Ersu

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A language of China

Alternate Names
Bu’erci, Bu’erzi, Bu’erzi Ersu, Doxu, Duoxu, Erhsu, Lizu, Lusu, T’osu
Population

20,000 (Shearer and Sun 2002), decreasing. Eastern Ersu (Ersu) 13,000, Central Ersu (Duoxu) 10 or less, Western Ersu (Lizu) 4,000.

Location

Sichuan province: Ganzi Tibetan autonomous prefecture, Jiulong county; Liangshan Yi autonomous prefecture, Ganluo, Mianning, Muli and Yuexi counties; Ya’an prefecture, Hanyuan and Shimian counties; all on lower Dadu river dispersed among Chinese, Tibetan, and Yi peoples.

Language Maps
Language Status

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

Dialects

Ersu (Eastern Ersu), Duoxu (Central Ersu), Lisu (Liru, Lüzü, Western Ersu).

Typology

SOV; adjectives and number-classifier constructions follow noun heads; consonant cluster onsets; most morphemes monosyllabic; 2 tones, word-template zone.

Language Use

Decreasing from language attrition. Mainly older adults. Neutral attitudes. Some also use Mandarin Chinese [cmn]. A few also use Lipo [lpo]. Used as L2 by Namuyi [nmy].

Language Development
About 10 people can read the Shaba script. Poetry. Videos. Dictionary.
Writing

Ersu Shaba Picture Writing [Qaag], used until some time before 2003, limited usage, used in religious ceremonies.

Other Comments

Traditional religion.