Kpelle, Guinea


A language of Guinea

Alternate Names
Akpese, Gbese, Gerse, Gerze, Guerze, Kpele, Kpelese, Kpelesetina, Kperese, Kpese, Kpwessi, Northern Kpele, Pessa, Pessy

460,000 (2012 V. Vydrin).


Nzérékoré region: southeast at Liberia border, between Nzebola and Dondano towns.

Language Maps
Language Status

5 (Developing). De facto language of national identity.


Central Kpelle, Gbali, Heghe. Different enough from Kpelle [xpe] of Liberia to need separate materials. Lexical similarity: 52%–67% with Kono [knu]. A member of macrolanguage Kpelle [kpe].

Language Use

Also use Eastern Maninkakan [emk].

Language Development
Was taught in school under the 1st Republic (before 1984). Dictionary. Grammar. Bible: 2008.

Latin script [Latn].

Other Comments

’Guerze’ is the French name. Traditional religion, Christian, Muslim.