Languages of Nigeria

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Languages of Nigeria
RegionalIgbo, Yoruba, Hausa, Fulfulde, Ijaw, Edo, Ibibio, Kanuri, Tiv, Nupe and others
SignedNigerian Sign Language
Hausa Sign Language
Bura Sign Language
A map of the major languages of Nigeria, Cameroon and Benin

There are over 500 native languages spoken in Nigeria.[1][2] The official language of Nigeria is English, the former language of colonial British Nigeria. As reported in 2003, Nigerian English and Nigerian Pidgin were spoken as a second language by 60 million people in Nigeria.[3] Communication in the English language is much more popular in the country's urban communities than it is in the rural areas, due to colonisation[citation needed].

The major native languages, in terms of population, are Hausa (over 63 million when including L2 speakers), Yoruba (over 42 million not including L2 speakers), Igbo (over 35 million, including L2 speakers) Fulfulde (15 million), Ibibio (10 million), Kanuri (8 million), Tiv (4 million), and approx. 2 to 3 million each of Edo, Igala, Nupe, Izon, Ekpeye, and Berom. Nigeria's linguistic diversity is a microcosm of much of Africa as a whole, and the country contains languages from the three major African languages families: Afroasiatic, Nilo-Saharan and Niger–Congo. Nigeria also has several as-yet unclassified languages, such as Centúúm, which may represent a relic of an even greater diversity prior to the spread of the current language families.

Niger–Congo languages[edit]

Niger–Congo predominates in the Central, East and Southern areas of Nigeria; the main branches represented in Nigeria are Mande, Atlantic, Gur, Kwa, Benue–Congo and Adamawa–Ubangi. Mande is represented by the Busa cluster and Kyenga in the northwest. Fulfulde is the single Atlantic language, of Senegambian origin but now spoken by cattle pastoralists across the Sahel and largely in the northeastern states of Nigeria, especially Adamawa.

The Ijoid languages are spoken across the Niger Delta and include Ịjọ (Ijaw), Kalabari, and the intriguing remnant language Defaka. The Efik language is spoken across the coastal southeastern part of Nigeria and includes the dialects Ibibio, Annang, and Efik proper. The single Gur language spoken is Baatọnun, in the extreme Northwest.

The Adamawa–Ubangian languages are spoken between central Nigeria and the Central African Republic. Their westernmost representatives in Nigeria are the Tula-Waja languages. The Kwa languages are represented by the Gun group in the extreme southwest, which is affiliated to the Gbe languages in Benin and Togo.

The classification of the remaining languages is controversial; Joseph Greenberg classified those without noun-classes, such as Yoruba, Igbo, and Ibibio (Efik, Ibibio, and Annang), as 'Eastern Kwa' and those with classes as 'Benue–Congo'. This was reversed in an influential 1989 publication and reflected on the 1992 map of languages, where all these were considered Benue–Congo. Recent opinion, however, has been to revert to Greenberg's distinction. The literature must thus be read with care and due regard for the date. There are several small language groupings in the Niger Confluence area, notably Ukaan, Akpes, Ayere-Ahan and Ọkọ, whose inclusion in these groupings has never been satisfactorily argued.

Former Eastern Kwa, i.e. West Benue–Congo would then include Igboid, i.e. Igbo language proper, Ukwuani, Ikwerre, Ekpeye etc., Yoruboid, i.e. Yoruba, Itsekiri and Igala, Akokoid (eight small languages in Ondo, Edo and Kogi state), Edoid including Edo (sometimes referred to as) Bini in Edo State, Ibibio-Efik, Idomoid (Idoma) and Nupoid (Nupe) and perhaps include the other languages mentioned above. The Idoma language is classified in the Akweya subgroup of the Idomoid languages of the Volta–Niger family, which include Alago, Agatu, Etulo and Yala languages of Benue, Nasarawa and Northern Cross River states.

