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Amharic - A Semitic language of Ethiopia
Amharic - A Semitic language of Ethiopia
Published: 2017/07/27
Channel: Langfocus
Amharic Language (Ethiopia)
Amharic Language (Ethiopia)
Published: 2014/04/12
Channel: Prepare to Serve!
Ethiopia
Ethiopia's languages: Suri teachers
Published: 2015/07/20
Channel: mediaeducation.net
Useful Amharic phrases
Useful Amharic phrases
Published: 2013/11/27
Channel: MsBissirat
Learn Amharic Now!!! The Entire Order - The Language of RasTafari
Learn Amharic Now!!! The Entire Order - The Language of RasTafari
Published: 2009/02/19
Channel: LOJSociety
How to learn Ethiopian Amharic Language letters
How to learn Ethiopian Amharic Language letters
Published: 2016/12/06
Channel: Todays Ethiopia
Languages of Ethiopia
Languages of Ethiopia
Published: 2016/08/13
Channel: WikiWikiup
Ge
Ge'ez: Life of a Dead Language
Published: 2013/11/16
Channel: ELAToronto
The Oromo Ethnic Group Of Ethiopia & Kenya
The Oromo Ethnic Group Of Ethiopia & Kenya
Published: 2015/06/13
Channel: Afric Network
Ethiopia in the eyes of a foreigner.
Ethiopia in the eyes of a foreigner.
Published: 2010/06/01
Channel: EthioNetTube
Learn Amharic - Simple and Useful Sentences
Learn Amharic - Simple and Useful Sentences
Published: 2008/12/14
Channel: LOJSociety
የአማርኛ የምግብ ዝግጅት መምሪያ ገፅ - Sinig Recipe - Amharic Ethiopian Food
የአማርኛ የምግብ ዝግጅት መምሪያ ገፅ - Sinig Recipe - Amharic Ethiopian Food
Published: 2017/07/27
Channel: Amharic Cooking
አሻሚ ፊደላትን መለየት (ክፍል ፩) - Differentiating Ethiopian (Chapter 1)
አሻሚ ፊደላትን መለየት (ክፍል ፩) - Differentiating Ethiopian (Chapter 1)
Published: 2012/01/29
Channel: FHLProduction
Dying language revived -- the story of Afan Oromo in Ethiopia
Dying language revived -- the story of Afan Oromo in Ethiopia
Published: 2013/10/22
Channel: Kurro Haro
The Afar Ethnic Group Of Ethiopia, Eritrea, and Dijibouti, East Africa
The Afar Ethnic Group Of Ethiopia, Eritrea, and Dijibouti, East Africa
Published: 2014/12/27
Channel: Afric Network
Learning how to speak Amharic in Ethiopia
Learning how to speak Amharic in Ethiopia
Published: 2011/11/20
Channel: Marcello Arrambide
Ancient Writings of Ethiopia
Ancient Writings of Ethiopia
Published: 2016/03/01
Channel: Addis Ethiopia
Useful Tigrinya Phrases
Useful Tigrinya Phrases
Published: 2013/12/28
Channel: MsBissirat
Ethiopia - Analysis on The Origin of Amharic by Dr. Grima Demeke - Part 1
Ethiopia - Analysis on The Origin of Amharic by Dr. Grima Demeke - Part 1
Published: 2016/01/01
Channel: EthioTube
Learn The Basics In Amharic- Ethiopian Language
Learn The Basics In Amharic- Ethiopian Language
Published: 2012/05/05
Channel: MsBissirat
Ethiopic Ge
Ethiopic Ge'ez was First Language NOT Hebrew?! Ask RasTafari Rabbi@LOJSociety
Published: 2015/01/23
Channel: RastafariSabbathical
Is Ethiopia in need of more official working languages? Pt 2 - SBS Amharic
Is Ethiopia in need of more official working languages? Pt 2 - SBS Amharic
Published: 2014/10/27
Channel: SBSAmharic
ETHIOPIA - University of Toronto began to teach Semitic languages
ETHIOPIA - University of Toronto began to teach Semitic languages
Published: 2017/01/11
Channel: #መረጃ
HAHU fidel Song - Geez Alphabet Song - Ethiopian and Eritrean alphabet
HAHU fidel Song - Geez Alphabet Song - Ethiopian and Eritrean alphabet
Published: 2014/05/23
Channel: Fikir Media
Chinese language education in Ethiopia
Chinese language education in Ethiopia
Published: 2013/01/04
Channel: Nazret Com
Ethiopia- Language and National Identity - SBS Amharic
Ethiopia- Language and National Identity - SBS Amharic
Published: 2017/06/16
Channel: SBSAmharic
Is Ethiopia in need of more official working languages? SBS Amharic
Is Ethiopia in need of more official working languages? SBS Amharic
