Old Bangkok Sign Language

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Bangkok Sign Language
Native to Thailand
Region metro Bangkok
Native speakers
(no estimate available)
Chiangmai–Bangkok Sign
Language codes
ISO 639-3 None (mis)
Linguist list
Glottolog None

Bangkok Sign Language (also known as Old or Original Bangkok Sign Language) is a deaf-community sign language of Thailand that arose among deaf people who migrated to Bangkok for work or family. Woodward (2003) found that it was 65% cognate with Chiangmai Sign Language, indicating that the two languages are related, possibly due to migration between Bangkok and Chiangmai. There appear to be connections to sign languages of Vietnam (especially to Hai Phong Sign Language), but the nature of these connections (whether areal or genetic) has not been determined. Village sign languages of Thailand, such as Ban Khor Sign Language, are unrelated.

The language is moribund, with all speakers born before 1960. Younger generations have switched to Thai Sign Language, which seems to have arisen as a mixture of Old Bangkok SL and American Sign Language.


  • James Woodward, "Sign Languages and Deaf Identities in Thailand and Vietnam". In Monaghan et al. eds, Many Ways to Be Deaf: International Variation in Deaf Communities, 2003