A language of China

Alternate Names
Chashan Yao, Lajia, Laka, Lakia, Lakja, Lakkja, Tai Laka, Tea Mountain Yao

9,000 (Bradley 2007a). 4,000 monolinguals. Ethnic population: 12,000 (Bradley 2007b).


Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region: Jinxiu Yao autonomous county.

Language Maps
Language Status

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


Phonetically similar to Iu Mien [ium], word order to Bunu [bwx]. Not intelligible with Hmong Djua [hnj] or Bunu. Minimal variation within Lakkia. Lexical similarity: 45% with Dong [doc], 23% with Lachi [lbt] and Qabiao [laq], 22% with Gelao.


SVO; modifiers follow heads; consonant clusters and palatalized and labialized onsets; voiced and voiceless nasal onsets; long-short vowel distinction; 6 basic tone categories in unchecked syllables and 2 in checked with further split in checked syllables according to vowel length.

Language Use

Vigorous. Some speakers of other languages use Lakkia for trade. All domains. Used by all. Positive attitudes. Also use Iu Mien [ium], Liuqian Zhuang [zlq], Mandarin Chinese [cmn]. Used as L2 by Jiongnai Bunu [pnu].

Language Development



Lisu (Fraser) script [Lisu], no longer in use.

Other Comments

The language is nonetheless Tai-Kadai (1990 J-O. Svantesson). Daoist, traditional religion.

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