Published: 2014/10/24
Channel: SBSAmharic
The first Ethiopian Amharic and Tigrigna Language alphabet
The first Ethiopian Amharic and Tigrigna Language alphabet
Published: 2016/12/06
Channel: Todays Ethiopia
Discussion in Ethiopia in Serbian language.
Discussion in Ethiopia in Serbian language.
Published: 2015/08/18
Channel: Stefan Simonovic
Is Ethiopia in need of more official working languages? Pt 4 - SBS Amharic
Is Ethiopia in need of more official working languages? Pt 4 - SBS Amharic
Published: 2014/11/02
Channel: SBSAmharic
ETHIOPIA - How can African languages be protected
ETHIOPIA - How can African languages be protected
Published: 2017/03/23
Channel: #መረጃ
Ethiopian Amharic Language  alphabet (Fidel)  HA HU
Ethiopian Amharic Language alphabet (Fidel) HA HU
Published: 2016/12/06
Channel: Todays Ethiopia
Ethiopian Semitic languages
Ethiopian Semitic languages
Published: 2015/12/31
Channel: WikiAudio
Ethiopia: Meet Kasu Seboka who plays Begena in 18 different languages
Ethiopia: Meet Kasu Seboka who plays Begena in 18 different languages
Published: 2016/03/08
Channel: DireTube Ethiopia
New Research Shows All Languages Began In Africa
New Research Shows All Languages Began In Africa
Published: 2016/06/27
Channel: Legesse Allyn
Tigrigna Letters : Wonderful Lessons!
Tigrigna Letters : Wonderful Lessons!
Published: 2016/12/06
Channel: Todays Ethiopia
Sidamo / Sidaamu Afoo / Sidaminya / ሲዳሞ / Sidaama: The Sidamo Language (East Cushitic)
Sidamo / Sidaamu Afoo / Sidaminya / ሲዳሞ / Sidaama: The Sidamo Language (East Cushitic)
Published: 2015/05/07
Channel: Awale Ismail
Ethiopia: A Must Watch Interview with Prof. Ephrem Isaac - Fit le Fit - PART 1
Ethiopia: A Must Watch Interview with Prof. Ephrem Isaac - Fit le Fit - PART 1
Published: 2017/04/05
Channel: ENNTelevision
Ethiopia and Language
Ethiopia and Language
Published: 2010/04/29
Channel: AfricanTranslation
The Story of Jesus - Kistane / Soddo / Soddo Gurage / North Gurage Language (Ethiopia)
The Story of Jesus - Kistane / Soddo / Soddo Gurage / North Gurage Language (Ethiopia)
Published: 2012/10/01
Channel: eyong52
Is Ethiopia in need of more official working languages? Pt 3 - SBS Amharic
Is Ethiopia in need of more official working languages? Pt 3 - SBS Amharic
Published: 2014/10/30
Channel: SBSAmharic
Do you know this? part 5 (Ethiopia the homeland of God)
Do you know this? part 5 (Ethiopia the homeland of God)
Published: 2014/07/19
Channel: አውደ ጥናት/AwdeTinat
Beautiful country,Beautiful people & Faces of Ethiopia Part 72
Beautiful country,Beautiful people & Faces of Ethiopia Part 72
Published: 2015/07/15
Channel: Nurettin Yilmaz
Guragigna Dance - Minnesota
Guragigna Dance - Minnesota's Andinet Dance Group - Ethiopia [ESA]
Published: 2013/04/21
Channel: Zehabesha TV
Cameroonians Speak Tamil
Cameroonians Speak Tamil
Published: 2013/05/29
Channel: Tamil Chinthanaiyalar Peravai
How to translate Ge
How to translate Ge'ez language(text) to Amharic? part 13
Published: 2014/08/06
Channel: አውደ ጥናት/AwdeTinat
Ethiopia: A Must Watch Interview with Prof. Ephrem Isaac - Fit le Fit - PART 2
Ethiopia: A Must Watch Interview with Prof. Ephrem Isaac - Fit le Fit - PART 2
Published: 2017/04/05
Channel: ENNTelevision
Furnal Ceremony in Butajira Ethiopia Gurage zone
Furnal Ceremony in Butajira Ethiopia Gurage zone
Published: 2016/05/04
Channel: Blaine Gidey
IRC Ethiopia: Proper Latrine Use Testimonial at Shimelba Refugee Camp (Tigrinya Language)
IRC Ethiopia: Proper Latrine Use Testimonial at Shimelba Refugee Camp (Tigrinya Language)
Published: 2015/06/15
Channel: OM PT
የቡላ አዘገጃጀት ለቁርስ Bula Amharic የአማርኛ የምግብ ዝግጅት መምሪያ ገፅ
የቡላ አዘገጃጀት ለቁርስ Bula Amharic የአማርኛ የምግብ ዝግጅት መምሪያ ገፅ
Published: 2017/07/28
Channel: Amharic Cooking
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WIKIPEDIA ARTICLE

