‹  舍  › 
Wednesday 14 November 2018
Lilian day 2175583.0866

Here’s today’s date in 704 languages and dialects, complete with a profile of each. I’m favoring languages that are at least a bit off the beaten track, offer Gregorian calendar terms that depart substantially from your run-of-the-mill neo-Latin, or both. (Spanish? No. Asturian? Yes.)

Heading terms in parentheses ( ) are alternate names for a language, while those in brackets [ ] specify a particular subdivision or dialect shown. Click the language name for its ISO code and profile info.

j. JENUIER / LOUWMAAND
ij. FREUIER / SPROKKELMAAND
iij. MARCH / LENTEMAAND
iiij. AURIL / GRASMAAND
v. MAY / BLOEIMAAND
vj. JUING / ZOMERMAAND
vij. JUILLET / HOOIMAAND
viij. AUOUST / OOGSTMAAND
ix. SEPTĒBRE / HERFSTMAAND
x. OCTĒBRE / WIJNMAAND
xj. NOUĒBRE / SLACHTMAAND
xij. DECĒBRE / WINTERMAAND
<span class="generic-slide-caption" style="width:194px;"><i><aside>j. JENUIER / LOUWMAAND</aside></i></span> <span class="generic-slide-caption" style="width:194px;"><i><aside>ij. FREUIER / SPROKKELMAAND</aside></i></span> <span class="generic-slide-caption" style="width:194px;"><i><aside>iij. MARCH / LENTEMAAND</aside></i></span> <span class="generic-slide-caption" style="width:194px;"><i><aside>iiij. AURIL / GRASMAAND</aside></i></span> <span class="generic-slide-caption" style="width:194px;"><i><aside>v. MAY / BLOEIMAAND</aside></i></span> <span class="generic-slide-caption" style="width:194px;"><i><aside>vj. JUING / ZOMERMAAND</aside></i></span> <span class="generic-slide-caption" style="width:194px;"><i><aside>vij. JUILLET / HOOIMAAND</aside></i></span> <span class="generic-slide-caption" style="width:194px;"><i><aside>viij. AUOUST / OOGSTMAAND</aside></i></span> <span class="generic-slide-caption" style="width:194px;"><i><aside>ix. SEPTĒBRE / HERFSTMAAND</aside></i></span> <span class="generic-slide-caption" style="width:194px;"><i><aside>x. OCTĒBRE / WIJNMAAND</aside></i></span> <span class="generic-slide-caption" style="width:194px;"><i><aside>xj. NOUĒBRE / SLACHTMAAND</aside></i></span> <span class="generic-slide-caption" style="width:194px;"><i><aside>xij. DECĒBRE / WINTERMAAND</aside></i></span>

One of the surprises here is how many non-European languages have Gregorian date terminology like this to dust off, at least for the record, even as their underlying cultures stand foursquare behind Islamic (Hijri), Hindu, Buddhist, or other calendar systems.

For those that expired before the advent of modern place-value numerals I’m using Roman. For Etruscan I’m using Etruscan numerals while pretending those serene, elbow-lounging folks used the Gregorian calendar and reckoned dates sequentially as we do.1 Traditional Chuvash numerals follow a similar scheme, but with the smaller units to the left of the larger ones, a slash for 5, and a star for 1000. Moksha resembled Chuvash but used a lambda for 10 and a kind of reflected sawhorse for 1000.

The only non-Gregorian date2 I’m showing is a rough estimate for the Gaulish, whose calendar was offset by about half a month from that used by their Roman contemporaries and whose months alternated between 29 and 30 days as opposed to 30 and 31.3

Peter


Abaza: Abaza ✧ ABQ ✧ Northwest Caucasian, endangered, 48,000 speakers in Russia and in Turkish diaspora communities. Natively it has 63 consonants but only 2 vowels. Related closely to Abkhaz (q.v.).
14 ноябрь (noyabr’) 2018
Abenaki [Western]: Abenaki [Western] ✧ ABE ✧ Algonquian family. As of 1991 spoken natively by fewer than 20 in Odanak, Quebec, and others in New York State and Connecticut; by 2006, only six. The English word “skunk” likely derives from Abenaki.
14 Mzatanos “Freezing river maker” 2018
Abkhaz: Abkhaz ✧ ABK ✧ Northwest Caucasian, 190,000 speakers, closely related to Abaza (q.v.). Features six different kinds of K/Q sounds.
14 абҵара (abtsãara) 2018
Abui: Abui ✧ ABZ ✧ Trans-New Guinea family, spoken by 17,000 on Alor Island in Eastern Indonesia, just north of East Timor. Abui has no active/passive distinction.
14 aakanai 2018
Acholi: Acholi ✧ ACH ✧ Nilo-Saharan family, spoken in Uganda and South Sudan. Since Acholi is tonal and since there are several versions of each vowel, a given one-syllable word can have 14 different pronunciations.
14 Dwe me apar acel 2018
Achuar-Shiwiar [Achuar Chicham]: Achuar-Shiwiar [Achuar Chicham] ✧ ACU ✧ From the tiny Jivaroan family, spoken by around 7000 in Peru and Ecuador by the Achuar, Shiwiar and Maina tribes. For numerals greater than four Achuar-Shiwiar borrows from Spanish.
14 sampi 2018
Achuar-Shiwiar [Shiwiar Chicham]: Achuar-Shiwiar [Shiwiar Chicham] ✧ ACU ✧ The other dialect of Achuar-Shiwiar
14 namúr 2018
Afar: Afar ✧ AAR ✧ Afro-Asiatic, Cushitic. Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia.
14 Ximoli 2018
Aghem (Wum): Aghem (Wum) ✧ AGQ ✧ Niger-Congo family, Cameroon. Aghem speakers traditionally used leopard-skin carpets.
14 ndzɔ̱ŋɔ̱chwaʔàkaa wo 2018
Aghul (Agul): Aghul (Agul) ✧ AGX ✧ Northeast Caucasian, 30,000 speakers mostly in Southern Dagestan. There is a contrast between “tense” and “weak” consonants.
14 фундукI (funduk̓) 2018
Ahom: Ahom ✧ AHO ✧ Kra–Dai family, Brahmaputra river valley, extinct by 1800. Unique script.
14 nov (din sip it) 2018
Ahtna [Central]: Ahtna [Central] ✧ AHT ✧ Athabaskan, around 80 speakers (all dialects combined), Alaska’s Copper River. Incorporates about 100 Russian loanwords.
14 taa’i na’aaye’ “Third month [of snow]” 2018
Ahtna [Lower]: Ahtna [Lower] ✧ AHT ✧ Another dialect of Ahtna
14 c‶endełi na‶aaye‶ “Lakes freeze” 2018
Ahtna [Mentasa]: Ahtna [Mentasa] ✧ AHT ✧ Another dialect of Ahtna
14 debae saa “Sheep month” 2018
Ainu: Ainu ✧ AIN ✧ Aboriginal language of Japanese archipelago, ancestry unknown, nearly extinct natively. Counts in base 20.
14 クエカィチュプ (kuekaychup) 2018
Akan: Akan ✧ AKA ✧ Niger-Congo Language native to Ghana and Ivory Coast, also brought to South America by slaves
14 Ɔberɛfɛw-Obubuo 2018
Akha [Puli/Standard]: Akha [Puli/Standard] ✧ AHK ✧ Sino-Tibetan, Loloish, 600,000 speakers in Burma’s Shan State, northern Laos, and northern Thailand. Four tones shown by hacheks and circumflexes above and below vowels (-̌ -̂ -̬ -̭) but also the letter m, which too can be tonal.
14 leǔ yî 2018
Alabama: Alabama ✧ AKZ ✧ Muskogean language, distantly related to Choctaw (q.v.), spoken in Texas. Regular versus nasalized vowels, contrastive vowel length.
14 hasiholtina istapókkòolawah cháffàaka 2018
Albanian [Gheg]: Albanian [Gheg] ✧ SQI ✧ Indo-European language with its very own branch. Unlike many languages it uses the “th” sounds (IPA symbol θ, ð).
14 nëntor 2018
Albanian [Tosk]: Albanian [Tosk] ✧ ALS ✧ Dialect (also called Arberesh) spoken in Italy, partial interintelligibility with Gheg Albanian(q.v.)
14 novembri 2018
Aleut [Atkan]: Aleut [Atkan] ✧ ALE ✧ Eskimo-Aleut family, Aleut branch, native to the Alaskan Peninsula and the Aleutian, Commander, and Pribilof Islands. Aleut in total has around 150 speakers. Two groups survive, Atkan being the smaller.
14 Kyum tugidaa “Horse mussel month” -or- Nuyaabrax̂ 2018
Algonquin: Algonquin ✧ ALQ ✧ Algonquian family, closely related to (but divergent from) Ojibwe (q.v.). 1800 speakers in Quebec and Ontario.
14 attikemeg gizis “Whitefish month” 2018
Altai: Altai ✧ ATV ✧ Turkic language spoken by 20,000 natively in Siberia’s Altai Mountains
14 küçürgen 2018
Aluku: Aluku ✧ ??? ✧ A creole combining English, Dutch, African languages, and French that arose among escaped African slaves in Suriname and French Guiana. Generations ago Aluku was a pretty big deal, but as of 1980 there were only 33 speakers left.
14 elufu mun fu baka yali 2018
Alutiiq: Alutiiq ✧ EMS ✧ An Eskimo-Aleut language, indigenous to the Alaska and Kenai Peninsulas and Kodiak Island, with around 200 native speakers. Two chief dialects, Kodiak and Chugach; Kodiak shown here.
14 Quyawim Iralua “Thanksgiving moon” 2018
Amharic: Amharic ✧ AMH ✧ Afro-Asiatic. Ethiopia, yes, but the Rastafari also dig it.
14 hadar 2018
Angami (Tenyidie): Angami (Tenyidie) ✧ NJM ✧ Sino-Tibetan family, eight dialects, 130,000 speakers in India’s Nagaland. Angami has five tones plus “breathy.” Listed as vulnerable by UNESCO.
14 Zipe o krö 2018
Anii: Anii ✧ BLO ✧ A Niger-Congo language spoken by 49,000 in Benin and Togo. Anii observes strict vowel harmony (like Turkic and Uralic languages such as Finnish) and is bitonal.
14 Acapomka kaŋɔrɔ 2018
Apache [Jicarilla]: Apache [Jicarilla] ✧ APJ ✧ Athabaskan family, New Mexico, about 500 speakers, tonal. Unusually rich sound inventory (34 consonants, 16 vowels) including ejectives and an N sound which like a vowel can carry tones.
14 Kajee Biådaa'idâ 2018
Apache [Western]: Apache [Western] ✧ APW ✧ Athabaskan family, southeast Arizona, 14,000 native speakers. Acute accents indicate a high tone on a vowel.
14 Kǫ’ bąąh Náɬk’as “Cold even by the fire” -or- Zas Nɬt’ees “Frostbiting show” 2018
Apatani (Tanii): Apatani (Tanii) ✧ APT ✧ Sino-Tibetan family, eastern Himalayas, 28,400 speakers. Most nouns have 2 syllables.
14 emo piilo 2018
Arabic [Levantine]: Arabic [Levantine] ✧ APC ✧ Afro-Asiatic family, Semitic. Descended from Ancient North Arabian.
١٤ تشرين الثاني (tishreenu alθāni) ٢٠١٨
Arabic [Libyan]: Arabic [Libyan] ✧ AYL ✧ An alternative terminology established under Muammar Gaddafi. Aside from that, this dialect has been influenced by Maltese and Sicilian.
١٤ الحرث (al ẖarθ) ٢٠١٨
Aragonese: Aragonese ✧ ARG ✧ Indo-European, Romance. Spoken in Northern Aragon, endangered, mutually intelligible with Spanish.
14 nobiembre 2018
Arapaho: Arapaho ✧ ARP ✧ Algonquian, Arapahoan branch, natively spoken by 1000 mostly living on the Wind River Indian Reservation in Wyoming. Closely related to Gros Ventre (q.v.). Uses a 3 for the unvoiced th sound (θ).
14 seniicenkooɂ “Leaves falling heavily” -or- beesceneeniisiis “Turkey month” 2018
Arikara: Arikara ✧ ARI ✧ A North American indigenous language from the Caddoan family, related to Pawnee (q.v.) but not mutually intelligible with it. A handful of speakers remain in White Shield, North Dakota.
14 [November unknown] 2018
Aromanian (Vlach): Aromanian (Vlach) ✧ RUP ✧ A Romance language often considered a Romanian dialect, spoken throughout the Balkans, Greece, and Turkey. Aromanian has more Greek influence; Romanian, more Slavic.
14 brumaru -or- nuembru 2018
Arosi: Arosi ✧ AIA ✧ Malayo-Polynesian, Solomonic, spoken by 6800 on Makira (San Cristobal) Island, east of Guadalcanal in the Solomons.
14 ogu 2018
Arpitan(Franco-Provençal) [Stéphenois]: Arpitan(Franco-Provençal) [Stéphenois] ✧ FRP ✧ Gallo-Romance, spoken around Saint-Étienne in eastern central France
14 nouvombrou 2018
Arpitan (Franco-Provençal) [Savoyard]: Arpitan (Franco-Provençal) [Savoyard] ✧ FRP ✧ An Arpitan dialect spoken around Savoy in western France
14 novembro 2018
Assiniboine 1: Assiniboine 1 ✧ ASB ✧ A Siouan language spoken by 150 or so in the Northern US/Canadian Plains. Like Dalecarlian (q.v.) and Polish it has nasal vowels signaled with ogoneks, in this case Ą, Į, and Ų.
14 caȟcáȟ hą́wi -or- cąʾácuȟewąga hą́wi -or- ogíciza inážį hą́w 2018
Assiniboine 2: Assiniboine 2 ✧ ASB ✧ Alternative terminology
14 pigína wódabi hą́wi -or- táȟca kiyúȟi hą́wi -or- wįcógądu sųgágu hą́wi 2018
Asturian: Asturian ✧ AST ✧ Indo-European, Romance, Northern Spain (Oviedo/Gijón area). Three genders.
14 payares 2018
Atikamekw: Atikamekw ✧ ATJ ✧ Algonquian family, Cree complex, 5500 speakers in southwestern Quebec
14 atikamekw pisimw 2018
Atong {Sino-Tibetan}: Atong {Sino-Tibetan} ✧ AOT ✧ Unlike many Sino-Tibetan languages, this one is non-tonal. Spoken by 10,000 in northeast India and adjacent regions of Bangladesh, most of whom are bilingual in Garo (q.v.). Not to be confused with the Niger-Congo Atong language.
14 nobembol 2018
Atsugewi: Atsugewi ✧ ATW ✧ This [possibly] Hokan, Shasta–Palaihnihan language of California went extinct with the death of Medie Webster in 1988. Atsugewis saw the Big Dipper as Coyote’s cane; the Milky Way, the Devil’s trail.
14 ascui cĭnehwu “wintertime moon” 2018
Austro-Bavarian: Austro-Bavarian ✧ BAR ✧ Akin to High German but highly divergent from it, using more Latin. Rural Austria, Bavaria, and South Tyrol. Three main dialects.
14 Novemba 2018
Avar [Premodern/Folk]: Avar [Premodern/Folk] ✧ AVA ✧ Northeast Caucasian language spoken in Dagestan and Azerbaijan. Uses either Cyrillic or Arabic characters.
14 раччарулъ راچّارۇڸ (raččarul″) 2018
Awa Pit (Cuaiquer): Awa Pit (Cuaiquer) ✧ KWI ✧ Barbacoan family, seriously endangered, spoken by 13,000 on the Pacific slopes of the Andes in Colombia and Ecuador by the Awa-Kwaiker people. Most Awa-Kwaiker men also speak Spanish; most women and children, only Awa Pit.
14 sak 2018
Aymara: Aymara ✧ AYM ✧ South American indigenous language from the Aymaran family which has only two members, the other being Jaqaru (q.v.). Unusual time/space conceptualization, uses only a, i, and u for vowels.
14 awti phaxsi -or- lapaka 2018

Bafia: Bafia ✧ KSF ✧ Niger-Congo, Bantu, spoken by 60,000 in southwestern Cameroon. Mostly oral, but efforts at establishing a written standard are underway.
14 ŋwíí akǝ ntɛk di bɔ́k 2018
Bagirmi: Bagirmi ✧ BMI ✧ Nilo-Saharan family, ≅ 45,000 speakers in Chad and Nigeria. This was the language of the Sultanate of Bagirmi which ruled southeast of Lake Chad between 1523 and 1897.
14 Nap dokkeme kar keɗe 2018
Bagvalal (Bagulal): Bagvalal (Bagulal) ✧ KVA ✧ Northeast Caucasian, seriously endangered, 1500 speakers in Dagestan’s Tsumadinsky District. Features ejectives and nazalized vowels. Used mainly in private; outside the home speakers rely on Avar (q.v.) or Russian.
14 найа̄́бирбос̄ӏ (nayáábirboss̓) 2018
Bahasa Banjar: Bahasa Banjar ✧ BJN ✧ Malayo-Polynesian, spoken by the Banjarese of South Kalimantan in Indonesia
14 Nupimbir 2018
Bakweri (Mokpwe): Bakweri (Mokpwe) ✧ BGM ✧ Niger-Congo, Bantu, spoken in Cameroon
14 Muuli me Ndeene 2018
Baluchi: Baluchi ✧ BAL ✧ Indo-Iranian language related to Kurdish (q.v.). Uses Pashto and Roman script.
14 gobšán 2018
Bambara: Bambara ✧ BAM ✧ Niger-Congo, Mande. Two tones, many French loans. Same word used for hand and arm.
14 Nòwanburu 2018
Bariai: Bariai ✧ BCH ✧ Austronesian family, Ngero group, 1400 speakers in Papua New Guinea
14 uria kemi 2018
Basaa: Basaa ✧ BAS ✧ Niger-Congo, Bantu. Four tones, 230,000 speakers in Camaroon.(Not to be confused with Bassa, below.)
14 maèyá seèp 2018
Bashkir: Bashkir ✧ BAK ✧ Turkic language spoken in Bashkortostan between the Volga and Urals. Uses no articles.
14 ҡырпағай (qirpaɣai) 2018
Basque [Biscayan]: Basque [Biscayan] ✧ EUS ✧ Basque is a Pre-Indo-European language isolate spoken in the Pyrenees area. This is the dialect heard on the Bay of Biscay.
14 zemendi -or- azil -or- azaro 2018
Basque [Guipuzcoan]: Basque [Guipuzcoan] ✧ EUS ✧ Basque dialect spoken in Guipuzcoa, a tiny Northern Spanish province at the eastern extreme of the Cantabrian sea. Originally studied and analyzed by Louis Lucien Bonaparte, Napoleon’s nephew.
14 azil -or- azaro 2018
Basque [Souletin]: Basque [Souletin] ✧ EUS ✧ Basque dialect spoken in the Pyrénées-Atlantiques département of France. Heavily influenced by Occitan (q.v.) and correspondingly features an additional vowel sound, ü.
14 gorotzila 2018
Bassa: Bassa ✧ BSQ ✧ Niger-Congo, Kru. Seven vowels with five tones each, spoken by 400,000 in Liberia and Sierra Leone. (Not to be confused with Basaa, above.)
14 Gbàɖà-Gbàɖà 2018
Batak: Batak ✧ BYA ✧ Malayo-Polynesian family. Unique script. Spoken in north Sumatra.
14 sipaha walu 2018
Bats (Tsova-Tush): Bats (Tsova-Tush) ✧ BBL ✧ Northeast Caucasian, Nakh branch but unintelligible with Chechen or Ingush (q.v.). It exists in a single dialect, ≅ 2500 speakers.
იდ გიორგობ (giorgob) “St George month” ციჱ
Belarusian: Belarusian ✧ BEL ✧ East Slavic, closely related to Ukrainian (q.v.). Though Belarusian is official in Belarus, only about 12% of the population uses it. Unlike Russian, it employs the characters І, Ї, and Ў.
14 лістапада (listapada) 2018
Bemba (Chibemba): Bemba (Chibemba) ✧ BEM ✧ Niger-Congo family, Southern Bantu. Tonal, spoken in Zambia.
14 chinshi kubili 2018
Bena: Bena ✧ BEZ ✧ Niger-Congo family, northeast Bantu, spoken in south central Tanzania
14 pa mwedzi gwa kumi na moja 2018
Beothuk: Beothuk ✧ BUE ✧ Spoken by a reclusive indigenous Newfoundland tribe, extinct since 1829 with the death of its last speaker, Shanawdithit.
14 godabonyeesh 2018
Bété [Eastern/Daloa]: Bété [Eastern/Daloa] ✧ BEV ✧ Niger-Congo, Kru. Bete is spoken by 400,000 in the Republic of Côte d'Ivoire; this is one of its five dialects. The language is tonal and its speakers count in base 20.
14 'napɛ 'kugbïa -bhlʋ -leyi 2018
Bezhta (Kapucha): Bezhta (Kapucha) ✧ KAP ✧ Preliterate Northeast Caucasian language spoken by around 6800 in Southern Dagestan.
14 найабер (nayaber) 2018
Biete: Biete ✧ BIU ✧ A Sino-Tibetan, Kuki-Chin language spoken by 30,000 in northeastern India (Meghalaya, Assam, Mizoram, Manipur, and Tripura). Related to Mizo (q.v.).
14 Thlaphal 2018
Bishnupriya Manipuri: Bishnupriya Manipuri ✧ BPY ✧ Indo-Aryan, 120,000 native speakers, not to be confused with Sino-Tibetan Meitei, also known as Manipuri (q.v.). Uses the rather uncommon Eastern Nagari script.
১৪ nov ২০১৮
Bislama: Bislama ✧ BIS ✧ A creole combining English with Austronesian lanugages. Official in Vanuatu.
14 Novemba 2018
Blackfoot (Siksika): Blackfoot (Siksika) ✧ BLA ✧ Algonquian family, unusual pitch system. Montana and Southern Alberta.
14 iitáó’tsstoyi 2018
Blin (Bilen): Blin (Bilen) ✧ BYN ✧ Afro-Asiatic, Cushitic. 70,000 speakers around Keren, Eritrea. Related to Tigrinya (q.v.) and Tigre (Tigrayit).
14 nov (mkiel meshweri) 2018
Breton (Armoric): Breton (Armoric) ✧ BRE ✧ Indo-European, Celtic, Brythonic. Spoken in Brittany, related to Welsh and Cornish (q.v.).
14 mis du 2018
Bukhori (Judaeo-Tajik): Bukhori (Judaeo-Tajik) ✧ BHH ✧ A Persian dialect with Hebrew, Turkic, and Slavic loans spoken by Bukharan Jews living in central Asia and diaspora communities in Israel and the US.
14 נאָיאַבּר (noyabr) 2018
Bulgar: Bulgar ✧ XBO ✧ Presumably Turkic, extinct since medieval times, unrelated to modern Bulgarian (which is South Slavic). Bulgar’s modern descendent is Chuvash (q.v.).
XIIII uchag ae MMXVIII
Bulgarian [Eastern Rup, 19th century]: Bulgarian [Eastern Rup, 19th century] ✧ BUL ✧ South Slavic. From the south-central Bulgarian town of Asenovgrad.
14 архангелския (archangelskiya) 2018
Bulgarian [Rhodope, pre-1945]: Bulgarian [Rhodope, pre-1945] ✧ BUL ✧ Another Bulgarian, here from the Rhodope Mountains around Smolyan
14 касумъ (kasuma) 2018
Burgundian (Bourguignon-morvandiau): Burgundian (Bourguignon-morvandiau) ✧ ??? ✧ Endangered Langue d’oïl spoken in Burgundy. Not to be confused with East Germanic Burgundian, extinct since the sixth century, though there are historic overlaps.
14 nouvembe 2018
Burmese: Burmese ✧ MYA ✧ Sino-Tibetan. Spoken in Myanmar/Burma, tonal. Unusual sounds such as unvoiced Ms and Ns. Script consists almost entirely of arcs and circles because the ancient Burmese wrote on palm leaves and straight lines would risk splitting them.
၁၄ နိုဝင်ဘာ (nowĩbʰa) ၂၀၁၈
Burum (Somba-Siawari): Burum (Somba-Siawari) ✧ BMU ✧ Trans-New Guinea family, Finisterre–Huon, Western Huon, spoken by 9000 in Papua New Guinea’s Morobe Province on the Huon Peninsula. Its alternate name cites its two dialects, Somba and Siawari.
14 geröpŋi 2018
Burushaski: Burushaski ✧ BSK ✧ A language isolate spoken by 87,000 in Northern Pakistan. Actions must often specify how loud something was.
14 eljummushum datukus -or- qaws 2018
Buryat [Premodern]: Buryat [Premodern] ✧ BUA ✧ Mongolic language related to Mongolian and Oirat (q.v.). China, Mongolia, and eastern Russia.
14 арбан нэгэдүгээр һара (arban negedügeer ḥara) 2018

