A language of Nepal

Alternate Names
Arthare, Athapre, Athpare, Athpre, Sanango Ring

5,530 (2011 census), decreasing.


Kosi Zone, Dhankuta district, north of the Tamur, between the Dhankuta khola west, and the Tangkhuwa east; Dhankuta municipality and Bhirgau VDC.

Language Status

6b (Threatened). Recognized language (2002, Education Plan, Section 1.1.3). Language of recognized indigenous nationality: Rai.


None known. Athpare and Belhariya [byw] are very similar, but not mutually intelligible (Bickel 1996).


SOV; postpositions; genitives, adjectives, numerals before noun heads; polar questions marked with a suffix attached to the verb sentence final; noun head final; no noun classes or genders; content q-word in situ; content questions can have the same word order as assertive sentences, or the question word occurs directly before the verb; up to 2 prefixes, up to 9 suffixes; clause constituents indicated by case-marking; affixes indicate case of noun phrase; verbal affixation marks person, number, object—obligatory; split ergative; comparatives with Nepali, Bhanda; both tense and aspect; no passives or voice; CV, CVC, CVCC; 24 consonant and 5 vowel phonemes; nontonal.

Language Use

Shifting to Nepali [npi]. Home, religion; mixed use: Friends. All ages. Positive attitudes. Also use Nepali [npi].

Language Development
Literacy rate in L2: 2%. Taught in 5 mother-tongue multilingual education schools since 2008. Taught in primary schools. Poetry. Magazines. Newspapers. Radio programs. Videos. Dictionary. Grammar.

Devanagari script [Deva].

Other Comments

Communities prefer to be called Kirati rather than Kirant. Traditional religion, Buddhist, Hindu.