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Lorraine Franconian (French: francique mosellan, platt lorrain, platt mosellan) is a designation, in practice ambiguous, for dialects of German spoken in the north-eastern part of the French region of Lorraine. These dialects all belong to the Western Central High German (German: Westmitteldeutsch) group of German dialects. The term Lorraine Franconian has multiple denotations. Some scholars use it to refer to the entire above mentioned group of dialects. Others use it more narrowly to refer to the dialect spoken in the valley of the river Nied (in Pays du Nied, whose largest town is Bouzonville), to distinguish it from the other two German dialects spoken in Lorraine, Luxembourgish to the west and Rhine Franconian (or Rhine Frankish) to the east. The Pays du Nied dialect belongs to the Moselle Franconian (Germanic) group of West Central German dialects.

In part due to the ambiguity of the term, estimations of the number of speakers of Lorraine Franconian in France vary widely, ranging from 30,000[1] to 400,000 (which would make it the 3rd most-spoken regional language in France, after Occitan and Alsatian).

The most reliable data come from the Enquête famille carried out by INSEE as part of the 1999 census, but they give a somewhat indirect picture of the current situation (see Languages in France for a discussion of this survey). Approximately 78,000 people were reported to speak Lorraine Franconian, but fewer than 50,000 passed basic knowledge of the language on to their children. Another statistic illustrating the same point: Of all adult men who used Franconian regularly at age 5, less than 30% use (or used) the language regularly with their own children.[2]

References

  1. ^ Auburtin
  2. ^ Héran

Sources

  • [1] Auburtin, Éric. 2002. "Langues régionales et relations transfrontalières dans l’espace Saar-Lor-Lux". Hérodote 105, pp. 102—122.
  • [2] Héran, François, et al. 2002. "La dynamique des langues en France au fil du XXe siècle". Population et sociétés 376. Paris: Institut National d'Études Démographiques (INED).
  • Hughes, Stephanie. 2005. Bilingualism in North-East France with specific reference to Rhenish Franconian spoken by Moselle Cross-border (or frontier) workers. In Preisler, Bent, et al., eds. The Consequences of Mobility: Linguistic and Sociocultural Contact Zones. Roskilde, Denmark: Roskilde Universitetscenter: Institut for Sprog og Kultur. ISBN 8773496510.
  • Kieffer, Jean-Louis. 2006. Le Platt Lorrain de poche. Assimil. ISBN 2-7005-0374-0

External links

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