Tai Nüa


A language of China

Alternate Names
Chinese Shan, Chinese Tai, Dai Kong, Dai Na, Dai Nuea, Daide, Dehong, Dehong Dai, Shan, Tai Dehong, Tai Le, Tai Mao, Tai Neua, Tai Nue, Tai Nü, Tai nö, Tai taü, Tai-Kong, Tai-Le, Yunannese Shan, Yunnan Shant’ou

540,000 in China (Zhou and Luo 2001). Ethnic population: 1,260,000 (2010 census). Includes Lü [khb], Tai Dam [blt], Tai Dón [twh], Tai Hongjin [tiz], and Tai Ya [cuu] languages. Total users in all countries: 726,100.


Sichuan province: Liangshan autonomous prefecture; Yunnan province: Dehong Dai and Jingpo autonomous prefectures, Baoshan, Lincang, and Simao municipal prefectures.

Language Status

4 (Educational). Language of recognized nationality: Dai.


Mangshi (Debao, Dehong, Taile), Menggeng (Taita), Tai Pong (Ka, La, Sai, Tai Ka, Ya, You), Yongren.


SVO; modifiers follow heads.

Language Use

Also use Mandarin Chinese [cmn]. Used as L2 by Achang [acn].

Language Development

Literacy rate in L2: 84% literate in any language (2000 census, Dai nationality). Tai Nüa has traditional script and tradition of literacy, so percentages probably include literacy in Liek or Chinese script or both. Taught in primary and secondary schools. Literature. Dictionary. Bible portions: 1931–1948.


Tai Le script [Tale], used in the Dehong Dai and Jingpho Autonomous Prefecture, Yunnan Province, China.

Other Comments

Northern Shan-like varieties in China are referred to collectively as Tai Na, or Dehong Dai in Chinese. Buddhist, traditional religion.

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