“Säi hebbent tēgen däi Düütsken spöölt (They played against the Germans)”, said grandma Johanna in past times. She was a real East Frisian woman from Rhauderfehn. And the Germans? Well, she wanted to state, that the opponent team was from the region of Oldenburg. Many East Frisian people referred to themselves not as Germans and also their language was called Ōstfräisk or Ōstfräisk Tóól.
In the project we are supporting for a standard East Frisian dictionary, our member Onno Feldmann now also regularly includes East Frisian first and last names. It is not about the pronunciation of the names in German, but the pronunciation in East Frisian. The old East Frisian names like Onno, Ubbo, Fokko are pronounced completely differently in East Frisian:
“That is because of abbreviations we have everywhere in East Frisia. In East Frisian, the name Ubbo is called Ueb and the Name Fokko is called Foek. I know this from my family as well as I am called Oen.” says Feldmann.
A pronounciation like this has never been documented in any way, except for Holger Weigelt, who described some of them. With this branch of our project we want to support the East Frisian language in this area and keep our names.
You can find the dictionary here: oostfraeisk.org