Requests for new languages/Wikipedia Westphalian

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Westfälisch Wikipedia[edit]

main page Request for a new language edition: Wikipedia Westphalian
submitted verification final decision
Applications-system.svg This language has been verified as eligible.
The language is eligible for a project, which means that the subdomain can be created once there is an active community and a localized interface, as described in the language proposal policy. You can discuss the creation of this language project on this page.

Once the criteria are met, the language committee can proceed with the approval, will verify the test project content with a reliable neutral source, such as a professor or expert and notify the Board of Trustees for a possible veto.

If you think the criteria are met, but the project is still waiting for approval, feel free to notify the committee and ask them to consider its approval.

  • The community needs to develop an active test project; it must remain active until approval (automated statistics, recent changes). It is generally considered active if the analysis lists at least three active, not-grayed-out editors listed in the sections for the previous few months.
  • The community needs to complete required MediaWiki interface translations in that language (about localization, translatewiki, check completion).
  • The community needs to discuss and complete the settings table below:
What Value Example / Explanation
Language code wep (SILEthnologue) A valid ISO 639-1 or 639-3 language code, like "fr", "de", "nso", ...
Language name Westphalian Language name in English
Language name Westfäölsk Language name in your language. This will appear in the language list on Special:Preferences, in the interwiki sidebar on other wikis, ...
Language Wikidata item Q505655 - item has currently the following values:
  • en label = Westphalian language
  • native label (P1705) =
  • instance/subclass (P31/P279) = language / Low Saxon
  • Wikimedia language code (P424) =
  • writing system (P282) = Latin script
  • number of speakers (P1098) =
Item about the language at Wikidata. It would normally include the Wikimedia language code, name of the language, etc. Please complete at Wikidata if needed.
You can optionally list your user name if you're a contributor to the wiki. Add "N" next to your name if you are a native speaker of this language.
Links Kommission für Mundart- und Namenforschung Westfalens Westfälische MundART Links to previous requests, or references to external websites or documents.
Project name "Wikipedia" in your language
Project namespace usually the same as the project name
Project talk namespace "Wikipedia talk" (the discussion namespace of the project namespace)
Enable uploads no Files should be uploaded to Commons, but if you want, you can enable local file uploading.
Notes: (1) files on Commons can be used on all wikis; (2) this setting can be changed afterwards; (3) uploading fair-use images is not allowed on Commons (more info); (4) localisation to your language may be insufficient on Commons
Optional settings
Project logo File:... 135x135 PNG derivative from a decent SVG image (instructions)
Default project timezone Continent/City "Continent/City", e.g. "Europe/Brussels" or "America/Mexico City" (see list of valid timezones)
Additional namespaces For example for a Wikisource which would need "Page", "Page talk", "Index", "Index talk"
Additional settings Anything else that should be set
submit maniphest task (includes everything automatically, except additional namespaces/settings)

Arguments in favour[edit]

  • This WIKIPEDIA should wake an almost forgotten language (Westphalian) again to the life. Der Buckesfelder 20:23, 6 May 2008 (UTC)
  • If this check is created, the language lives longer.
  • As a unique language it should be allowed to flourish as long as people are willing to work on it, taking from the differences with Lower Sorbian, i'm sure its very closely related but i know how hard it is to write in another language or dialect when your in the minority in this case Westphalian and you are surrounded by Lower Sorbian speakers/editors telling you you are writing something wrong or who will alse alter your Westphalian vernacular into Lower Sorbian same with spelling. For these reasons we should allow this distinct speech and writing to have its own plane.Qrc2006 17:30, 10 August 2008 (UTC)
It is not a unique language. The differences from Lower Sorbian are indeed huge, but that comes from the fact, that Westphalian is Lower Saxon and not related to Sorbian... --::Slomox:: >< 20:45, 10 August 2008 (UTC)
well then linguists must be stupid and liars. 02:39, 18 August 2008 (UTC)
I have no idea, what you are speaking of. --::Slomox:: >< 11:44, 18 August 2008 (UTC)

Arguments against[edit]

