Bribri language

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Native toCosta Rica.
Ethnicity12,200 Bribri people (2000)[1]
Native speakers
11,000 (2002)[1]
Language codes
ISO 639-3bzd
Costa-rica bribri.png

The Bribri language is language indigenous to Costa Rica. It is a tonal SOV language spoken by the Bribri people. It belongs to the Chibchan language family. Today there are about 11,000 speakers left.[3]


Bribri, like its sister language Cabécar, has nasal harmony.

Writing System[edit]

The Linguistics Department at the University of Costa Rica has conceived a standardized spelling system, based on several earlier attempts.[4]

Bribri sign in a restaurant in Bribrí in Talamanca, Costa Rica. Translation: "I'm hungry, I'm going to eat."
Bribri Alphabet
a b d ch e ë i j k l m n ñ o ö p pp r rr s sh t tt tch ts u y

Nasal vowels are indicated by a tilde: ⟨ã, ẽ, ĩ, õ, ũ⟩ (Previously indicated with a macron below: a̱, e̱, i̱, o̱, u̱), except after a nasal consonant (already indicating nasalisation of the vowel).

Tones are indicated by the grave accent for the high tone and the acute accent for the low tone; these can also be placed on the nasal vowels.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b Bribri at Ethnologue (18th ed., 2015)
  2. ^ Hammarström, Harald; Forkel, Robert; Haspelmath, Martin, eds. (2017). "Bribri". Glottolog 3.0. Jena, Germany: Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History.
  3. ^ "Ethnologue". Archived from the original on 28 June 2011. Retrieved 22 February 2011.
  4. ^ Jara & García 2013.


External links[edit]