Alagwa

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A language of Tanzania

Alternate Names
Alagwaisa, Alagwase, Alawa, Asi, Chasi, Hhagiree, Kialagwa, Kichase, Wasi
Population

30,000 (Kiessling and Mous 2003).

Location

Dodoma Region, Kondoa district.

Language Maps
Language Status

6b (Threatened).

Dialects

None known. Grammar is closer to Iraqw [irk] but not inherently intelligible. High degree of lexical similarity with Burunge [bds].

Typology

SVO; content questions with the q-word in situ; 3 genders; two tones, primarily grammatical.

Language Use

Vigorous in most villages. Home. All ages. Most children use as L1. In mixed villages children tend to speak Rangi [lag] among themselves. Positive attitudes. Also use Langi [lag], Swahili [swh].

Language Development
Literacy rate in L1: 0%. Literacy rate in L2: Many are literate in Swahili [swh]; some also in Arabic [arb]. Grammar.
Writing

Unwritten [Qaax].

Other Comments

Many villages have Islamic education and some children know Arabic and Swahili more fluently than Alagwa. Alagwa may be more readily recognized as Wasi. Muslim, traditional religion.