Tai Ya


A language of China

Alternate Names
Cung, Daiya, Huayao Dai, Multi-colored Waistband Tai, Tai Cung, Tai-Chung, Tai-Cung, Ya, Yuanxin Hongjin Dai

50,000 in China (2000 census). Population total all countries: 50,400. Ethnic population: 50,000 (Based on county level Dai populations from 2000 census).


Central and south Yunnan Province, Yuxi prefecture, Xinping Yi-Dai autonomous county, Mosha district; Yuanjiang Hani, Yi, and Dai autonomous counties; Honghe Hani and Yi autonomous prefectures, Yuanyang and Honghe counties. Also in Thailand.

Language Status

6a (Vigorous).


Tai Chung (Cung, Dai Zhong), Tai Kha (Dai Ka), Tai Sai (Dai Sai), Tai Ya. Dialects mutually intelligible, though speakers of the latter 3 may understand Tai Ya dialect (the largest) more easily than speakers of Tai Ya understand the other 3 dialects. Some linguists have analyzed Tai Ya as most similar to Tai Nüa [tdd], others have grouped Tai Ya with other non-Buddhist Southwestern Tai groups. Tai Ya is probably not easily intelligible with other varieties of Tai.


SVO; tonal, 6 tone categories in unchecked syllables, 2 (split into 4 according to vowel length) in checked syllables; nasal and stop finals

Language Use

Most domains. All ages. Positive attitudes.

Language Development
Dictionary. Grammar. Bible portions: 1922.
Other Comments

Officially classified within Dai nationality. Called Daiya or Huayao Dai (Multi-colored Waistband Dai) in China. Traditional religion, Christian.

Also spoken in:

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