  • Westphalian is part of Low Saxon (nds:) and Westphalian contributions are accepted on the Low Saxon Wikipedia. There is no need to create another Wikipedia. --::Slomox:: >< 21:14, 7 May 2008 (UTC)
  • Agree with Slomox. --ARBE0 19:00, 18 May 2008 (UTC)
  • Every source I've ever come across confirms that Westphalian is part of Low German (Plattdüütsch), for which there already is a Wikipedia (.nds). Westphalian has its direct counterparts in the Dutch Low Saxon dialect groups Achterhooks and Tweants, evident for instance in vowel change for plurals. The Tweants dialect Vjens even has characteristic Westphalian diphthongs. There is a separate Dutch Low Saxon Wikipedia because of Dutch/German spelling issues (and, I'm sure, issues of national identity). I would find it a shame if there had to be further fragmentation of Low German on Wikipedia. I am strongly in favour of a greater Westphalian representation on Wikipedia, because the Waterplatt of the Graafschop Bentheim, for instance, is close to my own dialect. But the speakers of Westphalian could and should take care of that on .nds, which is also their Wikipedia, even if it currently happens to be dominated by Noordneddersassisch. Ni'jluuseger 16:09, 16 August 2008 (UTC)
It were issues of national identity that led to the two very different spelling systems and that led to many of the differences between the two language variants, which made the split into two projects necessary. But I don't think that issues of national identity directly played a role in the split itself. --::Slomox:: >< 18:56, 17 August 2008 (UTC)
  • Users can already contribute in Westphalian on either nds or nds-nl. Servien 14:12, 20 July 2011 (UTC)
  • Per above, and where is test project?--Liuxinyu970226 (talk) 00:49, 13 February 2014 (UTC)

Other discussion[edit]

Ethnologue does not agree with the notion that it is part of Lower Saxon. It is a language. GerardM 09:26, 23 May 2008 (UTC)

This is in violation with the language proposal policy, which says: The language must be sufficiently unique that it could not coexist on a more general wiki.
And actually even Ethnologue says, that Westphalian is part of Low Saxon in the entry on Low Saxon: Westphaelian and Plautdietsch also have separate entries. Note the also. They are part of Low Saxon, but also have own entries. It makes sense to request every new project language to have an ISO code, but the sole fact, that an ISO code exists, does not mean, that the project should be accepted. --::Slomox:: >< 14:26, 23 May 2008 (UTC)
@Gerard: When you first declared the proposal for eligible, I thought you made a mistake. But obviously you are breaching the policy deliberately. The wording of the policy is very clear. --::Slomox:: >< 12:52, 24 May 2008 (UTC)
It is sad that you feel that way. It is however accepted practice. FYI I have informed the language committee about this, I have not had any reply and this is accepted as consent. GerardM 06:02, 26 May 2008 (UTC)
Ah, I see, if the subcommittee consents (well, actually: doesn't protest), it is accepted to violate the policy. Is that what you want to say? --::Slomox:: >< 12:20, 26 May 2008 (UTC)
Your interpretation is not the interpretation that is accepted as such. GerardM 13:38, 26 May 2008 (UTC)
Interpretation? The policy is not a poem by Rilke, it is very clear prose and says: The language must be sufficiently unique that it could not coexist on a more general wiki. Westphalian not only could, but it actually does coexist on a more general wiki. And until now you didn't contest this fact, but just said, that the fact is overruled by Overlord ISO. --::Slomox:: >< 16:48, 26 May 2008 (UTC)

Westphalian is not Low Saxon!--Der Buckesfelder 07:39, 25 May 2008 (UTC)

