Oromo, Borana-Arsi-Guji


A language of Ethiopia

Alternate Names
Afan Oromo, “Galla” (pej.), “Galligna” (pej.), “Gallinya” (pej.), Southern Oromo

3,630,000 in Ethiopia. 25,500,000 all Oromo speakers in Ethiopia (2007 census). Total users in all countries: 3,949,600.


South Oromia region; Southern Nations, Nationalities, and Peoples’ region; Amhara, Afar, and Somali regions.

Language Status

5 (Developing).


A member of macrolanguage Oromo [orm].


SOV; postpositions; gender (masculine/feminine); case-marking (7 cases); verb affixes mark person, number, gender of subject; passives (active, middle, passive); tense and aspect; 25 consonant and 10 vowel phonemes; pitch accent.

Language Use

Also use Swahili [swh].

Language Development
Literacy rate in L2: 16%. Grammar. Bible: 1967.

Latin script [Latn].

Other Comments

In Ethiopia, Oromo is viewed as one people who speak one language. Called Borana in Kenya where Gabra and Sakuye dialects may have significant dialect and language attitude differences from Borana dialect. Muslim, traditional religion.

Also spoken in:

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