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Historical Dictionary of Switzerland

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The Historical Dictionary of Switzerland is an encyclopedia on the history of Switzerland that aims to take into account the results of modern historical research in a manner accessible to a broader audience.

The encyclopedia is published by a foundation under the patronage of the Swiss Academy of Humanities and Social Sciences (SAGW/ASSH) and the Swiss Historical Society (SGG-SHH) and is financed by national research grants. Besides a staff of 30 at the central offices, the contributors include 100 academic advisors, 2500 historians and 100 translators.



Print edition

The encyclopedia is being edited simultaneously in three national languages of Switzerland: German (Historisches Lexikon der Schweiz - HLS), French (Dictionnaire Historique de la Suisse - DHS) and Italian (Dizionario Storico della Svizzera - DSS). The first of 12 volumes was published in 2002. An additional volume per year is planned. A single volume with a selection of articles will be published in Romansh (Lexicon Istoric Retic - LIR).

The 40,000 headings are grouped in:

  1. Biographies
  2. Articles on families
  3. Articles on places (municipalities, cantons, other nation states, fortresses, archeological sites)
  4. Subject articles (historical phenomena and terms, institutions, events)

Online edition

The online edition is available since 1998. It makes accessible, for free, all articles ready for publication in print, but no illustrations. It also lists all 40,000 topics that are to be covered.


  • Historisches Lexikon der Schweiz (HLS), Schwabe AG, Basel, ISBN 3-7965-1900-8 (2002-)
  • Dictionnaire historique de la Suisse (DHS), Editions Gilles Attinger, Hauterive, ISBN 2-88256-133-4 (2002-)
  • Dizionario storico della Svizzera (DSS), Armando Dadò editore, Locarno, ISBN 88-8281-100-X (2002-)

External links

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