East Benue–Congo includes Kainji, Plateau (46 languages, notably Gamai language), Jukunoid, Dakoid and Cross River. Apart from these, there are numerous Bantoid languages, which are the languages immediately ancestral to Bantu. These include Mambiloid, Ekoid, Bendi, Beboid, Grassfields and Tivoid languages.

The geographic distribution of Nigeria's Niger-Congo languages is not limited to the middle east and south-central Nigeria, as migration allows their spread to the linguistically Afro-Asiatic northern regions of Nigeria, as well as throughout West Africa and abroad. Igbo words such as 'unu' for 'you people', 'sooso' for 'only', 'obia' for 'native doctoring', etc. are used in patois of Jamaica and many Central American nations, Yoruba is spoken as a ritual language in cults such as the Santeria in the Caribbean and South-Central America, and the Berbice Dutch language in Surinam is based on an Ijoid language.

Even the above listed linguistic diversity of the Niger–Congo in Nigeria is deceptively limiting, as these languages may further consist of regional dialects that may not be mutually intelligible. As such some languages, particularly those with a large number of speakers, have been standardized and received a romanized orthography. Nearly all languages appear in a Latin alphabet when written.

The Efik, Igbo, and Yoruba languages are notable examples of this process. The more historically recent standardization and romanization of Igbo have provoked even more controversy due to its dialectical diversity, but the Central Igbo dialect has gained the widest acceptance as the standard-bearer. Many such as Chinua Achebe have dismissed standardization as colonial and conservative attempts to simplify a complex mosaic of languages.

Such controversies typify inter- and intra-ethnic conflict endemic to post-colonial Nigeria. Also worthy of note is the Enuani dialect, a variation of the Igbo that is spoken among parts of Anioma. The Anioma are the Aniocha, Ndokwa/Ukwuani, Ika and Oshimilli of Delta state. Standard Yoruba came into being due to the work Samuel Crowther, the first African bishop of the Anglican Church and owes most of its lexicon to the dialects spoken in Ọyọ and Ibadan.

Since Standard Yoruba's constitution was determined by a single author rather than by a consensual linguistic policy by all speakers, the Standard has been attacked regarding for failing to include other dialects and spurred debate as to what demarcates "genuine Yoruba". Linguistically speaking, all demonstrate the varying phonological features of the Niger–Congo family to which they belong, these include the use of tone, nasality, and particular consonant and vowel systems; more information is available here.

Branches and locations[edit]

Below is a list of major Niger–Congo branches and their primary locations based on Blench (2019).[4]

Distributions of Volta–Niger branches
Branch Primary locations
Akpes Akoko North LGA, Ondo State
Ayere–Ahan Akoko North LGA, Ondo State
Gbe Badagry LGA, Lagos State and adjacent areas
Yoruboid Southwestern Nigeria
Edoid Rivers, Edo, Ondo, Delta States
Akoko Akoko North LGA, Ondo State
Igboid Anambra, Rivers, Delta States (excluding Igbo proper)
Nupoid Niger, Kwara, Nasarawa States
Oko Ogori-Magongo LGA, Kogi State
Idomoid Benue, Cross River, Nasarawa States
Ukaan Akoko North LGA, Ondo State

Distributions of Benue–Congo branches in Nigeria
Branch Primary locations
Cross River Cross River, Akwa Ibom, and Rivers States
Bendi Obudu and Ogoja LGAs, Cross River State
Mambiloid Sardauna LGA, Taraba State; Cameroon
Dakoid Mayo Belwa LGA, Taraba State and adjacent areas
Jukunoid Taraba State
Yukubenic Takum LGA, Taraba State
Kainji Kauru LGA, Kaduna State and Bassa LGA, Plateau State; Kainji Lake area
Plateau Plateau, Kaduna, and Nasarawa States
Tivoid Obudu LGA, Cross River State and Sardauna LGA, Taraba State; Cameroon
Beboid Takum LGA, Taraba State; Cameroon
Ekoid Ikom and Ogoja LGAs, Cross River State; Cameroon
Grassfields Sardauna LGA, Taraba State; Cameroon
Jarawan Bauchi, Plateau, Adamawa, and Taraba States

