Nung language (Sino-Tibetan)

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Not to be confused with Nung language (Tai).
Native to Fugong County, China
Ethnicity Nung[1]
Native speakers
800  (2000–2005)[2]
Language codes
ISO 639-3 nun
Glottolog nung1282[3]
This article contains IPA phonetic symbols. Without proper rendering support, you may see question marks, boxes, or other symbols instead of Unicode characters.

Nung, or Anong [ɑ˧˩nuŋ˧˩], is a Tibeto-Burman language spoken by the Nung people in Fugong County, China and Kachin State, Burma. The Anong language is related very closely to the Derung Rawang language and Northern Lisu language. Most of the Nung people in China have shifted to Lisu. In Myanmar, Anong is considered as one of the clans of the Lisu family, called nopha (meaning "bean" in Lisu). the number of Anong speakers are decreasing year after year. The population of Anong people can't be easily known because they are mixed with the Lisu population. Only older people in this age can speak and write in Anong language. All the young generation use Lisu rather than Anong even at home. The majority of Anong speakers in Myanmar are found in Putao township and Myitgyina township in Kachin state. There are many other living in different cities such as Yangon, Khanti and Taunggy etc. But they couldn't use their language anymore. Instead they use Lisu. Therefore, Anong language is one of the endangered languages in the world. Besides in China and Myanmar, Anong people can also be found in Thailand and India. .


Anong is spoken by over 7,000 people in China, in the following townships (Sun & Liu 2005).

  • Shangpa 上帕镇: 2,200 people
  • Lijia 里甲乡: 1,100 people
  • Lumadeng 鹿马登乡: 2,100 people
  • Lishadi 利沙底乡: 2,200 people

There could be many more Anong speakers in neighboring Kachin State, Burma, although their current status is unknown.



The Anung have 43 single consonants.[below we list 47]

bilabial labiodental dentalveolar alveolar retroflex postalveolar velar glottal
aspirate stop ʈʰ
tenuis stop p t ʈ k ʔ
voiced stop b d ɖ ɡ
aspirate affricate tsʰ tʂʰ tɕʰ
tenuis affricate ts
voiced affricate dz ɖʐ
voiceless fricative f s ʂ ɕ x h
voiced fricative v z ʐ ʑ ɣ
voiceless nasal ɳ̥ ɲ̥ ŋ̊
voiced nasal m n ɳ ɲ ŋ
voiceless lateral
voiced lateral l ɭ
semivowel ɹ



  1. ^ The spurious "Ayi" is a misreading of Chinese 阿侬 Anong as *阿依 Ayi
  2. ^ Nawpha at Ethnologue (17th ed., 2013)
  3. ^ Nordhoff, Sebastian; Hammarström, Harald; Forkel, Robert; Haspelmath, Martin, eds. (2013). "Nung (Myanmar)". Glottolog 2.2. Leipzig: Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology. 
  4. ^ 孙宏开,刘光坤,p.26-31.

This book in English:

  • Sun Hongkai; Liu Guangkun (2009). A Grammar of Anong. Language Death Under Intense Contact. Brill, Leiden • Boston. ISBN 90-04-17686-1. 

External links[edit]