Zhuang, Nong


A language of China

Alternate Names
Daez, Kau Nong, Khaau Nong, Noangx, Nong hua, Phu Nong, Phu Tei, Yan-Guang Southern Zhuang, Zhuangyu Nanbu fanyan Yan-Guang tuyu

500,000 (Wang Mingfu and Johnson 2008). 25% monolingual. Ethnic population: 600,000 (2007).


Southeast Yunnan Province, Wenshan Zhuang and Miao autonomous prefectures, central and west Guangnan, east Yanshan, north Wenshan, Maguan, Xichou, and Malipo counties. A few in Funing and Qiubei counties.

Language Maps
Language Status

3 (Wider communication).


Central Zhuang, Liancheng, Southern Zhuang, Western Guangnan. Most similar with Yang Zhuang [zyg], Tày [tyz], and Min Zhuang [zgm]. Some Tày dialects near Viet Nam-Yunnan border reportedly mutually intelligible. Nong Dialects mutually intelligible for simple topics. Not intelligible of Dai Zhuang [zhd], Min Zhuang [zgm], Yang Zhuang [zyg], Guibian Zhuang [zgn], or Qiubei Zhuang [zqe]. Lexical similarity: over 70% with Nong, Yang [zyg], Yongnan [zyn], and Zuojiang [zzj]; about 67% with Dai [zhd]; 54% with Yongbei Zhuang [zyb].


SVO; modifiers follow nouns, directional verbs precede objects; phonemic distinction between aspirated, unaspirated voiceless, and preglottalized voiced plosives; 6 tones on unchecked, 3–4 on checked syllables

Language Use

Vigorous. Also used by speakers of other languages in the area. All domains. All ages. Positive attitudes. Also use Mandarin [cmn] (Putonghua or southwestern Mandarin dialects).

Language Development
Literacy rate in L1: A few teachers and linguists can read the recent Yunnan government approved experimental orthography. Literacy rate in L2: Rapidly increasing due to free education begun in 2008, including women and girls. In 2011, 300 Nong 7th graders received a few hours of Nong instruction. Taught in primary schools, pilot projects. Poetry. Magazines. Radio programs. Films. Dictionary. Bible portions.
Other Comments

Officially classified within Zhuang nationality. ‘Phu Nong’, Nong People; ‘Khau Nong’, Nong Language. Over half the Nong live in Guangnan and Yanshan counties. Nong represent a majority of Zhuang in all their counties except for Funing and Qiubei, where mostly northern Taic Zhuang languages are spoken. Traditional religion.