What exactly are you trying to say? --::Slomox:: >< 12:47, 25 May 2008 (UTC)
Buckesfelder's original post said Westphalian is not flat, my earlier post related to that.
That's plainly not true. The Westphalian writer Heinrich Kleibauer wrote the book Westfäölsk Platt - Ne Sammlunk vüö Kleine und Graute, affsunners vüö de Schaulen rutgiewen. The homepage of the Westphalian writer Klaus-Werner Kahl has the domain Peter Mayle has written Wo kuemmt de kleinen kinner hiär? nie vertellt in westfäölsk Platt. Or read any of our Wikipedia articles on Westphalian. Every single of them mentions, that Westphalian is part of Low Saxon/Low German. --::Slomox:: >< 15:31, 3 June 2008 (UTC)
Buckesfelder again changed his statement. His statement was Westphalian is not Platt! before. My earlier post related to that.
Westphalian is not Low Saxon! likewise is not true. The Westphalian writer Hermann Hagedorn has written Hatte on Heeme. Botterblaumen. Gedichte in niedersächsischer Mundart. Widukind, the greatest leader of the Saxons, was from Westphalia. The Irminsul stood in Westphalia. I am curious about you next statement. Come on! --::Slomox:: >< 16:19, 5 June 2008 (UTC)

To my understanding, Westphalian is sufficiently different from the Low Saxon that we use in WP-nds. The vowel system differs a lot. Example: DE: Bach, NDS: Beek, WF: Biäke. DE: essen, NDS: eten, WF: iäten. The resulting spellings are so different that they cannot be mixed within the same article. We also have a test Wikipedia in Plautdietsch. Plautdietsch is also quite far away from the usual Low Saxon. So as long as there are people who want proper Westphalian articles, they should get their own WP. The only condition that I would see valid is that they provide us with a convincing incubator wiki. HeikoEvermann 21:35, 27 May 2008 (UTC)

Okay, then we must go into linguistics. Westphalia has for one of the several different e's (the others are all the same as in the other Low Saxon regions). You can see it in this map (the yellow bordered region). But do we need an Eastphalian project too cause Eastphalian has leppel instead of leepel or liäpel? And actually even some parts of Westphalia have leppel and some others have just like Northern Low Saxon leepel. And do we need even one more project for the blue bordered region in the east with leipel (I don't know for a special name for this region, but if their e is different they surely need their own project. I suggest the name Leipelish Wikipedia). Another nice example of Westphalian breaking diphthongs is iu for long u like iut for ūt. Here's the map. But, oh, it doesn't coincide very well with our map... There's one region where we have both and they say iut'n Liäpel iäten, another where they say iut'n Läpel äten and yet another where they have ut'n Liäpel iäten. Well, let's look for more examples of broken diphthongs in Westphalian: ua for long o like kuaken vs. kōken. This is the map. And, yippie yayh, it does match the region! (At least if we are not nitpicking, some regions don't follow.) Next broken diphthong: for short ö like twiälf vs. twölf. Here's the map and baam!, strike, it matches again. Okay, nex try: au for long o (yes, we already had long o, it's another long o), brauder vs. brōder. The map. Holy shit! It stretches til Pomerania! But only half of your neat region is part of it. It spoils it all...
There is indeed a region where several vocalic features come together which makes the language look odd sometimes. But other than the spelling issues with the Dutch Low Saxons this doesn't make the language unintelligible. Ek iät iut de twiälf Liäpels un kuak fiär mien Brauder is odd for the Northern Low Saxon more accustomed to something like Ik ät ut de twölf Läpels un kook för mien Brauder, but if we'd split there still would be realizations like Ek ett ut dei zwölf Leppels un koch for mien Brauder or Ik eet ut de twalf Lepels un kook för mien Brör. Sass Northern Low Saxon would be Ik eet ut de twölf Lepels un kaak för mien Broder. Dutch Low Saxon would be 'k eet oet de twaalf lepels en kook voor mien breur (if you say, that the Dutch Low Saxon doesn't look that far away from the German Low Saxon: yeah, that's true. It's the same language! But this is an example of very plain language (nouns, adjectives, verbs). The difficulties are in the complex sentences, with grammatical devices and all that, which are influenced by the standard languages in the respective areas).
The Westphalian sentence Ek iät iut de twiälf Liäpels un kuak fiär mien Brauder looks odd for my Northern Low Saxon eye. If I try to read the Westphalian sentence aloud, I am unable to create those nifty diphthongs. But the sounds coming from my mouth, which are based on my best try to realize the diphthongs, are actually very close to the Northern Low Saxon sounds. And that's the difference, why Dutch Low Saxon needs a project and Westphalian not. If I try to read Dutch Low Saxon aloud, I stumble over the spelling and over those many Dutch-influenced gramatical structures. I can't read it aloud.
Plautdietsch is yet another case. They don't need an own project, cause their variant of our language is that far away from ours. It isn't that far. No, but they need their own project cause of identity. They care for their language cause it is their special language. Compare it to the jews. The jews developed many special jewish languages. It had to do with identity and their religion combined with separation from outside communities. Jews didn'T start writing in Yiddish cause they didn't know German. They wrote Yiddish, cause their identity made them loyal to their special language. The same for the Mennonite Low Saxons. They don't identify themselves with East Frisian Low Saxon or Westphalian or Sleswig Low Saxon. Their identity binds them to Plautdietsch. There's no point for them to participate in an broader project.
You have to see the broader circumstances and reasons. Only looking onto language identifiers and codes or only looking on the fitness to adapt to a standard spelling is too narrow-minded. Reality is more complex. --::Slomox:: >< 00:18, 28 May 2008 (UTC)

