Who are the Maithili
What languages are spoken in Nepal?
According to the 2011 census of Nepal, 123 languages are spoken as the first language in the country. Nepalese is the nation's official language. Nepali and Maithili are considered to be the most widely and second most widely spoken languages in the country.
The official language of Nepal
Nepali, formerly known as Parbate Bhasa or Gorkhali, is the official language of Nepal. This language is also spoken in parts of northern India. It is the official language of the Indian state of Sikkim. It is also an official language of Darjeeling, a district in West Bengal, India. The Nepalese language thus functions as the lingua franca of India and Nepal. The Nepalese language belongs to the Indo-Aryan language family, but is significantly influenced by the Sino-Tibetan languages.
The regional languages of Nepal
Indo-Aryan languages spoken in Nepal
Nepalese: Although the number of Indo-Aryan languages spoken in Nepal is much lower than the Sino-Tibetan languages spoken in the country, a much larger population (79%) speak Nepal's languages belonging to the first group than those of the latter group (18%). The fact that the Nepalese language, the most widely spoken language in Nepal, belongs to the Indo-Aryan language family is responsible for the higher proportion of speakers of the Indo-Aryan language group in Nepal.
Maithili: Unlike Nepali, Maithili is another popular language of the Indo-Aryan family spoken in Nepal. It is the second most widely spoken language in Nepal. According to the 2011 census, 11.57% of the Nepalese population speak Maithili. The language is spoken in some districts in the Terai region of Nepal.
Sino-Tibetan languages spoken in Nepal
As mentioned earlier, 123 languages are native to Nepal. Three quarters of these languages belong to the Sino-Tibetan language family. Some examples are:
Nepal Bhasa: Also known as Newari, this language is spoken by the Newar people from Nepal Mandala. Although some people think it is the same as Nepali, the language of the majority in Nepal, Nepal Bhasa is in fact very different from Nepali. The language once served as the administrative language of the country, but since the 10th century the language has declined in importance and today UNESCO considers it a "definitely endangered" language.
Limbu: The Limbu language is spoken by the tribes and clans that live in eastern Nepal. These people belong to the Kirati group and are of Tibetan origin. 487,300 people in Nepal speak this language.
Other Sino-Tibetan languages spoken in Nepal are Magar, Tamang, Rai languages, and Sunuwar languages.
Dravidian languages spoken in Nepal
Kurukh: The Kurukh language is spoken in parts of India, Bangladesh, Nepal and Bhutan. In Nepal, the language is spoken by 28,600 people where a dialect called Dhangar is spoken. The language is classified as "vulnerable" by UNESCO.
Austro-Asian languages spoken in Nepal
Santali: This Austro-Asian language of the Munda subfamily is spoken by approximately 6.2 million people in parts of India, Nepal, Bhutan and Bangladesh.
Mundari: It is also a Munda language spoken in India, Nepal, and Bangladesh.
What languages are spoken in Nepal?
|2||Regional languages||Limbu • Maithili • Newar • Angika • Tharu • Gurung • Tamang • Magar • Sherpa • Kiranti • Sunuwar • Bhojpuri • Rajbanshi and others|
|3||Sign language||Nepali Sign Language, Jhankot Sign Language, Jumla Sign Language, Ghandruk Sign Language|
Author: Jeffrey Pittman
Jeffrey Pittman is a 29 year old journalist. Passionate student. Twitter lawyer. Proud social media pioneer. Typical webaholic. Coffee geek. Troublemaker.
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