Caddo: Caddo ✧ CAD ✧ Critically endangered member of the Caddoan family, related to Arikara and Pawnee (q.v.), tonal, spoken by about two dozen individuals in Caddo County, Oklahoma.
14 Nip’-baa (h)a’-i-may 2018
Carrier (Dakelh): Carrier (Dakelh) ✧ CRX ✧ Na-Dené family, Athabaskan. A few hundred speakers in British Columbia.
14 banɣan n07ts’07kih 2018
Catalan: Catalan ✧ CAT ✧ Indo-European, Romance. Spoken in Catalonia, Valencia, the Balearic Islands, and the country of Andorra where it’s official. Its name comes from the word ‘castle.’
14 de novembre 2018
Cayuga: Cayuga ✧ CAY ✧ Iroquoian family, heard on the Six Nations of the Grand River Reserve in Ontario and the Cattaraugus Reservation in New York State. Only 79 fluent speakers. Vowels are lengthened by a colon; some can be nasalzed, others whispered.
14 Jo:to:ʔ “Cold” 2018
Cerma: Cerma ✧ CME ✧ Niger-Congo, Gur, 63,000 speakers in Burkina Faso and Côte d'Ivoire. Three dialects: Banfora, Niangoloko, and Soubakanié Dougou.
14 hɛllɛ 2018
Cham [Eastern]: Cham [Eastern] ✧ CJM ✧ Austronesian, Malayo-Polynesian. 300,000 speakers in Vietnam. Related to Rade (q.v.), oldest-attested Austronesian language with inscriptions dating back to the fourth century ce.
14 balan puis 2018
Chamorro: Chamorro ✧ CHA ✧ Malayo-Polynesian, ≅ 60,000 speakers in the Marianas archipelago. Same word used for hand and arm.
14 nubembre 2018
Chang (Mochungrr): Chang (Mochungrr) ✧ NBC ✧ Sino-Tibetan, Brahmaputran branch, 62,000 speakers in Nagaland, Northeast India. Uses the Roman alphabet, introduced in 1928.
14 Chinpinglit 2018
Chatino [Zona Alta]: Chatino [Zona Alta] ✧ CLY ✧ Zapotecan language spoken by 23,000 in Southern Oaxaca, Mexico. It has ten tones and uses nasal vowels.
14 ko' ta'a jyo'o 2018
Chayahuita: Chayahuita ✧ CBT ✧ One of only two languages belonging to the Cahuapanan family, spoken by 14,000 in the department of Loreto in the Peruvian province of Alto Amazonas. Some education in the area is bilingual Chayahuita/Spanish.
14 chimin hua'yan yoqui 2018
Chechen 1: Chechen 1 ✧ CHE ✧ Northeast Caucasian family, Nakh branch, related to Ingush (q.v.). It features an unusually large vowel inventory for a Caucasian language. Traditionally written with the Georgian alphabet, later the Arabic, finally the Cyrillic.
14 цӀехуьл (c̓eḫül) 2018
Chechen 2: Chechen 2 ✧ CHE ✧ A second alternative terminology for Chechen
14 эрх бутт (erḫ butt) 2018
Chechen 3: Chechen 3 ✧ CHE ✧ A third alternative terminology for Chechen
14 лахьанан бутт (laḥanan butt) 2018
Cherokee [Overhill]: Cherokee [Overhill] ✧ CHR ✧ Iroquoian family, Oklahoma. This is the Cherokee standard upon which Sequoyah based his unique script; further along he pursuaded the Eastern Cherokee speakers of North Carolina to adopt it.
14 ᏅᏓᏕᏆ (Nvdadequa) “Trading” 2018
Chewa (Chichewa or Nyanja): Chewa (Chichewa or Nyanja) ✧ NYA ✧ Niger-Congo family, Bantoid. Spoken in Malawi and Zambia. Unusually complex gender system.
14 mwezi wa Novembala 2018
Cheyenne (Tsisinstsistots): Cheyenne (Tsisinstsistots) ✧ CHY ✧ Algonquian family. Four principal tones, three principal vowels (a, e, o) which in some cases can can be voiceless. About 2000 native speakers in Montana & Oklahoma.
14 He’koneneeše’he 2018
Chickasaw: Chickasaw ✧ CIC ✧ Muskogean family, ≅ 75 speakers total in Oklahoma, USA. Same word used for hand and arm.
14 Nofempa 2018
Chilcotin: Chilcotin ✧ CLC ✧ Athabaskan, ≅ 860 native speakers in Chilcotin Country, central British Columbia. Chilcotin is bitonal and exhibits consonant harmony.
14 Benen Lhiz-Qwen-Yex Ts'enish 2018
Chimané [Mosetén]: Chimané [Mosetén] ✧ CAS ✧ Language isolate (?) spoken by around 2000 north of La Paz, Bolivia. Same word used for hand and arm.
14 tyak jirisyatyi’ ïwaj 2018
Chinook Jargon (Wawa): Chinook Jargon (Wawa) ✧ CHN ✧ A trading language that thrived in the Pacific Northwest during the 19th century. Used both Native American- and Indo-European-derived vocabulary, though evidence suggests it existed in a purely indigenous form before European contact.
14 Novimbir 2018
Choctaw: Choctaw ✧ CHO ✧ Muskogean, related to Chickasaw (q.v.). South-central USA, 18,000 speakers.
14 Nofimba 2018
Choyo (Queyu): Choyo (Queyu) ✧ QVY ✧ A Sino-Tibetan, Qiangic language of Yajiang and Xinlong Counties in Sichuan with ≅ 7000 speakers. Choyo is closely related to another Qiangic language, Zhaba, spoken by a similar number in Yajiang and Daofu Counties.
14 da35wa55tɕo55tɕi55pa53 2018
Chukchi: Chukchi ✧ CKT ✧ About 10,000 speakers in extreme eastern Siberia. Uses vowel harmony. Also, words cannot begin or end with consonant blends.
14 к’уулетйъилгын (k’uuletj”ilgyn) 2018
Chuukese: Chuukese ✧ CHK ✧ Polynesian, spoken by around 50,000 ethnic Chuukese on the Chuuk Islands of the Carolines as well as on Pohnpei and Guam.
14 Nofémper 2018
Chuvash: Chuvash ✧ CHV ✧ Turkic, spoken in the Urals. Features “hard” versus “soft” words. Genderless.
IIIIX čük III/X✳✳
Cimbrian: Cimbrian ✧ CIM ✧ A Germanic language spoken by ≅ 400 in northeastern Italy whose grammar, vocabulary, and pronunciation render it unintelligible to Standard High German speakers. Italian has largely displaced it.
14 novembre -or- bintarmånat 2018
Circassian (Cherkess) [Adyghe]: Circassian (Cherkess) [Adyghe] ✧ ADY ✧ Northwest Caucasian language. Has 50-60 consonant sounds, mutually intelligible with Circassian [Kabardian] (q.v.).
14 шэкIогъу (šǎk’oġ°) 2018
Circassian (Cherkess) [Kabardian]: Circassian (Cherkess) [Kabardian] ✧ KBD ✧ The other major Circassian dialect, also called East Circassian. Mutually intelligible with Circassian [Adyghe] (q.v.).
14 щакIуэгъуэ (šāk’ʷaʁʷa) 2018
Cofán: Cofán ✧ CON ✧ A seriously endangered language isolate spoken by 2400 Cofán people in Sucumbíos Province in northeast Ecuador and neighboring Colombia. Natively it counts in base 5.
14 avû dusûchuite 2018
Comorian [Maore] (Shimaore): Comorian [Maore] (Shimaore) ✧ SWB ✧ Niger-Congo family, Bantu. 80,000 speakers on French islands of Mayotte.
14 novambru 2018
Cornish: Cornish ✧ COR ✧ Celtic, Brythonic. Cornwall and Isles of Scilly, natively extinct but nowadays actively studied and taught.
14 mys Du 2018
Corsican: Corsican ✧ COS ✧ Indo-European, Romance, and unlike Sardinian (q.v.) this language is mutually intelligible with Italian. Spoken on Corsica, endangered.
14 nuvembre 2018
Cotabato Manobo: Cotabato Manobo ✧ MTA ✧ Malayo-Polynesian, spoken by 30,000 in the Sultan Kudarat and South Cotabato Provinces of Mindinao, Philippines. The Tasaday, once decried as a hoax tribe but now confirmed to be genuine, speak a dialect of Cotabato Manobo.
14 nobémbeli 2018
Cree: Cree ✧ CRE ✧ Algonquian family. Formerly creolized with French & Scottish Gaelic. Official in Canada’s Northwest Territories, almost 100,000 speakers.
14 kaskatinopizun “Rivers begin to freeze” 2018
Creek (Muscogee or Seminole): Creek (Muscogee or Seminole) ✧ MUS ✧ Muskogean family, tonal with nazalizations, 5000 speakers in Oklahoma and Florida
14 echolee “Frost” 2018
Crimean Tatar: Crimean Tatar ✧ CRH ✧ Half a million speakers. Although Turkic like Tatar, CT is not considered a Tatar dialect and they are not mutually intelligible.
14 boş ayı 2018
Croatian [Traditional]: Croatian [Traditional] ✧ HRV ✧ South Slavic, spoken in Croatia, Bosnia Herzegovina, and parts of Serbia. Uses the Roman alphabet as opposed to Serbian which uses Cyrillic.
14 studeni “Cold month” 2018
Crow (Apsáalooke): Crow (Apsáalooke) ✧ CRO ✧ Siouan family, Western, as of 2007 spoken by 3500 in the Crow Nation in southeastern Montana. Considered endangered, though schoolchildren are actively learning it and adolescents attend the Apsaalooke language camp for Crow language immersion.
14 baawiaxóoliche 2018
Cuicatec: Cuicatec ✧ CUX ✧ A language of the Oto-Manguean family spoken natively by 13,000 in western Oaxaca, Mexico. Cuicatec is tonal, forms verb tenses by attaching one of four different prefixes.
14 :iyuu nichiama 2018
Cuman (Polovetsian): Cuman (Polovetsian) ✧ QWM ✧ Turkic language spoken by Cuman-Kipchaks in eastern Europe. Extinct by 1800. The invading Polovetsians portrayed in Borodin’s opera Prince Igor would have spoken this language.
14 qurban bayram ay 2018
Curonian: Curonian ✧ XCU ✧ Extinct Balto-Slavic language spoken until the 16th century in parts of modern Latvia, Lithuania, and Germany.
14 novêmbirs 2018
Czech (Bohemian): Czech (Bohemian) ✧ CZE ✧ West Slavic, mutually intelligible with Slovak. The same word, ruka, can refer to hand or arm.
14 listopad 2018

Dagaare: Dagaare ✧ DGA ✧ Niger-Congo, Gur branch. Unusual consonant blends such as GB, KP, and MGM.
14 KyuurpieneyenisobO 2018
Dakota (Dakhota): Dakota (Dakhota) ✧ DAK ✧ Siouan family, mutually intelligible with Lakota. Around 20,000 speakers in an area centered on eastern South Dakota and taking in parts of North Dakota, Minnesota, Iowa, Nebraska, Wyoming, and Montana.
14 Tahecapšuŋwi 2018
Dalecarlian: Dalecarlian ✧ OVD ✧ North Germanic, endangered. Unlike Swedish (with which it isn’t mutually intelligible) it uses nasalized vowels (Ą, Ę, Į, Ų, Y̨, Ą̊ ) and like Icelandic uses eth (Ð). Used runes into the 20th century.
14 nov (nåwember) 2018
Dalmatian: Dalmatian ✧ DLM ✧ Romance language once spoken on the Adriatic east coast. Its last surviving native speaker was marine mail carrier Tuone Udaina, who died in a roadwork accident in 1898.
14 nuembar 2018
Danish [Premodern/Folk]: Danish [Premodern/Folk] ✧ DAN ✧ Traditional Danish before it adopted neo-Latin month conventions
14 Slagtemåned 2018
Dan: Dan ✧ DNJ ✧ Niger-Congo family, Mande, 1.6 million speakers in Côte d'Ivoire and Liberia plus another 800 in Guinea. Tonal. Three dialects, Gweetaawu, Blowo, and Kla; though the latter is often considered a separate language.
14 Novanblö -or- ‒zan ˈˈwɛɛ 2018
Deg Xinag: Deg Xinag ✧ ING ✧ Athabaskan language, virtually extinct. Area around the lower Yukon River, Alaska.
14 Vinginh łeggided iligh “The month that eels swim” 2018
Denaakk’e (Koyukon Athabascan): Denaakk’e (Koyukon Athabascan) ✧ KOY ✧ Athabascan, spoken by ≅ 300 in east central Alaska, 3 dialects
14 Sooge Zou̶’ 2018
Dena’ina (Tanaina) [Outer Inlet]: Dena’ina (Tanaina) [Outer Inlet] ✧ TFN ✧ Athabaskan, seriously endangered, Alaska’s Kenai Peninsula. Same word can refer to hand or arm.
14 benen ɬyusi 2018
Denya: Denya ✧ ANV ✧ Niger-Congo family, Bantoid, Mamfe. Spoken in Cameroon by around 11,000
14 nòwanburu 2018
Dhivehi (Maldivian): Dhivehi (Maldivian) ✧ DIV ✧ Indo-European, Indo-Iranic, uses the exclusive right-to-left Thāna script which unlike Arabic explicitly shows all vowels. Republic of Maldives.
14 nov (novembaru) 2018
Digaro Mishmi (Darang/Taraon): Digaro Mishmi (Darang/Taraon) ✧ MHU ✧ “Possibly” Sino-Tibetan, 35,000 speakers in India’s Arunachal Pradesh and China’s Zayü County.
14 xɑ⁵⁵ lo⁵³ xɑ⁵⁵ lɯ⁵⁵ khɯn⁵⁵ 2018
Dinka [Northwestern]: Dinka [Northwestern] ✧ DIW ✧ Nilo-Saharan, spoken in Sudan and by a refugee population in Jacksonville, Florida.
14 kon 2018
Ditidaht (Nitinaht): Ditidaht (Nitinaht) ✧ DTD ✧ Wakashan family, Vancouver Island. No nasal consonants, virtually extinct.
14 ʕičip’ałpaał 2018
Dogrib (Tłı̨chǫ Yatıì): Dogrib (Tłı̨chǫ Yatıì) ✧ DGR ✧ Na-Dené, Athabaskan. Canada Northwest Territories, 2600 speakers.
14 Ezôödzêë Zaà 2018
Duala: Duala ✧ DUA ✧ Niger-Congo, Bantu, spoken natively by 90,000 (and as an acquired language by 2 million) in Cameroon. The language is tri-tonal and first appeared in print in 1862.
14 tiníní 2018
Dukhan: Dukhan ✧ DKH ✧ A Turkic amalgam related to Tuvan, Buryat, and Tofalar (all q.v.) spoken, often mixed with Mongolian, by ≅ 500 Dukha reindeer herders in Northernmost Mongolia. (Language code DKH is unofficial.)
14 аldılааr аy 2018
Dusun (Bunduliwan): Dusun (Bunduliwan) ✧ DTP ✧ A Malayo-Polynesian language, standardized by the Kadazandusun Cultural Association Sabah, and spoken by 140,000 in Malaysia and Brunei.
14 Tulan Milau “Grow month” 2018
Dutch [Old]: Dutch [Old] ✧ ODT ✧ Indo-European, Germanic, spoken 9th to 12th centuries ce. Literary examples include The Leiden Willeram, a commentary on the Song of Solomon, and Hebban olla vogala (“Have all birds begun nests…” ), both from ca. 1100.
XIIII nov (slachtmaand) MMXVIII
Dzongkha: Dzongkha ✧ DZO ✧ Sino-Tibetan family, ≅ 170,000 native speakers (and an additional 470,000 non-native) in Bhutan where it is the only official language.
14 nov (spyi.zlaw.bču.gčig.pa) 2018

Edo (Bini): Edo (Bini) ✧ BIN ✧ Niger-Congo family. Spoken by Benin Empire descendents.
14 uki ewe 2018
Embu (Kîembu): Embu (Kîembu) ✧ EBU ✧ Niger-Congo family, Bantu. Spoken by 320,000 in two dialects, northeast of Nairobi, Kenya.
14 Mweri wa ikũmi na ũmwe 2018
Emilian-Romagnol (Sammarinese): Emilian-Romagnol (Sammarinese) ✧ EGL/RGN ✧ Romance language spoken in Italy (Emilia-Romagna region, Urbino, and Pesaro) and in San Marino. Its two principal dialects are Emiliano and Romangnolo, both of which separately recognized by UNESCO as “worthy of protection.”
14 novèmber 2018
English [Old] (Anglo-Saxon): English [Old] (Anglo-Saxon) ✧ ANG ✧ Indo-European, Germanic, spoken 5th to 12th centuries ce. Four noun cases, three genders. Literary examples are Beowulf (975-1025) and the Charter of Cnut (c. 1017).
XIIII nov (Blōtmōnað) MMXVIII
Erromangan (Sie)[Folk/Traditional]: Erromangan (Sie)[Folk/Traditional] ✧ ERG ✧ Malayo-Polynesian, Southern Oceanic, spoken by 1900 on Vanuatu’s Erromango Island. This was traditional before Erromangan borrowed quasi-English month names from Bislama (q.v.).
14 Movcowi 2018
Erromintxela: Erromintxela ✧ EMX ✧ A Basque/Romani hybrid language spoken by around a thousand Pyranees-dwelling Roma
14 açalua 2018
Ersu [Ganluo]: Ersu [Ganluo] ✧ ERS ✧ Sino-Tibetan, Qiangic, around 13,000 speakers in western Sichuan. Like Nakhi (q.v.) this language employs a pictographic script for folkloric purposes, though in this case the colors carry additional lexographic meaning.
14 pu33i55ɬɑ33 2018
Erzya: Erzya ✧ MYV ✧ Uralic, related to [but quite distinct from] Moksha (q.v.)
14 сундерьков (sunder’kov) 2018
Eskayan: Eskayan ✧ ESY ✧ Famously obscure Philippine language, extinct but heavily studied. Possibly a Cebuano-based cryptolect.
14 nobi 2018
Estonian: Estonian ✧ EST ✧ Uralic, Finnic. Features 3 vowel lengths, 15 noun cases. Among some speakers Estonian and Finnish are mutually intelligible though there are many “false friends,” i.e., words that look and sound identical but carry one meaning in Estonian but a different one in Finnish.
14 talvekuu 2018
Estonian [Southern]: Estonian [Southern] ✧ VRO ✧ In many respects closer to Võro (q.v.) than standard Estonian.
14 märdikuu “Martin’s month” 2018
Etruscan: Etruscan ✧ ETT ✧ Language isolate spoken on the Italian peninsula, last recorded use was in 410 ce. Roman emperor Claudius wrote several books on the language (all lost).
XIIII nov [November unknown] ⊕⊕XIIX
Even (Lamut): Even (Lamut) ✧ EVE ✧ Altaic, Tungusic. Endangered, with 7000-odd speakers in Siberia. Doesn’t use articles.
14 ойчири ечэн (ojčirij ečėn) 2018
Evenki (Solon): Evenki (Solon) ✧ EVN ✧ Tungusic, related to Even (q.v.) but four times as many speakers. In descending order of frequency, Evenki appears in Roman, Cyrillic, and Mongolian characters.
14 hugdarpi -or- ho:gdarpi 2018
Ewe: Ewe ✧ EWE ✧ Niger-Congo family, tonal, spoken by 5 million in western Africa. A tilde nazalizes a vowel: ã, ẽ, ɛ̃, ɔ̃, ĩ, õ, and ũ.
14 Adeεmekpↄxe 2018
Extremaduran: Extremaduran ✧ EXT ✧ Romance language spoken in west central Spain. Some differences from Spanish/Castilian: Infinitive verbs end in L, questions are reinforced by prepending the particles “lo,” “lu,” “pu,” or “pui.”
14 nuviembri -or- noviembri 2018