There are also other check's in Germanic languages, why not Westfälisch as Wikipedia? This is Wikipedia's (names in their own language): Frysk West Vlams Plattdüütsch Nedersaksisch Seeltersk Zeêuws Alemannisch (Swiss German, Alsatian, Schwaebisch, Vorarlbergerisch) Boarisch Ripoarisch Lëtzebuergesch Limburgs ייִדיש Deitsch

Languages from Central Europe, which currently (still) in the incubator are:

Broaban[t]s Dränþs Grönnegs Frasch Plautdietsch Pfälzisch

--Der Buckesfelder 12:03, 3 June 2008 (UTC)

Why not Westfälisch as Wikipedia? You answered that question by the list you provided:
West Vlams
Westphalian perfectly fits into the Low Saxon Wikipedia. And if you ask Why not Westfälisch as Wikipedia?, I have to ask Why Westfälisch as Wikipedia? There is not a single capable active contributor for Westphalian content, who could write articles in the still non-existing test project. You claimed to be a native speaker at first but you have not proven to be able to write even one single coherent sentence until now. And their is no proof, that Westphalian speakers want a Wikipedia edition of their own (I doubt, that they want it). Northern Low Saxon is much more vivid than Westphalian, but still Northern Low Saxon has only about five regular active contributors. Where do you want to take the active contributors for a Westphalian edition of Wikipedia from? Present at least one! --::Slomox:: >< 15:31, 3 June 2008 (UTC)
Given why the nds.wikipedia was split into two, this argument is unbelievable. Thanks, GerardM 16:32, 16 August 2008 (UTC)
What are you referring to? --::Slomox:: >< 19:00, 17 August 2008 (UTC)

I can understand why this proposal is made. I think that it's, for Westphalians, more interesting to write about interesting things, but because those interested things are often written in a language family-wikipedia as the first things, because everybody is interested in writting interested things, Westphalians can't write interested things if they don't get their own Wikipedia. (thinking: maybe I've used interest a little bit too much..) --OosWesThoesBes 07:55, 21 September 2008 (UTC)

