Kurdish, Central

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A language of Iraq

Alternate Names
Kurdi, Sorani
Population

3,500,000 in Iraq (2009). Population total all countries: 6,750,000.

Location

South of Great Zab river, Silemani (Sulaimaniya), Arbil, Kirkuk, Khanaqin, and Mandali provinces. Diaspora communities elsewhere, including western Europe and the United States.

Language Maps
Language Status

2 (Provincial). Statutory provincial language in Kurdistan Region (2005, Constitution, Article 4(1)).

Dialects

Bingird, Garmiyani, Hewleri (Arbili), Kerkuki, Mukri, Pizhdar, Rewandiz, Suleimani (Silemani), Warmawa, Xoshnaw. In Sulaimaniya, Hewleri and Kerkuki dialects seen as mutually intelligible. A member of macrolanguage Kurdish [kur].

Typology

SOV; no grammatical gender or case; noun head initial; tense-split ergative pattern; 9 vowel phonemes, 31 consonant phonemes (McCarus 2009).

Language Use

All domains. Children learn it first. Positive attitudes. Used as L2 by Gurani [hac].

Language Development
Literary standard is based on Sorani (from Suleimaniye) variety. Taught in primary and secondary schools. Fully developed. NT: 1994–2011.
Writing

Arabic script [Arab].

Other Comments

Christian, Yezidi.

Also spoken in:

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