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Welcome to the Department of General Linguistics!

Emmy-Noether-Research Group

The Emmy-Noether Research Group on Non-Hierarchicality in Grammar (NonGram) examines the formation of syntactic structures in constructions without a formal word-class distinction from a typological perspective; the languages studied are Waima'a (Austronesian), Kera'a (Sino-Tibetan), Warlpiri (Pama-Nyunga) and Vedic Sanskrit (Indo-European).

CRC project on Diachrony of Predication in Old Indo-Aryan

Project B03 of the Collaborative Research Centre (CRC) 1252 on Prominence in Language, located at the University of Cologne, is led by Prof. Dr. Uta Reinöhl and Prof. Dr. Gerrit Dimmendaal and explores how in the history of Indo-Aryan infinite participial forms developed into main clause predicates. Image: Vedic Prose and a Pillar of Aśoka, © by Simon Fries


VedaWeb 2.0 is the DFG-funded follow-up project of VedaWeb, a Digital Humanities project led by Prof. Dr. Uta Reinöhl in cooperation with other researchers. It aims at creating a web-based, openly accessible and collaborative platform for linguistic research on Old Indo-Aryan texts.

Fieldwork on Kera'a

Within the scope of the Emmy-Noether Research Group on Non-Hierarchicality in GrammarNaomi Peck and Prof. Dr. Reinöhl study Kera'a, a Trans-Himalayan language located in the North-East of the Indian State of Arunachal Pradesh, spoken by about 10,000 Idu Mishmi.

Fieldwork on Waima'a

Within the scope of the Emmy-Noether Research Group on Non-Hierarchicality in Grammar, Kirsten Culhane explores the prosody of Waima'a, an Austronesian language spoken by about 18,000 people in East Timor, an island country located in the Indonesian archipelago.

PhD Project on Warlpiri

Within the scope of her PhD project tied to the Emmy-Noether Research Group on Non-Hierarchicality in Grammar, Maria Vollmer studies Warlpiri, a Pama-Nyungan language spoken by about 2'300 people in the Australian Northern Territory. She is especially interested in how language change and language contact reflect in morphosyntax. Image: Papunya/Warumpi, © by James Gray


  • Applications are open!
    Application deadline: 15 July for Non-EU applicants, 15 September for EU applicants. Further information on our Master's programme can be found here.
  • The lecture series "Language, Communication & Cognition" continues.
    You can find the lecture dates here.
  • New Master's programme: Linguistics: Language, Communication and Cognition
    The new Master's programme Linguistics: Language, Communication and Cognition starts in the winter semester 2023/24. The programme is organised by the linguistics departments in Freiburg. Depending on the choice of the field of study, it is possible to study the programme exclusively in English. You can find further information on the programme and the fields of study here.
  • New Emmy-Noether research group on Bayesian modeling of spatial typology starts in December. 
    This project will explore how geography and space influence language contact and linguistic structures. We will develop new statistical techniques to address three main main topics: (1) barriers (like mountains, forests, oceans) and pathways (roads, trade routes); (2) asymmetric and symmetric language contact; and (3) realistic representations of language areas using polygon data.

  • Our lecture series has a new name: "Language, Communication & Cognition".
    You can find the lecture dates here.
  • HPSL Day 2022 & Call for Posters

    The PhD students of the Hermann Paul School of Linguistics are organising the HPSL Day 2022 on Friday, 28 October and invite all who are interested to participate, as listeners or actively with a poster on their own research project. Further information can be found here.
    The deadline for submission of poster proposals has been extended until August 15th

  • The Department of Linguistics now has its own Instagram account!
  • We celebrate a double success & congratulate Uta Reinöhl and Laura Becker!
    With the co-applicants Stefan Pfänder (Freiburg), Achim Rabus (Freiburg), Daniela Marzo (Freiburg), Lars Bülow (Wien) und T. Mark Ellison (Köln), Uta Reinöhl got the acceptance for a new project at FRIAS which is about "Routinization in Language". 
    In addition, Laura Becker will be a Junior Fellow at FRIAS from october. 
  • Prof. Uta Reinöhl is a guest editor of the recently released issue of the journal Linguistics: 
    Dana Louagie & Uta Reinöhl (eds). 2022. Typologizing the Noun Phrase. Special Issue of Linguistics 60 (3).
    Zudem hat Sie auch einen eignen Artikel darin veröffentlicht: Dana Louagie & Uta Reinöhl. 2022. "Typologizing nominal expressions: the noun phrase and beyond", in: Dana Louagie & Uta Reinöhl (eds). Typologizing the Noun Phrase. Special Issue of Linguistics 60 (3), 659-714.
  • Linguistics for Ukraine
    The website Linguistics for Ukraine is a place of resources for Ukrainian linguists, collecting offers from German-speaking academia to help linguists currently affected by the war in Ukraine. You will find information about scholarships and temporary positions in Germany and Austria for linguists and students of linguistics from Ukraine, offers for teachers and students from Ukraine as well as support for networking activities and participation in conferences. We encourage you to submit an offer, and check and publish your and others’ offers in a timely manner.
  • New project (DFG funded): VedaWeb 2.0
    The follow-up project of VedaWeb aims at creating a collaborative work environment for Old Indic texts. Project members: Prof. Daniel Kölligan (Julius-Maximilians-Universität Würzburg), Dr. Claes Neuefeind (Universität zu Köln), Prof. Uta Reinöhl (Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg), Prof. Patrick Sahle (Bergische Universität Wuppertal). 
  • We invite you to subscribe to our weekly newsletter!
    You can find all information on subscription and lecture announcements here.
  • We are happy to announce the publication of Dr. Laura Becker's book "Articles in the World's Languages" at De Gruyter!


  • We have a new page with useful links and tips for students of our master program.
    You can find institutions for internships, workshops, summer/winter schools, and lecture series there. Here you can find information about studying abroad and exchange programs.
  • The Department of Linguistics now has its own Facebook page.

Current Publications