Fe’fe’ (Nufi or Bafang): Fe’fe’ (Nufi or Bafang) ✧ FMP ✧ Niger-Congo, Bantoid. 120,000 speakers around Bafang, Cameroon.
14 nkùënùë 2018
Flemish [West-Vlams]: Flemish [West-Vlams] ✧ VLS ✧ A highly divergent Dutch dialect with 1.2 million speakers
14 november 2018
Fon: Fon ✧ FON ✧ Niger-Congo, Gbe. Spoken by 2.2 million in Togo and Benin in over 50 dialects.
14 abɔnya sùn 2018
Fox (Meskwaki) 1: Fox (Meskwaki) 1 ✧ SAC ✧ Algonquian, endangered, ≅ 2000 speakers distributed through Oklahoma, Kansas, Iowa, and Coahuila (Mexico). It has two indigenous writing systems known as Fox I, shown below, and (coming soon, I hope) Fox II.
14 nôpênopêha 2018
Fox (Meskwaki) 2: Fox (Meskwaki) 2 ✧ SAC ✧ Fox as above, written with the Fox I script. This is an abugida — halfway between a true alphabet and a syllabary — like the many used in India.
14 n..l.n..l. 2018
Frankish (Old Franconian): Frankish (Old Franconian) ✧ FRK ✧ Germanic language spoken in France between the 4th and 9th centuries, evolved into Old Dutch (q.v.). Charlemagne spoke a dialect of Frankish.
XIIII Herbismanoþ MMXVIII
Frisian [West Lauwers]: Frisian [West Lauwers] ✧ FRY ✧ Indo-European, West Germanic, considered to be the closest foreign language to English. 470,000 speakers in the Friesland province of the Netherlands.
14 slachtmoanne “Slaughter month” 2018
Frisian [North] (Mooring): Frisian [North] (Mooring) ✧ FRR ✧ About 10,000 speakers in the Schleswig-Holstein region of Germany
14 nofember -or- mistmoune “Mist month” 2018
Frisian [West Schiermonnikoog]: Frisian [West Schiermonnikoog] ✧ FRY ✧ Heard on the Island of Schiermonnikoog off Northern Netherlands, seriously endangered with fewer than 100 speakers
14 slachtmond 2018
Friulian: Friulian ✧ FUR ✧ Indo-European, Romance. Spoken in northeastern Italy. When c is followed by anything other than an e or an i in Friulian, but must still retain the soft c sound (č, as in English cherry), it takes a cedilla — ç).
14 novembar 2018
Fula: Fula ✧ FUL ✧ Niger-Congo family, western Africa, official in Senegal. Most commonly written with the Roman alphabet, less so with the Arabic, but a unique alphabet for Fula called Adlam arose in the 1980s and has been widely adopted.
14 jolal 2018
Fur: Fur ✧ FVR ✧ Tentatively attributed to the Nilo-Saharan family, spoken in south central Darfur in western Sudan.
14 Taáŋ 2018
Futunan: Futunan ✧ FUT ✧ Malayo-Polynesian language spoken on Futuna Island and New Caledonia. Its words for hand and arm are identical.
14 novepeli 2018

Gaelic [Irish] (Irish): Gaelic [Irish] (Irish) ✧ GLE ✧ Indo-European, Celtic, Goidelic. Spoken as a first language along the western coast of Ireland. It was also once widely spoken in Newfoundland but disappeared there sometime in the early 20th century.
14 Mí na Samhnain 2018
Gaelic [Scottish]: Gaelic [Scottish] ✧ GLA ✧ Like Irish Gaelic (q.v.), also Celtic, Goidelic. This is Highland Gaelic; Lowland Gaelic is extinct, one of its last known speakers having been Margaret McMurray who died ca. 1760.
14 An t-Samhain “Samhain festival” 2018
Gaelic [Scottish Archaic]: Gaelic [Scottish Archaic] ✧ GLA ✧ As Scottish Gaelic above, but older
14 Ciad Mhìos a' Gheamhraidh 2018
Gagauz: Gagauz ✧ GAG ✧ Turkic language spoken in Moldova, Ukraine, Turkey, Russia
14 касым айы (kasım ayı) 2018
Galician: Galician ✧ GLG ✧ Sharply divergent Portuguese spoken in Galicia (Northern Spain). Fidel Castroʼs father was Galician and emigrated to make his sugar cane fortune.
14 novembro 2018
Gallong (Galo) [Lare]: Gallong (Galo) [Lare] ✧ ADL ✧ Sino-Tibetan, Tani branch, at least four dialects though likely more, 30,000 speakers. Arunachal Pradesh, northeast India.
14 lubɨɨ 2018
Gallo: Gallo ✧ ROA-GAL ✧ Indo-European, Romance, Langue d’oïl. Approx. 28,000 speakers in the upper Brittany region. Gallo bears some mutual intelligibility with Norman (q.v.) dialects, though it displays Celtic influences as opposed to Old Norse.
14 novanbr 2018
Garifuna: Garifuna ✧ CAB ✧ Arawakan language with French and Carib loans, Central America, 170,000 speakers. Men’s and women’s speech differ. Men’s Garifuna tends to borrow more heavily from Carib while women’s leans more toward Arawak.
14 ûnsu hati 2018
Garo: Garo ✧ GRT ✧ Sino-Tibetan family, Brahmaputran, spoken in the Garo Hills of Meghalaya and in parts of Assam and Tripura, India, and also in Bangladesh. In its Roman writing system the letters F, Q, V, X, Y, and Z are non-native and occur only in loans.
14 bilsini chi·sagipa ja 2018
Gaulish: Gaulish ✧ XTG ✧ Indo-European, Celtic. Pre-Roman France, extinct by 7th century ce. Modern French uses several hundred Gaulish loans, among them the words alouette (lark) and petit (small).
XXX ogronii MMXVIII
Ga: Ga ✧ GAA ✧ Niger-Congo family, Kwa division, first written in 1764. Tonal, three vowel lengths.
14 Alemle 2018
Gciriku (Rumanyo): Gciriku (Rumanyo) ✧ DIU ✧ Niger-Congo, Bantu, 36,000 speakers along the Okavango River in Angola, Botswana, and Namibia. Most Bantu languages don’t have clicks, but Gciriku uses half a dozen. They tend to occur in place names and in words that refer to natural features.
14 Mangûndu 2018
Georgian: Georgian ✧ KAT ✧ Kartvelian family, lacks an F sound natively. Related to Svan (q.v.) but completely unintelligible with it.
იდ ნოემბერი (noemberi) ციჱ
Georgian [Old]: Georgian [Old] ✧ KAT ✧ Georgian from approximately 800-1000 ce
იდ გიორგობისთვე (giorgobistve) “Feastday month of Saint George” ციჱ
German [Alsatian]: German [Alsatian] ✧ GSW ✧ Alsace in eastern France. 100,000 speakers, all bilingual with French. Unlike German, the Alsatian alphabet also includes the letters À and É.
14 Nowamber 2018
German [Alsatian Folk]: German [Alsatian Folk] ✧ GSW ✧ Previous to, or aside from, the modern neo-Roman.
14 Windmonat -or- Nebelung 2018
German [Old High]: German [Old High] ✧ GOH ✧ Earliest attested German language, ca. 500-1050 ce. Old High German appears in the Oaths of Strasbourg, 12 February 842, between Louis the German and Charles the Bald.
XIIII Wintarmānōd MMXVIII
German [Ripuarian] (Kölsch): German [Ripuarian] (Kölsch) ✧ KSH ✧ Indo-European, West Germanic, Central Franconian. Cologne region.
14 Novemmber -or- Novämber 2018
German [Walser]: German [Walser] ✧ WAE ✧ Germanic, uppermost Swiss alps. Its CH is very roughly articulated.
14 Wintermánet 2018
German [mid 17th century]: German [mid 17th century] ✧ GER ✧ The High German shown on a 1665 calendar
14 Wintermond 2018
Gitxsan (Gitksan): Gitxsan (Gitksan) ✧ GIT ✧ Tsimshianic family, British Columbia, < 1000 speakers
14 hlox̱sa sa'nax̱ 2018
Gothic: Gothic ✧ GOT ✧ Indo-European, extinct by the 10th century. IE’s Germanic branch splits into West, North, and East; Gothic belonged to the latter, along with Vandalic and Burgundian which are both only poorly attested.
XIIII nov (fruma jiuleis) MMXVIII
Gourmantché: Gourmantché ✧ GUX ✧ Niger-Congo, Gur, spoken by 900,000 in Benin, Burkina Faso, Niger, and Togo. Its nouns use a system of circumfixes — prefix-suffix pairs that enclose them. All language names, for example, begin with mi- and end with -ma; thus Gourmantché becomes migourmantchema.
14 cipiiga n cile 2018
Greenlandic (Kalaallisut): Greenlandic (Kalaallisut) ✧ KAL ✧ Language from the Eskimo-Aleut family, now official in Greenland
14 Novemberi 2018
Griko (Grecanic Italiot Greek): Griko (Grecanic Italiot Greek) ✧ GRE ✧ Variety of modern Greek with ≅ 50% mutual intelligibility with it. About 28,000 speakers in the toe and heel of Italy.
14 Noembri 2018
Gros Ventre: Gros Ventre ✧ ATS ✧ Algonquian, Arapahoan language of the Gros Ventre people of Montana, natively extinct since 1981 but currently spoken in revival by 45 individuals. Closely related to Arapaho (q.v.) but with a wider consonant inventory.
14 báasikénééísíiisɂ “Turkey month” 2018
Guahiba: Guahiba ✧ GUH ✧ From the Guahiban family, 34,000 speakers in Colombia and in the Orinoco River area in Venezuela. Unusually complex stress patterns for syllables.
14 naesanabo juameto “Many fish” 2018
Guan [Dungan]: Guan [Dungan] ✧ DNG ✧ A Sino-Tibetan language that, unusually, uses the Cyrillic alphabet. Three tones. Spoken by 90,000 ethnic Dungans in Kyrgyzstan and Kazakhstan, it evolved from Mandarin Chinese but drew heavy influences from Turkic languages and Russian.
14 шыйийүә (šəjijyә) 2018
Guaraní [Paraguayan]: Guaraní [Paraguayan] ✧ GUG ✧ Tupian family. This is the standard Guaraníx spoken in Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Paraguay. Genderless. Oldest writings date from 1639.
14 jasypateï 2018
Guernésiais: Guernésiais ✧ NRF ✧ Indo-European, Romance, Langue d’oïl. A Norman dialect spoken by ≅ 200 on the Channel Island of Guernsey. Victor Hugo contemporary George Métivier (1790–1881) was a widely celebrated author in Guernésiais.
14 novembre 2018
Guhu-Samane: Guhu-Samane ✧ GHS ✧ An isolate related to the Binanderean family, Papua New Guinea, five dialects recognized, 13,000 speakers.
14 Nobeba 2018
Guiqiong: Guiqiong ✧ GQI ✧ Sino-Tibetan, Qiangic. A preliterate, poorly documented language spoken in Sichuan and Tibet. Four tones (33, 35, 53, 55), borrows heavily from Chinese. There are ≅ 6000 native speakers who switch to Chinese when they travel outside their villages.
14 sε̃55ndӡı55 2018
Gullah (Sea Islands Creole): Gullah (Sea Islands Creole) ✧ GUL ✧ English-based, Niger-Congo influences. The word “kumbaya” comes from Gullah.
14 Nowembuh 2018
Gusii (Ekegusii): Gusii (Ekegusii) ✧ GUZ ✧ Niger-Congo family, Northeast Bantu, spoken by 2.2 million in western Kenya’s Gusii district. Contrastive vowel lengths.
14 Egesunte Egetang’ani -or- Egesunte gia Chache 2018
Gusilay: Gusilay ✧ GSL ✧ Niger-Congo family, Jola branch, spoken by 15,000 in southwest Senegal. Its speakers also use other languages such as Wolof (q.v.), Mandinka, and Pulaar but their literacy in Gusilay itself is less than 1%.
14 Yondaay 2018
Gutnish (Gotlandic): Gutnish (Gotlandic) ✧ - ✧ Endangered Swedish dialect spoken by between 2000 and 5000 on the islands of Gotland and Fårö (not to be confused with the Faroe Islands). Shows vowel shifts and much vocabulary that differs from Swedish.
14 novembar 2018
Gwich’in [Western]: Gwich’in [Western] ✧ GWI ✧ Na-Dené family, Athabaskan. 700 speakers in Alaska + northwest Canada.
14 Divii Zhrii 2018

Haida: Haida ✧ HAI ✧ Language isolate native to the Haida Gwaii archipelago off the coast of British Columbia, with 14 reported speakers. It has no adjectives, getting around that by using verbs to assign qualities.
14 T’a’áaw Kungáay “Snow moon” 2018
Haitian Creole: Haitian Creole ✧ HAT ✧ French-derived but borrows from Taíno, Portuguese, African languages
14 novanmb 2018
Hakha Chin (Lai): Hakha Chin (Lai) ✧ CNH ✧ Sino-Tibetan family, spoken in Burma, Bangladesh, and India. Tonal.
14 November thla 2018
Hakka: Hakka ✧ HAK ✧ Sino-Tibetan. Taiwan, southeast China, diaspora communities worldwide. Uses NG sounds and final M, unlike, say, Mandarin Chinese.
14 十一月 sip⁶ yit⁵ ŋiet⁶ 2018
Hani (Ho): Hani (Ho) ✧ HNI ✧ Sino-Tibetan family, Lolo-Burmese branch, spoken by the 760,000 Ho people in Burma, Southern China, Laos, and Vietnam. Tones shown with superscripts: 24 (rising), 31 (low-falling), 33 (mid-level), and 55 (high-level).
14 ɣɛ³¹ la³³ 2018
Harari: Harari ✧ HAR ✧ Afro-Asiatic family, Semitic, ≅ 25,000 speakers in Ethiopia. Once written with Arabic script, but nowadays with the Ethiopic abugida and the Roman alphabet.
14 ahad assir-khá warhay 2018
Havasupai-Hualapai: Havasupai-Hualapai ✧ YUF ✧ Yuman family, around 550 speakers in northwestern Arizona
14 Li Be “When the firewood porter constellation leaves” 2018
Heiltsuk-Oowekyala [Heiltsuk]: Heiltsuk-Oowekyala [Heiltsuk] ✧ HEI ✧ Wakashan family, spoken natively by 60 people in the vicinity of Bella Bella and Klemtu at the northern coast of British Columbia. Two discourse styles. The Yílístis Society devised this Gregorian terminology in 1978.
14 c̓úx̌vḷísa “Rain washes the creeks” 2018
Herero: Herero ✧ HER ✧ Niger-Congo, Bantu, spoken by around 200,000 of at least six different ethnicities in Angola, Botswana, and Namibia. Roman script was introduced by missionaries in the 19th century.
14 Otjikukutu 2018
Hidatsa: Hidatsa ✧ HID ✧ Western Siouan, spoken by 200 (6 are monoglots) in North and South Dakota and Montana. A relatively modest sound inventory of five vowels, two dipthongs, and ten consonants.
14 Miráaba Aruháaci Mirísh 2018
Hiligaynon (Ilongo): Hiligaynon (Ilongo) ✧ HIL ✧ Malayo-Polynesian, Visaya group, spoken in Philippines.
14 nov (panglot-diotay) 2018
Hmong (Miao): Hmong (Miao) ✧ HMN ✧ Hmong-Mien family, native to mountainous areas in southeast Asia. Seven tones, including creaky and breathy. “Miao,” considered pejorative by some, is a larger umbrella term for an ethnicity of which the Hmong are a subgroup.
14 Kaum ib hlis ntuj 2018
Holikachuk: Holikachuk ✧ HOI ✧ Athabaskan language, central Alaska. Its last fluent speaker, Wilson “Tiny” Deacon, died in March 2012.
14 Łoogg Dood Mininh Iligh 2018
Homshetsi (Hamshen): Homshetsi (Hamshen) ✧ AXM(?) ✧ Archaic Armenian dialect spoken by 14,000 in Turkey, preliterate until 1995. Homshetsi and modern Armenian are not mutually intelligible.
14 աղերգյուզ (ağergüz) 2018
Hopi: Hopi ✧ HOP ✧ Uto-Aztecan family, ≅ 7000 native speakers in northeastern Arizona. Bitonal with four distinct dialects identified by linguist Benjamin Whorf that differ in their consonant inventory.
14 Kelmuya “Fledgling Raptor Moon” 2018
Huichol [Wixarika]: Huichol [Wixarika] ✧ HCH ✧ Uto-Aztecan language with 45,000 speakers, native to west-central Mexico. Creates long “sentence words” with prefixes and suffixes.
14 nuviemüpüre -or- tamaamata xewi metseeri 2018
Hungarian [Premodern religious]: Hungarian [Premodern religious] ✧ OHU ✧ Church-based Hungarian, before it adopted neo-Latin month conventions
14 szent andrás hava “St Andrew month” 2018
Hungarian [Premodern secular]: Hungarian [Premodern secular] ✧ OHU ✧ Secular Hungarian, before it adopted neo-Latin month conventions
14 enyészet hava “Decay month” 2018
Hungarian [Reform Era]: Hungarian [Reform Era] ✧ HUN ✧ Hungarian during the nationalistic fervor of 1825-1848
14 őszutó 2018

Iaai: Iaai ✧ IAI ✧ Spoken by around 4000 on Ouvéa Island, New Caledonia. Sports a highly unusual set of sounds for a Polynesian language, and stands alone in the world for its voiceless retroflex nasal.
14 noovemba 2018
Iatmül: Iatmül ✧ IAN ✧ Sepik family, spoken in four dialects by 8400 in the Sepik River Basin of Papua New Guinea. Iatmüls count in base 5, 10, and 20; their word for 5 translates as “one hand,” for 10, “two hands,” for 20, “one whole man.”
14 wubau 2018
Iban: Iban ✧ IBA ✧ Malayo-Polynesian, spoken natively by 790,000 ethnic Dyak in Malaysia’s state of Sarawak, Indonesia’s province of West Kalimantan, and Brunei. Uses the Roman alphabet, though a syllabary devised during the 1950s is undergoing revival.
14 chechanguk 2018
Idu Mishmi (Chulikata): Idu Mishmi (Chulikata) ✧ CLK ✧ Sino-Tibetan, endangered. India’s Dibang Valley, 3 dialects.
14 सिय्ग् (siyg) 2018
Igbo: Igbo ✧ IBO ✧ Niger-Congo, tonal, proverb-heavy, Nigeria. Actor Chiwetel Ejiofor (Amistad, Twelve Years a Slave, etc.) is Igbo.
14 ónwa íri nà ótùn’áfò 2018
Ik: Ik ✧ IKX ✧ Nilo-Saharan, Kuliak branch, 7500 speakers in Uganda along the northwest border of Kenya. Severely endangered. Features implosives, an example of which is the way English speakers imitate those cartoonish “glug-glug” sounds.
14 Kawés -or- Loipo 2018
Ingrian (Izhorian): Ingrian (Izhorian) ✧ IZH ✧ Uralic, Finnic language with only 120 speakers around Gulf of Finland
14 nojaabri 2018
Ingush 1: Ingush 1 ✧ INH ✧ Northeast Caucasian family, Nakh branch, tonal. Related to Chechen (q.v.) and like that language it went through a Georgian, Arabic, and finally Cyrillic alphabet writing phase.
14 лайчил (layčil) 2018
Ingush 2: Ingush 2 ✧ INH ✧ Alternative terminology
14 шийла бутт (šiyla butt) 2018
Inuktitut: Inuktitut ✧ IKU ✧ Eskimo-Aleut family, north of Canada’s tree line. There are some 35,000 speakers and, unlike the case with most “minority” languages, that number is growing. Its syllabary was first conceived by Moravian missionaries in the 19th century.
14 ᓄᕕᒻᐳᕆ (nuvimpuri) 2018
Inuktitut [Nunavik]: Inuktitut [Nunavik] ✧ IKU ✧ A dialect of Inuktitut
14 Natjuijarvik 2018
Inuktitut [Qikiqtaaluk]: Inuktitut [Qikiqtaaluk] ✧ IKU ✧ Inuktitut terminology used in the Baffin Region
14 Tauvigjuaq -or- Tusaqtuut 2018
Inupiaq [North Slope]: Inupiaq [North Slope] ✧ IPK ✧ Eskimo-Aleut family, extreme northwestern Alaska
14 nippivik 2018
Isan: Isan ✧ TTS ✧ A group of Lao dialects spoken in northeastern Thailand by ethnic Isans. Isan is often viewed to be of lower prestige than Thai.
14 pruessajigayon 2018
Isthmus Zapotec (Juchitán Zapotec): Isthmus Zapotec (Juchitán Zapotec) ✧ ZAI ✧ Oto-Manguean, Central Zapotec, 85,000 speakers in Tehuantepec and Juchitán in Mexico’s State of Oaxaca. Rich inventory of vowels that come in plain, creaky, and checked (cut off at the end with a glottal stop).
14 beu' Xandú “Month of death” 2018
Istriot (Rovignese): Istriot (Rovignese) ✧ IST ✧ Romance language spoken by around 400 on Croatia’s Istrian Peninsula, closely related to extinct Dalmatian (q.v.). Not to be confused with Istro-Romanian (1100 speakers) or the Istrian dialect of Venetian.
14 nuvenbre 2018
Itelmen: Itelmen ✧ ITL ✧ The sole surviving Kamchatkan language, spoken by fewer than 100 in and around the villages Kovran and Verkhnee Khayryuzovo on the Kamchatka Peninsula.
14 казакоач (kazakoač) 2018

Jèrriais: Jèrriais ✧ NRF ✧ Indo-European, Romance, Norse influences. A Norman dialect spoken by 3000 on the Channel Island of Jersey. Actress and socialite Lillie Langtry (1853-1929) quite famously spoke Jèrriais.
14 novembe 2018
Japanese [Premodern]: Japanese [Premodern] ✧ OJP ✧ Dating from the Heian Period (794-1185)
14 霜月 (shimotsuki) “Month of frost” 2018
Jaqaru: Jaqaru ✧ JQR ✧ With Aymara (q.v.), the other member of the Aymaran family, natively spoken by 740 in the Yauyos Province of the Lima Region in Peru. Like Aymara its only vowels are a, i, and u.
14 nubimbri 2018
Jarai: Jarai ✧ JRA ✧ Malayo-Polynesian language related to Cham (q.v.), spoken in Vietnam and Cambodia
14 blan pluh sa 2018
Jebero (Shiwilu): Jebero (Shiwilu) ✧ JEB ✧ Cahuapanan family, moribund, spoken by a few dozen elders. The Jeberos number around 2500 and live along the Río Platanayacu and the Río Marañon in the district of Jeberos, in Peru.
14 Chimipilusa'-duker 2018
Jerba Berber: Jerba Berber ✧ JBN ✧ Afro-Asiatic, Berber, Zenati branch, spoken on the Tunisian island of Jerba — the supposed home of the Lotus Eaters of Greek folklore.
14 numbír 2018
Jingpho (Kachin): Jingpho (Kachin) ✧ KAC ✧ Sino-Tibetan, Bramaputran. Kachin State, Burma, and Yunan Province, China. Five tones, commonly written with the Roman alphabet.
14 măji 2018
Jju: Jju ✧ KAJ ✧ Niger-Congo, West Plateau. 300,000 speakers in Nigeria’s Southern Kaduna state.
14 Hywan Swak B’a̱yrnig 2018