Distributions of Adamawa branches in Nigeria
Branch Primary locations
Duru (Vere) Fufore LGA, Adamawa State
Leko Adamawa and Taraba States; Cameroon
Mumuye–Yendang Mayo Belwa and Numan LGAs, Adamawa State
Waja Kaltungo and Balanga LGAs, Gombe State
Kam Bali LGA, Taraba State
Baa Numan LGA, Adamawa State
Laka Karim Lamido LGA, Taraba State and Yola LGA, Adamawa State
Jen Karim Lamido LGA, Taraba State
Bikwin Karim Lamido LGA, Taraba State
Yungur Song and Guyuk LGAs, Adamawa State

Afroasiatic languages[edit]

The Afroasiatic languages of Nigeria divide into Chadic, Semitic and Berber. Of these, Chadic languages predominate, with 700+ languages. Semitic is represented by various dialects of Arabic spoken in the Northeast and Berber by the Tuareg-speaking communities in the extreme Northwest.

A map showing Afroasiatic speaking peoples in Nigeria

The Hausa language is the most well-known Chadic language in Nigeria mampoza; though there is a paucity of statistics on native speakers in Nigeria, the language is spoken by 24 million people in West Africa and is the second language of 15 million more. Hausa has therefore emerged as lingua franca throughout much of West Africa and the Sahel in particular. The language is spoken primarily amongst Northern NigerianMuslims, and the language is often associated with Islamic culture in Nigeria and West Africa on the whole.

Hausa is classified as a West Chadic language of the Chadic grouping, a major subfamily of Afroasiatic. Culturally, the Hausa people have become closely integrated with the Fulani following the establishment of the Sokoto Caliphate by the Fulani Uthman dan Fodio in the 19th century. Hausa is the official language of a number states in Northern Nigeria and the most important dialect is generally regarded as that spoken in Kano, an Eastern Hausa dialect, which is the standard variety used for official purposes.

Eastern dialects also include some dialects spoken in Zaria, and Bauchi; Western Hausa dialects include Sakkwatanchi spoken in Sokoto, Katsinanchi in Katsina Arewanchi in both Gobir and Adar, Kebbi, and Zamfara. Katsina is transitional between Eastern and Western dialects. Northern Hausa dialects include Arewa and Arawa, while Zaria is a prominent Southern tongue version; Barikanchi is a pidgin formerly used in the military.

Hausa is a highly atypical Chadic language, with a reduced tonal system and a phonology influenced by Arabic. Other well-known Chadic languages include Mupun, Ngas, Goemai, Mwaghavul, Bole, Ngizim, Bade and Bachama. In the East of Nigeria and on into Cameroun are the Central Chadic languages, such as Bura, Kamwe and Marghi. These are highly diverse and remain very poorly described. Many Chadic languages are severely threatened; recent searches by Bernard Caron for Southern Bauchi languages show that even some of those recorded in the 1970s have disappeared. However, unknown Chadic languages are still being reported, witness the recent description of Dyarim.

Hausa, as well as other Afroasiatic languages like Bade (another West Chadic language spoken in Yobe State), have historically been written in a modified Arabic script known as ajami, however, the modern official orthography is now a romanization known as boko first introduced by the British regime in the 1930s.

Branches and locations[edit]

Below is a list of major Chadic branches and their primary locations based on Blench (2019).[4] Like the Adamawa and Bantu languages, Chadic branches are also referred to by lettered codes.