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
  (Redirected from Ethiopian languages)
Jump to: navigation, search
Languages of Ethiopia
Main languages Oromo (33.8%), Amharic (29.3%)[1][2]
Main foreign languages English
Sign languages several local sign languages

The languages of Ethiopia refers to the various spoken forms of communication in Ethiopia. It includes the nation's official languages, as well as its minority and foreign languages.

Overview[edit]

Distribution of languages of Ethiopia (2007) [3]
Oromo
  
33.8%
Amharic
  
29.3%
Other languages
  
8.1%
Somali
  
6.2%
Tigrinya
  
5.9%
Sidamo
  
2%
Wolaytta
  
2.2%
Gurage
  
2%
Afar
  
1.7%
Hadiyya
  
1.7%
Gamo
  
1.5%
Gedeo
  
1.3%
Kafa
  
1.1%

There are 88 individual languages of Ethiopia according to Ethnologue,[4] with the 1994 Ethiopian census indicating that some 77 tongues were spoken locally. Most of these languages belong to the Afroasiatic family (Semitic and Cushitic languages; Omotic languages are also spoken, though their classification is uncertain). Additionally, Nilo-Saharan languages are spoken by the nation's minority Nilotic peoples.

Of the languages spoken in Ethiopia, 86 are living and 2 are extinct. 41 of the living languages are institutional, 14 are developing, 18 are vigorous, 8 are in danger of extinction, and 5 are near extinction.[4]

Charles A. Ferguson proposed the Ethiopian language area, characterized by shared grammatical and phonological features in 1976. This sprachbund includes the Afroasiatic languages of Ethiopia, not the Nilo-Saharan languages. In 2000, Mauro Tosco questioned the validity of Ferguson's original proposal. There is still no agreement among scholars on this point, but Tosco has at least weakened Ferguson's original claim.

English is the most widely spoken foreign language and is the medium of instruction in secondary schools and universities. Amharic was the language of primary school instruction but has been replaced in many areas by local languages such as Oromo and Tigrinya.

After the fall of the Derg in 1991, the 1995 Constitution of Ethiopia granted all ethnic groups the right to develop their languages and to establish first language primary education systems. This is a marked change to the language policies of previous governments in Ethiopia.

In terms of writing systems, Ethiopia's principal orthography is the Ge'ez script. Employed as an abugida for several of the country's languages, it first came into usage in the sixth and fifth centuries BC as an abjad to transcribe the Semitic Ge'ez language.[5] Ge'ez now serves as the liturgical language of the Ethiopian and Eritrean Orthodox Tewahedo Churches. Other writing systems have also been used over the years by different Ethiopian communities. These include Arabic script for writing some Ethiopian languages spoken by Muslim populations[6][7] and Sheikh Bakri Sapalo's script for Oromo.[8] Today, many Cushitic, Omotic, and Nilo-Saharan languages are written in Roman/Latin script.

Languages[edit]

According to the 2007 Ethiopian census, the largest first languages are: Amharic 21,634,396 or 29.30%;[9][10]Oromo language 24,930,424 speakers or 33.80% of the total population [11] Somali 4,609,274 or 6.25%;[11] Tigrinya 4,324,476 or 5.86% [11] Sidamo 2,981,471 or 4.84% [11] Wolaytta 1,627,784 or 2.21%;[11] Gurage 1,481,783 or 2.01% [11] and Afar 1,281,278 or 1.74% [11] Widely spoken foreign languages include English (major foreign language taught in schools[12]). Amharic is the official language in which all federal laws are published, and it is spoken by millions of Ethiopians as a second language. In most regions it is the primary second language in the school curriculum.

Afroasiatic[edit]

Sign in Amharic at the Ethiopian millennium celebration.

Afroasiatic

Nilo-Saharan[edit]

In Ethiopia, the term "Nilotic" is often used to refer to Nilo-Saharan languages and their communities. However, in academic linguistics, "Nilotic" is only part of "Nilo-Saharan", a segment of the larger Nilo-Saharan family.