Der Buckesfelder suggests that, Westphalian was not Nedersassisch. That is of course true. But the ISO code nds to my understanding covers every variety of Low German, i.e. every language spoken between the Waterkant and the Benrather Linie where Low German borders to Middle German. Whether or not that is a good and useful collection to go together in a Wikipedia is quite another issue.
Actually, I made two observations:
  1. A set of contributions to the nds Wikipedia has been deleted which were made in a dialekt of the South Low Franconian group located between the Benrather Linie and the Uerdinger Linie and the writer has been asked to better contribute to the li Wikipedia - although his contribution was made in a German based spellling whilst the Limburgisch Wikipedia (at least at that time) practically only used a Dutch based spelling. (The South Low Franconian group is both geographically and linguistically at the rim of nds , and indeed close to, or part of li , depending on linguist school)
  2. A reader from the Sauerland, i.e. a (Southern) Westphalian speaker, whom I made aware of the nds Wikipedia, told me that, almost everything in the Wikipedia he read was in the Münsterland Dialekt, that is (Northern) Westphalian. (I believe that is, because the (German based) Sass spelling used in the Wikipedia is a great working compromise between the varieties of the Low German languages, at least in the center of the Low German speaking areas)
From these observations, though I know from listening that, Westphalian and Low Saxon do sound very differently, I tend to believe that, their written forms would be close enough to go together, if a proper spelling system is used. As in China, or in earlier times between China and Japan, where people do/did not understand each other when speaking, they easily do, or did, in writing because they were using the same ideographs. Maybe I am a bit too optimistic? I am too far from real knowledge to provide more than hints. --Purodha Blissenbach 11:45, 28 October 2008 (UTC)
Der Buckesfelder suggests that, Westphalian was not Nedersassisch. That is of course true. That is not of course true. Westphalian is Saxon. That's a fact. It is too a fact, that in some contexts the term Low Saxon and the corresponding German and Low Saxon terms are used restricted to Northern Low Saxon or Dutch Low Saxon (which of both too depends on the exact context). But these are special uses. The general use includes Westphalian.
The ISO code nds does indeed cover an area between Waterkant and the Benrath line, but not the whole area. Its Western border is the Westfalen line or de:Einheitsplurallinie (at least on the German side of the border, on the Dutch side of the border there is a bit of a dispute whether the border is the Einheitsplurallinie or whether West-Veluws too is part of Low Saxon). Varieties of Lower Frankonian around Xanten, Kevelaer and Cleves, which are Low German, but not Low Saxon, are not part of it. Ethnologue and ISO are not very precise with their distinctions, so I'm not sure which code is the correct one for this dialect, but at least Cleves is mentioned in the description of the code lim for Limburgish on Ethnologue. It is very clear, that they are not part of nds.
I can't recall the event with an speaker of Low Franconian you mention. Could you provide the name of the user?
Some of the potential readers of this may not realize the importance of what you have said in your last paragraph, so I will make it clearer: Purodha talked to a speaker from Sauerland. They speak Westphalian in the Sauerland. And this Sauerland speaker thought, that the nds Wikipedia was written in Münsterland dialect. Münsterland dialect too is Westphalian. Of course most of the nds Wikipedia is not written in Münsterland dialect. It is mostly written in Northern Low Saxon. So this Westphalian speaker didn't recognize the difference between Westphalian and Northern Low Saxon. I think this backs my argument that Westphalian and the rest of Low Saxon are very close. The difference between Southern (Sauerland) Westphalian and Northern (Münsterland) Westphalian is just as considerable as between Southern Westphalian and Northern Low Saxon.
Some Westphalian dialects have a very distinct sound compared to Northern Low Saxon. That's correct. That is related to the differences in the vocalic system I pointed out in one of my posts above. But these differences are not commonly shared between all variants of Westphalian. That's the reason, why it wouldn't help the Westphalians much to split from the rest of Low Saxon. The range of variety would be almost the same.
