Wilmanns, Wilhelm. Deutsche Grammatik: Wortbildung , Lautlehre , Verbum Wright, Joseph. An Old High German Primer. A Middle High German Primer. A Primer of the Gothic language. IN order to study the historical grammar of a lan- guage with any real profit, it is necessary for the student to possess an elementary knowledge of some of the general principles which are applicable to the historical and philo- logical treatment of all languages. It is beyond the plan and scope of this book to do more than indicate a few of the general principles ; for the rest, the student should consult books dealing specially with the subject, such as Paul's Principien der Sprachgeschichte, Sweet's Primer of Phonetics, and Passy's Petite photietique comparee des prin- cipales langues europe'ennes, which contains an excellent resume" of all the student requires to know concerning phonetics.
Comparison of sound laws with physical laws. Physical laws lay down what must invariably and always happen under certain given conditions, whereas sound laws merely state the regularity of sound-change observed in any particular group of historic phenomena. At first sight this may seem to be something like a distinction without a difference, but if we examine the matter more closely we shall see that there is a material difference. Physical laws are ab- solute and unchanging. They operate to-day just in the i Introduction [ 2 same manner as they did in all past ages, and will continue to do so for all time to come.
When we say, e. But not so with sound laws. In treating of the history and philology of any language or group of languages, two of the most impor- tant points, which the investigator carefully observes, are chronology and geography. Sound laws only operate for a limited period and then cease to operate ; and their operation is often confined to a small area.
It also by no means follows that a sound law which operated at one period of a language will operate again at a later period under similar conditions, e. But when n came to stand in this position at a later period, it has regularly remained, cp. We will now pass on to the second point which we have 3, 4] General Principles 3 already mentioned, viz. A good example of this is seen in the treatment of the Indg. Or to come nearer home, where our own dialects furnish abundant instances, let us take for example the development of Old English long u mus, mouse in the various modern dialects, where it has assumed eleven distinct forms ai, au, aa, a, se, eu, ou, u, mi, au, ail.
Other examples of the great diversity of forms arising from a single OE. Most of the so-called irregularities in the pho- nology of NHG. Many such examples will be found in the paragraphs dealing with the historical development of the NHG. Apart from certain cases of metathesis, dissimilation and assimilation of two sounds not standing contiguous in the same word, all sound changes take place gradually and not by sudden leaps.
Such a change, for example, as that of MHG. I, u, u written iu to NHG. What is meant by saying that the laws of sound change admit of no exceptions is : that within the limits of any definite language or dialect at a particular period all sounds, which practically fulfil the same phonetic con- ditions, have had the same fate; that is to say, the same sound must there have changed into the same other sound throughout the language or dialect.
And where various B 2 4 ' Introduction [ 4 sounds are seen to replace one and the same other sound of the older language, the cause for this difference must be sought in the difference of phonetic conditions, such as accent, contact with or proximity to other sounds ; or in other causes, such as the influences of analogy ; borrowings from another language or dialect, as NHG. An example of the variation of change caused by difference of accent is the formation of doublets, one being the accented and the other the unaccented form.
And what usually takes place when such doublets are called into existence through a difference of accent is that for a time they exist side by side without any difference in meaning ; then one of two things takes place : either they differentiate in meaning or else one of the forms dies out and the remaining form becomes used again, both in an accented and unaccented position, as OHG. Other examples of variation of change caused by difference of accent are Verner's Law ; the development of 6 to uo in accented syllables in OHG.
Examples of variation of change caused by contact with or proximity to other sounds are : the threefold develop- ment of the Indg. From what has been said above, it naturally follows that sound changes are of a twofold nature : isolative and com- And we define isolative changes as being those which affect a sound without any reference to its sur- roundings, and combinative changes those which imply two sounds in juxtaposition, which modify each other in various ways. The rigid adherence to the general principle that sound laws admit of no exceptions has resulted in showing that many sound changes, which were formerly thought to be impossible, are possible, and that many, which were thought to be possible, are impossible.
Many etymologies, which were formerly universally accepted, are now rightly rejected, and many others, which a generation ago would have been regarded as impossible, are now firmly estab- lished. We have only space for a few etymologies of each type. Etymologists used to regard the following pairs of words as being related, but we now know that they are not related : Lat. Gyp, whole Gr. On the other hand, the following can be shown to be related : Lat.
This great family of languages is usually divided into eight branches : I. Aryan, consisting of: i The Indian group, including the language of the Vedas, classical Sanskrit, and the Prakrit dialects. Armenian, the oldest monuments of which belong to the fifth century A. Greek, with its numerous dialects. Albanian, the language of ancient Illyria. The oldest monuments belong to the seventeenth century. Italic, consisting of Latin and the Umbrian-Samnitic dialects. Keltic, consisting of: i Gaulish known to us by Keltic names and words quoted by Latin and Greek authors, and inscriptions on coins ; 2 Brittanic, including Cymric or Welsh, Cornish, and Bas Breton or Armorican the oldest records of Cymric and Bas Breton date back to the eighth or ninth century ; 3 Gaelic, including Irish- Gaelic, Scotch-Gaelic, and Manx.
The oldest monuments are the old Gaelic ogam inscriptions which probably date as far back as about A. Germanic, consisting of : i Gothic. Almost the only source of our knowledge 6] The Germanic Languages 7 of the Gothic language is the fragments of the biblical translation made in the fourth century by Ulfilas, the Bishop of the West Goths.
The oldest records of this branch are the runic inscrip- tions, some of which date as far back as the third or fourth century. English is usually divided into three periods: Old English OE. Up to about it is generally called Old Saxon OS. Germanic ww , jj ; the form of the second pers. Gothic and Old Norse preserved the old perfect ending, as Goth. Old Norse namt, thou tookest, but OE. In the West Germanic languages the -t was only preserved in the preterite presents, as OE. The division of a language into fixed periods must of necessity be more or less arbitrary.
What are given as the characteristics of one period have generally had their beginnings in the previous period, and it is impossible to say with perfect accuracy when one period begins and another ends. The most characteristic differences between OHG. Some of the chief differences between MHG.
I, u, iu and 9 ] The High German Dialects 9 the monophthongization of ie, uo, tie ; the substitu- tion of the voiced explosives b, d, g, for the MHG. The oldest records of HG. Slavonic was spoken in these parts of Germany in the Middle Ages. Vowel length was either entirely omitted in writing, or was represented by doubling the respective vowel; but sometimes also by using the accents A , ' The sign ", placed over vowels, is used in this grammar to mark long vowels. The OHG. See All the simple vowels had both a short and a long quantity.
The short vowels a, i, o, u, and the long vowels a, e, I, 6, and u, had nearly the same pronunciation as the corresponding OE. In the former case e had an open sound like the e in English bed, and is generally written e in Old and Middle High German grammars, in order to 13] Orthography and Pronunciation 1 1 distinguish it from the umlaut-e, which had a close sound like the e in French ete.
