A language of Burkina Faso

Alternate Names
Seme, Sému, Siémou, Siemu, Syémou

20,000 in Burkina Faso (1999). Population total all countries: 40,000.


Hauts-Bassins region: Houet province, Toussiana department; Kenedougou province: Orodara is center, Tin, Diossogou, Diéri, Kotoudéni, Diéridéni, Didéri, Lidara, and Bandougou villages.

Language Maps
Language Status

6a (Vigorous).


Bandougou. Minor dialect differences between villages and within Orodara. The Bandougou dialect is considered different, but intelligibility among dialects seems adequate. No closely related languages.


SOV; postpositions; genitives, articles, personal pronouns before noun heads; adjectives, numerals after noun heads; question word final for yes-no questions; content question words appear in normal position: e.g., S-O-adverbial-O of prep; word order distinguishes subjects and objects; CV, CVC, CCV; tonal.

Language Use

Vigorous. Also use French [fra], Jula [dyu].

Language Development
Literacy rate in L2: A few in Jula, some in French. Bible portions: 2009.

Latin script [Latn].

Other Comments

Previously classified as Mande. Their tradition says they came from the south. Traditional religion, Muslim.