[sin] Widespread except some districts north, east, and center. 15,500,000 in Sri Lanka (2007). Population total all countries: 15,579,980. L2 users: 2,000,000 in Sri Lanka (1997). Status: 1 (National). Statutory national language (1987, Constitution (amended), Article 18). Alternate Names: Cingalese, Singhala, Singhalese, Sinhalese Dialects: Rodiya. Great differences exist between literary and colloquial language. Rodiya dialect is spoken by low caste Rodiya people. Classification: Indo-European, Indo-Iranian, Indo-Aryan, Sinhalese-Maldivian Comments: Buddhist.
Sri Lankan Creole Malay
[sci] Especially Colombo, Kandy, Badulla, Hambantota, and Kirinda cities. 46,000 (Ansaldo and Lim 2006), decreasing. Status: 5 (Developing). Alternate Names: Java Jati, Melayu Bahasa, Sri Lankan Malay Dialects: None known. Not intelligible of Standard Malay [zsm] due to phonological and syntactic differences, and strong influence from Tamil [tam]. May be similar to Malaccan Creole Malay [ccm] (Lim 1981). Classification: Creole, Malay based Comments: Malay vocabulary with grammatical structure based on Sri Lankan Moor Tamil. Muslim, traditional religion.
Sri Lankan Sign Language
[tam] North and northeast coasts, a few pockets in the south. 3,770,000 in Sri Lanka (2007). Status: 1 (National). Statutory national language (1987, Constitution (amended), Articles 22(1),24(1)), concentrated in North and East provinces; also in local administration and courts elsewhere. Classification: Dravidian, Southern, Tamil-Kannada, Tamil-Kodagu, Tamil-Malayalam, Tamil Comments: Hindu, Muslim.
[ved] Eastern mountains, Badulla and Polonnaruwa districts. Ethnic population: 2,500 (2002). Status: 8b (Nearly extinct). Alternate Names: Beda, Bedda, Vaedda, Veda, Veddha, Weda, Weddo Classification: Indo-European, Indo-Iranian, Indo-Aryan, Sinhalese-Maldivian Comments: They live in small rural settlements and are more of a caste than a separate ethnic group. Generally accepted as equal in rank to the Sinhalese Goyigama caste.