Mongolian, Peripheral


A language of China

Alternate Names
Inner Mongolian, Menggu, Monggol, Mongol, Southern-Eastern Mongolian

3,380,000 in China (1982). Population includes 299,000 Chakhar, 317,000 Bairin, 1,347,000 Khorchin (Horchin), 593,00 Kharchin (Harchin), 123,000 Ordos, 34,000 Ejine. 2,500,000 monolinguals. Ethnic population: 5,980,000 (2010 census). Includes China Buriat [bxu], Kalmyk-Oirat [xal], Katso [kaf], Narua [nru], and Tuvan [tyv] languages.


Nei Mongol Autonomous Region; Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region; Gansu, Hebei, Heilongjiang, Jilin, and Liaoning provinces, and Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region, Urumchi to Hailar.

Language Maps
Language Status

6b (Threatened). Language of recognized nationality: Mongolian.


Chahar (Chaha’er, Chakhar, Qahar), Ordos (E’erduos), Tumut (Tumet), Shilingol, Ulanchab (Mingan, Urat), Jo-Uda (Bairin, Balin, Keshikten, Naiman), Jostu (Eastern Tumut, Ke’erqin, Kharachin, Kharchin, Kharchin-Tumut), Jirim (Gorlos, Jalait, Kalaqin, Khorchin), Ejine, Ujumchin. Largely intelligible of Halh Mongolian [khk], but there are phonological and important loanword differences. A member of macrolanguage Mongolian [mon].



Language Use

Chinese living in the area can also speak it. All domains. Some young people, all adults. Positive attitudes. Also use Kazakh [kaz], Mandarin Chinese [cmn], Uyghur [uig]. Used as L2 by Daur [dta], Evenki [evn], Kalmyk-Oirat [xal], Oroqen [orh], Tuvan [tyv].

Language Development

Literacy rate in L2: 71%. Newspapers. Periodicals. Radio. TV. Grammar. NT: 1952–2003.


Mongolian script [Mong]. Phags-pa script [Phag], no longer in use.

Other Comments

Includes China Buriat [bxu], Tuvan [tyv], Kalmyk-Oirat [xal], and speakers of other varieties. In Xinjiang, Torgut, Oold, Korbet, and Hoshut peoples are known as the Four tribes of Oirat. Buddhist, traditional religion.

Also spoken in:

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