8,313,000 (1995). Republic of Niger. République du Niger. Literacy rate 10% to 13%; 5.5% (1977 C. M. Brann). Information mainly from SIL 1991, Vanderaa 1991. Data accuracy estimate: B. Sunni Muslim, traditional religion, Christian. Blind population 43,000. The number of languages listed for Niger is 21.
ARABIC, ALGERIAN SAHARAN SPOKEN [AAO] 100,000 in Niger (1991); 200,000 in all countries. Around Agadez and northwest Niger. Also in Algeria. Afro-Asiatic, Semitic, Central, South, Arabic. Originally from Algeria. They speak Tamasheq as second language. Muslim. Survey needed.
ARABIC, HASSANIYA (MAURE, MAURI, MOOR, SULAKA, HASANYA, HASSANI) [MEY] 127,400 in Niger (1991); 5,000 in Senegal (1993); 106,100 in Mali (1991); 1,800,000 in Mauritania (1991); 2,230,000 in all countries. Also in Morocco, Algeria. Afro-Asiatic, Semitic, Central, South, Arabic. Muslim. Survey needed.
ARABIC, SHUWA (ARABE CHOA, SHUWA ARABIC, SHUA, CHADIC ARABIC) [SHU] 50,000 in Niger (1991 L. Vanderaa CRC); 63,600 in Cameroon (1982 SIL); 100,000 in Nigeria (1973); 754,590 in Chad (1993); 63,000 in Central African Republic (1996); 1,031,000 in all countries. Eastern Niger. Afro-Asiatic, Semitic, Central, South, Arabic. Trade language. Muslim. NT 1967-1991. Bible portions 1964.
BUDUMA (DOUDOUMA, YEDIMA, YEDINA, YIDANA) [BDM] 4,000 in Niger; 51,600 in Chad (1993); 3,000 in Nigeria; 200 in Cameroon (1990 SIL); 58,800 in all countries. Shore of Lake Chad. Afro-Asiatic, Chadic, Biu-Mandara, B, B.1, Buduma. Some bilingualism in Kanembu and Kanuri. Muslim, traditional religion. Work in progress.
DAZA (DASA, DAZZA, DAZAGADA) [DAK] 15,000 in Niger (1991 L. Vanderaa CRC); 282,281 in Chad (1993 census); 297,000 in all countries. Nilo-Saharan, Saharan, Western, Tebu. Close to Tebu (Teda). Different from Daza in Nigeria, which is Chadic. Low bilingualism in Arabic. The government plans to develop Daza for formal and informal education. Muslim. Work in progress.
DENDI (DANDAWA) [DEN] 42,300 in Niger (1991); 30,000 in Benin (1995); 72,000 in all countries, or more. A few in Nigeria. Nilo-Saharan, Songhai. Closely related language to Dyerma and Songhai. In Niger speakers can understand Dyerma. Muslim. NT in press (1994).
FRENCH [FRN] 6,000 in Niger (1993 Johnstone); 72,000,000 in all countries (1995 WA). Indo-European, Italic, Romance, Italo-Western, Western, Gallo-Romance. National language. Bible 1530-1986. NT 1474-1980. Bible portions 1483-1987.
FULFULDE, KANO-KATSINA-BORORRO (PEUL, FULBE) [FUV] Several lineages settled in the region of Torodi and Wuro Gueladjo, the left bank at the bend of the Niger River. The Jaawambe and Sillube lineages settled in the Dallol Bosso Valley across the Niger River. Also in the northern provinces of Nigeria and Cameroon, in Chad, and CAR. Niger-Congo, Atlantic-Congo, Atlantic, Northern, Senegambian, Fula-Wolof, Fulani, East Central. Dialects: KANO-KATSINA, BORORRO (BORORO, MBORORO, AKO, NOMADIC FULFULDE). Muslim. Work in progress.
FULFULDE, SOKOTO [FUQ] 709,500 in all countries Fulfulde in Niger, 15% of population (1976 WA). The Wodaabe lineage originally came from Sokoto, Nigeria, after several years in Bornu near Lake Chad. They settled in the region of Torodi and Wuro Gueladjo, on the left bank at the bend of the Niger River. Also in Nigeria. Niger-Congo, Atlantic-Congo, Atlantic, Northern, Senegambian, Fula-Wolof, Fulani, East Central. Most Fula in Niger are speakers of the Sokoto dialect. Distinct from other dialects in Niger and Nigeria. Low bilingualism. Muslim.
