A short lesson in Bavarian

Cartoon Cartoon Fotolia Andi Short 800x600 5072755 rot© Andi-short,

With more than 12 million speakers, Bavarian is the largest cohesive dialect region in German-speaking countries. Among the many Bavarian local dialects, Middle Bavarian is the main one. It’s known far beyond the “Weiß­wurst equator” and is also spoken by authentic Munich citizens.

An important characteristic of this dialect is that hard consonants such as p, t and k (Pech, Tag, Knecht) are weakened to b, d and g (Bèch, Dåg, Gnecht). Furthermore, Bavarian has 24 diphthongs, which must be a record: the standard German language has only “ei,” “eu” and “au.” For example, a Bavarian speaker says “i woas” instead of “ich weiß” (I know), “liab” instead of “lieb” (lovely) and “Bruada” instead of “Bru­der” (brother).

As a “Zuagroas­ter” (new citizen), you can get the respect of the natives if you can say the word “Oachkatzl­schwoaf” (squirrel tail) without making too many mistakes. If this doesn’t work too well at first, try a Bairisch für Anfänger (Bavarian for Beginners) course at the Volkshochschule (adult education center). You can get a taste of this in our little language course below. “Host mi?” (Got it?).

German Bavarian
Hello! Grüß Gott!
The barrel’s tapped! Ozapft is!
I’d like a Mass of beer! I wui a Maß Bia!
I’ll have a shandy I mächd a Radlermaß
I’m looking for a girl! I suach a gscheits Madl!
Hands off my girl! Glubbal weg vo meina Oidn!
I beg your pardon? Wos hom’s gsogt?
You’re joking? I glaab, du bisd debbad!?
Could you do me a favor? Dua ma doch amoi an Gfoin
Can we be friends again? Sammawiedaguad?
Shut up! Hoids Mai!
My feet hurt Mia dean d’Fiaß wä
He’s much too sensitive Dea hod vui z’vui Gfui
Where’s the toilet paper? Wou isn des Globabia?
You won again Du hoast scho wieda gwunna
I love you I hob di gean
I’d like to kiss you I daad da gean a Bussel gem
No, I don’t want to Naa, des mog i need
Keep in touch Ria di hoid amoi
Are we all here? Samma olle do?
Don’t talk rubbish Vazäi need a so an Schmarrn
The bill please I daad gean zoin
Good heavens! Heagodsakra!
Bye Pfiadi

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