The strong link between Indo-European studies as developed in Germany during the nineteenth century and historical research into Celtic, especially Irish, linguistics as well as philology has often been emphasised and described in some detail. This paper shifts the emphasis away from the work of scholars such as Zeuss, Windisch, Meyer or Thurneysen and tries to evaluate the efforts directed at the documentation and description of Modern Irish, particularly in its precarious dialectical form. Three names of twentieth-century linguists from Germany and Switzerland will be in focus: Franz Nikolaus Finck, author of the first comprehensive description of an Irish dialect; Hans Hartmann, who should be remembered as the initiator of the largest coherent taped collection of vernacular Irish; and Heinrich Wagner as the most prolific and influential Irish dialectologist of all times. It will be shown that these linguists were strangely linked with each other through the language typologist Ernst Lewy, exiled in Dublin, thereby linking dialectical research on the periphery of Europe with truly central issues in theoretical linguistics. An outlook on achievements and further perspectives will conclude this brief paper.