GOURMANCHÉMA (GOURMA, GURMA, GOURMANTCHE, GOULIMANCEMA) [GUX] 45,000 in Niger (1991); 53,000 in Benin (1993); 359,000 to in Burkina Faso (1991); 120,500 in Togo (1991); 574,000 in all countries. Southwest, near Burkina Faso border. Niger-Congo, Atlantic-Congo, Volta-Congo, North, Gur, Central, Northern, Oti-Volta, Gurma. Traditional religion, Muslim, Christian. NT 1958-1990. Bible portions 1947-1988.
HAUSA (HAUSSA, HAOUSSA, HAUSAWA) [HUA] 3,600,000 in Niger (1993 Johnstone), 50% of the population (1986); 22,000,000 in all countries (1991); 38,000,000 first and second language speakers (1995 WA). Also Nigeria (primarily), Togo, Benin, Cameroon, Ghana, Sudan, Burkina Faso. Afro-Asiatic, Chadic, West, A, A.1. The main trade language of Niger. Radio Niger broadcasts in Hausa. Trade language. Muslim. Bible 1932-1980. NT 1880-1965. Bible portions 1857-1988.
KANEMBU (KANAMBU) [KBL] 11,000 in Niger (1993 Johnstone); 67,000 in Chad (1993 Johnstone); 78,000 in all countries. Also possibly in Nigeria. Nilo-Saharan, Saharan, Western, Kanuri. Dialects: KARKAWU, MANDO, NGURI. The most closely related language to Kanuri. There is a gradual differentiation between Kanembu and Kanuri dialects. The majority of the speakers use Arabic as second language. Muslim, traditional religion. Work in progress.
KANURI, MANGA (MANGA, KANOURI, KANOURY) [KBY] 350,000 in Niger (1995); 200,000 in Nigeria (1993); 550,000 in both countries. The main center in Niger is at Yerwa. Also in Nigeria. Nilo-Saharan, Saharan, Western, Kanuri. Possibly 30% literate. Trade language. Muslim. Work in progress.
KANURI, YERWA (KANOURI, "BERIBERI", BORNU, BORNOUANS, KANOURY, KOLE, SIRATA) [KPH] 50,000 in Niger (1991); 56,500 in Cameroon (1982 SIL); 3,000,000 or more in Nigeria (1985); 100,000 or more in Chad (1985); 3,500,000 in all countries (1987 UBS). Also in Sudan. Nilo-Saharan, Saharan, Western, Kanuri. Dialects: DAGARA, KAGA (KAGAMA), SUGURTI, LARE, KWAYAM, NJESKO, KABARI (KUVURI), NGAZAR, GUVJA, MAO, TEMAGERI, FADAWA, MAIDUGURI, MOVAR (MOBER, MOBBER, MAVAR). The Ajami script is used. "Beriberi" is considered a derogatory name. Muslim. NT in press (1995). Bible portions 1949.
SONGAI (SONGHAI, SONGOI, SONGOY, SONGAY, SONGHAY, SONRAI, SONRHAI) [SON] 390,000 in Niger (1991), including 335,000 Kado (1993); 600,000 in Mali (1991); 122,700 in Burkina Faso (1991); 1,112,700 in all countries (1991 L. Vanderaa CRC). Nilo-Saharan, Songhai. Dialects: CENTRAL SONGAI (KAADO, KADO), NORTHERN SONGAI (TIHISHIT, TASAWAQ). Kaado Songay constitutes 29% of all Songai, and 46% of Songai in Niger (including Dyerma and Dendi). It is an important language (Nicolai 1983). Closely related languages: Dendi, Dyerma. Songai in Niger can understand Dyerma. Ethnic groups include Kurtey (32,000), Wogo (28,000). Muslim. NT 1936-1976. Bible portions 1928. Work in progress.