Kabiye: Kabiye ✧ KBP ✧ Niger-Congo, Gur. Spoken by 1.2 million in Togo, Benin, and Ghana.
14 luŋnoɣ 2018
Kabuverdianu (Cape Verdean): Kabuverdianu (Cape Verdean) ✧ KEA ✧ The oldest surviving creole, based on 15th century Portuguese
14 nuvenbru 2018
Kabyle (Taqbaylit): Kabyle (Taqbaylit) ✧ KAB ✧ Afro-Asiatic, Berber, spoken in Algeria. Masculine nouns begin with A (character ⵔ); feminine nouns begin and end with T (character ⵜ).
14 ⵡⴻⵎⴱⴻⵔ (wembeṛ) 2018
Kainji [Piti-Atsam]: Kainji [Piti-Atsam] ✧ CCH/PCN ✧ Niger-Congo family, Platoid. Spoken by around 30,000 in Nigeria.
14 pen kur naba 2018
Kalapuya: Kalapuya ✧ KYL ✧ Tiny language family once spoken in Western Oregon, extinct
14 Alangitapi 2018
Kalenjin (Nandi): Kalenjin (Nandi) ✧ KLN ✧ Nilo-Saharan family, spoken in east Africa’s Rift Valley
14 kipsunde netai’ 2018
Kanza (Kaw): Kanza (Kaw) ✧ KSK ✧ A language from the Siouan family spoken by the Kaw people of Kansas, nominally extinct. The last native speakers were Maud McCauley Rowe (d. 1978), Ralph Pepper (d. 1982), and Walter Kekahbah (d. 1983).
14 óphaⁿ zhodabe 2018
Kapingamarangi (Kirinit): Kapingamarangi (Kirinit) ✧ KPG ✧ Polynesian language with around 3000 speakers on the Kapingamarangi and Pohnpei Islands of Micronesia
14 madangaholu madahi malama 2018
Kaqchikel: Kaqchikel ✧ CAK ✧ Mayan family, 450,000 speakers in Guatemala’s Central Highlands. Kaqchikel intensifies adjectives by reduplication — in other words, repeating them twice.
14 rujulaj ik’ 2018
Karachay-Balkar: Karachay-Balkar ✧ KRC ✧ Turkic language spoken in the Kabardino-Balkaria region of the north Caucasus. Closely related to Kumyk (q.v.).
14 абыстол ай (abistol ay) 2018
Karakalpak: Karakalpak ✧ KAA ✧ Turkic, closely related to Kazakh (q.v.), ≅ 400,000 speakers in Uzbekistan
14 қаўыс (qawıs) 2018
Karang: Karang ✧ KZR ✧ Niger-Congo, Bantu. Four dialects, 18,000 speakers in Camaroon.
14 few-kaɓ kala 2018
Karelian [Standard]: Karelian [Standard] ✧ KRL ✧ Uralic, Finnic. Only non-Karelian spoilsports call it a Finnish dialect. 36,000 speakers.
14 külmükuu “Cold month” 2018
Karelian [Livvi/Olonets]: Karelian [Livvi/Olonets] ✧ OLO ✧ About 30,000 speakers, mostly clustered northeast of Saint Petersburg, adjacent to the eastern shore of Lake Ladoga.
14 kylmykuudu 2018
Karen [S'gaw]: Karen [S'gaw] ✧ KAR ✧ Sino-Tibetan family, spoken by four million in Myanmar and Thailand. Five tones, uses a true alphabet derived from the Burmese script.
၁၄ nov (lah naw) ၂၀၁၈
Karuk: Karuk ✧ KYH ✧ A language isolate native to northwestern California’s Siskiyou, Humboldt, and Del Norte counties. As of 2007 a dozen native speakers remained along with 30 or so who had acquired it, largely through the efforts of the Karuk Language Restoration Committee.
14 kusrahkêem yíthaahan 2018
Kasena (Kasem): Kasena (Kasem) ✧ XSM ✧ Niger-Congo, Gur, 250,000 speakers in Ghana and Burkina Faso.
14 Fani cana 2018
Kaska: Kaska ✧ KKZ ✧ Na-Dené, Athabaskan. Fewer than 300 native speakers in towns in the Northwest Territories, Yukon Territory, and Northern British Columbia. Tonal with contrastive vowel length and nazalization.
14 Nī́ʼ Tené' Sā “Frozen ground month” -or- Zas Nédetlʼī́dī Sā “Snow falling month” 2018
Kayan [Baram]: Kayan [Baram] ✧ KCT ✧ A Malayo-Polynesian language spoken in central Borneo, in two dialects of weak interintelligibity: Baram and Rejang
14 bulan pulu ji 2018
Kazakh: Kazakh ✧ KAZ ✧ Altaic, Turkic. Cyrillic alphabet. In 2017 Kazakh president Nursultan Nazarbayev decreed that the language will switch completely to the Roman alphabet by 2025.
14 қараша (qaraša) 2018
Keresan: Keresan ✧ KEE/KJQ ✧ Language isolate group spoken in New Mexico. Some vowels are whispered. 10,000 speakers.
14 shuumi daawaatra 2018
Ket: Ket ✧ KET ✧ The only surviving language from the Yeniseian family and seriously endangered, with 150 speakers in Siberia’s Yenisei River valley
14 табеиӈ ӄип (tabеiŋ qip) 2018
Khakas [Koybal]: Khakas [Koybal] ✧ KJH ✧ Turkic language spoken by 43,000 (most of whom are bilingual in Russian) in the Khakassia Republic, north of the Altai Mountains
14 uluk-sôk 2018
Khakas [Sagay]: Khakas [Sagay] ✧ KJH ✧ Another dialect of Khakas
14 kîçîg xïrlas ayï 2018
Khanty (Ostyak): Khanty (Ostyak) ✧ KCA ✧ Uralic language related to Mansi (q.v.) and Hungarian. 12,000 speakers in Russia’s Khanty–Mansi and Yamalo-Nenets Autonomous Okrugs and in the Tomsk Oblast. Khanty’s major dialects differ significantly and are not mutually intelligible.
14 ай йӫркө тыӆәс (аy yø̆rkŏ tyl̦ĕs) 2018
Khanty (Ostyak) [Eastern]: Khanty (Ostyak) [Eastern] ✧ KCA ✧ Eastern Khanty terms collected 1956-1957
14 jaxkutj’kyt’tiki “Month when people hunt” 2018
Kharia: Kharia ✧ KHR ✧ Austroasiatic family, Munda branch, about 300,000 speakers in mainland India, the Andaman and Nicobar Islands, and Nepal. Not closely related to any other Munda language.
14 ce.riʔb 2018
Khasi: Khasi ✧ KHA ✧ Austroasiatic family, spoken by about one million in the Meghalaya state in India. Uses the Roman alphabet, deleting C, F, Q, V, X, and G (by itself) but adding Ng, Ï, and Ñ.
14 'nái-wieng 2018
Khmer (Cambodian): Khmer (Cambodian) ✧ KHM ✧ Austroasiatic family, Mon-Khmer branch, heavy Sanskrit influences. Oldest inscription dates from 611 ce.
14 nov (vicheka) 2018
Khoekhoe (Nama): Khoekhoe (Nama) ✧ NAQ ✧ A language from the Khoe family spoken by ≅ 300,000 in Namibia, Botswana, and South Africa. It’s a tonal language with 20 clicks and 11 other non-click consonants.
14 ǀhoǂgaeb 2018
Khowar (Chitrali): Khowar (Chitrali) ✧ KHW ✧ Indo-European, Indo-Iranian, 450,000 speakers mostly in Pakistan. Five dialects.
14 chanchori 2018
K’iche’ (Quiché): K’iche’ (Quiché) ✧ QUC ✧ Mayan family, spoken by 2.3 million in Guatemala, 13 percent of whom are monolingual. The famous Popol Vuh (Book of the people) was written in Classical K’iche’.
14 ujulaj ik’ 2018
Kiga (Rukiga): Kiga (Rukiga) ✧ CGG ✧ Niger-Congo, Central Bantu. Uganda and Rwanda. Prefixes indicate the class of a noun, e.g.: nu- indicates person; ki-, customs; ru-, languages (hence Kiga => Rukiga).
14 Okwaikumi na kumwe 2018
Kiliwa: Kiliwa ✧ KLB ✧ Yuman language, 50 speakers, northern Baja California. Word for Pacific Ocean is Kuñím.
14 ja’la’ kuchiviñal 2018
Kiribati (Gilbertese): Kiribati (Gilbertese) ✧ GIL ✧ Malayo-Polynesian, 120,000 speakers. Name pronounced KEER-i-bass, as natively this language has no S and so uses the digraph TI to indicate that sound from foreign loans. Interestingly this includes the name they use for their own land, a local rendering of “Gilberts” after an early European explorer.
14 Nobemb’a 2018
Koasati (Coushatta): Koasati (Coushatta) ✧ CKU ✧ A Muskogean language, tonal, spoken by 200 Coushatta people who live just north of Elton, LA and near Livingston, TX. Akin to Alabama (q.v.) though the two aren’t mutually intelligible.
14 nofámba -or- hasí pokkó:l awáh caffá:kan 2018
Kơho: Kơho ✧ KPM ✧ Austroasiatic, Bahnaric, spoken in twelve dialects by 200,000 in Vietnam’s Lâm Đồng Province. Vowel length is contrastive; prefix tön- makes a passive verb active.
14 kəənhaj ɟəət duːl 2018
Kokborok (Tripuri): Kokborok (Tripuri) ✧ TRP ✧ Sino-Tibetan language of India and Bangladesh. Uses high and low tones.
14 remchisa talni mung 2018
Komi (Ziryan): Komi (Ziryan) ✧ KOM ✧ Uralic, Permic. Spoken by 220,000 in Russia’s Komi Republic. Earliest known writings, 1372 ce.
14 вӧльгым (völ’gim) 2018
Kom: Kom ✧ BKM ✧ Niger-Congo, Bantu. Tri-tonal, 127,000 speakers in northwest Camaroon
14 njoñ ïìngvÏìyn 2018
Kongo: Kongo ✧ KON ✧ Bantu language spoken in Angola and both Congos. The words zombie and goober, and possibly funky, are Kongo loans.
14 sánza ya zómi na mókó 2018
Konso: Konso ✧ KXC ✧ Afro-Asiatic, Cushitic, spoken by 240,000 South of Lake Chamo in Ethiopia. Serves as a lingua franca in the area.
14 ollinɗala 2018
Korku: Korku ✧ KFQ ✧ Austroasiatic, Munda. 727,133 speakers in rural central and eastern India. UNESCO considers Korku “vulnerable to extinction” as it’s being rapidly displaced by Hindi.
14 divali 2018
Kosraean (Kusaiean): Kosraean (Kusaiean) ✧ KOS ✧ Malayo-Polynesian, Micronesian, spoken by 8000 on Kosrae of the Caroline Islands (where it’s the official language) and Nauru. Possessive pronouns (my, your, etc.) vary according to the subject being referenced.
14 nohfuhmpuh 2018
Kposo (Ikposo): Kposo (Ikposo) ✧ KPO ✧ Niger-Congo, Kwa, 160,000 speakers in Togo and Ghana. Consonant blends KP and GB frequently occur, along with ɣL.
14 iwletsyo 2018
Ksingmul: Ksingmul ✧ PUO ✧ Austroasiatic, Mon-Khmer, spoken by 27,000 ethnic Ksingmul (Xinh Mul in Vietnamese) in Vietnam and Laos.
14 bluən sip ʔet 2018
Kumeyaay (Central Diegueño): Kumeyaay (Central Diegueño) ✧ DIH ✧ Yuman family, spoken by ≅ 400 in Southern California and the Baja
14 halatai 2018
Kumyk: Kumyk ✧ KUM ✧ Turkic language spoken by ≅ 400,000 in Dagestan. Influenced by northeast Caucasian languages (Avar, Dargwa, Chechen) as well as Ossetian and Russian. (Not to be confused with Cuman, which is extinct.)
14 маййилик (mayyilik) 2018
Kuna (Cuna or Guna): Kuna (Cuna or Guna) ✧ CUK ✧ Chibchan family, spoken by 60,000 Kuna people of Panama’s San Blas Islands and the Northern coast of Colombia, who launched a successful rebellion in 1925 and won partial autonomy.
14 inanii “Month of [easily found] medicinal plants” 2018
Kurdish [Kurmanji/North]: Kurdish [Kurmanji/North] ✧ KMR ✧ Indo-European family, Indo-Iranian. The dialect of 75% of Kurdish speakers.
14 çiriya paşîn 2018
Kurdish [Kurmanji/North/Ezdiki]: Kurdish [Kurmanji/North/Ezdiki] ✧ KMR ✧ The Yezidi people speak Kurmanji Kurdish; to distinguish themselves they call their own language Ezdiki. These are the Yezidis' preferred Gregorian month names.
14 mijdar 2018
Kurdish [Sorani/South]: Kurdish [Sorani/South] ✧ CKB ✧ The Kurdish dialect second in number of speakers to Kurmanji
14 tishrîn i dûham 2018
Kutenai (Ktunaxa): Kutenai (Ktunaxa) ✧ KUT ✧ Language isolate spoken by 100 (British Columbia, Montana, and Idaho). No distinction between voiced versus unvoiced consonants, word order is flexible.
14 kt’aǂuʔk ¢upqa 2018
Kven: Kven ✧ FKV ✧ A seriously endangered Finnic language spoken by a few thousand mostly in the communities of Storfjord and Porsanger in Northern Norway. Kven and Finnish are mutually intelligible.
14 novemperikuu 2018
Kwak'wala: Kwak'wala ✧ KWK ✧ A language from the Wakashan family with around 500 speakers, native to the Queen Charlotte Strait off the northeastern tip of Vancouver Island. Uncommonly wide consonant inventory, including ejectives.
14 [November unknown] 2018
Kwangali: Kwangali ✧ KWN ✧ Niger-Congo family, Bantu, spoken by 84,000 in the Okavango River area of Namibia and Angola. Unusually for a Bantu language it uses clicks, presumably borrowed from its Khoisan neighbors.
14 Mangundu 2018
Kyrgyz: Kyrgyz ✧ KIR ✧ Altaic family, Turkic. Spoken by 4 million in Kyrgyzstan, Afghanistan, Pakistan, China.
14 cetinin ayı 2018

Lach: Lach ✧ ??? ✧ Either a dialect of Czech, Polish, or Silesian — depending on whom you believe. Óndra Łysohorsky (1905-1989), arguably the most celebrated Lach poet who resolutely refused to compose in either Polish or Czech, almost singlehandedly set the standard for literary Lach.
14 listopad 2018
Ladakhi (Bhoti): Ladakhi (Bhoti) ✧ LBJ ✧ A Sino-Tibetan language spoken by around 130,000 in India, Nepal, China, and Pakistan. Ladakhi and Tibetan are closely related but not mutually intelligible.
14 dawa chu chik pa 2018
Ladin [Badiotto]: Ladin [Badiotto] ✧ LLD ✧ Ladin is a Romance language related to Romansh (q.v.). This particular dialect is spoken by a few in the South Tyrol.
14 novëmber 2018
Ladin [Cadorean]: Ladin [Cadorean] ✧ LLD ✧ Ladin dialect of a handful of speakers in Cadore in the Italian province of Belluno bordering on Austria
14 novembre 2018
Ladin [Fassa Valley]: Ladin [Fassa Valley] ✧ LLD ✧ Another Ladin dialect, 600 speakers in Trentino in the Italian Alpines
14 novẹmber 2018
Ladin [Gardenese]: Ladin [Gardenese] ✧ LLD ✧ Ladin dialect, 8000 speakers in the Dolomites of South Tyrol in Northern Italy
14 nuvëmber 2018
Ladin [Nones]: Ladin [Nones] ✧ LLD ✧ Ladin dialect, 30,000 speakers in the Non Valley of Northern Italy. Whether Nones should be considered a dialect of Ladin or simply another Gallo-Italic/Romance language on its own is still open to debate.
14 novèmber 2018
Ladino (Judaeo-Spanish or Judezmo): Ladino (Judaeo-Spanish or Judezmo) ✧ LAD ✧ Medieval Spanish substrate + Hebrew, Arabic, Turkish loans. Spoken by Sephardic Jews worldwide. Ladino has traditionally used the 15th century Hebrew script called Rashi, shown here.
14 nov (novembre) 2018
Lahu: Lahu ✧ LHU ✧ Sino-Tibetan family, spoken in China, Thailand, Myanmar, and Laos
14 nòvêbà 2018
Lakota: Lakota ✧ LKT ✧ Siouan-Catawban family, spoken by ≅ 6000 in the US Dakotas. Heard in the 1990 movie Dances with Wolves.
14 Waniyetu Wi “Moon of cold” 2018
Lak: Lak ✧ LBE ✧ Northeast Caucasian, ≅ 160,000 speakers in Southern Dagestan. Heavy influences from Russian, Turkish, Arabic, and Persian.
14 ацIния цалчинмур барз (аtşniya barz) 2018
Lango (Lwo): Lango (Lwo) ✧ LAJ ✧ Nilo-Saharan family, Uganda. All numerals under 20 begin with A.
14 Kʉsaano 2018
Lao: Lao ✧ LAO ✧ Kra–Dai family, 6 tones. Many Indo-European loans via Pali/Sanskrit.
14 deuan pacheek 2018
Latgalian: Latgalian ✧ LTG ✧ Baltic, 150,000 speakers. Related to Latvian, Samogitian, and Lithuanian (q.v.).
14 solnys mieness 2018
Laz (Lazuri): Laz (Lazuri) ✧ LZZ ✧ A Kartvelian language spoken in five major dialects by ≅ 22,000 on the southeast shore of the Black Sea. Many Greek and Turkic loans; all Laz nouns end with a vowel.
14 ʒ’ilva 2018
Lenape (Delaware): Lenape (Delaware) ✧ DEL ✧ Algonquian, native to the lower Delaware and Hudson Rivers and northern New Jersey in the US. Many Dutch loans from early contact. As of this writing only two speakers remain.
14 Winigischuch “Snow month” 2018
Leonese: Leonese ✧ ??? ✧ Endangered Romance language undergoing a revival in northwestern Spain. Oldest writings date from ca. 959-974 ce.
14 noviembre 2018
Lepcha: Lepcha ✧ LEP ✧ Sino-Tibetan family, non-tonal, unique script. West Bengal, Nepal, Bhutan.
14 nov (raa lavo) 2018
Lezgian: Lezgian ✧ LEZ ✧ Northeast Caucasian, uses 54 consonant sounds, numerals 20 to 99 are expressed vigesimally (by 20s). Official in Dagestan, 665,000 speakers.
14 цӀехуьл (c’eḫül) 2018
Lezgian [Premodern]: Lezgian [Premodern] ✧ LEZ ✧ Conjectured Lezgian terminology of yore
14 куьлег (ku‘leg) 2018
Lhao Vo (Langsu or Maru): Lhao Vo (Langsu or Maru) ✧ MHX ✧ Sino-Tibetan, Lolo-Burmese, 100,000 speakers in Luxi City, and Lianghe and Longchuan Counties in China; and eastern Kachin State in Myanmar.
14 lɔ̱⁵⁵ tă³¹ tshɛ³¹ ta³¹ khjɛʔ⁵⁵ 2018
Ligurian [Genoese]: Ligurian [Genoese] ✧ LIJ ✧ Indo-European, Romance, Northern Italy. Endangered. Not to be confused with ancient Ligurian, an extinct Celtic language.
14 nuvembre 2018
Ligurian [Monégasque]: Ligurian [Monégasque] ✧ LIJ ✧ Ligurian dialect spoken by 5600 in Monaco including Princess Stephanie. Employs the non-Italian ü, œ, and ç.
14 nuvembre 2018
Limburgish: Limburgish ✧ LIM ✧ Germanic language, Limburg & Rhineland areas. Quite unusually, it’s tonal.
14 November 2018
Lingala: Lingala ✧ LIN ✧ Niger-Congo, Bantu, tonal. Spoken in both Congos.
14 sánzá ya zómí na mɔ̌kɔ́ 2018
Lingarak (Neverver): Lingarak (Neverver) ✧ LGK ✧ Malayo-Polynesian, Malekula subgroup, spoken by 500 central Malekula Island natives in Vanuatu. It’s under serious threat from Bislama (q.v.), English, and French.
14 nelavlavlab -or- nelavlavran 2018
Lisu: Lisu ✧ LIS ✧ Sino-Tibetan, related to Lahu (q.v.). Uses unusual Fraser alphabet from 1915 in which dots, commas, apostrophes, and bars serve to indicate tones. For Roman transcription tones are indicated by superscript numbers, as shown here.
14 nov (tshi33 ti55 ha21) 2018
Lithuanian: Lithuanian ✧ LIT ✧ Baltic, 3 million speakers. Unusually, its alphabet places Y after Į.
14 lapkritis “Falling leaves” 2018
Livonian: Livonian ✧ LIV ✧ Uralic, akin to Finnish and Estonian (q.v.). No native, fluent speakers remain but increasing numbers are acquiring it as a second language and it’s now taught at universities in Estonia, Latvia, and Finland.
14 kílmakú “Cold month” 2018
Lombard [Eastern]: Lombard [Eastern] ✧ LMO ✧ Romance, spoken in Northern Italy around Bergamo, Brescia, Mantua, Crema, and Trentino. Lombard and its dialects are not mutually intelligible with Italian.
14 nuember 2018
Lombard [Eastern Bergamasque]: Lombard [Eastern Bergamasque] ✧ LMO ✧ A subdivision of Eastern Lombard spoken by 700,000
14 noèmber 2018
Lombard [Mantuan]: Lombard [Mantuan] ✧ LMO ✧ Lombard dialect spoken in the city and commune of Mantua in Lombardy
14 noènbar 2018
Lombard [Western] (Insubric): Lombard [Western] (Insubric) ✧ LMO ✧ The Lombard spoken in Southern Switzerland and Northern Italy around Milan
14 nuember 2018
Louisiana Creole: Louisiana Creole ✧ LOU ✧ French-derived, African + other elements. Unlike French, verbs don’t conjugate.
14 novemb 2018
Lower Tanana: Lower Tanana ✧ TAA ✧ Endangered Athabaskan language with a dozen or so speakers. Minto, Alaska.
14 kheyenen-nokhulnegee 2018
Lozi: Lozi ✧ LOZ ✧ Niger-Congo family, Bantu, spoken in Zambia, Zimbabwe, Namibia, Botswana, and South Africa. It arose as a hybrid of two other Bantu languages, Luyana and Kololo.
14 Njimwana 2018
Luba-Katanga: Luba-Katanga ✧ LUB ✧ Niger-Congo family/Bantu, spoken in the Katanga Province of the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
14 Kaswèkèsè 2018
Ludic: Ludic ✧ LUD ✧ Uralic, Finnic, critically endangered. 3000 speakers near the northeastern shore of Lake Onega, Republic of Karelia, Russia. Described as a transitional language between Veps and the Livvi/Olonets dialect of Karelian (both q.v.).
14 kül’mkuu 2018
Lugbara: Lugbara ✧ LGG ✧ Nilo-Saharan family, Uganda (west Nile region) and the Democratic Republic of the Congo. First written in 1918, uses Roman alphabet except for Q and X.
14 Waa 2018
Luo: Luo ✧ LUO ✧ Nilo-Saharan family, Kenya and Tanzania. Barak Obama Sr. was Luo.
14 Dwe mar apar gi achiel 2018
Luxembourgish [Traditional]: Luxembourgish [Traditional] ✧ LTZ ✧ Indo-European, Germanic, French influences. Its CH is pronounced like English SH. “Moselle Franconian” is an umbrella term for Luxembourgish and its related West Germanic dialects.
14 Allerhellgemount 2018