The following key-words will be of use, as giving an approximate pronunciation of the vowel-sounds to students unacquainted with Old English : a as in NHG. Ml gibuntan, bound u NHG. The remaining diphthongs ea ia , io eo , iu, ou au , uo ua , will present no difficulties to the learner who has mastered the key-words to the short vowels in the above table. In late OHG. The letters b, d see k, 1, m, n, p, and t had nearly the same sound-values as in English. The remaining consonants require special attention. It had the sound of English k finally and before the guttural vowels a, o, u, 12 Phonology [13 and before consonants, as folc, folk, corn, corn, cund, known, clein, pretty.
Before the palatal vowels i, e except in the combination sc it had the sound of ts, like NHG. But, on the other hand, sceidan, to sever, where sc was pronounced like the sch in the English word school. In Upper German monuments it was also used to express the affricata kh, i.
See , 2. Germanic g, or rather prim. Germanic 5, had the sound of English g in got, as OHG. See , But when it stood for prim. Germanic j, it was a spirant and had nearly the same sound as the y in English yet, as gener jener , Goth, jains, Me, yon ; herige herie , Goth, harja, dat. Single u v was often written for Germanic f see f , as uaran, varan, to go. It was also employed, especially after consonants and before the vowel u, to express u consonant, i. English w, as suarz for suuarz, black, uurdun for uuurdun, they became.
It was also sometimes written u v , see above under u v. In this grammar we shall generally write w. Examples are : zan, tooth, lenzo, spring, holz, wood, herza, heart, suarz, black, scaz, money, cp. In this grammar the ts sound is represented by z, and the s sound by A diphthong is the combination of a sonantal with a consonantal vowel. The sonantal vowel is the bearer of the stress accent in the syllable in which it occurs. All the OHG. The double consonants, nn, tt, c. They were uniformly shortened simpli- fied when they became final or came to stand before other consonants, and also frequently medially when preceded by a long vowel, as rinnan, to run, pret.
In NHG. Long vowels a, ae, e, I, 6, u, ce, iu. Diphthongs ei, ie, ou, uo, 6u eu , tie. Of the above vowels and diphthongs a, e, e, i, o, u ; a, e, I, 6, u ; ei, ie, ou, and uo had the same sound-values as in OHG. The fact that the umlant of u was written iu in MHG. The following key-words will serve to illustrate the MHG.
The e in this position was pronounced like the -e in NHG. The MHG. The letters c, ch, f, h, j, k, 1, m, n, p, pf ph , q, r, t, w, x, z, z, had the same sound-values as in OHG. The consonants b, d, g were not voiced explosives like English and NHG. A similar difference existed between intervocalic v, s and final f, s In MHG. The latter was generally used at the beginning, and the former at the end of a syllable, as kunst, art, trinken, to drink, pret, tranc ; senken, to sink, pret.
Double consonants were pronounced long as in OHG. A table of the NHG. It should be noted that the short vowels are open and the long vowels closef a and au are generally used in words which have beside them obviously related forms without umlaut, as gdste, alter, bdume, hd'user beside gast, alt, baum, haus 90, The historical distinction between MHG. All three sounds are pronounced as open e, like the e in English get, men, when they have remained short. When MHG. This distinction is arbitrary and entirely due to the influence of the orthography.
On the use of h in NHG. On special points connected with the pronunciation of the consonants, the student should consult for b, d, g, f, s; for p, t, k, and for r. Double consonants are short and merely indicate that the preceding vowel is short All the Indo-Germanic languages have partly pitch musical and partly stress accent, but one or other of the two systems of accentuation always predominates in each language, thus in Sanskrit and Old Greek the accent was predominantly pitch, whereas in the oldest periods of c 1 8 Phonology [ 23 the Italic dialects, and the Keltic and Germanic languages, the accent was predominantly stress.
This difference in the system of accentuation is clearly seen in Old Greek and the old Germanic languages by the preservation of the vowels of unaccented syllables in the former and the weakening or loss of them in the latter. In the early period of the parent Indg. Tra-rp-os beside aCC.
It is now a generally accepted theory that at a later period of the parent language the system of accentuation became pre- dominantly pitch, which was preserved in Sanskrit and Old Greek, but which must have become predominantly stress again in prim. Germanic sometime prior to the operation of Verner's law The quality of the accent in the parent language was partly 'broken ' acute and partly 'slurred ' circumflex.
This distinction in the quality of the accent was preserved in prim. Germanic in final syllables containing a long vowel, as is seen by the difference in the development of the final long vowels in historic times according as they originally had the ' broken ' or ' slurred ' accent , 3. In the parent language the chief accent of a word did not always fall upon the same syllable of a word, but was free or movable as in Sanskrit and Greek, cp. TraTijp, father, voc. Trarepa ; Skr. This free accent was still preserved in prim.
I Germanic at the time when Verner's law operated, I whereby the voiceless spirants became voiced when the f vowel immediately preceding them did not bear the chief. At a later period of the prim. Germanic language the chief accent of a word became confined to the root- or stem-syllable. This confining of the chief accent to the root-syllable was the cause of the great weakening and eventual loss which the vowels underwent in unaccented syllables in the prehistoric period of the individual Germanic languages The rule for the accentuation of uncompounded words is the same in German as in the other Germanic languages, viz.
This syllable is always the first of the word. The position of the secondary stress in trisyllabic and polysyllabic words fluctuated in OHG. In a few words the chief stress has been shifted from the first to the second syllable in NHG. The change of stress is probably due to their having been mistaken for foreign or compound words. Similarly in hermelin MHG. In compound words it is necessary to distinguish between compounds whose second element is a noun or an adjective, and those whose second element is a verb. In the c 2 20 Phonology [ 26 former case the first element had the chief accent in the parent Indg.
But already in prim. Germanic the second element of compound verbs nearly always had the chief accent ; a change which was mostly brought about by the compound and simple verb existing side by side. In all periods of the German language it has been the rule for the chief accent to fall upon the second element of compound verbs, when the first element was inseparable, and for the chief accent to fall upon the first element when it was separable. As has been stated above, compound words whose second element is a noun or an adjective had originally the chief accent on the first syllable.
Already in OHG. The same rule also holds good for similar nouns and adjectives in NHG. In like manner the prefix ge- OHG. Germanic and therefore nouns compounded with it have the chief accent on the 26] Accentuation 21 second element in NHG. This difference also existed in OHG. In a few adjec- tives the meaning varies according as the chief accent is on the first or second element, as blutarm, steinreich, un- haltbar. This dis- tinction in the two classes of adjectives compounded with un- existed already in OHG. In the latter class of adjec- 22 Phonology [ tives the tendency to shift the chief accent is far more common in North than in South German.
In compound adverbs the first element has the chief or secondary accent according as it is the more or less important element of the compound, as duswdrts, ddmals, diesseits, mnerhalb, jensetis, kreuzweise, vormals, but allenthdlben, allerdmgs, bergdb, sofort, uberdll. But Romance words borrowed at a later period generally have the chief accent on the last syllable or on one of the last syllables, as adresse, appctit, armee, coustne, disputieren, kapelle, offizier, originell, nervtis, papier.