Branch Code Primary locations
Distributions of West Chadic branches
Hausa-Gwandara A1 Northern Nigeria
Bole-Tangale A2 Darazo LGA, Bauchi State; Yobe, Taraba, Gombe, Borno states
Angas A3 Shendam and Mangu LGAs, Plateau State
Ron A4 Mangu LGA, Plateau State
Mupun A5 Pankshin PGA and Mangu LGA, Plateau State
Bade-Warji B1-2 Darazo and Ningi LGAs, Bauchi State
South Bauchi B3 Bauchi State (Toro, Dass, Tafawa Balewa, Bauchi LGAs)

Branch Code Primary locations
Distributions of Biu–Mandara branches in Nigeria
Tera A1 Gombi LGA, Adamawa State and Biu LGA, Borno State
Bata A8 Mubi LGA, Adamawa State
Kamwe (Higi) A3 Michika LGA, Mubi North LGA, Hong LGA, Madagali LGA Adamawa State, Askira/Uba LGA Borno State
Mandara A4 Gwoza LGA, Borno State and Michika LGA, Adamawa State

Other than Chadic languages, Arabic varieties, particularly Shuwa Arabic, are also spoken throughout northern Nigeria.

Nilo-Saharan languages[edit]

The Nilosaharan language family is represented by Kanuri and Kanembu in the Northeastern part of Nigeria in the states of Borno, Yobe and parts of Jigawa and Bauchi states, as well as Zarma or Zabarma and Dendi spoken in the northwestern state of Kebbi near the border with the neighbouring country of Niger. Teda is also spoken in northern Nigeria.

List of languages[edit]

This is a non-exhaustive list of languages in Nigeria.[5][6][7][8]

