A language of Uganda

Alternate Names
Kyopi, Lunyoro, Orunyoro, Runyoro

969,000 (2014 census), increasing. Census based on tribal affiliation.


Masindi, Kiryandongo, Kibaale, Hoima, and Buliisa districts; also Kiboga, Kyankwanzi, Kyegegwa, and Kyenjojo districts east of Lake Albert.

Language Maps
Language Status

5 (Developing).


Rutagwenda, Orunyoro (Nyoro). 73% inherent intelligibility with Gungu [rub]. Hema-Sud [nyo] (Nyoro-Toro) in Democratic Republic of the Congo is quite different. Lexical similarity: 78%–93% with Tooro [ttj], 77% with Nyankore [nyn] and Chiga [cgg], 67% with Nyambo [now] and Zinza [zin], 66% with Haya [hay], 62% with Kerewe [ked].



Language Use

Vigorous. Home, market, work. All ages. Positive attitudes. Also use Tooro [ttj], especially Rutangwenda speakers. Used as L2 by Amba [rwm], Gungu [rub], Ruuli [ruc].

Language Development
Literacy campaign in progress (2012). Taught in primary schools. Literature. Radio. Videos. Dictionary. Grammar. Texts. Bible: 1912.

Latin script [Latn], used since 1978.

Other Comments

Standardized form of the western languages (Nyankore-Chiga and Nyoro-Tooro) is called Runyakitara. It is taught at the University and used in internet browsing, but is a hybrid language. Christian, traditional religion.

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