TAMAHAQ, HOGGAR (TAMASHEQ, TAMACHEK, TUAREG, TOUAREG, TAMASHEKIN, TOURAGE, TOMACHEK, HOGGAR) [THV] 25,000 to 76,000 in all countries, including 20,000 in Hoggar dialect; 5,000 in Ghat dialect (1987 Glover SIM); 17,000 in Libya (1993 Johnstone). The Hoggar dialect is in the south Hoggar (Ajjer) Mountain area around Tamanrasset and south into Niger. The Ghat dialect is in southeast Algeria around Ganet and west Libyan oases around Ghat. Afro-Asiatic, Berber, Tamasheq, Northern. Dialects: HOGGAR (AHAGGAREN, AJJER, TAHAGGART), GHAT (GANET, DJANET). Tuareg are the people (Targi is the singular); Tamahaq is the language. Volcanic mountains. Inadan: blacksmiths, jewelry craftsmen. Muslim. Bible portions 1948-1965. Survey needed.
TAMAJEQ, AIR (TAMACHEK, TOMACHECK, AMAZIGH, TUAREG, TOUAREG) [THZ] 250,000 to 300,000 (1991 SIL). Central, Agadez area. Afro-Asiatic, Berber, Tamasheq, Southern. Dialects: AIR (AGADEZ, TAYART, TAYERT, TAMESTAYERT), TANASSFARWAT (TAMAGARAST). The name of the people is 'Tuareg', the language 'Tamajeq'. Traditional script called Shifinagh. Nomadic. Muslim. NT 1990. Bible portions 1934-1985.
TAMAJEQ, TAHOUA (TAMASHEQ, TAMACHEK, TOMACHECK, TAMASHEKIN, TUAREG, TOUAREG, TOURAGE, AMAZIGH, TAHOUA, TEWELLEMET) [TTQ] 350,000 or more in Niger (1991 SIL); 190,000 in Mali (1991); few in Nigeria; 540,000 in all countries; 1,3OO,OOO or more all Tuareg in all countries (1991). The eastern dialect is in west Niger and east Mali, Menaka region; the western dialect in Gao region, Mali, and Nigeria. Afro-Asiatic, Berber, Tamasheq, Southern. Dialects: TAWALLAMMAT TAN DANNAG (IOULLEMMEDEN), TAWALLAMMAT TAN ATARAM. The people call themselves 'Kal Tamajaq'. The traditional script is called Shifinagh. Nomadic. Pastoralists, agriculturalists. Muslim. Bible portions 1979-1985. Work in progress.
TEDA [TUQ] 40,000 in Niger (1991 L. Vanderaa CRC); 2,000 in Libya (1954 Lebeuf); 28,501 in Chad (1993 census); 2,000 or fewer in Nigeria (1990 Blench); 72,500 in all countries. Seguedine, Bilma, Termit-Kaoboul. Nilo-Saharan, Saharan, Central. Dialects: AZA, TEDA, TUBU (TEBU, TEBOU, TIBBU, TOUBOU). Speakers are bilingual in Daza. The majority are bilingual in Arabic. Many separate groups. Well diggers, pastoralists: cattle, semi-nomadic. Muslim. Work in progress.
ZAGHAWA (SOGHAUA, ZEGGAOUA, ZAGAOUA, ZORHAUA, ZAGAWA, ZEGHAWA, BERI) [ZAG] 35,000 in Niger (1991 L. Vanderaa CRC); 17,500 in Chad; 102,000 in Sudan (1982); 7,000 in Libya (1993); 161,500 in all countries. Also in Libya. Nilo-Saharan, Saharan, Eastern.
ZARMA (DYERMA, DYARMA, DYABARMA, ZABARMA, ADZERMA, DJERMA, ZARBARMA) [DJE] 1,495,000 in Niger, 23% of the population (1986); 50,000 in Nigeria (1973); 600 in Burkina Faso (1987); 2,000,000 in all countries (1995 WA). Southwest, Dosso area. Also in Benin. Nilo-Saharan, Songhai. Radio Niger broadcasts in Dyerma. Muslim, traditional religion, some Christians. Braille Bible portions. Bible 1990. NT 1954. Bible portions 1934.
Part of the Ethnologue, 13th Edition, Barbara F. Grimes, Editor.
Copyright © 1996, Summer Institute of Linguistics, Inc. All rights reserved.
If you have questions, comments, or updates on the Ethnologue, go to the Feedback page.
[Africa | Areas | Ethnologue Home | SIL Home]