A language of Sudan

Alternate Names
Bedauye, Bedawi, Bedawiye, Bedja, Beja, Tu Bdhaawi, Tu-Bedawie

951,000 in Sudan (1982 SIL). 30,000 Hadendoa, 15,000 Bisharin (1992). Population total all countries: 1,186,000.


Al Bahr al Ahmar state; Kassala, Nahr an Nil, and Al Qadarif states, southeast River Nile.

Language Status

5 (Developing).


Beni-Amir, Bisharin (Bisariab), Hadareb (Hadaareb), Hadendoa (Hadendiwa, Hadendowa). Little vocabulary in common with other Cushitic languages, but a great deal of the verbal morphology is similar.


SOV; prefixes, postpositions, causatives, reciprocals, reflexives, subject; suffixes distinguish person, number, gender.

Language Use

All domains. All ages. Positive attitudes. Also use Sudanese Spoken Arabic [apd], Tigré [tig].

Language Development
Poetry. New media. Radio programs. Dictionary. Bible portions: 2008–2010.

Arabic script [Arab]. Latin script [Latn], used since 1990s.

Other Comments

Beja is the Arabic name. Not related to Western Egyptian Bedawi Spoken Arabic (Bedawi) [ayl] or Eastern Egyptian Bedawi Spoken Arabic (Bedawi) [avl].

Also spoken in:

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