Tuu languages

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Tuu languages_table_infobox_0

TuuTuu languages_header_cell_0_0_0

distributionTuu languages_header_cell_0_1_0

South Africa and BotswanaTuu languages_cell_0_1_1
Linguistic classificationTuu languages_header_cell_0_2_0 One of the world's primary language families (formerly considered Khoisan)Tuu languages_cell_0_2_1
SubdivisionsTuu languages_header_cell_0_3_0 Tuu languages_cell_0_3_1
GlottologTuu languages_header_cell_0_4_0 Tuu languages_cell_0_4_1

The Tuu languages, or Taa–ǃKwi (Taa–ǃUi, ǃUi–Taa, Kwi) languages, are a language family consisting of two language clusters spoken in Botswana and South Africa. Tuu languages_sentence_0

The relationship between the two clusters is not doubted but is not close. Tuu languages_sentence_1

The name Tuu comes from a word for "person" common to both branches of the family. Tuu languages_sentence_2

Classification Tuu languages_section_0

The Tuu languages are not demonstrably related to any other language family, however they do share a great many similarities to the languages of the Kxʼa family. Tuu languages_sentence_3

This is generally thought to be due to thousands of years of contact and mutual influence (that is, a sprachbund), but some scholars believe that the two families may eventually prove to be related. Tuu languages_sentence_4

The Tuu languages were once thought to form a branch of the now-obsolete Khoisan language family and were called Southern Khoisan in that scenario. Tuu languages_sentence_5

Languages Tuu languages_section_1

Tuu languages_unordered_list_0

  • TaaTuu languages_item_0_0
  • ǃKwi (ǃUi)Tuu languages_item_0_3
    • Nǁng (a dialect cluster; moribund)Tuu languages_item_0_4
    • ǀXam (a dialect cluster, including Nǀuusaa) †Tuu languages_item_0_5
    • ǂUngkueTuu languages_item_0_6
    • ǁXegwiTuu languages_item_0_7
    • ǃGãǃneTuu languages_item_0_8

The ǃKwi (ǃUi) branch of South Africa is moribund, with only one language remaining, Nǁng, and that with less than 5 elderly speakers. Tuu languages_sentence_6

ǃKwi languages were once widespread across South Africa; the most famous, ǀXam, was the source of the modern national motto of that nation, ǃke eː ǀxarra ǁke. Tuu languages_sentence_7

The Taa branch of Botswana is more robust, though it also has one surviving language, ǃXóõ, with 2,500 speakers. Tuu languages_sentence_8

Because many of the Tuu languages became extinct with little record, there is considerable confusion as to which of their many names represented separate languages or even dialects. Tuu languages_sentence_9

See List of Khoisan languages for some possibilities. Tuu languages_sentence_10

The Tuu languages, along with neighbouring ǂʼAmkoe, are known for being the only languages in the world to have bilabial clicks as distinctive speech sounds (apart from the extinct ritual jargon Damin of northern Australia, which was never anyone's mother tongue). Tuu languages_sentence_11

Taa, ǂʼAmkoe and neighbouring Gǀui (of the Khoe family) form a sprachbund (language area) with some of the most complex inventories of both consonants and vowels in the world. Tuu languages_sentence_12

All languages in these three families also have tone. Tuu languages_sentence_13

Credits to the contents of this page go to the authors of the corresponding Wikipedia page: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tuu languages.