Maa [Maasai]: Maa [Maasai] ✧ MAS ✧ Nilo-Saharan family, spoken in Kenya & Tanzania by 1.3 million. Maasai is highly tonal and features implosives, an example of which is the way English speakers imitate those cartoonish “glug-glug” sounds.
14 pushúkà 2018
Maa [Samburu]: Maa [Samburu] ✧ SAQ ✧ Maa dialect of the Northern Kenya highlands, 240,000 speakers
14 Lapa le tomon obo 2018
Macassarese [Traditional, before 1605]: Macassarese [Traditional, before 1605] ✧ MAK ✧ Austronesian, Malayo-Polynesian language spoken by 2.1 million, native to the South Sulawesi province of Indonesia. Terminology shown is that of the Pre-Islamic Kindgom of Goa.
XIIII bulang Mangase’tiwi MMXVIII
Macedonian [Archaic/Folk]: Macedonian [Archaic/Folk] ✧ MKD ✧ Indo-European, South Slavic. Lacks the noun case system characteristic of most other Slavic languages. Not to be confused with Macedonian Greek, an unrelated Hellenic language spoken during the first millennium bce.
14 студен (studen) “Cold ” 2018
Maguindanao [Pre-Spanish Conquest]: Maguindanao [Pre-Spanish Conquest] ✧ MDH ✧ A Malayo-Polynesian language spoken by 1.1 million descendents of the Sultanate of Maguindanao on southwest Mindanao in the Philippines
14 inabuyan 2018
Makasae: Makasae ✧ MKZ ✧ Trans-New Guinea family, West Bomberai, spoken by 102,000 on the eastern end of East Timor. Though rarely used, this is their Gregorian month terminology.
14 bare bare “Height of dry season” 2018
Malagasy: Malagasy ✧ MLG ✧ Spoken in Madagascar but non-African (Malayo-Polynesian, from Borneo). For all dialects inclusive there are 25 million speakers.
14 Novambra 2018
Malagasy [Antankaraña]: Malagasy [Antankaraña] ✧ XMV ✧ Dialect spoken by ethnic Antankaraña in Northern Madagascar
14 Fahosa 2018
Malagasy [Sakalava]: Malagasy [Sakalava] ✧ SKG ✧ Dialect spoken by ethnic Sakalava in Northern Madagascar
14 Vatravatra 2018
Malagasy [Tandroy-Mahafaly]: Malagasy [Tandroy-Mahafaly] ✧ TDX ✧ Dialect spoken by ethnic Mahafaly in southwestern Madagascar
14 Novambra 2018
Malecite-Passamaquoddy: Malecite-Passamaquoddy ✧ PQM ✧ Algonquian family, spoken in New Brunswick & Maine, endangered
14 kolotonuhkewi-kisuhs 2018
Maltese: Maltese ✧ MLT ✧ Unique Arabic/Sicilian hybrid, 370,000 speakers on Malta. Its cadence and inflection reminds many non-natives of Italian.
14 Novembru 2018
Manchu: Manchu ✧ MNC ✧ Tungusic language spoken natively by fewer than 20 in northeast China, but also by several thousand as a second language due to recent revival efforts
14 nov (omšon biya) 2018
Mandinka: Mandinka ✧ MNK ✧ Niger-Congo family, Mande branch, Manding group. Bitonal.
14 noofemba karoo 2018
Mandinka [Traditional]: Mandinka [Traditional] ✧ MNK ✧ Niger-Congo family, Mande branch, Manding group. Bitonal.
14 banna konongo 2018
Mangarevan: Mangarevan ✧ MRV ✧ Malayo-Polynesian, spoken by 600 in French Polynesia’s Mangareva and Gambier Islands. Though many speakers are bilingual with French, Mangarevan itself borrows little from unrelated languages.
14 tataatea 2018
Mang: Mang ✧ ZNG ✧ Austroasiatic family, 3200 speakers in Lai Châu Province, Vietnam and neighboring areas in China. The outside world only discovered this language in 1974.
14 meː⁶ ʑaːp⁷ 2018
Mankanya: Mankanya ✧ KNF ✧ Niger-Congo family, Bak branch, spoken natively by 75,000 in Gambia, Guinea-Bissau, and Senegal.
14 Pli ptëbënţën pi kanjalën 2018
Mansi: Mansi ✧ MNS ✧ Uralic, related to Hungarian, 3000 speakers in central Siberia. Word order is fixed.
14 яныг таквс (yanig takws) 2018
Manx: Manx ✧ GLV ✧ Celtic, Goidelic (related to Irish Gaelic), native to the Isle of Man. Its last native speaker was Ned Maddrell (1877-1974). The local folk band Briskee Brisht performs songs in both English and Manx.
14 Mee Houney or Sauin 2018
Māori (te reo): Māori (te reo) ✧ MRI ✧ Malayo-Polynesian, closely related to Tahitian. Personal pronouns come in singular, dual, and plural. Vowel length is contrastive, the long version signaled with a macron.
14 Whiringa ā rangi 2018
Māori [Cook Islands] (Rarotongan): Māori [Cook Islands] (Rarotongan) ✧ MRI ✧ This is the Māori dialect official in the Cook Islands with ≅ 14,000 speakers there and another 8000 in New Zealand.
14 Noema 2018
Mapudungun (Mapuche): Mapudungun (Mapuche) ✧ ARN ✧ Language isolate spoken in Chile and Argentina, writing system under dispute
14 inanhuel-cújen 2018
Mari [Meadow] (Cheremis): Mari [Meadow] (Cheremis) ✧ MHR ✧ Uralic language spoken in Russia’s Mari Replublic. Nine noun cases, 470,000 speakers. The other chief dialect is Hill Mari, which in contrast to Meadow sticks to Russian/Neo-Latin Gregorian terms.
14 кылме (kǝlme) 2018
Marshallese: Marshallese ✧ MAH ✧ Malayo-Polynesian, two main dialects, spoken on the Marshall Islands.
14 Nobōṃba 2018
Mashi (Kwandu): Mashi (Kwandu) ✧ MHO ✧ A Niger-Congo, Bantu language spoken by 22,000 in parts of Angola, DR Congo, and Zambia.
14 Nyaceze 2018
Matlatzinca: Matlatzinca ✧ MAT ✧ From the Oto-Manguean family, spoken by 650 in and around San Francisco Oxtotilpa, Mexico. Matlatzinca is seriously endangered, though with 61 other languages Mexico recognizes it as official.
14 rat՚ amusranbë 2018
Maxakalí: Maxakalí ✧ MBL ✧ Language with its own family spoken by a few hundred in Minas Gerais, Brazil
14 nomen 2018
Mbuko: Mbuko ✧ MHW ✧ Afro-Asiatic, Chadic. 13,000 speakers in Northern Camaroon. Not to be confused with Mbukushu (q.v.), from the Niger-Congo family.
14 kiya sé déäa gélan 2018
Mbukushu: Mbukushu ✧ MHW ✧ Niger-Congo family, a Bantu language that unlike most uses clicks, spoken by 50,000 along Namibia’s Okavango River and in Batswana, Angola, and Zambia. Not to be confused with Mbuko (q.v.), from the Afro-Asiatic family.
14 murongana 2018
Mbula: Mbula ✧ MNA ✧ Malayo-Polynesian, spoken by 4500 in Morobe, Papua New Guinea. Many bilingual in Tok Pisin and/or English. Five first-person pronouns: singular (I); dual inclusive (you and I), dual exclusive (we two but not you); plural incl. (we including you), plural excl. (we but not you).
14 Ŋese -or- Mbui potpot 2018
Meitei (Manipuri): Meitei (Manipuri) ✧ MNI ✧ Sino-Tibetan. Spoken in India, Bangladesh, Burma and not to be confused with Bishnupriya Manipuri (which is Indo-European). Unique script.
14 nov (phairel) 2018
Mele (Atara Imere): Mele (Atara Imere) ✧ MXE ✧ Malayo-Polynesian, one of two interintelligible languages (the other is Fila) spoken natively by 3500 on Vanuatu’s Efate Island. Mele uses a sound that’s rare for a Polynesian language, IPA tɕ, which resembles the ch in cherry.
14 Noovempere 2018
Menominee: Menominee ✧ MEZ ✧ Algonquian family, spoken in Northern Wisconsin, nearly extinct
14 Pāhkatāhkamek kēsoq “Freezing moon” 2018
Meänkieli: Meänkieli ✧ FIT ✧ Endangered Finnish dialect group spoken in Sweden’s Norrbotten province
14 nuvemperi 2018
Miami-Illinois: Miami-Illinois ✧ MIA ✧ Algonquian, originally midwestern US. Extinct but under revival.
14 kiiyolia kiilhswa 2018
Michif: Michif ✧ CRG ✧ A French-Cree hybrid, < 1000 speakers. North Dakota, Saskatchewan, Manitoba. It borrows its Gregorian calendar terms from French.
14 novámbr 2018
Micmac: Micmac ✧ MIC ✧ Eastern Algonquian family, ≅ 7000 speakers currently. At one time Micmac used a system of Egyptianesque hieroglyphics called Komqwejwi'kasikl.
14 Keptekewiku’s 2018
Miju Mishmi (Kaman): Miju Mishmi (Kaman) ✧ MXJ ✧ Either Sino-Tibetan (?) or an isolate (?), spoken by 18,000 Miju Mishmi in India’s Arunachal Pradesh and Zayü County in Tibet. Features both voiced and unvoiced th sounds (IPA ð and θ). It has two tones, shown with acute and grave accent marks; plus level, shown with a macron.
14 tā̀n 2018
Min Dong [Fuzhou]: Min Dong [Fuzhou] ✧ CDO ✧ Sino-Tibetan, unintelligible with Mandarin or Cantonese, untra-complex tonality
14 dâ̤ sĕk ék nguŏk 2018
Mingrelian: Mingrelian ✧ XMF ✧ An endangered Kartvelian language related to Georgian and Laz (q.v.), with some mutual intelligibility with the latter. Georgian president Zviad Gamsakhurdia spoke Mingrelian.
იდ გერგობათუთა (gergobatuta) ციჱ
Mirandese: Mirandese ✧ MWL ✧ Romance language, at least 1000 years removed from Portuguese.
14 nobembre 2018
Miskito: Miskito ✧ MIQ ✧ From the small Misumalpan family, spoken by ≅ 150,000 in Honduras and Nicaragua. English loans are numerous in Miskito; Spanish, less so.
14 yahbra kâti 2018
Mixtec [Magdalena Peñasco]: Mixtec [Magdalena Peñasco] ✧ XTM ✧ Oto-Manguean family, Mixtecan branch, Mixtec subgroup. Magdalena Peñasco is known as “Language of the Rain People” and spoken by 9100 in the Mexican state of Oaxaca.
14 yoo noviembre 2018
Mixtec [Tututepec]: Mixtec [Tututepec] ✧ MTU ✧ A Mixtec language spoken natively by 1200 in Santa María Acatepec, Santa Cruz Tututepec, San Pedro Tututepec and other towns in Oaxaca, Mexico. There are at least 30 Mixtec languages total, but Tututepec is highly divergent from most of the others.
14 yòò nímà 2018
Mizo (Lushai): Mizo (Lushai) ✧ LUS ✧ Sino-Tibetan language spoken in Myanmar, Bangladesh & India. Akin to Biete (q.v.).
14 sahmulphah thla 2018
Mohawk: Mohawk ✧ MOH ✧ Iroquoian family, 3500 speakers in Ontario, Quebec, and Northern New York State. Curiously, no labial (lip-produced) consonants.
14 Kentenhkó:wa 2018
Moksha: Moksha ✧ MDF ✧ Uralic language, spoken along the central Volga. There are three main dialects, of which the central “ä” is the literary standard.
IIIIΛ nojabrjkov III/Λ10001000
Mongolian: Mongolian ✧ MON ✧ Mongolic, a family whose members include Buryat and Oirat (q.v.). Observes vowel harmony and lacks the standard L sound.
14 арван нэгдүгээр сар (arvan nägdügäär sar) 2018
Montagnais Innu: Montagnais Innu ✧ MOE ✧ Algonquian language related to Cree (q.v.), spoken by 11,000 in Labrador and Quebec
14 takuatshi-pishimu 2018
Mossi (Mòoré): Mossi (Mòoré) ✧ MOS ✧ A Niger-Congo language spoken by 5 million, mostly in Burkina Faso
14 sipaolgo 2018
Motu [Premodern]: Motu [Premodern] ✧ MEU ✧ Malayo-Polynesian, spoken by 39,000 in central Papua New Guinea. Vowel-heavy like many Polynesian languages and lacking consonant blends.
14 Biriakei 2018
Moxo [Trinitario]: Moxo [Trinitario] ✧ TRN ✧ Arawakan family, Southern, native to northeastern Bolivia. The Endangered Languages Project reports 3100 speakers.
14 noñemre 2018
Mozarabic (Andalusi Romance): Mozarabic (Andalusi Romance) ✧ MXI ✧ A set of non-standardized, Late Latin-derived languages spoken in the Muslim-controlled areas of the Iberian Peninsula (Al Andalus) between approximately the eighth and sixteenth centuries. Three writing systems.
XIIII נונבר نونبر  nuwánbar MMXVIII
Mundang: Mundang ✧ MUA ✧ A Niger-Congo language spoken by 250,000 in Southern Chad
14 fĩi gwahlle 2018
Muya: Muya ✧ MVM ✧ Sino-Tibetan family, Northern Qiangic; two chief dialects not mutually intelligible. There are 10,000 speakers, of which 2000 speak only Muya. China’s Sichuan Province, Kangbo and Jiulong, Ganzi Tibetan autonomous prefecture, Simian county, Ya’an district.
14 dε3355tɕu55tɕi5553 2018
Mwotlap [Folk/Traditional]: Mwotlap [Folk/Traditional] ✧ MIV ✧ Malayo-Polynesian, Southern Oceanic, spoken natively by 2100 on Vanuatu'a Mota Lava, Ra, and Banks Islands. Uses four numbers for humans: singular, dual, trial, plural. Non-human subjects are inflected as singular.
14 n-in-lap 2018
Myene (Omyene): Myene (Omyene) ✧ MYE ✧ Niger-Congo, Bantu, 45,000 speakers of the Mpongwe, Nkomi, Galwa, and Bongo Pygmy groups in Gabon.
14 fogwɛnanga 2018

Nāhuatl: Nāhuatl ✧ NAH ✧ Uto-Aztecan, from the original language group of the Aztecs, presently 1.7 million speakers. Of its many dialects, Huasteca Nāhuatl is the most heavily spoken.
14 tlamactlihuanceti 2018
Nafsan (South Efate) : Nafsan (South Efate) ✧ ERK ✧ Malayo-Polynesian, native to Efate Island of Northeast Vanuatu with 6000 speakers. They count in base 5.
14 atlag karalim iskei atmat iskei 2018
Nakhi (Naxi): Nakhi (Naxi) ✧ NXQ ✧ Sino-Tibetan, spoken in Yunnan by 350,000, famous for its Dongba “picture” writing.
14 ceiqddee -or- sheefyifyui 2018
Nàmá (Khoekhoe): Nàmá (Khoekhoe) ✧ HQM ✧ Khoisan family, 300,000 speakers. Consonants include 20 clicks. Formerly called Hottentot.
14 !kaniǁkhab -or- ǀhooǂgaeb 2018
Nanai (Gold): Nanai (Gold) ✧ GLD ✧ Tungusic. 4000 speakers, decendents of Manchurian Jurchen
14 ичэ биа 2018
Naskapi: Naskapi ✧ NSK ✧ Algonquian family, spoken by 1,230 in Quebec and Labrador. Uses the Cree syllabic writing system.
14 ᐱᓄᐎᐤ ᐱᓯᒻ (pinuwiiw-piisim na) “Month caribou lose antlers” 2018
Navajo (Diné bizaad): Navajo (Diné bizaad) ✧ NAV ✧ Athabaskan family, southwest US. Tonal, uses ejectives.
14 Níłchʼitsʼósí 2018
Nawdm: Nawdm ✧ NMZ ✧ A language from the Niger-Congo family, Gur branch, spoken by the Losso people in Togo and Ghana.
14 kwɛnooga 2018
Ndebele [Northern] (Zimbabwean Ndebele): Ndebele [Northern] (Zimbabwean Ndebele) ✧ NDE ✧ Niger-Congo, Southern Bantu, Nguni. Native to Zimbabwe and part of Botswana, spoken by descendants of Zulu leader Mzilikazi (1790-1868).
14 uLwezi 2018
Ndebele [Southern] (Transvaal Ndebele): Ndebele [Southern] (Transvaal Ndebele) ✧ NBL ✧ Niger-Congo, Southern Bantu, Nguni. Spoken in South Africa’s provinces of Mpumalanga, Limpopo, Gauteng, and North West.
14 uSinyikhaba 2018
Ndyuka (Aukan): Ndyuka (Aukan) ✧ DJK ✧ English-based creole spoken by the Maroon people of Suriname
14 elufu mun 2018
Neapolitan: Neapolitan ✧ NAP ✧ Romance language named not after the city but the Kingdom of Naples, spoken in central Italy. The term paparazzo from Frederico Fellini’s film La Doce Vita (1960) came from the Abruzzo dialect of Neapolitan spoken by one of his screenwriters.
14 nuēmbr 2018
Neapolitan [Tarantine]: Neapolitan [Tarantine] ✧ NAP ✧ A dialect of Neapolitan with Messapic roots, spoken by 300,000 in and around the city of Taranto in the Italian heel area.
14 novèmmre 2018
Nenets: Nenets ✧ YRK ✧ Uralic family, Samoyedic. It’s moribund and spoken by hardly anybody in extreme northwest Russia.
14 nyudya pevdey 2018
Nez Perce: Nez Perce ✧ NEZ ✧ Plateau Penutian family, Idaho, < 200 speakers, revival underway
14 Sex̣liw’aál 2018
Nganasan: Nganasan ✧ NIO ✧ Uralic family, Samoyedic. Extreme north central Russia, ≅ 1000 speakers.
14 nêjabêri 2018
Ngiemboon: Ngiemboon ✧ NNH ✧ Niger-Congo family, Southern Bantoid, Grassfields. Spoken in Province de l'Ouest and Bamboutos in Cameroon by 250,000.
14 saŋ mejwoŋó 2018
Ngomba: Ngomba ✧ JGO ✧ A Niger-Congo family, Southern Bantoid, Grassfields language like Ngiemboon above. Spoken in Province de l'Ouest and Bamboutos in Cameroon by 63,000.
14 pɛsaŋ ntsɔ̌pmɔ́ 2018
Nheengatu: Nheengatu ✧ YRL ✧ Tupi-Guaraní family, spoken in Brazil, Colombia, and Venezuela. The name means “good tongue.”
14 îasypaîepé 2018
Nisga’a: Nisga’a ✧ NCG ✧ Tsimshianic family, seriously endangered, British Columbia (Canada)
14 Gwilatkw 2018
Niuean: Niuean ✧ NIU ✧ Malayo-Polynesian language spoken in Niue. Unlike Hawaiian it uses no glottal stop.
14 Novema 2018
Nivkh (Gilyak): Nivkh (Gilyak) ✧ NIV ✧ Language isolate spoken on western Sakhalin Island and adjacent mainland by around 1000. Nivkh is genderless and doesn’t have adjectives. It uses a modified Cyrillic alphabet with 46 letters.
14 tlo long 2018
Nkore: Nkore ✧ NYN ✧ Niger-Congo, Bantu. Spoken by 2.3 million in southwestern Uganda.
14 kashwa 2018
Nogai: Nogai ✧ NOG ✧ Turkic, spoken in southwestern Russia (Tuva area) by Golden Horde descendents
14 караша ай (karaša ay) 2018
Norman: Norman ✧ NRF ✧ Romance, Langue d’oïl with a substantial Norse element, spoken by ≅ 100,000 in Normandy. The Channel Island languages Guernésiais, Jèrriais, and Sercquiais (q.v.) descended from medieval Norman.
14 novembe 2018
Norn (Nynorn) [Shetland]: Norn (Nynorn) [Shetland] ✧ NRN ✧ North Germanic, extinct since ca. 1850 with the death of Walter Sutherland. Orkneys and Shetland Islands off the north coast of Scotland. Currently being revived as “Nynorn.”
14 November 2018
Nuer: Nuer ✧ NUS ✧ Nilo-Saharan. South Sudan, Ethiopia. Breathy vs. non-breathy vowels. Related to Reel (q.v.).
14 Kur 2018
Nukuoro: Nukuoro ✧ NKR ✧ Malayo-Polynesian, ≅ 860 speakers on Nukuoro Atoll and Pohnpei Island (Federated States of Micronesia). Five vowels, each of which can be long or short, and ten consonants total.
14 laaga 2018
Nusu (Nu) [Northern] (Wawa-Kongtong dialect): Nusu (Nu) [Northern] (Wawa-Kongtong dialect) ✧ NUF ✧ Sino-Tibetan, Lolo-Burmese, preliterate, 2,000 speakers in China’s Fugong, Wawa, Kongtong, and Youduoluo Counties. Not to be confused with Nuosu/Yi (q.v.).
14 thi⁵⁵ tshe³¹ thi⁵⁵ ɬa⁵⁵ 2018
Nuuchahnulth (Nootka) [Hesquiaht]: Nuuchahnulth (Nootka) [Hesquiaht] ✧ NUK ✧ Of the Southern Wakashan family, Nuuchahnulth as a whole is spoken natively by 130 on Vancouver Island’s west coast. There were at least 15 dialects; this one survives through the efforts of The Hesquiaht Language Program.
14 ʔaak̓ʷatuʔisumł 2018
Nyole [Ugandan]: Nyole [Ugandan] ✧ NUJ ✧ Niger-Congo family, Bantu, 340,000 speakers in the Tororo District of Uganda. It shares ≅ 60% of its vocabulary with Kenyan Nyole.
14 Nejuuli 2018