Language Alternate names Number of speakers States spoken in Current status
Abanyom Abanyum, Befun, Bofon, Mbofon 13,000 Cross River Active
Nsukka Enugu State and some parts of Kogi state Active
Abon, Abong, Abõ, Ba'ban 1,000 Taraba Active
Abua Odual, Abuan 25,000 Rivers Active
Abureni Mini 4,000 Bayelsa Active
Achipa Achipawa 5,000 Kebbi Active
Adim Cross River Active
Aduge 30,000 Anambra Active
Adun Cross River Active
Afade Affade, Afadeh, Afada, Kotoko, Moga Borno, Yobe Active
Afo Plateau Active
Afrikaans Lagos Active
Afrike Afrerikpe 60,000 Cross River Active
Gbo Agbo, Legbo Cross River Active
Ajawa Aja, Ajanci Bauchi Extinct
Akaju-Ndem Akajuk Cross River Active
Akweya-Yachi Benue Active
Alago Arago Plateau Active
Amo Plateau Active
Anaguta Plateau Active
Anang Akwa lbom Active
Obolo Andoni Akwa lbom, Rivers Active
Angas Bauchi, Jigawa, Plateau Active
Ankwei Plateau Active
Anyima Cross River Active
Arabic Chadian Arabic also known as Shuwa Arabic Borno by Baggara Arabs Active
Attakar Ataka Kaduna Active
Auyoka Auyokawa, Auyakawa, Awiaka Jigawa Active
Awori Lagos, Ogun Active
Ayu Kaduna Active
Babur Adamawa, Bomo, Taraba, Yobe Active
Bachama Adamawa Active
Bachere Cross River Active
Bada Plateau Active
Bade Yobe Active
Bahumono Cross River Active
Bakulung Taraba Active
Bali Taraba Active
Bambora Bambarawa Bauchi Active
Bambuko Taraba Active
Banda Bandawa Taraba Active
Banka Bankalawa Bauchi Active
Banso Panso Adamawa Active
Bara Barawa Bauchi Active
Barke Bauchi Active
Baruba Barba Niger Active
Bashiri Bashirawa Plateau Active
Basa Kaduna, Kogi, Niger, Plateau Active
Batta Adamawa Active
Baushi Niger Active
Baya Adamawa Active
Bekwarra Cross River Active
Bele (Buli, Belewa) Bauchi Active
Betso (Bete) Taraba Active
Bette Cross River Active
Bilei Adamawa Active
Bille Adamawa Active
Bina (Binawa) Kaduna Active
Bini Edo Active
Birom Plateau Active
Bobua Taraba Active
Boki (Nki) Cross River Active
Bkkos Plateau Active
Boko (Bussawa, Bargawa) Niger Active
Bole (Bolewa) Bauchi, Yobe Active
Botlere Adamawa Active
Boma (Bomawa, Burmano) Bauchi Active
Bomboro Bauchi Active
Buduma Borno Niger Active
Buji Plateau Active
Buli Bauchi Active
Bunu Kogi Active
Bura Bura/Pabir Borno, Adamawa, Yobe Active
Burak Bauchi Active
Burma (Burmawa) Plateau Active
Buru Yobe Active
Buta (Butawa) Bauchi Active
Bwall Plateau Active
Bwatiye Adamawa Active
Bwazza Adamawa Active
Challa Plateau Active
Chama (Chamawa Fitilai) Bauchi Active
Chamba Taraba Active
Chamo Bauchi Active
Chibok (Chibbak) Yobe Active
Chinine Borno Active
Chip Plateau Active
Chokobo Plateau Active
Chukkol Taraba Active
Cipu Western Acipa 20,000 Kebbi, Niger Active
Daba Adamawa Active
Dadiya Bauchi Active
Daka Adamawa Active
Dakarkari Niger, Kebbi Active
Danda (Dandawa) Kebbi Active
Dangsa Taraba Active
Daza (Dere, Derewa) Bauchi Active
Degema Rivers Active
Deno (Denawa) Bauchi Active
Dghwede 30,000 Borno Active
Diba Taraba Active
Doemak (Dumuk) Plateau Active
Ouguri Bauchi Active
Duka (Dukawa) Kebbi Active
Duma (Dumawa) Bauchi Active
Ebana (Ebani) Rivers Active
Ebirra lgbirra 1,000,000 Edo, Kogi, Ondo Active
Ebu Edo, Kogi Active
Efik Cross River Active
Egbema Rivers Active
Igede (lgede) Egede Benue Active
Eggon Plateau Active
Egun (Gu) Lagos,Ogun Active
Ejagham Cross River Active
Ekajuk Cross River Active
Eket Akwa Ibom Active
Ekoi Cross River Active
Ekpeye Ekpe ye Rivers Active
Engenni (Ngene) Rivers Active
Epie Rivers Active
Esan (Ishan) Edo Active
Etche Rivers Active
Etolu (Etilo) Benue Active
Etsako Edo Active
Etung Cross River Active
Etuno Edo Active
Palli Adamawa Active