It should be noted that the secondary accent is generally stronger in compounds than in derivatives. But already in MHG. The short vowels i, u, a, the long vowels i, u, and vocalic 1, m, n, r occurred originally only in syllables which did not bear the principal accent of the word. The short vowels i, u, and vocalic 1, m, n, r arose from the loss of e in the strong forms ei, eu, el, em, en, er, which was caused by the principal accent having been shifted to some other syllable in the word.
I and u were contractions of weak diphthongs which arose from the strong forms eia, ai, ei, oi ; eua, au, eu, ou through the loss of accent. The e in eia, eua had disappeared before the contraction took place. In this book no further account will be taken of the Indg. For their treatment in final syllables in Primitive Germanic, see , 3. Upon theoretical grounds it is generally assumed that the parent language contained long vocalic 1, m, n, r. But their history in the various Indg.
In any case they were of very rare occurrence, and are there- fore left out of consideration in this book. KWOS gen. Ovpa, OE. Trarrfp, Lat. Doric a, Attic, Ionic rj became 6, as Lat. I Lat. I, Gr. I older ei , Gr. Hhan, to lend. Toudhos, Goth. The u in um, un, ur, ru, ul, lu had the same further development in the Germanic languages as Indo-Germanic u. From what has been said in , we arrive at the following vowel-system for the prim. The origin of this vowel has not yet been satisfactorily explained.
This system underwent several modifications during the prim. Germanic period, i. The most important of these changes were : Every prim. Germanic a in accented syllables was of this origin. The a in the above and similar examples was still a nasalized vowel in prim. Germanic, as is seen by its develop- ment to 5 in OE. The I 55 and u 57 were also nasalized vowels in prim.
This explains why OHG. This i became I under the same conditions as those by which a became a 54 , as Goth. When followed by an i, I, or j in the same or the next syllable, as Goth. Sri, OHG. This sound-law accounts for the difference in the stem- vowels of such pairs as NHG. In unaccented syllables, except in the combination er when not followed by an i in the next syllable, as OE.
In historic times, however, this law has a great number of exceptions owing to the separate languages having levelled out in various directions, cp. Germanic o in accented syllables was of this origin. This sound-law accounts for the difference in the stem vowels of such pairs as NHG. Jnihte, OHG. Jmgkjan, OHG. From what has been said in , it will be seen that the prim. Germanic a generally remained unchanged in OHG. Goth, faran, to go; OHG. Goth, band, 60] The OHG. Short Vowels 31 he bound-, OHG. Goth, nam, he took] OHG. Goth, gaf, he gave.
This i-umlaut of a did not take place in the following cases : 1. Goth, slahan. In words ending in -nissi, -nissa, or -lih, as firstant- nissi, understanding-, infancnissa, assumption', kraftlih, strong ; tagalih, daily. The first traces of the i-umlaut of a are found about the middle of the eighth century. From then onwards umlaut is met with more and more frequently until in the early part of the ninth century the process was practically com- plete except in certain combinations named above.
In the oldest monuments the umlaut of a was sometimes written f , ae, ai, or ei, and at that period it was doubtless an open e-sound like the e in Engl. Umlaut e and Germanic e are still kept apart in many NHG. Germanic e usually written e in order to distin- guish it from the e which arose from the i-umlaut of a generally remained in OHG. Germanic e became i in OHG. This law has many exceptions due to new formations where the e was regular, thus fehu beside fihu is due to levelling out the oblique stem form, as gen.
On the OHG. On OHG. In a few words e became o through the influence of a preceding w, as woche late OHG. Germanic i remained in OHG. Goth, witan, to know, OHG. Germanic o, which arose from an older u 57 , remained in OHG. Long Vowels 33 OHG. Germanic u remained in OHG. Germanic a, which arose from a according to 54 , remained in OHG.
Goth, fahan, to catch, seize] OHG. Goth, hahan, to hang, beside OHG. Goth, brahta, I brought, beside OHG. D 34 Phonology [ satun, OE. Germanic e, which cannot be traced back phono- logically to Indo-Germanic e 52, note , is of obscure origin. In Gothic the two sounds fell together in e, but in the other Germanic languages they were kept quite apart, thus Indg. Germanic e remained in the oldest period of High German.
In the eighth century ea appears beside e. In the first half of the ninth century this ea became ia, ie. Examples are : OHG. Goth, her, here] OHG.
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Germanic I remained in OHG. Germanic 6 had become uo in stem syllables in all the OHG. The diph- thongization of 6 to uo did not take place in all the dialects ] The OHG. Diphthongs 35 at the same time. In Upper Franconian uo appears beside 6 in the middle of the eighth century, and by the end of the century uo is the normal form except in South Rhenish Franconian the dialect of Otfrid , where the intermediate stage ua occurs during the ninth century. In Alemanic oa appears beside 6 in the second half of the eighth century.
By the end of the century oa 6 had become ua, which remained the characteristic form for this dialect in the ninth century.
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Bavarian retained 6 longer than the other dialects. In this dialect 5 became uo through the intermediate stage oa by the end of the ninth century. Examples are OHG. Goth, for, I fared] OHG. Jmsend, Goth, fusundi, thousand] OHG. Jmhte, Goth. The contraction to a monophthong had already taken place in the early part of the eighth century.
At this period it must have been an D 2 36 Phonology [ 76 open se sound, otherwise it would have fallen together with Germanic e 52, note. In all other cases Germanic ai had become ei towards the end of the eighth century, as OHG. Germanic au OS. The change from au to 9 through ao took place in the second half of the eighth century. At this pe'riod the monophthong must have been open, other- wise it would have fallen together with Germanic 6 Examples are: OHG.
Ion, OE. Diphthongs 37 hauhs, high ; pret. Before all other consonants and when final, au became ou in OHG. Original eu 46 became iu in Gothic. In OS. But it became iu in OS. In OHG. It also appears as iu in Upper German before labials and gutturals except old h when not originally followed by an i, j, or u in the next syllable, as Upper German Hup, dear-, tiuf, deep ; siuh OE. Hoht, light, beside liuhten, to light. A difference of pronunciation must have existed between this iu and the iu which arose from eu when originally followed by an i, j, or u in the next syllable.
In the former case the iu became io in the tenth century, and by the end of 38 Phonology [ 78 the century had become ie as in 2. Whereas in the latter case the iu remained. In all other cases original eu became eo, which passed into io during the first half of the ninth century, io remained the regular form until the end of the tenth century and then became ie. From what has been said in it will be seen that the Germanic vowel-system assumed the following shape in the OHG. In comparing OHG. Xevicos, light, bright, By umlaut is meant the modification palatalization of an accented vowel through the influence of an i or j in the following syllable.
The only vowel which underwent this change in OHG. The change is first met with in OHG. In the ninth century the process was practically complete except when the a was followed by certain consonant combinations, see Umlaut must have taken place earlier in the spoken language than it is expressed in late OHG. The vowels and diphthongs which under- went umlaut in MHG. The umlaut of all these sounds was completed by about the year It also occurs in derivatives ending in -lich, -lin, as manlich, manly; schamelich, shameful; tagelich, daily; vaterlich, fatherly ; vaterlin, dim.
