European dialects are apparently much more similar than we think.

Dialects are becoming increasingly rare in Europe, as borders are open and there’s more free movement between states. But dialects help preserve the local language and culture, so some Scottish and German poets have taken up the challenge of translating verse in these regional varieties.

Fitzgerald Kusz, a Franconian poet from Nuremberg, said that in translating Scots poems he was surprised to discover traces of that dialect’s Germanic roots. Kusz has spoken Franconian since childhood and regards his dialect as an intimate and comfortable form of communication.

“On one hand, globalization continues strengthen its hold,” he said, “High German, the unified language, can be heard on television in every village. But there is, in fact, a movement among the people to keep their languages alive.”

And that is one primary goal of dialect literature, he added.

Read the full article on dialect poetry here.