Pulani (Pulbe) Bauchi, Borno, Jigawa, Kaduna, Kano, Katsina, Kebbi, Niger, Sokoto, Taraba, Yobe Active
French Bordering states of Nigeria Active
Fyam (Fyem) Plateau Active
Fyer (Fer) Plateau Active
Ga’anda Adamawa Active
Gade Niger Active
Galambi Bauchi Active
Gamergu Mulgwa , Malgo, Malgwa Borno Active
Qanawuri Plateau Active
Gavako Borno Active
Gbedde Kogi Active
Gengle Taraba Active
Geji Bauchi Active
Gera (Gere, Gerawa) Bauchi Active
Geruma (Gerumawa) Plateau Active
Geruma (Gerumawa) Bauchi Active
Gingwak Bauchi Active
Gira Adamawa Active
Gizigz Adamawa Active
Goernai Plateau Active
Gokana (Kana) Rivers Active
Gombi Adamawa Active
Gornun (Gmun) Taraba Active
Gonia Taraba Active
Gubi (Gubawa) Bauchi Active
Gude Adamawa Active
Gudu Adamawa Active
Gure Kaduna Active
Gurmana Niger Active
Gururntum Bauchi Active
Gusu Plateau Active
Gwa (Gurawa) Adamawa Active
Gwamba Adamawa Active
Gwandara Kaduna, Niger, Plateau Active
Gwari (Gbari) Kaduna, Niger, Plateau Active
Gwom Taraba Active
Gwoza 40,000 Borno Active
Gyem Bauchi Active
Hausa 34,000,000 Bauchi, Borno, Jigawa, Kaduna, Kano, Kastina, Kebbi, Niger, Taraba, Sokoto, Zamfara Active
Holma Adamawa Active
Hona Adamawa Active
Hyam (Ham, Jaba, Jabba) Kaduna Active
Ibeno Akwa lbom Active
Ibibio Akwa lbom Active
Ichen Adamawa Active
Idoma Benue, Taraba Active
Igala Kogi Active
lgbo 40,000,000 Abia, Anambra, Benue, Delta, Ebonyi, Enugu, Imo, Rivers Active
Ijaw Bayelsa Active
ljumu Kogi Active
Ikorn Cross River Active
Irigwe Plateau Active
Isoko Delta Active
lsekiri (Itsekiri) 1,000,000 Delta Active
lyala (lyalla) Cross River Active
Izere Izarek, Fizere, Fezere, Feserek, Afizarek, Afizare, Afusare, Jari, Jarawa, Jarawan Dutse, Hill Jarawa, Jos-Zarazon. 100,000 Plateau Active
lzondjo) Bayelsa, Delta, Ondo, Rivers Active
Jahuna (Jahunawa) Taraba Active
Jaku Bauchi Active
Jara (Jaar Jarawa Jarawa-Dutse) Bauchi Active
Jere (Jare, Jera, Jera, Jerawa) Bauchi, Plateau Active
Jero Taraba Active
Jibu Adamawa Active
Jidda-Abu Plateau Active
Jimbin (Jimbinawa) Bauchi Active
Jirai Adamawa Active
Jonjo (Jenjo) Taraba Active
Jukun Bauchi, Benue, Taraba, Plateau Active
Kaba (Kabawa) Taraba Active
Kadara Ajuah, Ajure, Adaa, Adara, Azuwa, Ajuwa, Azuwa Kaduna, Niger Active
Kafanchan Kaduna Active
Kagoro Kaduna Active
Jju Kaje , Kache Kaduna Active
Kajuru (Kajurawa) Kaduna Active
Kaka Adamawa Active
Kamaku (Karnukawa) Kaduna, Kebbi, Niger Active
Kambari Kebbi, Niger Active
Kamwe Adamawa, Borno and Republic of Cameroon Active[9]
Kamo Bauchi Active
Kanakuru (Dera) Adamawa, Borno Active
Kanembu Borno Active
Kanikon Kaduna Active
Kantana Plateau Active
Kanufi Bomo Kaduna, Adamawa, Kano, Niger, Jigawa, Plateau, Taraba, Yobe Active
Karekare (Karaikarai) Bauchi, Yobe Active
Karimjo Taraba Active
Kariya Bauchi Active
Katab (Kataf) Kaduna Active
Kenern (Koenoem) Plateau Active
Kenton Taraba Active
Kiballo (Kiwollo) Kaduna Active
Kilba Adamawa Active
Kirfi (Kirfawa) Bauchi Active
Koma Taraba Active
Kona Taraba Active
Koro (Kwaro) Kaduna, Niger Active
Kubi (Kubawa) Bauchi Active
Kudachano (Kudawa) Bauchi Active
Kugama Taraba Active
Kulere (Kaler) Plateau Active
Kunini Taraba Active
Kurama Jigawa, Kaduna, Niger, Plateau Active
Kurdul Adamawa Active
Kushi Bauchi Active
Kuteb Taraba Active
Kutin Taraba Active
Kwalla Plateau Active
Kwami (Kwom) Bauchi Active
Kwanchi Taraba Active
Kwanka (Kwankwa) Bauchi, Plateau Active
Kwaro Plateau Active
Kwato Plateau Active
Kyenga (Kengawa) Sokoto Active
Laaru (Larawa) Niger Active
Lakka Adamawa Active
Lala Adamawa Active
Lama Taraba Active
Lamja Taraba Active
Lau Taraba Active
Ubbo Adamawa Active
Limono Bauchi, Plateau Active