Occitan [Aranese]: Occitan [Aranese] ✧ OCI ✧ Indo-European, Romance, Langue d'òc. Spoken in northeastern Spain’s Aran Valley.
14 noveme 2018
Occitan [Gascon]: Occitan [Gascon] ✧ OCI ✧ Indo-European, Romance, Langue d'òc. Spoken in Gascony in Southern France.
14 noveme 2018
Occitan [Provençal]: Occitan [Provençal] ✧ OCI ✧ Indo-European, Romance, closely related to Catalan (q.v.). A Langue d'òc spoken in Southern France.
14 nouvèmbre 2018
Occitan [Vivaro-Alpine]: Occitan [Vivaro-Alpine] ✧ OCI ✧ Seriously endangered Occitan dialect spoken in SE France and NW Italy.
14 novembre 2018
Oirat [Kalmyk]: Oirat [Kalmyk] ✧ XAL ✧ Mongolic, grammatically genderless, earliest written samples dating from the 11th century. The Ewok speech in Return of the Jedi was inspired by the distinctive sound of Oirat.
14 ükr 2018
Ojibwe (Chippewa) [Eastern]: Ojibwe (Chippewa) [Eastern] ✧ OJG ✧ Algonquian family, 100,000 speakers (all dialects inclusive) in north-central US and Canada. Ojibwe tends to avoid borrowing terms from other languages.
14 Baashkaakodin Giizis “Freezing Moon” 2018
Ojibwe (Chippewa) [Western]: Ojibwe (Chippewa) [Western] ✧ OJW ✧ The other major dialect division of Ojibwe
14 Gashkadino Giizis “Freezing Over Moon” 2018
Oneida: Oneida ✧ ONE ✧ Iroquoian family, ≅ 250 native speakers in Ontario, New York State, and an area around Green Bay, Wisconsin. Consonant inventory is relatively small: K, L, N, S, T, H, W, Y and a glottal stop signaled by an apostrophe.
14 Tehutʌnuhela:túh̲e̲’ “They give thanks.” 2018
Onondaga: Onondaga ✧ ONO ✧ Iroquoian family, ≅ 50 speakers in Ontario and New York State
14 kentengôna 2018
Oroch: Oroch ✧ OAC ✧ Northern Tongusic language, eight (as of 2010) native speakers in Khabarovsk Krai in eastern Siberia and thus critically endangered, three dialects. Not to be confused with the Southern Tungusic language called Orok.
14 беэ адыи (bjey adyi) 2018
Oromo: Oromo ✧ ORM ✧ Afro-Asiatic, Cushitic. Non-Roman scripts once banned.
14 sadaasa 2018
Ös (Chulym): Ös (Chulym) ✧ CLW ✧ Western Turkic language. Moribund, spoken by a few dozen in southwestern Siberia north of the Altay Mountains. Soviet-era school children were punished when caught speaking Ös.
14 kiča ai 2018
Osage: Osage ✧ OSA ✧ This Oklahoma-based Siouan language went natively extinct in 2005 with the death of its last speaker, Lucille Roubedeaux. Revitalization efforts are underway. Like European languages such as Polish, Lithuanian, and Dalecarlian (q.v.), Osage features nasalized vowels.
14 mį́įǫpa álįį wį́xci 2018
Ossetian [Digor]: Ossetian [Digor] ✧ OSS ✧ Indo-European, Indo-Iranic, spoken mainly by Moslems
14 gorguba 2018
Ossetian [Ironian]: Ossetian [Ironian] ✧ OSS ✧ Indo-European, Indo-Iranic, spoken mainly by Christians
14 джеоргуыбайы мæй (džeorguibayi mæy) 2018
Ozolotepec: Ozolotepec ✧ ZAO ✧ Oto-Manguean family, Zapotecan group, spoken by 6500 in Oaxaca, Mexico. Zapotecan languages are tonal.
14 nobiembr 2018
O’odham (Papago-Pima): O’odham (Papago-Pima) ✧ OOD ✧ From the Uto-Aztecan family, spoken by some 10,000 in south-central Arizona and Northern Sonora. No L sound; word order is extremely fluid.
14 S-ke:g S-he:pijig Maṣad “Pleasant Cold Month” 2018

Palauan: Palauan ✧ PAU ✧ Austronesian family, ≅ 15,000 speakers. Palau, Guam, Mariana Islands.
14 Ongetruich me a ta el buil 2018
Palor (Sili): Palor (Sili) ✧ FAP ✧ Niger-Congo family, 9,700 speakers (Thies area of Senegal)
14 noowàmbar 2018
Pame (Xi’iui): Pame (Xi’iui) ✧ PBS ✧ From the Oto-Manguean family, tonal, spoken by 11,000 in central Mexico’s state of San Luis Potosí. Pame speakers traditionally count in base 8 (octal), as they use their knuckles rather than their fingers.
14 ngum’au l’je’e 2018
Pashto [Eastern]: Pashto [Eastern] ✧ PUS ✧ Indo-European, Indo-Iranic, spoken in northeastern Pakistan
14 miyana miašt 2018
Pashto [Western]: Pashto [Western] ✧ PUS ✧ Pashto dialect spoken in western Afghanistan and Iran
14 miyana 2018
Pawnee [Skiri]: Pawnee [Skiri] ✧ PAW ✧ Caddoan family, north-central Oklahoma, seriously endangered, fewer than a dozen elderly speakers. Along with Arikara (q.v.), we hear Pawnee spoken in the 2015 film The Revenant.
14 [October unknown] 2018
Pawnee [South Band]: Pawnee [South Band] ✧ PAW ✧ With Skiri above, the other dialect of Pawnee
14 kiíwakski 2018
Pecheneg: Pecheneg ✧ XPC ✧ A mysterious, poorly attested Turkic language with no known descendents, extinct by 1300
14 elem 2018
Pemon (Arekuna): Pemon (Arekuna) ✧ AOC ✧ From the Cariban family, spoken by 30,000 in southeastern Venezuela, Brazil’s Roraima State, and Guyana. It was preliterate until the 20th century.
14 Kamonne kapüyi “Month of the deceased” 2018
Penan-Nibong: Penan-Nibong ✧ PEZ ✧ Malayo-Polynesian, North Sarawakan, spoken by 13,000 in Sarawak, Borneo. Two main dialects.
14 laseh jah polo' jah 2018
Pennsylvania “Dutch” (Deitsch): Pennsylvania “Dutch” (Deitsch) ✧ PDC ✧ A Palatinate German spoken by the Amish, many of whom not named Yoder
14 Nowember 2018
Penrhyn (Tongarevan): Penrhyn (Tongarevan) ✧ PNH ✧ Seriously endangered Polynesian language spoken by around 200, Northern Cook Islands
14 noema 2018
Picard (Ch’ti or “Patois”): Picard (Ch’ti or “Patois”) ✧ PCD ✧ Indo-European, Romance, Langue d’oïl. Extreme Northern France.
14 novinb 2018
Picard [Medieval]: Picard [Medieval] ✧ PCD ✧ As seen on the Astrolabe of Berselius (14th century)
XIIII nouēbre MMXVIII
Piedmontese: Piedmontese ✧ PMS ✧ Indo-European, Romance; 3 million speakers in Northern Italy. Curiously, Piedmontese lacks ordinal numbers exceeding “sixth” and instead resorts to phrases (“the one that makes seven,” etc.) to express ordinals beyond that.
14 novèmber 2018
Pingelapese: Pingelapese ✧ PIF ✧ Malayo-Polynesian language spoken by < 1000. Micronesia, Pingelap atoll. Offers specific words for every sequential day in a month — shown here in quotes. Another quirk: 1 in 10 Pingelapese are so colorblind they see only in black and white.
14 (“woalopwo”) pikker 2018
Pipil (Nawat): Pipil (Nawat) ✧ PPL ✧ Uto-Aztecan language under revival, El Salvador. There are now over 3000 speakers.
14 metzi majtakti se 2018
Piro [Yine]: Piro [Yine] ✧ PIB ✧ Arawakan family, spoken by the 4000 ethnic Yine who live in the Peruvian Urubamba River Valley and taught in their schools alongside Spanish.
14 nowyempre ksuru 2018
Pitcairn-Norfolk: Pitcairn-Norfolk ✧ PIH ✧ An endangered Tahitian/English creole spoken on Pitcairn & Norfolk Islands
14 nowemba 2018
Plautdietsch (Low German): Plautdietsch (Low German) ✧ PDT ✧ North Sea Germanic, akin to Dutch. Spoken in Northern Germany, eastern areas of the Netherlands, and by Mennonites worldwide.
14 Novamba -or- November 2018
Pnar (Jaintia or Synteng): Pnar (Jaintia or Synteng) ✧ PBV ✧ Austroasiatic language, 320,000 speakers, Meghalaya, northeast India + adjacent areas in Bangladesh. Shares much in common with Khasi (q.v.) though the two are not mutually inteligible.
14 khɔn ʧɔŋlad 2018
Pohnpeian: Pohnpeian ✧ PON ✧ Malayo-Polynesian, Micronesian, spoken by ≅ 34,000 on Pohnpei Island in the Caroline Islands. Pohnpeian offers 30 sets of 1-to-9 numerals used when referring to different classes of objects such as stalks, small round things, bundles, gusts of wind, and songs.
14 nopempe 2018
Poitevin-Saintongeais: Poitevin-Saintongeais ✧ ??? ✧ Indo-European, Romance, Langue d’oïl. Earliest known writings from 1400s.
14 nouvenbre 2018
Pökut: Pökut ✧ KLN ✧ Nilo-Saharan family, Kalenjin. 264,000 speakers in Kenya, Uganda.
14 Kokelian 2018
Polabian: Polabian ✧ POX ✧ West Slavic with Germanic influences. Last native speaker died in 1756. The protagonists in the Russian opera-ballet Mlada describe themselves as Polabians.
14 zaimă môn -or- seynemon 2018
Pomeranian [Kashubian]: Pomeranian [Kashubian] ✧ CSB ✧ Indo-European, West Slavic. Some 100,000 speakers living mostly in Germany & Poland.
14 lëstopadnik 2018
Pomeranian [Slovincian]: Pomeranian [Slovincian] ✧ CSB ✧ The other major dialect of Pomeranian, though unfortunately extinct since World War I
14 nȯu̱vèmbĕr 2018
Pontic: Pontic ✧ PNT ✧ Indo-European, Hellenic. Spoken actively by 200,000 in Northern Greece, Turkey, and diaspora communities worldwide. Many consider Pontic a Greek dialect, but orally the two are not mutually intelligible.
14 Αεργϊτες (Aergites) 2018
Potawatomi: Potawatomi ✧ POT ✧ Algonquian language of the Great Lakes Area (Michigan, Wisconsin, Southern Ontario). One of its last native speakers, Cecilia Miksekwe Jackson (d. 2011), worked to document and teach Potawatomi. Revival efforts are currently underway.
14 bnakwi-gizes 2018
Proto-Germanic: Proto-Germanic ✧ ??? ✧ Reconstructed ancestor of all Germanic languages, last spoken ca. 250 bce
XIIII Bloþamenoþ MMXVIII
Proto-Slavic: Proto-Slavic ✧ ??? ✧ Reconstructed ancestor of all Slavic languages, 5th to 8th centuries ce
XIIII listopad MMXVIII
Pukapukan: Pukapukan ✧ PKP ✧ Malayo-Polynesian language from Danger Island (Cook Islands group). Over 4000 speakers.
14 Nōvema 2018
Pumi [Qingua or Southern]: Pumi [Qingua or Southern] ✧ PMJ ✧ Sino-Tibetan, Qiangic. Spoken by highland ethnic Pumi in Yunnan.
14 tsu55squɑ55ɬi55 2018
Pumi [Taoba or Northern]: Pumi [Taoba or Northern] ✧ PMI ✧ The other chief dialect of Pumi. The two are not mutually intelligible.
14 ʑu33ta33ɬe53 2018
Purépecha (Tarascan): Purépecha (Tarascan) ✧ TSZ ✧ A language isolate of the descendents of the Purépecha civilization, which rivaled that of the Aztecs up until the European conquest. Still spoken natively by 125,000 in the southwestern Mexican state of Michoacán.
14 nobiembri 2018
Puroik (Sulung): Puroik (Sulung) ✧ SUV ✧ So far unclassified. Spoken by 20,000 in seven (or so) dialects by the Puroik people of India’s Arunachal Pradesh. Genderless, seven noun cases.
14 ra³³ dʑɔŋ³³ aŋ³³ bo³³ 2018

Q’eqchi’ (Kekchi): Q’eqchi’ (Kekchi) ✧ KEK ✧ Mayan family, 800,000 speakers in Guatemala and Belize
14 nowyemr 2018
Qiang [Horpa/Ergong]: Qiang [Horpa/Ergong] ✧ ERO ✧ Sino-Tibetan family, Qiangic, non-tonal, 50,000 Sichuan-area speakers. Linguists consider it a “living fossil.”
14 vtɕə tɕɯ pa 2018
Qiang [Máwō]: Qiang [Máwō] ✧ CNG ✧ Sino-Tibetan, Qiangic, non-tonal, 130,000 speakers in China’s Sichuan
14 he tɕiʂ 2018
Qiang [Taoping]: Qiang [Taoping] ✧ QXS ✧ Sino-Tibetan, Qiangic, but tonal (unlike Ergong and Máwō above), 80,000 speakers
14 χɑ31tʃı33ʂı33 2018
Quechua [Standard]: Quechua [Standard] ✧ QUE ✧ Quechuan family, spoken by Inca Empire descendents. Natively it lacks the vowels E and O.
14 ñiqin ayamarq’a killapi 2018
Quechua [Huallaga]: Quechua [Huallaga] ✧ QUE ✧ Quechua dialect spoken in the Huánuco Province in Peru
14 nubimri 2018
Quechua [Northern/Ecuadorian]: Quechua [Northern/Ecuadorian] ✧ QUE ✧ Quechua dialect, called Kitchwa, spoken in Ecuador, Colombia, and Peru
14 ayar 2018
Quechua [Southern/Cusco]: Quechua [Southern/Cusco] ✧ QUZ ✧ Modern terminology for the Quechua dialect spoken in the Peru’s Cusco region
14 ayamarq’a 2018
Quechua [Southern/Cusco Imperial]: Quechua [Southern/Cusco Imperial] ✧ QUZ ✧ This is the traditional terminology of the Inca Empire, citing its monthly celebrations
14 aya marqa “Procession of the dead” 2018
Quileute (Quillayute): Quileute (Quillayute) ✧ QUI ✧ The last language to survive from the Chimakuan family. Natively extinct, undergoing revival at the Quileute Tribal School in La Push, Washington. One quirk of Quileute is that it prefixes words according to the physical traits of the person being spoken to — cross-eyed, hunchbacked, short, lame, etc.
14 t̕łoḳʷoʔoḳtiyat 2018

Rade: Rade ✧ RAD ✧ Austronesian, Malayo-Polynesian, Chamic, Highlands, akin to Cham (q.v.), spoken by 180,000 E-de people in southern Vietnam.
14 mlan pluh sa 2018
Rangi (Langi): Rangi (Langi) ✧ LAG ✧ Niger-Congo family, Bantu, with between 270,000 and 410,000 speakers in central Tanzania. Nouns divide into 19 classes.
14 Kʉsaano 2018
Rapa Nui (Pascuanese): Rapa Nui (Pascuanese) ✧ RAP ✧ Eastern Polynesian, Easter Island, 2700 native speakers. Major differences from other EP languages. Its native writing system, called Rongorongo, remains undeciphered.
14 vahine 2018
Rawang (Krangku): Rawang (Krangku) ✧ RAW ✧ Sino-Tibetan family, Tibeto-Burman, Nungish, 63,000 speakers in India and Northern Myanmar. Roman alphabet writing system developed by American missionary Robert Morse starting in 1950.
14 sétiq shvlá 2018
Reel (Atuot): Reel (Atuot) ✧ ATU ✧ Presumably Nilo-Saharan, related to Nuer (q.v.), spoken by some 50,000 Atuot people living near Yirol in South Sudan’s Eastern Lakes State.
14 Laal 2018
Rennell-Bellona (Rennellese): Rennell-Bellona (Rennellese) ✧ MNV ✧ Relatively obscure Polynesian language, 2000 speakers, Solomon Islands
14 Nobe’eba 2018
Rgyalrong [Northwestern]: Rgyalrong [Northwestern] ✧ JYA ✧ Sino-Tibetan. Verbs marked with directional orientation cues. Sichuan.
14 zla wa ptʃǝ ptʃǝk 2018
Rohingya: Rohingya ✧ RHG ✧ Indo-European, Indo-Iranian. Heavily persecuted, the Rohingya are toughing it out in Burma and in refugee camps in Bangladesh.
14 mak 2018
Romani [Balkan Sofia Erli]: Romani [Balkan Sofia Erli] ✧ RMN ✧ Indo-Aryan language spoken by Romani in Bulgaria. There are around 760,000 Balkan Romani speakers as a whole, of which Sofia Erli is a subdivision.
14 noemvro 2018
Romani [Balkan Ursari]: Romani [Balkan Ursari] ✧ RMN ✧ A Balkan Romani spoken in Moldavia and Romania
14 nojembrija 2018
Romani [Kale Finnish]: Romani [Kale Finnish] ✧ RMF ✧ Indo-Aryan language, by way of Scotland, spoken by the Finnish Romani
14 glattibosko čoon 2018
Romani [Kale Iberian] (Caló): Romani [Kale Iberian] (Caló) ✧ RMQ ✧ Indo-Aryan language spoken by Iberian Peninsula Romani. The characters singing the famous “Anvil Chorus” in Verdi’s opera Il trovatori would have likely represented Caló.
14 ñurdicoy 2018
Romani [Kale Welsh]: Romani [Kale Welsh] ✧ RMW ✧ Romani variety spoken in Wales until at least 1950, introduced by a group that arrived during the 15th century. The purported last native speaker was Manfri Frederick Wood (d. 1968).
14 båre-mačengero -or- båre-mačengo munþos 2018
Romanian [Old Church/Traditional]: Romanian [Old Church/Traditional] ✧ RON ✧ Indo-European, Romance. Pre-20th century.
14 brumar “Hoar-frost” 2018
Romansh [Grischun]: Romansh [Grischun] ✧ ROH ✧ Indo-European, Rhaeto-Romance. Called Rumantsch Grischun to distinguish it from Puter below.
14 november 2018
Romansh [Puter]: Romansh [Puter] ✧ ROH ✧ Romansch dialect spoken in the Engadine Valley, Switzerland.
14 november 2018
Rotokas: Rotokas ✧ ROO ✧ Spoken by ≅ 4000 in Papua New Guinea. Famous for its tiny sound inventory, its entire alphabet consists of A, E, G, I, K, O, P, R, S, T, U, and V.
14 katai tau kataipa kekira 2018
Russian [Ninilchik]: Russian [Ninilchik] ✧ ??? ✧ Seriously endangered but still spoken by descendents of 19th century Russian American Company workers in Ninilchik, Alaska. It has diverged so much from Russian that linguists consider it a separate language.
14 Nayáp 2018
Russian [Premodern]: Russian [Premodern] ✧ RUS ✧ This was Russian before it adopted neo-Latin (more accurately, Byzantine Greek) month conventions.
14 полузимник (poluzimnik) “Half-winter” 2018
Rusyn (Ruthene or Ruthenian): Rusyn (Ruthene or Ruthenian) ✧ RUE ✧ East Slavic, ≅ 60,000 current speakers. Andy Warhol and Sandra Dee were of Rusyn extraction.
14 листопадъ (listopad) “Falling leaves” 2018
Rwanda-Rundi: Rwanda-Rundi ✧ KIN/RUN ✧ Niger-Congo, Bantu. Tonal, official in Rwanda.
14 Ugushyingo 2018

