 1940s, using an extensive questionnaire. This research, graphically represented in the Word Atlas, is an invaluable record of a historically and culturally important language that is rapidly dying out. The volume also includes an introduction to Pennsylvania German dialectology and linguistics by Mark Louden of the University of Texas, several essays by Seifert on dialect geography, and a brief biography of Seifert by Howard Martin of the University of Wisconsin.

Distributed for the Max Kade Institute for German-American Studies

Lester W. J. Seifert was professor of German at the University of Wisconsin–Madison.

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July 1999

260 pp. 160 maps 8 1/2 x 11

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Cloth $19.95 t
ISBN 978-0-924119-02-6
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