A language of Russian Federation

Alternate Names
Galancho, Nokchiin Muott, Nokhchi, Nokhchiin

1,350,000 in Russian Federation (2010 census). 233,000 monolinguals. Ethnic population: 1,430,000 (2010 census). Total users in all countries: 1,502,350.


Chechnya republic, Dagestan republic, and Ingushetia republic; Stavropol krai; north Caucasus, most in rural areas.

Language Status

2 (Provincial). Statutory provincial language in Chechen Republic (2003, Constitution of Chechen Republic, Article 10(1)). Provincially recognized language in Dagestan Autonomous Republic (1994, Constitution of Dagestan Autonomous Republic, Article 10).


Ploskost, Itumkala (Shatoi), Melkhin, Kistin, Cheberloi, Akkin (Aux). The Akkin people in western Dagestan have a strong self-identity and consider themselves distinct from Chechen. Chechen partially intelligible with Ingush [inh]. Melkhi transitional dialect to Ingush.


Ergative case system; many consonants and vowels; extensive inflectional morphology, many nominal cases, several gender classes; complex sentences by chaining participial clauses; verbs have gender agreement with the direct object or intransitive subject, but no person agreement (Nichols 1995).

Language Use

Largest Nakh-Daghestanian language. Used in publishing. Also use Russian [rus].

Language Development

Taught in primary schools. Newspapers. Radio. Dictionary. Grammar. Bible: 2012.


Arabic script, Naskh variant [Arab], no longer in use. Cyrillic script [Cyrl]. Latin script [Latn], used between 1925-1938.

Other Comments

Many Russians, Ingush, Ossetins, and other peoples live among them. From 1944–1957, they were deported to Kazakhstan and Siberia losing 25%–50% of the population, much land, economic resources, and civil rights. They have been largely removed from productive lowlands. Muslim.

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