Nilo-Saharan

Unclassified[edit]

Endangered languages[edit]

A number of Ethiopian languages are endangered: they may not be spoken in one or two generations and may become extinct, victims of language death, as Weyto, Gafat, and Mesmes have and Ongota very soon will. The factors that contribute to language death are complex, so it is not easy to estimate which or how many languages are most vulnerable. Hudson wrote, "Assuming that a language with fewer than 10,000 speakers is endangered, or likely to become extinct within a generation", there are 22 endangered languages in Ethiopia (1999:96). However, a number of Ethiopian languages never have had populations even that high, so it is not clear that this is an appropriate way to calculate the number of endangered languages in Ethiopia. The real number may be lower or higher. The new language policies after the 1991 revolution have strengthened the use of a number of languages. Publications specifically about endangered languages in Ethiopia include: Appleyard (1998), Hayward (1988), Zelealem (1998a,b, 2004)

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Ethiopian Constitution". Article 5 Ethiopian constitution. APAP. Retrieved 3 December 2011. 
  2. ^ "Country Level". 2007 Population and Housing Census of Ethiopia. CSA. 13 July 2010. Archived from the original on 14 November 2010. Retrieved 18 January 2013. 
  3. ^ "Africa :: ETHIOPIA". CIA The World Factbook. 
  4. ^ a b Ethnologue page on Ethiopian languages
  5. ^ Rodolfo Fattovich, "Akkälä Guzay" in Uhlig, Siegbert, ed. Encyclopaedia Aethiopica: A-C. Wiesbaden: Otto Harrassowitz KG, 2003, p. 169.
  6. ^ (Alula Pankurst|Pankhurst, Alula]]. "Indigenising Islam in Wällo: ajäm, Amharic verse written in Arabic script." Proceedings of the Xlth International Conference of Ethiopian Studies, Addis Ababa 1991. 1994.
  7. ^ Andreas Wetter on Arabic script for writing Amharic
  8. ^ Hayward and Hassan, "The Oromo Orthography of Shaykh Bakri Saṗalō", Bulletin of the School of Oriental and African Studies, 44 (1981), p. 551
  9. ^ Central Statistical Agency. 2010. Population and Housing Census 2007 Report, National. [ONLINE] Available at: http://catalog.ihsn.org/index.php/catalog/3583/download/50086. [Accessed 13 December 2016].
  10. ^ Ethnologue. 2016. Amharic | Ethnologue. [ONLINE] Available at: http://www.ethnologue.com/18/language/amh/. [Accessed 13 December 2016].
  11. ^ a b c d e f g "Statistical Tables for the 2007 Population and Housing Census of Ethiopia: Country Level". Central Statistical Agency. 2007. pp. 91–92. Archived from the original on 2012-11-13. Retrieved 2011-08-12. 
  12. ^ "Ethiopia". The World Factbook. Central Intelligence Agency. 

Further reading[edit]

  • Appleyard, David. 1998. Language Death: The Case of Qwarenya (Ethiopia). In Endangered Languages in Africa, edited by Matthias Brenzinger. Köln: Rüdiger Köppe.
  • Ferguson, Charles. 1976. The Ethiopian Language Area. Language In Ethiopia, ed. by M. Lionel Bender, J. Donald Bowen, R.L. Cooper, Charles A. Ferguson, pp. 63–76. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
  • Hayward, Richard J. 1998. The Endangered Languages of Ethiopia: What’s at Stake for the Linguist? In Endangered Languages in Africa, edited by Matthias Brenzinger, 17–38. Köln: Rüdiger Köppe.
  • Hudson, Grover. 1999. Linguistic Analysis of the 1994 Ethiopian Census. Northeast African Studies Vol. 6, No. 3 (New Series), pp. 89–108.
  • Hudson, Grover. 2004. Languages of Ethiopia and Languages of the 1994 Ethiopian Census. Aethiopica: International Journal of Ethiopian and Eritrean Studies 7: 160–172.
  • Leslau, Wolf. 1965. An annotated bibliography of the Semitic languages of Ethiopia. The Hague: Mouton.
  • Tosco, Mauro. 2000. Is There an ‘Ethiopian Language Area’? Anthropological Linguistics 42,3: 329–365.
  • Unseth, Peter. 1990. Linguistic bibliography of the Non-Semitic languages of Ethiopia. East Lansing: African Studies Center, Michigan State University. (Classification charts, pp. 21 ff.)
  • Zelealem Leyew. 1998a. An Ethiopian Language on the Verge of Extinction. International Journal of the Sociology of Language 134: 69–84.
  • Zelealem Leyew. 1998b. Some Structural Signs of Obsolescence in K’emant. In Endangered Languages in Africa. Edited by Matthias Brenzinger. Köln: Rüdiger Köppe.
  • Zelealem Leyew. 2004. The fate of endangered languages in Ethiopia. On the margins of nations : endangered languages and linguistic rights. proceedings of the eighth FEL Conference, Eds. Joan A. Argenter & Robert McKenna Brown, 35–45. Bath: Foundation for Endangered Languages.

External links[edit]

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