165,000 (2000). 141,000 Maria and 23,700 Hill Maria.
Chhattisgarh state: Bastar district, Narayanpur and Bijapur sub-districts, administrative block of 200 villages known as ‘Abujhmar block’; Maharashtra state: Garhchiroli (Chanda) district, Bhamragad, Etapalli, and Sironcha sub-districts.
Abujmaria (Abujhmadia, Abujhmaria, Abujmar Maria, Abujmariya, Hill Maria), Adewada, Bhamani Maria (Bhamani), Etapally Maria. Etapally Maria dialect is apparently understood by all. Distinct from Muria, Dandami Maria [daq], Northern Gondi [gno], Adilabad Gondi [wsg], Aheri Gondi [esg], and Koya [kff]. 76%–77% intelligibility of other Gondi varieties. Muria Gondi [mut] is intelligible of Abujmaria around Narainpur area but not elsewhere. Distinct from Maria dialect of Chanda District in Maharashtra (Natarajan 1985). Intelligibility 90%–100% of Bhamragarh dialect by other Maria speakers. Maria is intelligible to the Gatte Maria, an ethnic group. Lexical similarity: 59%–80% among dialects (1991 survey), 65%–98% (1999 survey).
Devanagari script [Deva].
A Scheduled Tribe. Hindu, Christian, traditional religion.