It is likewise met with in MHG. This a was a very open sound, nearly like the a in English man. It is generally written a in M HG. Good MHG. In like manner the modern Bavarian and Austrian dialects still distinguish between a and e. In the MHG. Germanic u 57 did not become o in OHG. Examples are : boc, he-goat, beside dim. In Upper German certain consonant combinations often prevented umlaut from taking place where it might be expected. Of these the principal are : I. Before a liquid -f con- sonant, as hulde OHG.
This fluctuation is especially common in the pret. In Upper German before gg, ck, pf, tz which arose from the West Germanic gemination of consonants , as brugge, bridge, mugge, midge, drucken, to press, stucke, piece, hupfen, to hop, schupfen, to push ; nutze, useful, nutzen, to use, beside Middle German briicke, mticke, drucken, stucke, hupfen, schupfen, nutze, nutzen. The long vowel ae corresponded in quality to a in Upper German, but in Middle German it was closer and corre- sponded in quality to e. It is common in the writings of Notker t , as hiute older huti, skins , hides ; chriuter older chrutir, herbs.
In other writings of the tenth to the twelfth century the umlaut of u is seldom found. Umlaut of ou did not take place before a following w, as frouwe OHG. Forms like douwen, to digest, drouwen, to threaten, frouwen, to rejoice, houwe, hay, strouwen, to strew, beside douwen, drouwen, frouwen, houwe, strouwen, were all analogical formations, see Umlaut did not take place in Upper German before a following labial, as erlouben, to allow, gelouben, to believe, houbet, head, koufen, to buy, troumen, to dream, toufen, to baptize, beside Middle German erlouben, gelouben, houbet, koufen, troumen, toufen.
Yarn, to fare, go ; buoch, book, dim. Traces of the umlaut of uo occur in late OHG. In Middle German tie became contracted to u in the twelfth century. In Middle German 6, ii, ou, tie were not distinguished in writing from o, u, ou, uo. In early MHG. Short Vowels 43 fourteenth century onwards by a, 6, ii. Apart from the changes caused by umlaut, viz. In Bavarian e and e fell together, except before liquids, in e during the MHG.
In Alemanic of the fourteenth century e but not e, a became rounded to 6 especially in the neighbourhood of labials, as fromde, strange ; monsche, man ; opfel, apples. Several such forms have passed into the NHG. Before nasals u became o and ii became 6 in Middle 44 Phonology [ 81 German already in the twelfth century, as Middle German from, sonne, gonnen, konic, beside Upper German frum, sunne, giinnen, kiinic. See 97, In Middle German short vowels in open syllables began to be lengthened at the end of the twelfth century, but in Upper German traces of this lengthening are not met with until the end of the thirteenth century.
In Bavarian, Middle German, and a part of Alemanic a became 6 before a following nasal and after a pre- ceding win the second half of the thirteenth century. Long vowels before consonant combinations began to be shortened in Middle German about the end of the twelfth century. Diphthongs 45 early part of the fourteenth century, but in West Middle German not until the beginning of the sixteenth century.
Apart from the umlaut of ou to 6u eu 79 , OHG. Apart from the umlaut of ou to lie 79 , OHG. In Middle German uo became contracted to u in the thirteenth century. By summing up the results of it will be seen that the OHG. Vowels 47 oe is the umlaut of OHG. When in MHG. The old difference between long and short vowels in open and closed syllables has for the most part been preserved in Low German.
This explains why in the singular they are written with single final consonants. The umlaut of a is now mostly written a in NHG. In a few words e is used where related non-umlauted forms exist, as add : edel, bass : besser, fahrt : fertig, fast : fest, hahn : henne, hand : behcnde, mann : mensch. In several words a is used for MHG. In a few instances it is used to dis- tinguish pairs of words, as dltern : eltern, fdrse : ferse, larche : lerche, stdrke : sterke.
The writing of a for a was first used in Swabian. It often occurs in early works printed at Augsburg, but still more frequently in those printed at Basle, Zurich, and Bern ; in the former place it was generally used for the MHG. But a came gradually to be used in these parts also. East Middle German was the last to introduce a. It does not occur in the last edition of Luther's Bible.
All three sounds are pronounced as 9 1 -2,] The NHG. Vowels 49 open e when they have remained short. Rounded 6, ii, and au eu were not distinguished in pronunciation from unrounded e, i, ei until far into the eighteenth century ; hence 6 and e, ii and i, au eu and ei often rhyme with each other in the poetry of the eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries. The modern distinction in the pronunciation is due to Low German usage, which has gradually taken root in Modern German. As we have already seen, 80, note 3, e but not e, a became rounded to 6 especially in the neighbourhood of labials in Alemanic of the fourteenth century.
At a later period it occurs in the neighbourhood of 1, sch, and in one or two other words. The change of e to 6 does not seem to have spread to East Middle German, because 6 for e is very rarely if ever found in Luther's writings. This 6 for e occurs in NHG. It has been lengthened to 6 in flotz MHG. Examples are : alter, farben, halt MHG. Vowels 51 In Middle German u became o before nasals already in the twelfth century.
This is still a characteristic difference between the modern Middle German and Upper German dialects. Several of these non-umlauted forms have passed into the NHG. Parallel with the change of u to o 97 was that of ii to 6 in Middle German of the twelfth century. Several such forms have survived in the NHG. In Bavarian, Swabian, and Middle German, there was a tendency to unround ii to i already in the fourteenth century, ii has been regularly unrounded to i in many of the modern dialects from which several words containing i for older ii have passed into the literary language, as find- ling MHG.
Vowels 53 MHG. Short vowels in closed syllables have regularly been lengthened before simple final r in monosyllables, as ar, dar, gar, der, er f her, iver, dir, ihr, mir, wir, vor, but daran, herein, vbran, c. The examples are : art, arzt but arztlich, arsch, barsch, bart, fahrt, harz, quarz, scharte, schwarte, zart ; gefdhrte ; erde, herd, herde, pferd, schivert, werden, ivert; begterde, borse, geburt. The lengthening took place earliest in Middle German where traces of it are found in monu- ments of the late twelfth and early thirteenth centuries.
Traces of the lengthening are not met with in Upper German until about the end of the thirteenth century. On forms like gewohnen, lowe, schworen, see But the vowel has remained short in neffe MHG. Although the writing of e for old e has generally re- mained in NHG.
On the pronunciation of the a, e, e in , see Short in zinn 1 1 ] The NHG. Vowels 55 MHG. On the writing of ie for I, see Short vowels in open syllables, when followed by a suffixal -el, -en, -er in the next syllable, have some- times been lengthened, and have sometimes remained short. The vowel was regularly lengthened when 1, n, r were vocalic and remained short when they were conso- nantal. In the uninflected forms 1, n, r the e was merely graphical were vocalic, but in the inflected forms they were consonantal.
The lengthening regularly took place in the former case, but not in the latter, and then one or other of the forms was generalized. Words containing MHG. Short vowels in open syllables, when followed by t, have generally remained short, as bitte, blatt, bottich, brett, biitte, gatte, glatt, gott, kette, kitt, lattich, matt, matte, platt, platte, quitt, rettig, rotte, satt, schnitt, schnitte, schritt, stadt, stdtte, sitte, spott, trttt, wittib, zotte.