Sa‘a (South Malaita or Apae‘aa): Sa‘a (South Malaita or Apae‘aa) ✧ APB ✧ Malayo-Polynesian, Southeast Solomonic, spoken by 12,000 in South Malaita, Solomon Islands.
14 oku denu “When palolo worms appear” 2018
Sabaean (Sabaic or Himyarite): Sabaean (Sabaic or Himyarite) ✧ XSA ✧ Afro-Asiatic, Old South Arabian, language of the Queen of Sheba/Saba spoken in Yemen between ca. 1000 bce and the 6th century ce. Some of its successors (Mehri, Soqotri, etc.) still flourish.
XIIII 𐩻𐩥𐩽𐩲𐩡𐩣𐩠𐩡𐩱𐩩 (ðū ‘lmhlat) MMXVIII
Salish, Coastal [Island Halkomelem]: Salish, Coastal [Island Halkomelem] ✧ HUR ✧ A language from the Salishan family spoken by ≅ 200 on the east coast of Vancouver Island
14 Tth’al’xwumutsun 2018
Salish, Coastal [Klallam]: Salish, Coastal [Klallam] ✧ CLM ✧ Salishan family, heard in the Pacific Northwest on the Northern shore of the Olympic Peninsula. It went natively extinct with the death of Hazel Sampson in 2014, though the high school in Port Angeles, WA, now offers it.
14 xʷəsəlenəxʷ -or- čən̕háʔnəŋ 2018
Salish, Coastal [North Straits]: Salish, Coastal [North Straits] ✧ STR ✧ Salishan family, Vancouver area. Six dialects, nearly extinct.
14 čən̕háʔnəŋ 2018
Salish, Coastal [North Straits Saanich]: Salish, Coastal [North Straits Saanich] ✧ STR ✧ A dialect of North Straits Salish, 5 native speakers reported. Saanich uses no rounded vowels (o, oo, ow, etc.) except in foreign loans.
14 xʷəsəlénəxʷ 2018
Salish, Coastal [Puget Sound] (Lushootseed): Salish, Coastal [Puget Sound] (Lushootseed) ✧ LUT ✧ Another Salishan language, spoken by fewer than 100. The word geoduck (elephant clam) derives from Puget Sound Salish.
14 pədƛ̕xʷayʔ 2018
Salish, Coastal [Sechelt] (Shashishalhem): Salish, Coastal [Sechelt] (Shashishalhem) ✧ SEC ✧ This Salishan family language is native to the Sechelt Peninsula area of British Columbia. Fewer than a dozen native speakers remain, all elderly, but it’s being actively taught in local schools. A Sechelt Nation Language Certificate awaits those who pass the course.
14 temkwemayits՚ a shalshal 2018
Salish, Coastal [Squamish]: Salish, Coastal [Squamish] ✧ SQU ✧ Salishan, native to Squamish, North Vancouver, and West Vancouver in British Columbia. Half a dozen native speakers remain; the language is taught at Capilano University.
14 tem eḵwáyanexw 2018
Salish, Interior [Colville-Okanagan] (Syilx): Salish, Interior [Colville-Okanagan] (Syilx) ✧ OKA ✧ Southern British Columbia and Northern Washington State. Syilx is spoken natively by ≅ 600 of whom only a quarter are “deeply fluent” and mostly over 50; it’s considered moribund.
14 kc̓ac̓ałtán 2018
Salish, Interior [Kalispel–Spokane–Flathead]: Salish, Interior [Kalispel–Spokane–Flathead] ✧ FLA/SPO ✧ Also called Montana Salish, spoken by ≅ 100 elders in the central Montana’s Flathead Nation and in the Kalispel and Spokane Reservations in Washington. Critically endangered.
14 sqʷllumt spq̓niʔ 2018
Salish, Interior [Shuswap]: Salish, Interior [Shuswap] ✧ SHS ✧ The Northernmost Interior Salishan language, spoken natively by around 200 in central and southern British Columbia. Shuswap’s stress is conveniently predictable: the vowels U and I are always stressed, the schwa never is.
14 Pellc7ell7ú7llcwten “Entering month” 2018
Sami [Inari]: Sami [Inari] ✧ SMN ✧ Finno-Ugric, 300 speakers, seriously endangered. The term “Lapp” for the Sami language group is considered derogatory and no longer used.
14 skammâmáánu 2018
Sami [Kildin]: Sami [Kildin] ✧ SJD ✧ A Sami spoken by ≅ 600 in the Lovozero area of the Kola Peninsula
14 иӈӈманну (iŋŋmannu) 2018
Sami [Lule]: Sami [Lule] ✧ SMJ ✧ Spoken by between 1000 and 2000 around the Lule River in Sweden and in Norway’s Nordland County.
14 basádismánno 2018
Sami [Northern]: Sami [Northern] ✧ SME ✧ The most widely spoken Sami, ≅ 20,000 speakers
14 skábmamánu “Polar night [sun never rises]” 2018
Sami [Skolt]: Sami [Skolt] ✧ SMS ✧ Seriously endangered, 400 speakers mostly around Sevettijärvi, Finland. Oldest writings date from 1884.
14 skamm’mannu 2018
Sami [Southern]: Sami [Southern] ✧ SMA ✧ Seriously endangered, 500 speakers in Norway’s Snåsa and Hattfjelldal districts
14 rahkan 2018
Samlandish (Old Baltic Prussian): Samlandish (Old Baltic Prussian) ✧ PRG ✧ Indo-European, Balto-Slavic (as opposed to Germanic, the other, entirely unrelated “Prussian”). Extinct by 1800, largely owing to plague epidemics and famines during the period 1709-1711.
14 Lapkrūtis 2018
Samogitian: Samogitian ✧ SGS ✧ Indo-European, Baltic, spoken in western Lithuania. A Lithuanian dialect to some, a separate language to others. Related to Curonian and Latgalian (both q.v.).
14 lapkrėtis “Falling leaves” 2018
Sango: Sango ✧ SAG ✧ Ubangian-derived creole, 3 tones, central Africa, 450,000 native speakers. Along with French, Sango is an official language of the Central African Republic.
14 tekîri 2018
Sanskrit: Sanskrit ✧ SAN ✧ One of the oldest attested Indo-European languages. Modern representatives of its sub-branch include Hindi, Bengali, Nepali, and approximately 220 others, collectively spoken by 800-900 million.
१४ एकादशमास (ekādaśamāsa) २०१८
Santali: Santali ✧ SAT ✧ Austroasiatic-Munda language spoken in Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, and Nepal. Uses Ol Chiki alphabet devised in the early 20th century.
᱑᱔  ᱱᱳᱣᱮᱢᱵᱨ  ᱒᱐᱑᱘
Saramaccan: Saramaccan ✧ SRM ✧ Portuguese/English/Dutch creole + African traits. Suriname.
14 élúfúmú líba -or- élúfúmu “Eleventh month” 2018
Sardinian [Campidanese]: Sardinian [Campidanese] ✧ SRD or SRO ✧ 500,000 speakers in Sardinia in the Cagliari metro area and elsewhere in Oristano, South Sardinia, and Nuoro. Proposed as a Sardinan language co-standard along with Logudorese.
14 mesi de santu Sadurru -or- tottussantus 2018
Sardinian [Gallurese]: Sardinian [Gallurese] ✧ SDN ✧ 100,000 speakers, Sardinia’s Gallura region and elsewhere in the northeast. It has more noticeable Spanish and Catalan influences. Many consider Gallurese to be a dialect of Corsican (q.v.).
14 Li Santi 2018
Sardinian [Logudorese]: Sardinian [Logudorese] ✧ SRD or SRC ✧ 500,000 speakers. Central-southern Sardinian Province of Sassari, northern parts of the Provinces of Nuoro and Oristano. Proposed as a Sardinan language co-standard along with Campidanese.
14 sant’Andria 2018
Sardinian [Logudorese Nuorese]: Sardinian [Logudorese Nuorese] ✧ SRD or SRC ✧ A subdialect with features found nowhere else on Sardinia including some th (IPA symbol θ) sounds and the simplification of ny (ɲ) and ly (ʎ) sounds into n and l (e.g., Sardinna instead of Sardegna).
14 sant’Andria 2018
Sardinian [Sassarese]: Sardinian [Sassarese] ✧ SDC ✧ 100,000 speakers tending toward the north of the island. Heavy Corsican (q.v.) influences.
14 sant’Andria 2018
Saxwe (Tsáphɛ): Saxwe (Tsáphɛ) ✧ SXW ✧ Niger-Congo family, Gbe group, spoken by 170,000 in Benin
14 Odasun 2018
Secoya (Pai Coca): Secoya (Pai Coca) ✧ SEY ✧ Tucanoan family, spoken by 1200 in Peru and Ecuador along the Putumayo and Vaupés Rivers. Nouns can be animate, inanimate, personal, or supernatural/spiritual. Secoya culture and language are under serious threat from the petroleum industry.
14 ënejoa 2018
Sedang: Sedang ✧ SED ✧ Austroasiatic language native to Laos & Vietnam, 100,000 speakers. Famously huge vowel inventory.
14 khế môi chat môi 2018
Seediq [Truku/Taroko]: Seediq [Truku/Taroko] ✧ TRV ✧ Formosan, Atayalic. Indigenous language from Northern Taiwan.
14 maxal kingal idas 2018
Sekani [Fraser Lake]: Sekani [Fraser Lake] ✧ SEK ✧ Athabaskan language spoken by a few dozen in British Columbia. Bitonal. The name Sekani comes from Tse’Khene meaning “people of the rock.”
14 Lhooh Ooza 2018
Sekani [McLeod Lake]: Sekani [McLeod Lake] ✧ SEK ✧ Another Sekani variant
14 Meh tun tun tsudle 2018
Selkup: Selkup ✧ SEL ✧ Uralic, Samoyedic. Yamalo-Nenets region in Siberia, 1500 speakers. Distinguishes between long and short vowels.
14 кы´ба кандак иррет (ky´ba kandak irret) “Little frost month” 2018
Serbian [Orthodox]: Serbian [Orthodox] ✧ SRP ✧ Serbian Orthodox Church tradition
14 мратињски (pratin'sky) 2018
Serbian [Premodern/Folk]: Serbian [Premodern/Folk] ✧ SRP ✧ Serbian folk tradition, pre-19th century
14 студен (studen) 2018
Sercquiais (Sarkese): Sercquiais (Sarkese) ✧ NRF ✧ Indo-European, Romance. A Norman dialect spoken by ≅ 20 on the Channel Island of Sark.
14 novãbr 2018
Seri: Seri ✧ SEI ✧ Indigenous language isolate spoken by < 1000 in Mexico. Uses nine definite articles that depend on the relative movement of the object.
14 hee yao 2018
Seychellois Creole (Seselwa): Seychellois Creole (Seselwa) ✧ CRS ✧ French-based creole of the Seychelles, around 70,000 speakers
14 novanm 2018
Shan: Shan ✧ SHN ✧ Kra–Dai language, tonal. Spoken in Burma, Thailand, and China. It has a trill [IPA r] but uses it only rarely, mostly for loans. Many speakers can’t make it and substitute an L sound.
14 nov (lungam) 2018
Shawiya Berber: Shawiya Berber ✧ SHY ✧ Afro-Asiatic, Berber, spoken in and around the Awras Mountains of eastern Algeria. Preliterate until recently.
14 wember 2018
Shawnee: Shawnee ✧ SJW ✧ An Algonquian language with fewer than 200 speakers in Oklahoma. Two genders, animate and inanimate.
14 Kini kiishthwa “Long Moon” 2018
Sherpa: Sherpa ✧ XSR ✧ Sino-Tibetan. Spoken by 150,000 in Nepal, Tibet, and Kashmir. Tonal.
14 dāwā čyučīkpā 2018
Shinasha (Borna or Boro): Shinasha (Borna or Boro) ✧ BWO ✧ Afro-Asiatic, either North or South Omotic (depending on whose paper you take to heart) dialect cluster with 37,500 speakers in Ethiopia.
14 farara 2018
Shixing: Shixing ✧ SXG ✧ A scantily documented Sino-Tibetan language of the Sichuan and the Tibet Autonomous Regions. Spoken by fewer than 2000, two thirds of whom are quite inconveniently monolingual in Shixing.
14 qε5555ɬɯ55 2018
Shona: Shona ✧ SNA ✧ Bantu language spoken by over 8 million, official in Zimbabwe
14 Mbudzi 2018
Shor: Shor ✧ CJS ✧ Turkic, 10,000 speakers in Siberia’s Kemerovo Province. Mongolian and Russian loans, preliterate until 1885.
14 ulug au 2018
Shoshone [Panamint]: Shoshone [Panamint] ✧ SHH ✧ Uto-Aztecan family, natively spoken by 1000 in Idaho, Nevada, Utah, and Wyoming. Features some whispered vowels. Lewis and Clark’s translator, Sacagawea, was Shoshone.
14 sümüttüm ma 2018
Shuar: Shuar ✧ JIV ✧ Jivaroan family, 35,000 jungle-dwelling speakers in Ecuador’s Morona-Santiago and Pastaza Provinces. Not to be confused with Shiwiar, though they’re of the same family. The Shuar used to take heads and shrink them.
14 esat 2018
Sicilian: Sicilian ✧ SCN ✧ Indo-European, Romance. Arabic and Greek influences with pre-Indo-European roots. One departure from Italian is that Sicilian uses the vowels E and O far less frequently.
14 nuvèmmuru 2018
Sikaiana: Sikaiana ✧ SKY ✧ Malayo-Polynesian, spoken by 750 on the small, isolated atol Sikaina in the Solomon Islands. Features two vowel lengths, so two words that differ only by that feature can have unrelated meanings.
14 Novepa 2018
Silesian: Silesian ✧ SZL ✧ West Slavic, spoken in Poland and the Czech Republic. Some authorities consider it a dialect of Polish, others don't. In any case about a dozen sub-dialects of Silesian are cited, one unique to Panna Maria, Texas.
14 listopad 2018
Siona (Bai Coca): Siona (Bai Coca) ✧ SNN ✧ Tucanoan family, spoken by 500 Siona people in Colombia and Ecuador along the Putumayo River. They are akin to the Secoya Pai Coca speakers (q.v.) and under similar threat.
14 ẽnejoa 2018
Slavey [South]: Slavey [South] ✧ XSL ✧ Na-Dené, Athabaskan. Slavey as a whole has 2120 speakers among the Slavey and Sahtu people in the Northwest Territories. This is the South dialect, 1000 speakers.
14 Ɂehdzo zá 2018
Slavonic [Old Church]: Slavonic [Old Church] ✧ CHU ✧ Indo-European, Slavic, dating from the 9th century. The original model for the Cyrillic alphabet, it called itself словѣ́ньскъ ѩꙁꙑ́къ (slověnĭskŭ językŭ).
XIIII nov (noyębr) MMXVIII
Slavonic [New Church]: Slavonic [New Church] ✧ CHU ✧ The current liturgical language used in conservative Slavic European Orthodox churches as well as the American Carpatho-Russian Orthodox Diocese. Descended from Old Church Slavonic (below).
14 ное́мврїй (noémvryi) 2018
Slovene [Standard Premodern]: Slovene [Standard Premodern] ✧ SLV ✧ Indo-European, South Slavic, standardized from various dialects during the 18th century. Unlike other Slavics, Slovene offers three numbers — singular, dual, and plural. Not to be confused with Slovak, which is WEST Slavic and close to Czech (q.v.).
14 listopad “Falling leaves” 2018
Slovene [Prekmurian Premodern]: Slovene [Prekmurian Premodern] ✧ SLV ✧ Prekmurian is a Slovene dialect spoken in northeastern Slovenia and western Hungary. It’s sufficiently divergent both culturally and linguistically that many consider it a separate language.
14 andrejšček 2018
Somali: Somali ✧ SOM ✧ Afro-Asiatic family, Cushitic. Employs vowel harmony and three tones, spoken in the horn of Africa and in diaspora communities by 15 million.
14 bisha kow iyo tobnaad -or- asli -or- balqaad 2018
Sorbian (Lusatian or Wendish) [Lower]: Sorbian (Lusatian or Wendish) [Lower] ✧ WEN ✧ Indo-European, West Slavic, spoken by 10,000 in lower Saxony (Brandenburg)
14 młośny 2018
Sorbian (Lusatian or Wendish) [Upper]: Sorbian (Lusatian or Wendish) [Upper] ✧ WEN ✧ Indo-European, West Slavic, spoken by 40,000 in upper Saxony
14 nazymnik 2018
Sotho (Sesotho): Sotho (Sesotho) ✧ SOT ✧ Niger-Congo, Southern Bantu, spoken in Lesotho (where it’s the official language) and South Africa. It’s tonal, and its novel sound inventory includes ejectives, clicks, and a uvular trill.
14 Pulungoana 2018
Sotho [Northern] (Pedi): Sotho [Northern] (Pedi) ✧ SOT ✧ Another dialect of Sotho, South Africa.
14 Dibatsela 2018
Southern Min (Minnan): Southern Min (Minnan) ✧ NAN ✧ Sino-Tibetan, spoken in China’s Fujian province
14 十一月 cha̍p-it-go̍eh 2018
Standard Moroccan Berber (Tamazight): Standard Moroccan Berber (Tamazight) ✧ ZGH ✧ Afro-Asiatic, Berber. This language was standardized in 2011 through amendments to the Moroccan Constitution.
14 ⵏⵓⵡⴰⵏⴱⵉⵔ (nuwanbir) 2018
Sudovian (Yotvingian): Sudovian (Yotvingian) ✧ XSV ✧ Indo-European, Baltic, unfortunately extinct by 1600. It was mutually intelligible with Samlandish (q.v.).
14 lapkrūtis -or- nuvemberis 2018
Sumo [Northern, Mayangna]: Sumo [Northern, Mayangna] ✧ SUM ✧ Like Miskito (q.v.), from the small Misumalpan family. There are ≅ 9000 speakers of Sumo languages in the Huaspuc River area in Nicaragua and Hoinduras; shown here is the Mayangna dialect.
14 sann balh wainku 2018
Sumo [Northern, Tawakha] : Sumo [Northern, Tawakha] ✧ YAN ✧ Misumalpan family, Sumo group. Tawakha and Miskito (q.v.) are closely related and many Tawakha in the area (at the mouth of the river Wampú on the Atlantic side of Honduras) are trilingual between Tawakha, Miskito, and Spanish.
14 nawah waiku 2018
Sumo [Southern, Ulwa]: Sumo [Southern, Ulwa] ✧ ULW ✧ Misumalpan family, Sumo group, Southern. About 400 speakers in eastern Nicaragua.
14 sau tunak pas waikaku 2018
Svan: Svan ✧ SVA ✧ Kartvelian family (Like Georgian, Mingrelian, and Laz), spoken in the Svaneti region of Georgia by around 30,000, who call it lushnu nin. It has no written standard.
იდ გაორგ̄ობ (gaorḡob) ციჱ
Swazi: Swazi ✧ SSW ✧ Niger-Congo, Bantu. Swaziland (official), Lesotho, Mozambique, and South Africa.
14 Lidvuba 2018
Swedish [Traditional/Folk]: Swedish [Traditional/Folk] ✧ SWE ✧ North Germanic, descended from Old Norse. This is the premodern terminology.
14 vintermånad 2018
Syriac Aramaic: Syriac Aramaic ✧ SYC ✧ Northwest Semitic, spoken by Syrian Christians in Turkey, Iraq, and Syria. Its script shares its ancestry with the Arabic and maps to it almost one-to-one; the style shown here is called Serṭā.
410 nov (tishrin khārayā)  8102000

