Talk:Saxon Switzerland

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English Name[edit]

Have any of you got an English native-speaker source for calling this area a "Switzerland"? It sounds OK in German, but in English it sounds ridiculous. In English, these hill-and-lake scenic landscapes are called "lake districts" and the 19th century history of tourist promotion of such areas in Germany (Holsteinische Schweiz too) and the English-speaking world is broadly parallel. "Schweiz" is a promotional term that does not translate. The headword should be either "Saxon Schweiz" or "Saxon Lake District".


Here's your native speaker [1]. -- 15:10, 19 February 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Link rot above. Can I delete that comment? — Wegesrand (talk) 12:43, 20 November 2012 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Try this one, p.100. Yaan (talk) 20:45, 20 November 2012 (UTC)Reply[reply]
P.S. the BBC link above might still be useful for people who know how to use Yaan (talk) 20:51, 20 November 2012 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I agree that as an English name this is ridiculous, and I have removed the extremely subjective words that called it "most logical". It would be equally logical to say that German "Schweiz" means "a mountainous area" and so call this place "the Saxon mountain country".
It's unfortunate that East Germany, southern Poland and northern Bohemia were inaccessible to English-speaking tourism for 40 years and so did not develop normal English place names "naturally" as European tourism developed. With the sudden opening, we get ridiculous literal "translations" for German place names, like the !"Ore Mountains", the !"Giant Mountains", etc. My impression is that these are being propagated mainly by local German (or Czech) speakers in their touristic marketing copy.
The best thing to do would be to research pre-war guide books and other materials in British alpinist and touring clubs and see what those who did travel called the places then. In the meantime, I PROPOSE retaining the German names for such places, i.e. renaming this article "Sächsische Schweiz".—Wegesrand (talk) 12:35, 20 November 2012 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Ah, maybe an even better idea: merge this article into Elbe Sandstone Mountains. Also link Sächsische Schweiz from German WP to that.—Wegesrand (talk) 13:44, 20 November 2012 (UTC)Reply[reply]
There are numerous sources that refer to the area as Saxon Switzerland in English - check out the links in the article for a start.
"Foo Switzerland" is often used in English to refer to areas known in Europe as Foo Schweiz or Suisse Foo. See the article on Little Switzerland.
Please cite reliable sources that Schweiz is a German word for "mountain country". It is not in any dictionary I have; I have only ever seen it used as a proper name.
"Ore Mountains" is a well known name for the Erzgebirge, see the discussion on its talk page and sources over 40 years ago such as Elkins Germany (1972), a British geographer.
There is already an article called Sächsische Schweiz - it's the administrative district, not the region.
It should not be merged with the Elbe Sandstone Mountains because they are not synonymous.
I realise that German speakers (including translators like us, who are familiar with the German) often do not like their proper names anglicized, but hey, that's what happens. Just like German speakers talk about Kapstadt, Frankreich, Spanien, Prag, etc. We need to follow the reliable sources where they exist and use common sense and convention when they don't. -- Bermicourt (talk) 19:59, 20 November 2012 (UTC)Reply[reply]
"cite reliable sources": If you like, Grimm's Deutsches Wörterbuch says "übertragen auf bergige gegenden: die sächsische, böhmische Schweiz. die österreichische Schweiz" — this is a usage note and nothing we didn't already know. My point is that this usage cannot be interpreted to mean said places are parts of Switzerland, hence the only semantic content of "Schweiz" in these usages is "mountainous place". And we don't use "Switzerland" the same way in English, hence a paraphrase is necessary. This is a perfectly normal, basic task in translation, not an exotic or arcane translation problem.—Wegesrand (talk) 12:59, 18 January 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]


"It continues as Bohemian Switzerland in the Czech Republic where it meets the Giant Mountains"

There's no connection between Bohemian Switzerland and the Giant Mountains. From west to east: Saxon Switzerland/Bohemian Switzerland - Lusatian Mountains/Zittauer Gebirge - Jizera Mountains - Giant Mountains.

The administrative division named "Sächsische Schweiz" and the landscape are NOT identical, thus it is wrong to merge them into one article. The landscape extends further than the district, and is definitely older than the district, which was just created in 1994. And while the distrcit may change name in future, or may change its extend, the landscape will stay the same. You might notice that in the German wikipedia there are two separate articles as well. andy 11:06, 27 May 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]

This is right.

has some 1,000 peaks that have never been climbed - This is wrong. Today there are no unclimbed peaks in the Saxon Switzerland anymore. Every little Boulder (officiall climbing peak if more than 15 meters of free climbimg path, and one can not 'walk' on) is already climbed today. -- de:Burts 12:10, 24 February 2006 (UTC)

on the question:

     Have any of you got an English native-speaker source for calling
     this area a "Switzerland"? It sounds OK in German, but in English it sounds ridiculous.

I TOTALLY agree, the germanic term "schweiz" is best translated as "Highlands" (Frankische Schweiz = Franconian Highlands, and Der Schweiz = The Highlands). This official .de website use of "Switzerland" is almost embarrassing. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 00:12, 27 February 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I recall it being known as the Saxon Alps - the most reasonable English translation I've heard. Calling it a lake district would be bizarre - the karst formations are the most prominent feature by far. For lakes, there's the Spreewald not too far to the north. (talk) 12:00, 6 November 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Please pay attention![edit]

Saxon Switzerland is not a valid application or translation for the region this article discribes!

Saxon is a town in southern Switzerland with a very long history. Here is the geographic location: (please search yourself in your prefered prg): 46.156125,7.176418 Here is the website of the administration:

The geographical region "Sächsische Schweiz" has absolutely nothing to do with switzerland, swiss. It is really far away. Switzerland is a alpine region with tree language and cultures: - italian - french - swiss german (a forked variant of early german languages with own developpement, but not the same gramatic rhuleset

 (in tree words: swiss german speakers understands german, german speakers don't captures really the swiss german.

I am nativ swiss german, living in Saxon (Switzerland)- a french spoken region and working in the Valais (see Zermat, Saas Fee Matterhorn and so on..).

Cosy-ch (talk) 11:24, 3 October 2010 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I understand your concern, but you need to read the article on Little Switzerland (landscape) which explains that, similar to the German language, the term "Switzerland" is typically used in English for regions that German speakers call "XXXX Schweiz" and the French call "Suisse XXXX". Look through the references and you will see further examples of the use of the term "Saxon Switzerland" for this region. --Bermicourt (talk) 13:33, 18 January 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]