Lopa (Lupa, Lopawa) Niger Active
Longuda (Lunguda) Adamawa, Bauchi Active
Mabo Plateau Active
Mada Kaduna, Plateau Active
Mama Plateau Active
Mambilla Adamawa Active
Manchok Kaduna Active
Mandara Wandala Borno Active
Manga (Mangawa) Yobe Active
Margi Adamawa, Borno, Yobe Active
Matakarn Adamawa Active
Mbembe Cross River, Enugu Active
Mbol Adamawa Active
Mbube Cross River Active
Mbula Adamawa Active
Mbum Taraba Active
Memyang (Meryan) Plateau Active
Miango Plateau Active
Miligili (Migili) Plateau Active
Miya (Miyawa) Bauchi Active
Mobber Borno Active
Montol Plateau Active
Moruwa (Moro’a, Morwa) Kaduna Active
Muchaila Adamawa Active
Mumuye Taraba Active
Mundang Adamawa Active
Mupun 1,000,000 Plateau Active
Mushere Plateau Active
Mwahavul (Mwaghavul) Plateau Active
Ndoro Taraba Active
Ngamo Bauchi, Yobe Active
Ngizim Yobe Active
Ngweshe (Ndhang.Ngoshe-Ndhang) Adamawa, Borno Active
Ningi (Ningawa) Bauchi Active
Ninzam (Ninzo) Kaduna, Plateau Active
Njayi Adamawa Active
Nkim Cross River Active
Nkum Cross River Active
Nokere (Nakere) Plateau Active
Nunku Kaduna, Plateau Active
Nupe Niger Active
Nyandang Taraba Active
Ogbia Bayelsa Active
Ododop Cross River Active
Ogori Kwara Active
Okobo (Okkobor) Akwa lbom Active
Okpamheri Edo Active
Olulumo Cross River Active
Oron Akwa lbom Active
Owan Edo Active
Owe Kwara Active
Oworo Kwara Active
Pa’a (Pa’awa Afawa) Bauchi Active
Pai Plateau Active
Panyam Taraba Active
Pero Bauchi Active
Pire Adamawa Active
Pkanzom Taraba Active
Poll Taraba Active
Polchi Habe Bauchi Active
Pongo (Pongu) Niger Active
Potopo Taraba Active
Pyapun (Piapung) Plateau Active
Qua Cross River Active
Rebina (Rebinawa) Bauchi Active
Reshe Kebbi, Niger Active
Rindire (Rendre) Plateau Active
Rishuwa Kaduna Active
Ron Plateau Active
Rubu Niger Active
Rukuba Plateau Active
Rumada Kaduna Active
Rumaya Kaduna Active
Sakbe Taraba Active
Sanga Bauchi Active
Sate Taraba Active
Saya (Sayawa Za’ar) Bauchi, Plateau, Kaduna, Abuja, Niger, Kogi Active
Segidi (Sigidawa) Bauchi Active
Shanga (Shangawa) Sokoto Active
Shangawa (Shangau) Plateau Active
Shan-Shan Plateau Active
Shira (Shirawa) Kano Active
Shomo Taraba Active
Shuwa Adamawa, Borno Active
Sikdi Plateau Active
Siri (Sirawa) Bauchi Active
Srubu (Surubu) Kaduna Active
Sukur Adamawa Active
Sura Plateau Active
Tangale Bauchi Active
Tarok Plateau, Taraba Active
Teme Adamawa Active
Tera (Terawa) Bauchi, Bomo Active
Teshena (Teshenawa) Kano Active
Tigon Adamawa Active
Tikar Taraba Active
Tiv 2,000,000 Benue, Plateau, Taraba, Nasarawa Active
Tula Bauchi Active
Tur Adamawa Active
Ufia Benue Active
Ukelle (Kukelle) Cross River Active
Ukwani (Kwale) Delta Active
Uncinda Kaduna, Kebbi, Niger, Sokoto Active
Uneme (Ineme) Edo Active
Ura (Ula) Niger Active
Urhobo 1,000,000 Delta Active
Utonkong Benue Active
Uyanga Cross River Active
Vemgo Adamawa Active
Verre Adamawa Active
Vommi Taraba Active
Wagga Adamawa Active
Waja Bauchi Active
Waka Taraba Active
Warja (Warja) Jigawa Active
Warji Bauchi Active
Wula Adamawa Active
Wurbo Adamawa Active
Wurkun Taraba Active
Yache Cross River Active
Yagba Kwara Active
Yakurr (Yako) Cross River Active
Yalla Benue Active
Yandang Taraba Active
Yergan (Yergum) Plateau Active
Yoruba 30,000,000 Kwara, Lagos, Ogun, Ondo, Oyo, Osun, Ekiti, Kogi Active
Yott Taraba Active
Yumu Niger Active
Yungur Adamawa Active
Yuom 250,000 Plateau Active
Zabara Niger Active
Zaranda Bauchi Active
Zarma Dyerma, Dyarma, Dyabarma, Zabarma, Adzerma, Djerma, Zarbarma, Zerma.Zarmawa Kebbi Active
Zayam (Zeam) Bauchi Active
Fulfulde 15,000,000 Bauchi, Gombe, Borno Active
Zul (Zulawa) Bauchi Active

