Chichewa

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A language of Malawi

Alternate Names
Chewa, Chinyanja, Nyanja, Nyanja-Chewa
Population

6,500,000 in Malawi (2009 UNSD). 4,250,000 Chewa, 1,490,000 Ngoni, 754,000 Nyanja (2009 UNSD). Total users in all countries: 9,536,700.

Location

West central and southwest.

Language Maps
Language Status

3 (Wider communication). De facto language of national identity.

Dialects

Chewa (Cheva, Chichewa, Sheva), Ngoni, Manganja (Cimanganja, Waganga), Nyasa, Peta (Cipeta, Malawi, Marave, Maravi). Manganja is also a Chewa-influenced dialect of Sena [swk].

Typology

SVO.

Language Use

Most Ngoni in Malawi speak the Chewa dialect or Tumbuka [tum]. Used as L2 by Kokola [kzn], Malawi Lomwe [lon], Yao [yao].

Language Development
T. Newspapers. New media. Radio programs. Dictionary. Grammar. Bible: 1905–1998.
Writing

Braille script [Brai]. Latin script [Latn], primary usage.

Other Comments

Traditional religion, Christian.

Also spoken in:

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