Some background information: The Saxons were a tribe of Germanic people in Holstein. Westphalia was not part of the Saxon area at the beginning of the Common Era. But the Saxons lend their name to a coalition of Germanic tribes which included (fully or partly) Chaucians, Langobards, Cheruscians, Chamavians, Tubantians and others. Until 500 they were merged to a single tribe called Saxons. The Westphalians arose as a subdivision of this tribe and were first mentioned in the 8th century alongside Eastphalians and Angrivarians. So the Westphalians are Saxons. In the north of the Saxon area the Hanse formed. The Hanse had a leveling effect on the Northern dialects and the power of the Hanse led to the spread of the Saxon language over wide areas which were before Slavic, Frisian or Jutish. This is why Northern Low Saxon has much less variety than Westphalian. The old Northern Saxon dialects were levelled by the Hanse and the young dialects in the colonialized areas had not much time to develop distinct features. But the old areas of Westphalia and Eastphalia had much less influence by the Hanse or other levelling factors and there is much dialectic fragmentation. Westphalia (and to a lesser extent Eastphalia) is thus a fragmentation cluster. But that doesn't mean it is thus a different group from Low Saxon. The fragmentation cluster will still have almost the same degree of fragmentation when given a project of its own. The Westphalians will still have to accept reading uncommonly written words (uncommonly for their own dialect) whether on a wep project or a nds project. --::Slomox:: >< 20:16, 29 October 2008 (UTC)
Ähem, maybe I am/was caught by political versus linguistic "borders" in geographic context. Westphalian language varieties are spoken in an area which almost entirely is outside todays political federal state "Lower Saxony", and I was convinced that, when it comes to making distinctions that, Lower Saxon was roughly the set of vernacular languages of Lower Saxony (including large overlap into neighboring federal states, as e.g. Eastphalian has) while Westphalian was closely related but not under the roof of the Lower Saxon language in a narrower sense.
The term "Plattdütsch" or "Plattdeutsch" is - astonishingly - in common use for their languages among speakers from the North until up between the Uerdingen the Benrath line, while approximately from the Benrath line on to the South, they use only "Platt", and protest, when foreigners call their vernacular "Plattdüütsch". Nevertheless they say, they were using "a German dialect" (German = Dütsch since 1400 years)
I am sorry, I do not recall the user who wrote some Limburgs (in german based spelling) in the nds Wikipedia. Maybe, (s)he was an anonymous one. I recall an article (stub) name, though, nds:Frömmich. The spelling used in the text made me believe that, the writer was from between Mönchengladbach or about, and w:Heinsberg, approximately, which is pretty near the Benrath line; his writing style and content made me believe that, he was a male of likely considerable age. -- Since we allow some overlap between strict Ripuarian, that most German Scholars use, and the "looser" borders that some dutch authors propose, we accept contributions from that area in the Wikipedia of Ripuarian languages, when contributors feel so. I copied the abovementioned stub to ksh:Frömmich early Novembre, 2006. I do not recall the circumstances, but I inserted a template saying it was in the dialect of Kerkeve, which somebody must have told me. I remember having conversed about Kerkever Platt, but did not remember this article stub in the context, until I found it again just a minute ago. Kerkeve is indeed a bit outside Mönchengladbach-Rheydt, and it is touched by the Benrath line. Some of its neigboring villages or quarters are on the other side of it.
I was not aware that, the "Einheitsplurallinie" is the Western border of ISO-defined nds . So, ok, I'll have to readjust my views. Thank you for pointing me to it.
I am afraid, I am not really certain how ISO / SIL / Ethnologue see it, but the Cleves and de:Ostbergisch vernacular languages then likely to not have an ISO code. Imho, you cannot group them under li (Limburgs) since they completely lack tonal accents. On the other hand, you can have the South-Eastern part of the Lower Franconian languages under li (including Kerkever Platt) that do have the tonal accents, they are spoken in the areas of Heinsberg, Mönchengladbach, Neuss (North), Krefeld, Ratingen, Düsseldorf (excluding parts of Benrath and South), which some call de:Limburgisch-Bergisch.
I back eveything you pointed out about the mutual understandability of written Westphalian and Northern Low Saxon. While I know from experience that North-Western Low Saxoners have a hard time understanding some Westphalians (and Eastphalians, too but less so) because of their distinkt vowels system - to my understanding this difficulty almost vanishs in writing. Strangely enough, the hardest-to-understand in the North, that I met, were from Münsterland, i.e. from geographical locations between Northern Low Saxon and South-Westphalian speaking population.
Btw. one of he reasons, among others, that the Hanse official language did not influence (Northern) Westphalian so much was that, there were rough and swampy territories in between making travel and trade hard and dangerous.
--Purodha Blissenbach 13:14, 31 October 2008 (UTC)

Localisation update[edit]

  • Currently 0.00% of the most used MediaWiki messages have been localised. Localisation of these messages is a requirement before your request is finally assessed. This is the recent localisation activity for your language. Thanks, GerardM 13:40, 12 November 2008 (UTC)

Even if you do not get a Wikipedia in Westphalian, you can and should still create a Westphalian localization! Translating te most often used messages is not a big effort. --Purodha Blissenbach 01:02, 5 November 2010 (UTC)