The only exceptions are : beet, bote, gebet, gebot, krote, met, pate, pfote, schote, zote. Of the eight MHG. See , note. And in the pret. Vowels 57 blawes , braue MHG. Several words containing this change have got into the NHG. This is espe- cially the case when the vowel was followed by a nasal or preceded by w. Long a has been shortened in acht prosecution , blatter, brachte, gebracht, dachte, gedacht, jammer, klafter, krapfen, nachbar, natter, rache, sacht, schach, waffe, wappen, see In the language of the stage it has now become long close e, whether written e or a.
When written a many people pronounce it as long open se. This distinction is arbitrary and is entirely due to the influence of the orthography. It is mostly written a in NHG. Examples are : bdhen, blahen, gebarde also geberde , gefass, gerat, grafin, jdh t ka'se, kra'hen, mahen, marchen, nahen, sden, schafer, spat, statig also stetig , trage, wdhnen ; the pi.
It has been shortened in ansdssig, schdcher, truchsess, pret. It is not written a in angenehm, bequem, drehen, leer, selig, schere shears , schwer, stets, wehen. It has been shortened in echt, herrlich, herrschaft, herrschen, lerche, see It has been shortened in amboss, genosse, hochzeit, hoffart MHG. I, u, iu. The diphthongization took place earliest in Bavarian, where i, u, iu had become ei, ou, eu au by the end of the twelfth century, and then ou became au in the fourteenth century.
In Swabian it took place in the fifteenth century. Vowels 59 German not until the beginning of the sixteenth century. From then onwards the diphthongs became the recognized forms except in Switzerland where the old monophthongs were retained in writing until about in Basle and between and in Zurich. The old long vowels have remained to the present day in the Alemanic except Swabian and many Middle German dialects.
So that in these dialects MHG. I and ei, u and ou, iu and 6u eu have not fallen together as in the NHG. I has become ai in NHG.
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Upper German briuwen and kiuwen which would have become brauen breuen and kauen keuen in NHG. The two sounds fell together in ii written iu about the year Although the two sounds fell together so early, they are still partly distinguishable in NHG. With one or two doubtful exceptions, the NHG.
When no non-umlauted forms exist, the umlaut is generally written eu. Examples of the umlaut, written au are : dussern, brduti- gam, fdule filth , hd'user, hduslich, haute, gestrduch, tauten, mduse, rdude, sdule with au from the old plural, MHG. An e has been developed in closed syllables before r after NHG. I, iu, u, as feier MHG. Vowels 61 scheuer MHG. Of the six MHG. The change from ei to ai took place in Bavarian and Swabian in the early part of the thirteenth century. Examples are : ameise, arbeit, beide, bein, bleich, breit, ei, eiche, eid, eigen, ein, eiter, fleisch, get'!
Written ai in haide beside heide, hain, kaiser, laib loaf , laie, Mai, saite string , waide, waise orphan. It has been shortened to e in elf, elster, nelke, and to a in zwanzig, see It was written eu in Bavarian as early as the twelfth century. Many of the forms with au given below are late analogical formations based upon older models.
Examples are : bdume, sich bdumen, betduben, older NHG. In early NHG. These forms have crept into the literary language from dialects which have unrounded au eu to ei. In Middle German the diphthongs ie, uo, tie became contracted to I written ie , u, and u in the thirteenth century, but remained diphthongs in Upper German and the greater part of East Franconian, where i 3 ] The NHG. Vowels 63 with various modifications, they have been preserved in the dialects down to the present day. This explains why the I, which arose from old short i in open syllables, is written ie Examples are : bier, brief, dieb, dienen, fieber, hier, knie, kneg, lied, lieb, miete, priester, tief, tier, ziegel ; in the present of many strong verbs, as biegen, bieten, Jliegen, fliehen,fliessen,frieren, geniessen, giessen, kriechen, riechen, schieben, schiessen, schliessen, sieden, triefen, verdriessen, verlieren, ziehen ; in the pret.
It has been shortened to i in dime, fichte, fing, ging, king, immer, licht, nimmer, viertel. Liigen MHG. In this dialect ie partly became e already in the MHG. It has been shortened to u mf utter, genug, muss, musste, mutter, ruchlos, wuchs, wusch. Almosen MHG. In this dialect uo partly became 5 in the MHG. It has been shortened in briillen, gerucht, miissen, mutter, nuchtern, russel. In Middle and Upper German dialects u has been unrounded to I. The shortening took place earliest in Middle German, where traces of it are found in monuments belonging to the early part of the thirteenth century.
But as the shortening took place in the various dialects at different periods, it is impossible to lay down any hard-and-fast rules. In several cases the shortening has been caused by shifting of the stress. Apart from consonant combinations, it will be seen that those factors, which prevented the lengthening of short vowels in open syllables, have often been the cause of the shortening, especially in words containing ss, ch , note , and the suffixal elements -el, -en, -er Examples are : bar: barfuss, OHG.
Vowels 65 dambrett, dieser: diesseits, heer : herberge, herzog, MHG. Luther has fieng beside fing. Where in the standard language a difference is made in the pronunciation of e and a, the latter is more open than the former Where a distinction is made in pronunciation between e and a the former is close and the latter open.
I is generally written ie or ih, as in miete, ihm. With few exceptions ai is always written ei ; and oi is always written eu au. The diphthongs ai and au are pronounced as ae and ao by many Germans, and the latter are regarded as the standard pronuncia- tion by some of the best phoneticians, oi from MHG.
S through the intermediate stages iiii, oii, oil varies in pronunciation in the different parts of Germany. Some phoneticians regard oii, or 06 with the first element very open, as the standard pronunciation. Vowels 67 F a 68 Phonology [ 1 B. Vowels 69 Before formulating the laws which govern the treatment of the vowels in final syllables, it will be useful to state here the laws relating to the treatment of final consonants in prehistoric High German.
When the vowel, which thus became final, was short, it had the same further development as if it had been originally final, as OHG. AvW, wolf] ace. Goth, gast, cp. Germanic, except after a short accented vowel, as pres. In prehistoric High German it became z by Verner's law , and then later r.
It is difficult to account for the final -a in certain personal endings of verbs, viz. Final long vowels, inherited from primitive Germanic, became shortened already in primitive High German : -5 became u, as OHG. I became -i, as OHG. These short vowels then underwent the same further development in OHG. See below. High German. They, as well as the u and i, which arose from the shortening of 6 and I, disappeared also in dissyllabic forms when the first syllable was long, but remained when the first syllable was short. The regular operation of this law was often disturbed by analogical formations.
Regular forms were : OHG. AvW; OHG. Se, he knows-, OHG. ArW; OHG. Final -er remained in OHG. Attic prjTfpa.
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Germanic, and then underwent the same further changes as old -ai, -au, that is, they became e, -6 in West Germanic. Later than the shortening mentioned under i, occurred the shortening which was experienced in dissyllabic and polysyllabic words by the long vowel, after which an -n or -z had disappeared, and by the -e and -6 from older ai and -au, which were either already final in prim.
Ger- manic, or had become so after the loss of -z, as well as by the -i which had arisen from older -iji. The e and -6 from older -ai and -au became -e, -o, and!
