Pumi, Southern


A language of China

Alternate Names
Pimi, P’ömi, Primmi, P’rome, Pruumi, P’umi

19,000 (1999). 6,000 monolinguals. Ethnic population: 28,000 (2000 census).


Northwest Yunnan Province, Lanping, Weixi, Yongsheng, and Lijiang counties; Ninglang county, Xinyingpan district; western Sichuan Province, Garze Tibetan autonomous prefecture.

Language Maps
Language Status

6a (Vigorous). Language of recognized nationality: Pumi.


Qinghua. 4 other dialects. Intelligibility of Northern Pumi [pmi] is difficult. Lexical similarity: 60% between Northern Pumi [pmi] and Southern Pumi.


SOV; adjectives and numbers follow noun heads; uvular obstruents; initial s + consonant clusters; different vowels from N. Pumi; tonal, 2 tones.

Language Use

Vigorous. All domains. Positive attitudes. Also use Central Bai [bca], Central Tibetan [bod], Lipo [lpo], Lisu [lis], Mandarin Chinese [cmn], Naxi [nxq]. Used as L2 by Shixing [sxg].

Language Development
Literacy rate in L2: 70% for Pumi nationality (2000 census).

Unwritten [Qaax].

Other Comments

Buddhist (Lamaist).