Schleswig-Holstein dictionary

The „Schleswig-Holsteinisches Wörterbuch“, i.e. the Schleswig-Holstein dictionary, is a standard reference of the low german language from Schleswig-Holstein. It consists of 5 large volumes which were published as single deliverables during the years 1927–1935. The editor was the germanist Otto Mensing.

The preparatory works on the dictionary already began in the year 1902. With the help of a large crowd of people a huge amount of material from all aspects of the language could be collected.

I am about to transfer this dictionary into a database. The aim is to prevent that more and more genuine low german words, phrases, sayings and much more are forgotten. It shall enable getting this treasure back into the every day language as it is currently spoken. Low german is quickly becoming a high german language, just pronounced in a low german fashion. This project want to help here. The printed volumes are already digitised and have been processed using OCR.

By the way: For the low german of the easter frisian region there is already the dictionary by Otto Buurman online at Ostfriesische Landschaft.


(Transcripts of the introductory chapters that came with the first deliverale – they are all in German)

1. Geschichte des Wörterbuchs – History of the dictionary
2. Grundsätze der Bearbeitung – Principles of the editions
3. Quellen – Sources
Gliederung des Landes – Division of the geographical regions
Alphabetische Übersicht über die Abkürzungen in den Ortsbezeichnungen – Alphabetical overview of abbreviations in place names
Sonstige Abkürzungen – Other abbreviations

The dictionary