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Nigeria". Ethnologue. Retrieved 2017-07-14.
  2. ^ Blench, Roger (2014). An Atlas Of Nigerian Languages. Oxford: Kay Williamson Educational Foundation.
  3. ^ "Nigeria". Ethnologue. Retrieved 2018-05-10.
  4. ^ a b Blench, Roger (2019). An Atlas of Nigerian Languages (4th ed.). Cambridge: Kay Williamson Educational Foundation.
  5. ^ "Nigeria". Ethnologue. Retrieved 2017-04-30.
  6. ^ Blench, Roger (2014). An Atlas Of Nigerian Languages. Cambridge: Kay Williamson Educational Foundation.
  7. ^ Crozier, David Henry; Blench, Roger (1992). An Index of Nigerian languages. Dallas: Summer Inst of Linguistics. ISBN 9780883126110.
  8. ^ "Ethnologue 15 report for Nigeria". Retrieved 2017-04-30.
  9. ^ Kwache,IY (2016)Kamwe People of Northern Nigeria: Origin, History and Culture


  • Crozier, David & Blench, Roger (1992) An Index of Nigerian Languages (2nd edition). Dallas: SIL.mbembe language in cross river
  • Blench, Roger (1998) 'The Status of the Languages of Central Nigeria', in Brenzinger, M. (ed.) Endangered languages in Africa. Köln: Köppe Verlag, 187–206. online version
  • Blench, Roger (2002) Research on Minority Languages in Nigeria in 2001. Ogmios.
  • Kwache, Iliya Yame (2016) Kamwe People of Northern Nigeria :Origin, History and Culture
  • Chigudu, Theophilus Tanko (2017); Indigenous peoples of North clCentral Nigeria Area: an endangered race.
  • Blench, Roger (2019). An Atlas of Nigerian Languages (4th ed.). Cambridge: Kay Williamson Educational Foundation.
  • Emenanjo, E. N. (2019). Four Decades in the Study of Nigerian Languages and Linguistics: A Festschrift for KayWilliamson.

External links[edit]