Romansh is a Romance language spoken by 50-70,000 people in the Swiss
canton of Grisons (Graubünden). It is one of the four national
languages of Switzerland and has semi-official status.
Romansh, which is also known as Rumantsch, Romansch or Romanche or
Rhaeto-Romansch, is not in fact a single language but rather a cluster of
closely-related dialects. A standardised written form, known as Rumantsch
Grischun (Graubünden Romansh) was created in 1982 by Heinrich
Schmid, a linguist from Zurich, though it isn't particularly popular with speakers,
who prefer to use their own dialects and often use German to communicate with
speakers of different dialects.
Romansh first appeared in print in 1552 in a catechism by Jacob Bifrun called
Christiauna fuorma, which he wrote in the Engadine dialect. A Romansh
translation of the New Testament was published in 1560.
Today Romansh is used to some extent in schools and the media.
The letters k (ka), w (ve dubel), and y (ipsilon / i grec) are only used in foreign loanwords.
Tuots umans naschan libers ed eguals in dignità e drets. Els sun
dotats cun intellet e conscienza e dessan agir tanter per in uin spiert
All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They
are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another
in a spirit of brotherhood. (Article 1 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights)