Saho

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A language of Eritrea

Alternate Names
Sao, Shaho, Shiho, Shoho
Autonym
Saho
Population

235,000 in Eritrea (2016), increasing. Total users in all countries: 271,180 (as L1: 267,800; as L2: 3,380).

Location

Debub, Northern Red Sea, and Southern Red Sea regions.

Language Status

5 (Developing).

Dialects

Irob dialect only in Ethiopia. Very similar to Afar [aar].

Typology

SOV.

Language Use

Home, community. Used by all. Also use Afar [aar], Tigrigna [tir], Tigré [tig].

Language Development

Literacy rate in L1: Females: about 30%. Literacy rate in L2: Below 5%. Taught in some primary schools. Literature. Radio. Videos. Dictionary. Texts. Bible portions: 1964.

Writing

Ethiopic script [Ethi], official usage in Ethiopia. Latin script [Latn], official usage in Eritrea.

Other Comments

Ethnic group names are Asa’orta, Hadu (Hazu), Miniferi. Nomadic. Not accepting of outsiders. Muslim, Christian.

Also spoken in:

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