Igbo

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A language of Nigeria

Alternate Names
Ibo
Population

18,000,000 in Nigeria (Wiesenfeld 1999). Total users in all countries: 18,007,950.

Location

Widespread in southeast.

Language Status

2 (Provincial). De facto provincial language in southeastern region. Main LWC of Abia, Anambra, Ebonyi, Enugu, and Imo states.

Dialects

Afikpo (Ehugbo), Nsukka (Nsuka), Ohuhu (Umuahia), Bende (Ohafia), Central Igbo (Union Igbo). 30 dialects vary in inherent intelligibility. The standard literary form developing based on Owerri and Umuahia dialects, omitting the nasality and aspiration found in those dialects.

Typology

SVO; prepositions; no articles; tense; 37 consonant and 8 vowel phonemes; tonal (3 level phonemic tones); vowel harmony (ATR).

Language Use

Used for government notices. Used as L2 by Ikwere [ikw], Obolo [ann], Ogbah [ogc].

Language Development
New media. Radio programs. TV. Dictionary. Grammar. Bible: 1906–2006.
Writing

Latin script [Latn], used since 1900.

Other Comments

Christian, traditional religion.

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