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All these shortenings took place in prehistoric High German. Examples are : pi. OLKOL, at home, dat. It became a during the prim. Germanic period except i when followed by an m which remained in historic times, and 2 when the following syllable originally contained u. In these positions the o became u in OHG. Germanic e, I, 6, u when protected by a consonant in historic times remained in OHG. The u was then carried into the gen. Final -jan became -en, but -jen when preceded by r, as OHG. The i in the preterite and past participle of weak verbs, Class I, was regularly syncopated after long stem syllables in prehistoric High German, as pret.
If a nasal or a liquid, preceded by a mute con- sonant, came to stand finally after the loss of a , 2 , it became vocalic and then generated a new a before it in prehistoric High German, as nom. Goth, ibns, ibnana ; nom. Goth, fugls, fugl; nom. Medial vowels were often assimilated to final vowels, as keisar, emperor, gen.
In all OHG. Vowels of Unacc. Syllables 75 tween medial rh,lh,as also before w in the combinations rw, Iw, and sw. The vowel thus developed appeared mostly as a or o, but it not unfrequently regulated itself after the quality of a neighbouring vowel. But the vowel thus developed disappeared again in MHG. Final -u and -i became -o and -e in the ninth century, as sunu, filu, fridu, tagu, blintemu, iru, meri, wini became suno, filo, frido, tago, blintemo, iro, mere, wine. The prim. Germanic vowels of unaccented syl- lables underwent few further changes beyond those de- scribed in until towards the end of the OHG.
One of the most characteristic differences between OHG. The weakening had already begun by the beginning of the tenth century, and spread considerably during this and the early part of the following century. It took place earlier when the vowels were followed by a consonant than when they were absolutely final.
In the former case the short vowels had been weakened to e by the end of the OHG. The long vowels, followed by a consonant, were only shortened not weakened to e in Alemanic of the twelfth century. The weakened vowel a was generally written e in MHG. This writing of the indistinct vowel as i was especially common in Middle German down to the early part of the sixteenth century.
Slow fades back and forth between scenes, cross-cutting, emotionally charged internal P. It is also, rather ironically, one of his more traditional films in other respects. The use of glamour-shot lighting and emotion-laden music hearken back to the melodramas of the s.
That music was composed by Wolfgang Zeller. Zeller was a well-known film composer who made his first big splash in with his score for the animated film, The Adventures of Prince Achmed Die Abenteuer des Prinzen Achmed , the oldest existing feature-length animated film. After the Nazis came to power, Zeller continued to work for them, providing the music for every variety of film, including several propaganda films. Perhaps in an attempt to atone for his work during the Third Reich, Zeller imbues the score for Marriage in the Shadows with an intense emotionalism that occasionally overwhelms the visuals.
Zeller did a few more films for DEFA, but his traditional, romantic musical style was better suited to the nostalgic films of West Germany. During the early days of DEFA he provided a few scores, but within a few years he was working exclusively in the west. During the Third Reich, he was the cinematographer for Titanic , one of the few German films from the Nazi period that is still regularly shown throughout the world. The migration to West Germany was a common occurrence in the early days of the GDR in all fields, but especially in the movies.
Once the West German film industry was back up and running, they were perfectly content to continue their careers closer to home. In some cases, film people who were actually from the Soviet sector decided to join the Republiksflucht and head west to the promise of better money. He would continue with a successful film and television career in the west, right up until his death in , and in , Germany had a postage stamp made in his honor. Most of the rest of the film crew ended up in the west as well, including, the editors Alice and Herman Ludwig , the art director Kurt Herith , and the Costume Designer Gertraud Recke.
When the film was first shown it hit German moviegoers like a punch in the gut. Audiences attending the screenings are reported to have responded with somber silence; still sitting in their seats when the lights came on. Marriage in the Shadows signaled not only a new attitude for the German people, but a new kind of filmmaking.
One that would flourish in the east, while the west was content to expend most of their effort making sentimental Heimatfilme. IMDB page for this film. Epic is not a term one often uses with East German movies. Its scale is huge and its sets are opulent. Using the backdrop of the Spanish Inquisition, Goya is shot in eye-busting color on 70mm film, with over 3, costumes, and locations in four different countries.
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From the opening moments of this film you know you are in for something different from any other film that ever came out of the GDR. Over somber chanting, a religious procession moves through a street in Spain. Some of the people in the procession wear white robes and capirotes, looking for all the world like members of the Ku Klux Klan. Others wear the same outfits in black. Men, stripped to the waist, their faces covered in white cloth, flagellate themselves as they walk in the procession, moaning in pain and religious ecstasy.
Along the way, people kneel and make the sign of the cross as the statues of Jesus on the cross and the Virgin Mary trundle by in wooden carts. To cast the film, director Konrad Wolf chose actors from seven countries, from Russia to Spain. To ensure the best possible performances from everyone, actors played their parts in their native languages. The set for this film must have sounded like the lobby at the United Nations. Since the government of Francisco Franco was not exactly on speaking terms with the GDR, Wolf could not film in Spain, so the back streets of Dubrovnik were used instead.
To add a more authentic flavor to the film, a film crew made up of West Germans was assembled and sent to Spain. At the beginning of the story, Goya is perfectly happy to be a pawn in the game that people in power played with the public. It is only after a series of tragic events that he comes to realize that these people are not worthy of admiration and he begins to evolve as a painter.
Lion Feuchtwanger wrote the book in response to the anti-communist trials that were being held by Senator Joseph McCarthy in Washington. The famous German fairy tale writer, Wilhelm Hauff had written a version of the story back in So much so that the Nazis felt compelled to ban the book and make a film based on the Wilhelm Hauff book that challenged nearly every detail in the Feuchtwanger book. Although he lived in the United States, Feuchtwanger was especially popular in East Germany, partly due, no doubt, to his defense of Stalin in his book, Moscow As a director, Konrad Wolf is a hard man to pin down.
A quick look at his list of films demonstrates his versatility, but it also makes it impossible for proponents of the auteur school film criticism to pigeonhole him. Some of his films are small and intimate, some are gritty, some are grand. That is, perhaps the point. Wolf was a communist director working in a communist system in a communist way. It is like nothing he ever did before and like nothing he did after.
It is majestic, intense, and unsentimental. The film that it is intended as much as a criticism of government repression as it is as a story about eighteenth-century Spain. As a co-production with Russia, the film was screened in advance in Moscow. The Russian official who screened the film asked that the final lines in the film—where the Inquisitor General of the Spanish Inquisition states that the name of Goya would be forever stricken from the records and forgotten by history—be removed from the film.
To his credit, Wolf refused to remove the lines. Had it been any other director, this refusal would have either been ignored, or the film would have ended up on a shelf alongside the films of the 11th Plenum, but Wolf got away with more than most directors in East Germany. Like J. Considering how often Konrad Wolf pushed the boundaries—most notably with Divided Heaven and Solo Sunny —there is a suggestion of truth to this.
