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Nuer language

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Nuer language

Nuer
Naadh
Native to South Sudan, Ethiopia
Region Upper Nile state, Gambela Region
Ethnicity Nuer
Native speakers
unknown (890,000 cited 1982–2007)[1]
Dialects
Thiang
Western Jikany
Eastern Jikany
Nyuong
Door
Lou
Latin
Language codes
ISO 639-3 nus
Glottolog nuer1246[2]

The Nuer language is a Nilo-Saharan language of the Western Nilotic group. It is spoken by the Nuer people of South Sudan and in western Ethiopia (region of Gambela). Nuer is one of eastern and central Africa's most widely spoken languages.

Nuer language has a Latin-based alphabet. There are also several dialects of Nuer, although all have one written standard. For example, final /k/ is pronounced in the Jikany dialect, but is dropped in other dialects despite being indicated in Nuer orthography.

Nuer communities

There are different dialects spoken by Nuer groups living in various locations in South Sudan. Some of the Nuer people live in Western Ethiopia. They are called Gajaak, Gajiok, and Lou. The Nuer of the Nasir region are called Gajiok, and those in Waat are called Lou. There are also Gaweer and Jikueichieng.

Sample text

Nuer:  Naath dial diethɛ kɛ a lɔr kä päärkɛ kɛ ciaŋ malä a mäni cuŋkiɛn. Tekɛ kɛ car kɛnɛ nhok ti de lät kɛ raan kɛ dämaan a gɔa.

English:  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)

Writing system of Nuer

The alphabet of Nuer uses 39 distinct letters, shown below in capitals and lowercase styles.[3]
Majuscules
A Ä B C D Dh E Ë Ɛ Ɛ̱ Ɛ̈ G Ɣ H I Ï J
K L M N Ŋ Nh Ny O Ö Ɔ Ɔ̱ P R T Th U W Y
Minuscules
a ä b c d dh e ë ɛ ɛ̱ ɛ̈ g ɣ h i ï j
k l m n ŋ nh ny o ö ɔ ɔ̱ p r t th u w y

References

  1. ^ Nuer at Ethnologue (17th ed., 2013)
  2. ^ Nordhoff, Sebastian; Hammarström, Harald; Forkel, Robert; Haspelmath, Martin, eds. (2013). "Nuer". Glottolog 2.2. Leipzig: Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology. 
  3. ^ Hutchinson, 1996, pp. xv-xvii

External links

  • Nuer Project - copious grammatical notes
  • OpenRoad page on Nuer (Thok Nath)
  • PanAfrican L10n page on Nuer
  • Omniglot page on Nuer
  • World Atlas of Language Structures information on Nuer
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