Lachi

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A language of Viet Nam

Alternate Names
Cù Te, Cu-Tê, La Chi, Lachí, Laji, Lati, Lipulio, Mia, Tai Lati, Y, Y Pí, Y Póng, Y To
Population

5,000 in Viet Nam (Bradley 2007). 3,990 women, in 1,450 households (Liang Min 1990), including Black Lachi 2,500 in 550 households, Long-Haired Lachi 4,500 in 900 households. 10,800 for all La Chi in Viet Nam (1999 census). Population total all countries: 5,200. Ethnic population: 7,860 (Bradley 2007).

Location

Ha Giang Province, west of Ha Giang in upper Clear River Valley (Riviere Claire) on China border. Black Lachi in Manyou, Long-Haired Lachi in Manpeng.

Language Status

6b (Threatened).

Dialects

Lipupi (Long-Haired Lachi), Liputiõ (Black Lachi). Related to Gelao. Lexical similarity: Long-Haired Lachi of Viet Nam: 80% with Flowery Lachi [lbt] of China, White Lachi [lwh] of Viet Nam: 30%–40% with the others, and should be considered a separate language, 36% with Gelao, 33% with Qabiao [laq], 22% with Dong [doc], 23% with Laka, 25% with Hlai [lic].

Language Use

Continue to use the language. Also use Zhuang, Miao, Chinese varieties.

Other Comments

Part of the La Chí official ethnic community (13,158, 2009 census) which includes White Lachi [lwh]. ‘Red’, ‘Flowery’, refer to clothing color or other features of physical appearance. Traditional religion.

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