Lithuanian actor, Donatas Banionis, was already known in the eastern bloc countries for his work in films such as, Watch Out for the Automobile Beregis avtomobilya and a Lithuanian version of The Little Prince Malenkiy prints. Banionas makes a good Goya, passionate and confused, quixotic and vain, yet still sympathetic. But it was lead actress, Olivera Katarina, who was best known to western audiences at the time. She sang songs in a variety of languages, including many gypsy tunes, and the Serbian folk songs of her native land.
In , when the relationships between the various states in Yugoslavia started to heat up, the Yugoslavian government decided that her songs were too nationalistic, she was quietly blacklisted and made no further albums until Today, a remarkable number of her songs are available in video form on YouTube. She continues to perform, and has her own website.
Although Goya contains no songs by Ms. Katarina, it does contain a couple wonderful numbers by Carmen Herold, who plays the folksinger, Maria Rosario Gomez. Herold sings in Spanish, and in the few scenes where she speaks, she seems to be speaking Spanish, but there is very little information available on this wonderful singer. Goya appears to be her only film, and her name does not turn up in any sources I could find outside of references to this movie. She has a remarkable face and a powerful singing voice, and she deserves more fame than she has received.
The music for the film was composed by the Azerbaijani composers Kara Karayev and his son, Faradsh. The Karayevs were trained as classical musicians, and Goya has an outstanding score. It could be played by an orchestra without any reference to the film and it would impress people. The elder Karayev wrote over pieces of music, including ballets, symphonies, and chamber pieces.
Today, his work is still performed around the world and an annual festival in his honor is held every April in Baku, Azerbaijan. Goya was one of his last film scores. He died in Faradsh Karayev has gone on to become a well-respected composer in his own right, having composed almost as many pieces as his father at this point. This time, however, he was assisted by the Russian cinematographer, Konstantin Ryzhov.
These two men have very different styles of filming. Bergmann often used a freer, hand-held technique. This was especially impressive considering he had lost one arm during the war. To compensate, Bergmann devised a special sling mount for his camera. Ryzhov, on the other had, seemed to prefer the more traditional, tripod-mounted approach, which was particularly well-suited to convey the opulence of the ballroom scenes. It is fun to watch the film with this in mind and try and guess which cinematographer handled which scenes.
Cinematography was not the only technical aspect handled by a tag team. Costume design, production design, and many of the other tech credits appear to be split almost evenly between East Germans and Russians. Having spent his formative years in exile in Russia, he spoke that language better than his native German. One credit that did not have shared billing was the editor. As always, Wolf used a woman editor, but this time it was Russian film editor, Aleksandra Borovskaya. It is the only time he worked with Ms. On his previous film, I Was Nineteen , Wolf used the talented editor Evelyn Carow, and returned to her after Goya for all his subsequent films.
How well or badly he meshed with Ms. Borovskaya, is not known, but he obviously was not predisposed to work with her again. It is powerful and grand, and does a good job of portraying the turbulent times in which Goya lived. Its attention to detail is remarkable, with an accuracy that Hollywood seldom attempts.
Within a year after Hitler was elected Chancellor, the first of many lists was published announcing the expatriation of undesirable German citizens. By the end of the sixties, it was obvious to all but the most iron-headed autocrats that East Germany was facing a crisis of culture. In spite of every effort to seal the public off from the invidious influences of the west, information was getting through, and the young people of the GDR were becoming more and more dissatisfied with the state of things.
At DEFA they decided to try a different tack. If the kids wanted youth-oriented films that could match the likes of the AIP Beach Party movies, then DEFA was going to give them what they wanted, but with a distinctly communist slant. In Hot Summer , a group of boys from Karl-Marx-Stadt Chemnitz and group of girls from Leipzig that have just finished school and are ready for a summer vacation like its Hollywood counterparts, everyone in this film is considerably older than the character they play.
They meet on their way to the Baltic Sea, with each group trading turns singing about the joys of a hot summer. Unlike the American Beach Party movies, which usually start with the boys and girls getting along at first and then fighting later, the boys and girls of Hot Summer are at each other from the start. Both appeared regularly on TV variety shows. Although there is some sexual tension between Kai and Stupsi, it never amounts to much. Aside from a scene where the two of them are singing atop a railroad train and then jump into a haystack done without stunt doubles, I might add , they never quite connect.
She would be chastised because sex for its own enjoyment is seen as a bad thing. In the east, her behavior is frowned on because it leads to party disunity. The rivalry over Britt threatens to tear the fabric of the community apart and everyone learns that the needs of the collective are more important than the needs of the individual. Britt is played by Regine Albrecht, who exudes a an easy-going, inconsiderate charm. Albrecht was primarily a stage actress, but she appeared in several films in the GDR.
Since the late nineties, she has worked with the Hans Otto Theater in Potsdam, where she lives. She is also well-known for her voice dubbing, and has done the German voices for several popular American television shows and movies, including The Gilmore Girls , and Brokeback Mountain. The director, Joachim Hasler, who was already a well-respected cinematographer when he made this film. The term auteur is often bandied about in film criticism and suggests that the director is the driving creative force behind a movie.
Auteur theory falls to pieces in the east, where that kind of project ownership was actively discouraged. Joachim Hasler not only directed the film, but—like Kubrick and Soderberg—he was also the cinematographer and the co-author of the screenplay. In spite of this seemingly heavy message, Hot Summer is light fun. The cast is as attractive as any western equivalent, and the songs are ridiculously catchy. He began by scoring short films, and moved to feature films in with Hexen and Carola Lamberti — Eine vom Zirkus.
Gerd knew how to compose classical and stage music but Hot Summer was more pop than anything he had done before. To help him with this, he enlisted the aid of his year-old son Thomas. In the late seventies, he started composing music for East German television shows, and continued this after the wall came down with nary a pause. Hot Summer was a hit at the box-office.
In the west, this would have led to an immediate sequel or two in the case of Beach Party , three sequels were made in the following year alone. It took five years for anything resembling a sequel to this film to make it to the big screen. No Cheating, Darling! The film was not the hit that Hot Summer was.
Critics liked the music, but hated the movie. Today, the comparison to the films of Frankie and Annette has faded. More often, the film is compared to Grease , even though Grease came out after Hot Summer the play in , and the film in Nonetheless, it is an apt comparison. Both Grease and Hot Summer were dismissed by critics as pop culture kitsch appealing only to the lowest common denominator, yet both were box office hits that transcended the criticism with an infectious exuberance and plenty of catchy songs.
Both have experienced revivals, of sorts. It is easy to sniff at a fluffy little film like Hot Summer , but it is far more enjoyable to simply let yourself go with it and accept it for what it was intended to be: a welcome relief from the drab duties of daily life. Most East German films received little if any distribution in the west.
If you lived in Poland or Russia, you might see some of them pop up in theaters particularly the Indianerfilme , but only a handful made it to the movie houses in New York and London. During those early days of DEFA and the two German republics, many West German filmmakers found themselves turning to the east to get their projects realized.
The western authorities—and in particular, the United States—were in no hurry to get the German movie industry back on its feet. The Cold Heart was successful on both sides of the border and the East German authorities recognized the potential income that this particular film genre had for the state.
