Zillis. Photo/Foto: TES.

Beverin Park, Three Languages and Cultures

The cultural and linguistic identities in the Beverin Natural Park (canton of Graubünden) are mainly of Walser and Romansh origin.

The Walser people immigrated in the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries from Oberwallis to this region and areas in the east of France, the west of Austria and Liechtenstein and the north of Italy.

The Walser dialect is relatively well preserved in the Safiental and the villages Sufers and Tschappina. The Romansh language (Sutsilvan idiom) is still spoken in the Schamserberg area (in Andeer, Lohn, Pignia and Zillis). They also speak the Swiss German Bündnerdialect and some the Walser dialect.  Around 1 000 inhabitants still speak Sutsilvan today.

The church of Zillis

The Changes in the 19th and 20th centuries (tourism, media, railways, mobility, immigration) introduced German as the main language. However, the Romansh and Walser cultures and languages still exist.

(Source and further information: www.naturpark-beverin.ch).

Fürstenau. Photo: TES