A language of Nepal

Alternate Names
Barhagaule, Panchgaunle, Tapaang, Thaksya

6,000, all users. L1 users: 5,240 (2011 census), decreasing. L2 users: 760 (2011 census).


Dhawalagiri zone: Mustang district, Thak Khola, mid Kali Gandaki valley, Annapurna Himal on one side and Dhawalagiri Himal on the other, Tatopani village south to Jomsom north. Tukuche to Thaksatsae, in 13 villages: Bhurjungkot, Dampu, Ghansa, Khanti, Kobang, Kunjo, Larjung, Lete, Nakung, Naurikot, Taglung, Tithi, and Tukuche (Tukuche dialect). Many live outside the area.

Language Maps
Language Status

6b (Threatened). Language of recognized indigenous nationality: Thakali, Chhairotan, Marphali Thakali, Tieengaule Thakali. Apparently 3 other nationalities share [ths] as their language.


Tukuche (Tamhang Thakali, Thaksaatsaye, Thaksatsae), Marpha (Puntan Thakali), Syang (Yhulkasom). Thakali dialects have 91%–97% inherent intelligibility. Tukuche dialect most easily understood by others. Tukuche is cultural center and the most prestigeous dialect. Lexical similarity: 41%–46% with Gurung [gvr], 46%–51% with Tamang languages (1994 J. Webster). Thakali dialects in 4 villages have 75%–86% lexical similarity.


SOV; postpositions; noun head both initial and final; no noun classes or genders; content q-word final; verbal affixation marks number; tense; no passives or voice; tonal; 27 consonant and 6 vowel phonemes.

Language Use

Youth in Tukuche maintain Thakali strongly. Elsewhere youth use less Thakali, but develop it more fully as they grow older (1994 J. Webster). Religion; mixed use: Home, friends, religion, work. Some young people, all adults.

Language Development

Taught in primary schools. Literature. Videos. Dictionary. Grammar.


Devanagari script [Deva].

Other Comments

Marpha dialect is in an endogamous village. People of Marpha, Syang, Thini, Chhairo, and Chimang villages are sometimes collectively known as Panchgaunle (5 villages), the name used for both the ethnic group and language. Buddhist, Christian, traditional religion.

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