En réponse à Philippe Caquant : >This all can very well be understood if we look at a >geographic map of Norway. Until recently, valleys were >very isolated from each other, and often the best way >to get from one region to another was by sea. (Now >they made tunnels everywhere like worms in a piece of >cheese, and you have to pay a fee every 15 km). Actually, geography is not necessary to have a multitude of dialects. You don't even need distance! Look at the Netherlands: probably the flatest country of the world, and a small one at that, and yet such a multitude of dialects that it's common on TV to *subtitle* Dutch people just like people speaking a foreign language! And the differences between dialects can be lexical, syntactic and morphological (for example my friend's dialect still uses "gij" for "jij": "you (sg)" (in other dialects, "gij" is like "thou" in English: it's limited to talking to God). It's quite simple: each village in the Netherlands has its own distinctive dialect, slightly different from its neighbours. Impressive for such a small country! :) And then if you add the Flemish dialects spoken in Belgium and Fries (which is not a dialect but a separate language), you get a beautiful linguistic mess :))) . Christophe Grandsire. http://rainbow.conlang.free.fr You need a straight mind to invent a twisted conlang.