A language of China

Alternate Names
Ewenk, Ewenke, Ewenki, Khamnigan, Owenke, Solon, Solong, Sulong, Suolun

11,000 in China (Salminen 2007). Population total all countries: 17,130. Ethnic population: 30,500 (2000 census).


Nei Mongol Province, Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region, Hulunbuir banners; Ewenki, Moriadawa, Oronchon, Chen Bargu, Arong, Ergune East, and Huisuomu; Heilongjiang Province, Nale prefecture; a few in Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region.

Language Status

7 (Shifting). Language of recognized nationality: Ewenki.


Aoluguya (Olguya), Chenba’erhu (Old Bargu), Haila’er, Huihe (Hoy), Morigele (Mergel). Standard dialect is Huihe. Dialectal differences within Evenki are small and the case for regarding Evenki and Orochen as separate languages is weak (Salminen 2007).

Language Use

Other speakers in the area also use Evenki. All domains. Very few children except among the Khamnigan. Positive attitudes. Bilinguals use Mandarin Chinese [cmn] as L2. Written Chinese used as literary languages. Farmers use Chinese. Also use Mongolian [mvf]. Written Mongolian used as literary language. Herdsmen use Mongolian as L2. Also use Daur [dta], Oroqen [orh]. Used as L2 by Daur [dta], Oroqen [orh].

Language Development
Literacy rate in L2: 96%, literacy in any language (2000 census, Ewenki nationality). Radio programs. TV. Dictionary. Grammar. Bible portions: 1995.

Cyrillic script [Cyrl], used since 1937, small-scale use in Russia. Latin script [Latn], used in Russia in 1931–1937, limited use in a few publications in China and on internet from 1983.

Other Comments

Ethnic autonym: Solon in China, but also now use the official name Ewenke. Traditional religion, Buddhist (Lamaist).

Also spoken in:

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