Zazaki, Northern


A language of Turkey

Alternate Names
Alevica, Dersimki, Dimilki, Kirmanjki, Northern Zaza, So-Bê, Zaza, Zonê Ma
Shar Ma

184,000 in Turkey (Leclerc 2014c).


Bingöl province: Karkiova and Kigi districts; Elazig province: Elazig merkez and Karakoqan districts; Erzincan province; Erzurum province: Cayirli district; Malatya province; Mus province: Varto district; Sivas province, Divrigi, Imranli, Kangal, and Zara districts; Tunceli province: Hozat, Nazmiye, Ovacik, Pulumur, and Tunceli merkez districts; at least 83 total villages.

Language Maps
Language Status

5 (Developing).


Tunceli, Varto. Lexical similarity: 70% with Southern Zazaki [diq]. A member of macrolanguage Zaza [zza].


SOV; prepositions and postpositions; genitives, articles, adjectives relatives after noun heads; numerals before noun heads; question word replaces content word in content questions; 2 prefixes, 2 suffixes, word order distinguishes subject, object, indirect object; noun affixes indicate case; verb affixes indicate person, number, gender; ergativity; passives; causatives; comparatives; V, VC, VCC, CV, CVC, CVCC; nontonal.

Language Use

Abroad, they use Northern Zazaki for close relationships. Home, community. Used by all. Also use Turkish [tur]. Used as L2 by Northern Kurdish [kmr].

Language Development

Literacy rate in L2: School-age children to 40 years old, are literate in Turkish [tur]. Newspapers. Periodicals. Radio. TV. Videos. Dictionary. Grammar.


Latin script [Latn].

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