Samo, Southern


A language of Burkina Faso

Alternate Names
Sa, Samo, Sane

85,000 (1998). All Samo (San) languages: 233,000 (2009 UNSD).


Boucle du Mouhoun region: mainly Nayala province, Nouna and Solenzo areas; Sourou province; Centre-Ouest region: Sanguie province; Nord region: Passore province; Bobo-Dioulasso, Dedougou, Koudougou, and Ouagadougou cities. Gassan, Gossina, Kougny, Toma, Yaba, and Ye departments (Toma dialect).

Language Maps
Language Status

5 (Developing).


Toma (Makaa, Nyaana). Intelligibility low across Samo varieties.

Language Use

Home, religion, commerce. Used by all. Positive attitudes. Also use Mòoré [mos], Western Niger Fulfulde [fuh]. Also use French [fra], especially users of the Toma dialect. Also use Jula [dyu], especially youth and those who do not speak the Toma dialect.

Language Development

Literacy rate in L2: Higher among Toma. Motivation to read French and Toma Samo is high. A literacy center in Toma teaches Toma. Grammar. Bible: 2014.


Latin script [Latn].

Other Comments

The Rimaïbé are Samo who were former Fula slaves, now speak Fulfulde [fuh] as L2, and live in Kawara, Kassan, Zoumou, and Teri in the Tougan area. Traditional religion, Christian, Muslim.

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