Tabasaran: Tabasaran ✧ TAB ✧ Northeast Caucasian language notable for its vast noun case inventory. Natively it lacks the vowel O; the palochka character (Ӏ) makes preceding consonant an ejective.
14 жябагъ (žæbaʕ) 2018
Tacana: Tacana ✧ TNA ✧ Western Tacanan family, 1800 speakers along the Beni & Madre de Dios rivers in Bolivia
14 badhi tunka piadha 2018
Tachelhit (Shilha or Sussian): Tachelhit (Shilha or Sussian) ✧ SHI ✧ Afro-Asiatic, Berber, Southern Morocco. Writings date from 16th century ce.
14 nov (nuwambir) 2018
Tagalog [Pre-colonial]: Tagalog [Pre-colonial] ✧ TGL ✧ Malayo-Polynesian, Central Philippine, spoken by ≅ 70 million (28 million fluently). This endemic terminology derives from the first Tagalog dictionary, published by Franciscan priest Pedro de San Buenaventura in 1613.
14 buang ikalabing isa sa lakad nang taon 2018
Taita (Daw'ida): Taita (Daw'ida) ✧ DAV ✧ Niger-Congo family, Bantu. 400,000 speakers in Kenya’s Taita Hills.
14 Mori ghwa ikumi na imweri 2018
Taki Taki (Sranan Tongo): Taki Taki (Sranan Tongo) ✧ SRN ✧ An English/Dutch/Portuguese/West African Creole spoken in Suriname. The second verse of Suriname’s national anthem is sung in Taki Taki.
14 November -or- Erfumun 2018
Talinga (Lubwisi): Talinga (Lubwisi) ✧ TLJ ✧ Niger-Congo family, Bantu, 99,000 speakers in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (where they call it Talinga) and Uganda (where they call it Lubwisi)
14 Kwekumi Na-kumui 2018
Tamahaq: Tamahaq ✧ THV ✧ Afro-Asiatic, Berber, Northern Tuareg language spoken in Algeria, western Libya, and Northern Niger. Three dialects, 77,000 speakers.
14 wanber 2018
Tamil: Tamil ✧ TAM ✧ Dravidian family, India. Split off from Malayalam 9th century ce. Pronouns offer several levels of politeness.
௰௪ நவம்பர் (navampar) ௲௲௰௮
Tanacross: Tanacross ✧ TCB ✧ Athabaskan language with ≅ 30 speakers (middle Tanana River, Alaska)
14 demee s̱ǎa’ “Sheep month” 2018
Tasawaq (Ingelshi): Tasawaq (Ingelshi) ✧ TWQ ✧ Tentatively assigned to Nilo-Saharan, Songhay, though heavily influenced by Berber languages. 8000 speakers, Niger.
14 noowanbur 2018
Tatar [Kazan]: Tatar [Kazan] ✧ TAT ✧ Turkic, spoken in Tatarstan. Has used Arabic, Roman, & Cyrillic alphabets.
14 nöyäber 2018
Telugu: Telugu ✧ TEL ✧ Dravidian family, Andhra Pradesh, India. Oldest text, 575 ce.
౧౪ నవంబర్ ౨౦౧౮
Temne: Temne ✧ TEM ✧ Bantu language spoken in Sierra Leone, 4 tones.
14 Taró̱kane̱ 2018
Teso (Ateso): Teso (Ateso) ✧ TEO ✧ Nilo-Saharan language spoken in Kenya, Uganda
14 Olabor 2018
Tetum (Tetun): Tetum (Tetun) ✧ TET ✧ Malayo-Polynesian language with Portuguese influences, East Timor.
14 novembru 2018
Thadou: Thadou ✧ TCZ ✧ An endangered Sino-Tibetan language spoken by 230,000 in Manipur and Assam in northeast India and in Myanmar. There are about a dozen mutually intelligible dialects.
14 pallha 2018
Thai: Thai ✧ THA ✧ Now assigned to the Kra–Dai family, previously considered Sino-Tibetan. Five speech registers: Street, Formal, Rhetorical, Religious, Royal. Through Buddhism, Thai inherited lots of Indo-European Sanskrit and Pali. Its script is an abugida, i.e., halfway between an alphabet and a syllabary.
๑๔ พฤศจิกายน (phrɯ́tsacìkaayon) “scorpion” ๒๐๑๘
Tibetan [Standard or Lhasa]: Tibetan [Standard or Lhasa] ✧ BOD ✧ Sino-Tibetan, bitonal, three speech registers: Phal-skad (informal), Zhe-sa (polite/respectful), Chos-skad (religious, as it appears in scriptures).
༡༤ ta13wa13tɕuk55tɕiʔ53pa53 ༢༠༡༨
Tibetan [Dégé]: Tibetan [Dégé] ✧ BOD ✧ The Tibetan dialect spoken in China’s Sichuan Province
༡༤ a13wa53tɕuʔ53či53 ༢༠༡༨
Tibetan [Written]: Tibetan [Written] ✧ BOD ✧ Written Tibetan quite famously diverges from its spoken form. Writing conventions had fossilized while the speech evolved over many centuries, such that the oral version of a word can be entirely different from the written.
༡༤ zla ba btɕu gtɕig pa ༢༠༡༨
Ticuna: Ticuna ✧ TCA ✧ Possibly a language isolate, spoken by 50,000 in Brazil, Peru, and Colombia. Six vowels (A, E, I, O, U and Ü), nine tones, glottal stops indicated by X.
14 naxchi̱xichigaarü tauemacü 2018
Tigrinya: Tigrinya ✧ TIR ✧ Afro-Asiatic, South Semitic. Ethiopia & Eritrea, 9 million speakers. Like English and unlike many of its close relatives, Tigrinya uses phrasal verbs.
14 nov (hedar) 2018
Tiwa [Southern]: Tiwa [Southern] ✧ TIX ✧ A language from the Tanoan family spoken by 1600 at Isleta Pueblo and Sandia Pueblo, New Mexico; and Ysleta del Sur Pueblo (adjacent to El Paso), Texas. Its sound inventory is relatively large: 26 consonants and six vowels with contrastive nasal versions.
14 Paya Pa 2018
Tlingit: Tlingit ✧ TLI ✧ Na-Dené family, USA Pacific northwest, nearly extinct
14 Kukahaa Dís 2018
Tocharian B (Kuchean): Tocharian B (Kuchean) ✧ TXB ✧ Tocharian was an early branch of Indo-European, extinct since the ninth century. Tocharian A and B scripts have been unearthed in Xinjiang, northwest China. Tocharian B reckoned the months as ordinals — first through twelfth; so aside from some idiomatic exceptions, that’s what you see here.
XIIII wärsaññe meñe MMXVIII
Tofalar (Karagas): Tofalar (Karagas) ✧ KIM ✧ A moribund, mildly tonal Turkic language closely related to Tuvan (q.v.) with ≅ 90 speakers in the Irkutsk region. Uses a modified Cyrillic alphabet of 42 characters.
14 алдылаар ай (аldɨlār ay) 2018
Tokelauan [Traditional]: Tokelauan [Traditional] ✧ TKL ✧ Malayo-Polynesian, ≅ 4300 speakers in American Samoa (on Tokelau and Swains Island) and New Zealand. Tokelauan and Tuvaluan are mutually intelligible.
14 Oloāmanu 2018
Tolowa (Siletz Dee-ni): Tolowa (Siletz Dee-ni) ✧ TOL ✧ Na-Dené, Pacific Coast Athabaskan, nominally extinct. Linguist Loren Bommelyn teaches Tolowa in Crescent City, CA. Tolowa features ejectives, contrastive vowel length and nasality.
14 Nee-san-lha’-ch’aa-ta num-nii-man’s 2018
Tongan: Tongan ✧ TON ✧ Malayo-Polynesian. Only one vowel per syllable, no blended consonants.
14 Novema 2018
Trique [Copala]: Trique [Copala] ✧ TRC ✧ Oto-Manguean family, Mixtecan branch, spoken by ethnic Trique in San Juan Copala, Oaxaca, Mexico and migrants in San Quintín valley, Baja California. There are 26,000 speakers of Trique in general, 15,000 of the Copala dialect.
14 yavii xnangá 2018
Trique [Chicahuaxtla]: Trique [Chicahuaxtla] ✧ TRC ✧ Dialect of Trique heard in San Andrés Chicahuaxtla, Oaxaca, Mexico. 6000 speakers.
14 nure sántúu 2018
Tsafiki (Tsachila or Colorado): Tsafiki (Tsachila or Colorado) ✧ COF ✧ Barbacoan family, spoken by 2300 ethnic Tsachilas in Ecuador. Natively Tsafiki only had concise terms for the numbers 1 through 5; for higher numbers it has since borrowed from Spanish.
14 sino sun pe 2018
Tsez (Dido): Tsez (Dido) ✧ DDO ✧ Northeast Caucasian, endangered, 15,000 speakers in Southern Dagestan. Heavy influences from Russian, Avar, Arabic, Georgian, and Turkic languages. Rich consonant inventory but lacks an F sound.
14 нойабер (noyaber) 2018
Tshangla (Sharchop): Tshangla (Sharchop) ✧ TSJ ✧ Sino-Tibetan, Bodish, spoken by 170,000 in Bhutan’s Trashigang district, Tibet, and Arunachal Pradesh in India. Tshangla derives much of its vocabulary from Classical Tibetan and the two evolved from a common ancestor.
14 dawa tɕuktɕi pa 2018
Tsimshian [Coast]: Tsimshian [Coast] ✧ TSI ✧ Indigenous language spoken by around 240 in British Columbia and Alaska. Possibly an isolate.
14 Ha’lila᾿x sits’a᾿’a᾿x “Time to dig clams” 2018
Tsonga: Tsonga ✧ TSO ✧ Niger-Congo family, Bantu. Uses whistling sounds and a single click.
14 Hukuri 2018
Tswana (Setswana): Tswana (Setswana) ✧ TSN ✧ Niger-Congo family, Bantu; official in Botswana, Zimbabwe, and South Africa. In a manner similar to Gourmantché (q.v.), Tswana nouns divide into classes (nine in this case) and each noun takes a prefix corresponding to that class, providing a clue to its meaning.
14 Ngwanatsele 2018
Tuareg [Tamasheq]: Tuareg [Tamasheq] ✧ TAQ ✧ Afro-Asiatic, Berber. Complex “avoidance” behavior in communication.
14 nov (wanber) 2018
Tujia [Southern]: Tujia [Southern] ✧ TJS ✧ Sino-Tibetan, but unclassified within that family due to its extensive borrowing from neighboring languages. Tonal, spoken by 70,000 in China’s northwestern Hunan Province.
14 tõ³³ jye²¹ 2018
Tumbuka: Tumbuka ✧ TUM ✧ Niger-Congo, Bantu. Speakers in Malawi, Zambia, & Tanzania.
14 Novembala 2018
Turkish [Standard]: Turkish [Standard] ✧ TUR ✧ Altaic family, earliest Old Turkic inscriptions found in Mongolia
14 kasım -or- koç ayı 2018
Turkish [Meskhetian]: Turkish [Meskhetian] ✧ TUR ✧ Dialect spoken by Meskheti disapora throughout Russia
14 коч айы (koč ayə) 2018
Turkish [Ottoman]: Turkish [Ottoman] ✧ TUR ✧ Turkish of the Ottoman Empire before 20th century reforms
14 тәшрини-сәни 2018
Turkmen 1 [Pre-Niyazov]: Turkmen 1 [Pre-Niyazov] ✧ TUK ✧ Altaic family, Turkic. Largely intelligible with Azeri and Turkish, 9 million speakers.
14 noýabr 2018
Turkmen 2 [Post-Niyazov]: Turkmen 2 [Post-Niyazov] ✧ TUK ✧ As decreed by dictator Saparmurat Niyazov (1940-2006)
14 Sanjar {Last Seljuk Empire leader, Turkmen hero} 2018
Turkmen 3 [Post-Post-Niyazov]: Turkmen 3 [Post-Post-Niyazov] ✧ TUK ✧ Back by popular demand!
14 noýabr 2018
Tuscarora: Tuscarora ✧ TUS ✧ There were only 3 reported speakers of this Northern Iroquoian language in 2007, so it may well be extinct or nearly so. Nominally its range is the Six Nations Reserve in Southern Ontario and the Lewiston Tuscarora (“hemp people”) reserve in New York State.
14 kuhserhęháh 2018
Tutchone [Northern]: Tutchone [Northern] ✧ TTM ✧ Na-Dené family, North Athabascan, about 350 native speakers of Tutchone as a whole. This subgroup: Yukon communities of Mayo, Pelly and Stewart Crossing, Carmacks, and Beaver Creek.
14 Män cho tadétän “Larger lakes freezing up month” 2018
Tutchone [Southern, Aishihik]: Tutchone [Southern, Aishihik] ✧ TCE ✧ Southern Aishihik Tutchone is spoken in the Yukon communities of Aishihik, Burwash Landing, Champagne, Haines Junction, Kloo Lake, Klukshu, Lake Laberge, and Whitehorse.
14 Näntän shäw nzhā “Everything is frozen” 2018
Tuvan: Tuvan ✧ TYV ✧ A Turkic language with Mongolian loans spoken in the Russian Republic of Tuva in southern Siberia. Nobel laureate Richard Feynman popularized Tuva and its language among western readers in his posthumously published book Tuva or Bust.
14 он бир ай (on bir ay) 2018
Tyap (Katab): Tyap (Katab) ✧ KCG ✧ Niger-Congo, West Plateau. 200,000 speakers, Nigeria.
14 Zwat Mangjuwang 2018
Tzotzil: Tzotzil ✧ TZO ✧ Mayan family, Cholan-Tzeltalan branch, spoken by 400,000 in Chiapas, Mexico
14 nodyembre 2018

Uab Meto: Uab Meto ✧ AOZ ✧ Malayo-Polynesian family, unusual gender distinctions, spoken by 800,000 Atoni people in Indonesian West Timor
14 fun-boes-am-mese’ 2018
Ubykh: Ubykh ✧ UBY ✧ Extinct Northwest Caucasian language notable for its staggering consonant inventory and richness in idioms. Its last native speaker was Circassian exile Tevfik Esenç (1904-1992).
14 [November unknown] 2018
Udmurt (Votyak): Udmurt (Votyak) ✧ UDM ✧ Uralic family, related to Komi (q.v.). 500,000 speakers in the central Urals. Natively lacks an F sound, which it uses only for names and Russian loans.
14 шуркынмон (šurkynmon) 2018
Ukrainian: Ukrainian ✧ UKR ✧ Indo-European, East Slavic, Polish affinities. Unlike Russian, it employs the characters Ґ, Є, І, and Ї but not Ы or Ъ.
14 листопад (lystopad) “Leaves fall” 2018
Ukrainian [Premodern]: Ukrainian [Premodern] ✧ UKR ✧ Older Ukrainian
14 грудкотрус (grudkotrus) “Chestnuts” -or- листопадець (lystopadets’) 2018
Unami [Lenape]: Unami [Lenape] ✧ UNM ✧ Nominally extinct Algonquian language of the New Jersey area Lenape people
14 Wini Kishux “Snow Month” 2018
Upper Chinook [Clackamas]: Upper Chinook [Clackamas] ✧ WAC ✧ From the Chinookan family of northwestern Oregon. Upper Chinook went extinct with the death of its last fluent speaker Gladys Thompson in 2012. There were about half a dozen dialects; this one was spoken along the Clackamas and Sandy Rivers.
14 wakma’lalidix 2018
Upper Kuskokwim: Upper Kuskokwim ✧ KUU ✧ Athabaskan, only 40 speakers (Alaska). Features a voiceless N sound.
14 minich’i’unadlea’e 2018
Upper Tanana [Tetlin]: Upper Tanana [Tetlin] ✧ TAU ✧ Athabaskan, related to Tanacross (q.v.), fewer than 100 speakers. Tetlin, Alaska.
14 Dibee Saa 2018
Urhobo: Urhobo ✧ URH ✧ Niger-Congo, Edoid, spoken by a half million living near the Niger River or in boats on it. They worship ancestors and also the water spirit Ohworhu.
14 úshọvó 2018
Uyghur: Uyghur ✧ UIG ✧ Turkic, loans from Persian, Russian, Chinese. Spoken in China’s Xinjiang region.
14 on birinchi ay 2018

Võro: Võro ✧ VRO ✧ Finno-Ugric, related to Veps (q.v.), seriously endangered
14 märtekuu 2018
Võro [Seto]: Võro [Seto] ✧ VRO ✧ A Võro or Estonian dialect, depending on whom you ask, spoken by 12,500 in Setomaa (Estonia/Russia). Germanic influences.
14 november -or- märdikuu 2018
Vai: Vai ✧ VAI ✧ Niger-Congo family, Mande. Tonal, 75,000 speakers, Liberia. Its syllabary writing system was invented by Momolu Duwalu Bukele during the early 19th century.
14 ꔞꘋꕔꕿ ꕸꖃꗏ (kenpkato ɓololɔ) 2018
Venda: Venda ✧ VEN ✧ Niger-Congo family, Bantu branch. 800,000 speakers in Southern Africa
14 l̥ara 2018
Venetian: Venetian ✧ VEC ✧ Spoken in and around Venice and also in Brazil’s Rio Grande do Sul and the Mexican city of Chipilo. Has un-Italian sounds ç (like Greek θ) and, as also in Polish, ł (like English w).
14 novenbre 2018
Veps: Veps ✧ VEP ✧ Finno-Ugric, ≅ 6300 speakers mostly near the Gulf of Finland. It has 23 noun cases, the most of any Finnic language.
14 kül’mku 2018
Vietnamese (Annamese): Vietnamese (Annamese) ✧ VIE ✧ Austroasiatic family, at one time written with Chinese-derived script called Chữ nôm. Five tones, shown by diacritics (example: á, à, ã, ả, and ạ), plus neutral.
14 tháng mười một 2018
Vosgien [La Bresse]: Vosgien [La Bresse] ✧ ??? ✧ Romance, Langue d’oïl, Lorraine subgroup. Vosgien dialects were spoken in France in Vosges, St. Quirin, eastern Badonviller, and two Alsace Departments. Extinct, though much of its unique vocabulary lives on.
14 novembre 2018
Vosgien [La Haye]: Vosgien [La Haye] ✧ ??? ✧ Another Vosgien dialect
14 novamb 2018
Vosgien [Ville sur Illon]: Vosgien [Ville sur Illon] ✧ ??? ✧ And yet another
14 novamp 2018
Votic (Votian or Vote): Votic (Votian or Vote) ✧ VOT ✧ Uralic, Finnic, < 20 speakers in two villiages near Narva, Estonia. Like other Finnic languages it uses vowel harmony, where “back” vowels and “front” vowels cannot coexist within the same word.
14 nojaabri 2018

Wa [Parauk]: Wa [Parauk] ✧ PRK ✧ Austroasiatic, Mon-Khmer, spoken by 820,000 hilltop-dwelling ethnic Wa in Thailand, Myanmar, southern China. Wa’s scripts have long been in a state of flux; shown here is Parauk Wa’s Yaong Soi dialect, expressed in IPA.
14 kʰiʔ kau tiʔ 2018
Wallisian (East Uvean): Wallisian (East Uvean) ✧ WLS ✧ Polynesian, spoken by around 10,000 on Wallis Island of Wallis and Futuna. Related to Rennellese and Tongan (q.v.).
14 novepeli 2018
Walloon: Walloon ✧ WLN ✧ Indo-European, Romance, Langue d’oïl whose writings date back to 1500s. Despite its traditional label as a dialect, Walloon and French show little mutual intelligibility.
14 nôvimbe 2018
Waorani (Sabela or Auishiri): Waorani (Sabela or Auishiri) ✧ AUC ✧ A language isolate spoken by 2000 mostly Huaorani natives in Ecuador’s Napo, Orellana and Pastaza Provinces plus possibly some “uncontacted” people nearby
14 bodetede 2018
Warao: Warao ✧ WBA ✧ This is an endangered language isolate spoken by 32,000 on Trinidad and along the northeast coast of South America in a thin strip ranging over Guyana, Suriname, and Venezuela. The 2015 Venezuelan film Gone with the River is in Warao.
14 waniku mojoreko arai jisaka 2018
Waray-Waray [Premodern]: Waray-Waray [Premodern] ✧ WAR ✧ Malayo-Polynesian, Central Visayan. Philippines.
14 nov (panlinti) 2018
Wayuu (Goajiro): Wayuu (Goajiro) ✧ GUC ✧ Arawakan family, Northern, spoken by 305,000 in northwestern Venezuela and northeastern Colombia. Vowels can be short or long (a => aa, etc.), as can the consonants m, n, and t.
14 nouyempüre 2018
Welsh (Cymric): Welsh (Cymric) ✧ CYM ✧ Indo-European, Celtic, Brythonic. Many speakers not named Jones.
14 Tachwedd 2018
Winnebago (Ho-Chunk): Winnebago (Ho-Chunk) ✧ WIN ✧ Siouan family, native to an area stretching from the Lake Michigan’s southwestern shore to east central Minnesota. As in some European languages like Polish and Lithuanian, nasalized vowels are contrastive and marked with ogoneks (a/ą, i/į, u/ų).
14 Caa hikiruxe wiira 2018
Woleaian: Woleaian ✧ WLE ✧ A Malayo-Polynesian language spoken by 1700 in the Federated States of Micronesia, principally on the Woleai atoll. While the language uses foreign loans, Woleaians are otherwise serious about preserving their culture and enforce strict rules against wearing western clothing.
14 gaseigeli-me-seewali merame 2018
Wolof: Wolof ✧ WOL ✧ Niger-Congo language. Senegal, Gambia, Mauritania. The terms “okay” and “hep cat” may possibly have come from Wolof.
14 diggy 2018
Wymysorys (Wilamowicean/Vilamovian): Wymysorys (Wilamowicean/Vilamovian) ✧ WYM ✧ Germanic language with a few dozen mostly elderly speakers in Wilamowice, Poland. A graduate student at the University of Warsaw named Tymoteusz Król works to revive and promote the language.
14 november 2018

Xhosa: Xhosa ✧ XHO ✧ Niger-Congo, many unusual consonants including 15 clicks
14 eyeNkanga 2018
Xincan [Jutiapa]: Xincan [Jutiapa] ✧ XIN ✧ From a family of moribund/extinct language isolates, spoken by a handfull in Guatamala though no longer fluently. Lots of Mayan loans.
14 pakincal ʔawa 2018

Yakut (Sakha): Yakut (Sakha) ✧ SAH ✧ Northern Turkic, grammatically genderless, spoken by 450,000 in the Sakha Republic in Northern Siberia
14 сэтинньи (setinnyi) 2018
Yanesha’ (Amuesha): Yanesha’ (Amuesha) ✧ AME ✧ Arawakan family. Spoken by ≅ 7000 Yanesha’ in the Peruvian Amazon. Vowels are A, E, and O, each of which can be long, short, or glottalized. (U only occurs with QU, a Spanish holdover convention to signal a K sound.)
14 huerequëm̃ 2018
Yangben (Central Yambasa): Yangben (Central Yambasa) ✧ YAV ✧ Niger-Congo family, Southern Bantoid, spoken by 17,000 in Cameroon
14 makandikɛ 2018
Yaqui (Hiaki): Yaqui (Hiaki) ✧ YAQ ✧ Uto-Aztecan family, 17,500 speakers in Sonora, Mexico; another 430 in Arizona. Seven noun cases. Special feature: a word with an L can be pronounced instead with an R to indicate a speaker’s disapproval.
14 wojmamsenumet 2018
Yi (Nuosu): Yi (Nuosu) ✧ III ✧ Tibeto-Burman language spoken by ethnic Yi in China and southeast Asia
14 nov (cixzyma) 2018
Yi (Nuosu) [Northern Shengza, Xide]: Yi (Nuosu) [Northern Shengza, Xide] ✧ III ✧ A dialect of Yi spoken by the Shuitian people of Sichuan’s Liangshan Prefecture
14 l̩(u)³³ ɬɯ²¹ “Dragon month” 2018
Yiddish (Judaeo-German): Yiddish (Judaeo-German) ✧ YID ✧ Arose from Old High German (q.v.) during the ninth century. It uses Hebrew script adapted to indicate vowels explicitly. There are currently ≅ 3 million speakers worldwide.
14 נאוועמבער (november) 2018
Yoruba: Yoruba ✧ YOR ✧ Niger-Congo family, spoken in Nigeria and Benin. Heavy Arabic influences.
14 Oṣù Bélú -or- Kọkànlá Oṣù 2018
Yuchi: Yuchi ✧ YUC ✧ Native American language of unknown ancestry, virtually extinct, Oklahoma
14 [November unknown] 2018
Yukaghir [Tundra]: Yukaghir [Tundra] ✧ YKG ✧ A moribund two-language family, spoken by a few dozen in the Russian Far East
14 χand’eme niŋin χačil 2018
Yupik [Pacific Gulf]: Yupik [Pacific Gulf] ✧ YPK ✧ Eskimo-Aleut family, 2 dialects, ≅ 500-1000 speakers
14 Quyawim Iralua 2018
Yupik [St Lawrence]: Yupik [St Lawrence] ✧ YPK ✧ Eskimo-Aleut family, Bering Strait area, < 300 speakers
14 Aqumuq 2018
Yupi’k [Chevak Cup’ik]: Yupi’k [Chevak Cup’ik] ✧ YPK ✧ Seriously endangered Yupi’k (q.v.) sub-dialect. Hooper Bay, Alaska.
14 Kanruyauciq 2018
Yupi’k [Mid-Alaskan]: Yupi’k [Mid-Alaskan] ✧ YPK ✧ Eskimo-Aleut family, ≅ 13,000 speakers
14 Cauyarvik 2018

Zarma (Dyerma): Zarma (Dyerma) ✧ DJE ✧ Nilo-Saharan family, Songhay group. Spoken in southwest Niger.
14 fulanzam 2018
Zaza (Zazaki or Dimli): Zaza (Zazaki or Dimli) ✧ ZZA ✧ Indo-European, Indo-Iranian. 2,000,000 speakers, mostly in Turkey.
14 paiza peyêne -or- teşrine 2018
Zhuang: Zhuang ✧ ZHA ✧ Kra–Dai family, 6 tones, spoken in China’s Guangxi region
14 nin cwbx wtj 2018
Zou (Zo) [India]: Zou (Zo) [India] ✧ ZOM ✧ Sino-Tibetan, Kuki-Chin, spoken by 82,000 in Myanmar, India, and by the Bom people in Bangladesh. This is the particular Zou spoken in India.
14 káupí hà 2018
Zou (Zomi) [Chin Hills]: Zou (Zomi) [Chin Hills] ✧ ZOM ✧ This is the Zou spoken in those areas other than India.
14 káupí hlà 2018
Zulu: Zulu ✧ ZUL ✧ Bantu language widely spoken in Southern Africa. Uses clicks.
14 uLwezi 2018
Zuni: Zuni ✧ ZUN ✧ An isolate spoken by 9500 in New Mexico. Strangely, there may be a 13th-century Japanese connection.
14 yachun kwa’shi’amme 2018

Illustration: The Très Riches Heures du Duc de Berry, mid-15th century French Gothic illuminations produced in the Low Countries. Months captioned in two common vernaculars of that time and place, Medieval Picard and Old Dutch.

Notes

1. They didn't, though, not to mention the fact Pope Gregory wouldn’t enter the picture for several more centuries. Etruscans marked dates pretty much like the Romans did; i.e., so many days leading up to the nones or ides, or preceding the start of the next month. The very word “ides,” as a matter of fact, likely derives from an Etruscan term for “divide.”

2. In some cases, especially with indigenous languages, the month-by-month correspondence between their systems and the modern Gregorian one was less than clear but at least informally accepted according to listings I’ve used as sources. Of course those of many cultures bear no such correspondence so you won’t see their languages displayed here.

3. Our source for the Gaulish system is the Coligny calendar dating from the 2nd century ce, discovered in France in 1897.


current moon phase
↑ التربيع الأول
Special thanks:

Douglas Q. Adams (Tocharian B)
Lorraine Allen and John Ritter (Tutchone varieties)
Ansuharijaz (Frankish and Proto-Germanic reconstructions)
Mira Bergelson, Andrej A. Kibrik, Wayne Leman, and Marina Raskladkina (Ninilchik Russian)
William Bright and Susan Gehr (Karuk)
Can Dai Quang (Cham)
Bernard Comrie of UC Santa Barbara and Timur Maisak (Bagvalal)
Eliza Jones, James Kari, Mildred Buck, plus others of the Alaska Native Language Center
Lin Ying-Chin, Institute of Linguistics, Academia Sinica, Taipei (Tibetan, Pumi, Qiangic languages)
Patsou’s Des Mots et des Langues
Peace Corps language handbooks
Le Projet Babel (Vosgien)
Paul Lewis (Akha)
Ma Seng Mai of Payap University (Wa)
Qinglian Zhao (Naxi)
Antoninu Rubattu (Sardinian)
Apay Tang (Truku dialect of Seediq)
Tomedes — Smart Human Translation (Homshetsi)
Suzanne Weryackwe of Arizona State University (Havasupai-Hualapai)
… and literally hundreds of other sources



Name


Your email address


Subject





Message: