Unclassified language


Unclassified language

Unclassified languages are languages whose genetic affiliation has not been established, mostly due to lack of reliable data. The question of the genetic affiliation of languages belongs to the domain of historical linguistics. If this state of affairs continues even after intense study of the language and efforts to connect it to other languages, it is termed a language isolate. Languages can be considered unclassified for a variety of reasons, including:

Absence of data, e.g.:
* Weyto language (Ethiopia)
* Sentinelese language (spoken by the Sentinelese of the Andaman Islands in India)

Paucity of data, e.g.:
* Bete language (Nigeria; not to be confused with Bété language)
* Bung language (Cameroon)
* Kujarge (Chad)
* Lufu language (Nigeria)
* Luo language of Atta (Nigeria; not to be confused with Luo language)
* Mawa language of Bauchi (Nigeria; not to be confused with the Mawa language of Chad)

Not closely related to its neighbors, and not commonly examined due to paucity of data, e.g.:
* Bangi-me (Mali)
* Jalaa language (Nigeria)
* Mpre language (Ghana)
* Oropom language (Uganda)
* Shompen languages (India)

Not closely related to any other language, and academic consensus on its more distant relations not yet established, e.g.:
* Laal (Chad)
* Ongota (Ethiopia)
* Shabo (Ethiopia)
* Korean language (South Korea, North Korea) Considered language isolate or Altaic.

Also, languages whose very existence either presently or in the past is dubious fall into this category by default, e.g.:
* Imraguen language (Mauritania)
* Nemadi language (Mauritania)
* Rer Bare language of Ethiopia (extinct, if it existed)
* Wutana language (Nigeria)
* Malakhel (Afghanistan)
* Mukha-Dora (India)

ee also

* Language isolate
* List of unclassified languages according to the Ethnologue

External links

* [http://www.ethnologue.com/show_family.asp?subid=40 Ethnologue: Unclassified languages]
* [http://www.african.gu.se/maho/downloads/eballmanual.pdf EBALL miscellenea] including section on African unclassified languages


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