Legendary Val Gardena: Mystical stories and a small Ladin lexicon

You've probably already noticed that here in Val Gardena, people speak a special language: Ladin. This language is the centrepiece of a wonderful, multi-faceted culture that we cherish and cultivate with pride throughout the valley. Here in Selva we speak the so-called "Sella Ladin", which we think is the most beautiful dialect of all. But all variants have one thing in common: there is a huge treasure trove of fairy tales and stories, countless stories, myths and legends. There is talk of "fanes and ganes", of witches and fairies and wild creatures. And exactly where our Hotel Sella stands today, a sad and beautiful love story is said to have taken place a long, long time ago.


The warrior Ey-de-Nét, the unattainable Dolasilla and the sun child Soreghina

It is somewhat complicated, with many twists and turns: It is about the brave warrior Ey-de-Nét, who fell head over heels in love with the heroine Dolasilla. But not only did she have shimmering pearly white armour, she also had better things to do than worry about Ey-de-Nét, who was in love with shock. One night he stumbled over his own feet, fell into the ditch and if it hadn't been for the beautiful Princess Soreghina, who found him and devotedly nursed, cared for and nurtured him, things would have ended badly for our brave warrior. Unfortunately, there is no happy ending, because Soreghina only felt at ease during the day and in bright sunshine. But when the mighty Samblána (the winter goddess) sends the dense kalivérna (autumn fog) into the land or the moon is in the sky, she is in a bad way. And as is sometimes the case with unfulfilled love, the princess spied on her beloved, heard him talking about how he didn't love her but the good Dolasilla and then wandered around in terror and grief and sorrow for so long that it became a bitterly cold night and things ended badly for her. Sometimes, on very special days of the year, you can still hear him sobbing quietly, the ungrateful warrior Ey-de-Nét. For he had already grown somewhat fond of her, the beautiful, sun-hungry Soreghina.


For children and adults: important words in Sella-Ladinese

If you want to know what happened next and whether our hero at least got the Dolasilla, you have to come to us in person at the Hotel Sella in Val Gardena, because every child here knows the legendary stories. Here in Selva and the surrounding area, around 80 per cent of all locals speak Sella-Ladinese. We would be all the more delighted if you learnt a few words of our wonderful language:


Good day/good night! - Bon di! Bona sëira!

My name is XY, what is your name? - Mi inuem ie XY, co es’a tu inuem?

I come from XY - Ie vëni da XY

I am on holiday at Hotel Sella - Ie passi mi feries tl Hotel Sella

How do you say XY in Ladin? - Co dijen pa XY te ladin?

Shall we play? - Ulons’a fé damat?

Shall we be friends? - Ues’a vester cumpanies?

Goodbye, see you soon! - A se udëi!

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