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Swiss Roots
 
608-527-6565
Swiss Roots
 
608-527-6565

Languages

Willkommen, Bienvenue, Benvenuti, Bund dì, Allegra, Bainvegni, Bagnnia, Grüezi, Grüessech, Sali, Grüess Gott.
All mean welcome, hello and hi.
For many of us, It's much easier to read the directional signposts that you find all over the land of four languages--and many more dialects.
Switzerland has four national languages, none of which is English.
German is the most widely spoken language in Switzerland. 19 of 26 cantons are (Swiss) German-speaking.  Swissworld.org has more on Swiss German.
In western Switzerland, French is spoken in "Suisse Romande.". Cantons Geneva, Jura, Neuchâtel and Vaud are French-speaking while in Bern, Fribourg and Valais, French and German are spoken.
The border between the German and the French speaking part of of Switzerland is known as the "Röstigraben"  (literally translated: "hashed potatoes ditch"). It refers not only to the separation of the languages, but also the separation of the cultures and the ideologies.
Italian is spoken in Ticino and four southern valleys of Canton Graubünden.
Romansh is spoken by only 0.5% of the Swiss population.  It is found in the only trilingual canton of Graubünden where people also speak German and Italian. Romansh, like Italian and French, is a language with Latin roots.
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What to learn how to speak one of the MANY Swiss German dialects?  It's best to go live in Switzerland to do so, but for most of us that is just a dream.  So, pick up an App.
How about a free Grüezi Switzerland app for your IOS device!
For free, Android users can learn Swiss German AND Swedish
This is a little strange for those of us who are often confused by others with the statement "oh you are from Sweden."

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