With their common themes about the importance of helping others less fortunate than yourself and the humbling of the rich, fairy tales fit nicely within the confines of socialist ideology. The film tells the story of a young man who, because of his kindness to an old woman, is given a golden goose. Lots of singing and general hilarity ensues. This is because the film was purchased for distribution in the U.
Gordon Murray. His formula was simple: buy a film cheaply, dub it badly, edit it substantially, and distribute it quickly. Eventually, Murray ran afoul of the IRS, and all his films were seized. He was in the process of getting them back when he died of a heart attack. Yellen started Childhood Productions, a company exclusively devoted to kiddie films. Yellin brought more East German films to U.
He got his start as an assistant director in the early fifties, working on, among other films, The Story of Little Muck. All of his fairy tale films are available on DVD through Icestorm Entertainment , although not all have been released in the United States. Although he only composed the music for three feature films all of them by Siegfried Hartmann , composer Siegfried Bethmann was a successful musician in East Germany who was better known for his march music than his film scores. IMDB page for the film. In the early s, the East German authorities made yet another U-turn in their attitude toward the arts.
Women and minorities were still being treated as second-class citizens in the Untied States—a country that prided itself on its individual freedoms. In spite of its civil rights laws, poverty was still rampant in the African-American community, and there were no signs that this was about to change any time soon. At the same time, women were still treated as either sex objects or comic fodder for bad comedians.
This was seen as perfectly legitimate. Meanwhile at DEFA, filmmakers were doing all they could to change the perception of women in the workplace by producing films that featured them in positions of authority. The Legend of Paul and Paula pushed things a little further with its story of a woman who is a powerless blue-collar worker Mitarbeiterin , but she is still the focal point of the film.
But most of these initial feminist films were still made by men. Soon Ms. Hinrichs finds herself romantically involved with both of them, and not sure which way to turn. In some respects, the story in the film pales in comparison to the story of the film. It was made at the tail end of the cycle of a renewed creative freedom in East Germany, but once again, the authorities were getting nervous that these movies were in danger of making people question the state of things. They decided it was time to make an example of a film, and The Dove on the Roof was right there at the wrong time.
Normally, when a film was banned, DEFA had the foresight to shelve it—literally—keeping the original negatives in case of a future change in policy. But somehow The Dove on the Roof fell through the cracks. The original color negatives were destroyed and the film was thought to be lost forever. The color layers had de-laminated, making it impossible to strike a decent color print from the copy.
A decision was made to create a black-and-white print instead and the film was finally screened in But almost immediately after the screening, it was lost again, and remained lost for another twenty years, finally turning up a second time in New black-and-white prints were made and the film was finally released on DVD last summer. The Dove on the Roof was her first feature film. Although it was completed, the film never made it to the theaters. It was well received by both the authorities and the public and helped get her career as a director back on track. During the summer of , a few months before the wall came down, Ms.
Gusner left East Germany, moving first to Cologne and later to Berlin. Linda Hinrichs is played by Heidemarie Wenzel. After her husband, director Helmut Nitzschke, failed to return from a business trip to West Germany, Ms. Wenzel applied for an exit visa to join him. This effectively brought her acting career in East Germany to an end. For the next few years, she worked as an office assistant at a church. Finally in , she was allowed to immigrate to West Germany.
In , she was cast as Sylvia Hagenbeck in the popular TV series, Unsere Hagenbecks , where the death of her character on the show led to public protests. More recently, she has been seen as a regular on In aller Freundschaft , a popular TV hospital drama set in Leipzig.
The two male leads are as different as can be, and so are their careers. He continues to appear often in German television productions. Andreas Gripp, on the other hand, was a newcomer to film. Primarily a theater actor, after this film was made he reportedly returned to the stage. He died a few years later in a car accident. The Dove on the Roof is not the first color film to be converted to black-and-white.
It is a common technique for saving old films when the original negative or working copy is too faded to produce an adequate color print. That this film was rescued, not once, but twice, is one of the great success stories of film preservation. Sadly, many other films both from the east and the west are not so lucky. Prior to the s, there were few efforts to save motion pictures. The medium was seen as a disposable form of entertainment,. Hundreds of films were either thrown away or destroyed through overuse and are now gone forever. The script for this movie sat on the shelf for over ten years, and was finally made in by Lothar Warneke.
In , disco fever swept the world. The Bee Gees—formerly a Beatles-influenced band—had reinvented themselves as the kings of the nightlife, John Travolta was teaching people how to dance, and skin-tight polyester shirts were flying off the shelves. Each number starts with a black-and-white sequence that shows the various musicians wandering through the backlots of DEFA, or preparing for the numbers they are about to sing. In the first sequence, for example, the popular East German singer, Veronika Fischer, is seen being made up before the video while one of her bandmates tries unsuccessfully to start their tour bus.
About halfway through the film, the songs are interrupted by a longer comedy routine starring Rolf Herricht and Hans Joachim Preil. One of the more interesting musical numbers occurs shortly before the Herricht and Preil sketch. Scenes of Demmler sitting on a stool and strumming a guitar are interspersed with scenes of a marionette performing a striptease and very quickly edited and artfully photographed shots of a naked woman. Demmler had made a name for himself writing lyrics for nearly every major group or singer in East Germany, including those in this movie.
He is reported to have written the lyrics for over 10, songs. Later, in September of , he was also one of the many musicians in the GDR to sign the Rock Musician and Songwriter Resolution Resolution von Rockmusikern und Liedermachern , a petition calling for changes in the East German government. It is a little ironic that Demmler is singing in this film about sex, since it was sex that proved to be his downfall.
In , Demmler was charged with the sexual molestation of six young girls who had auditioned with him for a group he was reportedly putting together. The indictment further charged him with cases of sexual molestation of girls between the ages of 10 and In , he was fined 1, Euros in a similar case. While awaiting trial on the charges, Demmler hanged himself in his jail cell. Many of the musical sequences in DEFA Disko 77 are remarkably—perhaps even aggressively—ill-designed.
Lakomy, with his denim outfit, Prell-girl hair, oval shades, and droopy moustache was the perfect East German hipster circa His appearance was so readily identifiable that Nina Hagen once parodied him on East German television. In the video we see Lakomy, in his usual garb, trying to seduce a woman dressed like Marie Antoinette.
Why she is dressed like this is never explained. The most curious aspect of DEFA Disko 77 is how aggressively cluttered and ill-composed each musical sequence is. Scenes are filled with gantries, light poles, desks, and stagehands. As the camera circles, dozens of people working at desks obscure the view. The end result looks like it was shot from the perspective of a small child trying to catch a glimpse of a parade between the legs of the adults. To make matters worse, the band performs on a balcony three floors up while the camera stays at ground level, constantly circling around the building, as if trying to figure out where the music is coming from.
Still, this is the only video in which a couple is actually dressed as if they are going to a disco. Everyone else on the dance floor, however, is dressed in a crazy variety of outfits, including some that look suspiciously like the spacesuits from In the Dust of the Stars. Wallroth, by , had made a dozen movies for cinema and television, so we can assume that he was intentionally avoiding traditional aesthetics, perhaps in an attempt to create a more spontaneous look and feel. Whether he succeeds or not is up to the viewer, but he is clearly throwing out a lot of the rules of traditional filmmaking.