Ch’ol language

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For similar terms, see Ch'ol (disambiguation) and Chol (disambiguation).
Native to Mexico
Region North Central Chiapas Tabasco
Native speakers
210,000 (2010 census)[1]
Early forms
Language codes
ISO 639-3 ctu
Glottolog chol1282[2]

The Ch'ol (Chol) language is a member of the western branch of the Mayan language family used by the Ch'ol people in the Mexican state of Chiapas. There are two main dialects:

  • Ch'ol of Tila spoken by 43,870 people of whom 10,000 are monolinguals in the villages of Tila, Vicente Guerrero, Chivalito and Limar in Chiapas.
  • Ch'ol of Tumbalá spoken by 90,000 people of whom 30,000 are monolinguals in the villages of Tumbalá, Sabanilla, Misijá, Limar, Chivalita and Vicente Guerrero.

The Cholan branch of the Mayan languages is considered to be particularly conservative and Ch'ol along with its two closest relatives the Ch'orti' language of Guatemala and Honduras, and the Chontal Maya language of Tabasco are believed to be the modern languages that best reflect their relationship with the Classic Maya language.[3]

Ch'ol-language programming is carried by the CDI's radio station XEXPUJ-AM, broadcasting from Xpujil, Campeche.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ INALI (2012) México: Lenguas indígenas nacionales
  2. ^ Hammarström, Harald; Forkel, Robert; Haspelmath, Martin; Bank, Sebastian, eds. (2016). "Chol". Glottolog 2.7. Jena: Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History. 
  3. ^ Houston, S., O. Chinchilla, Stuart D. "The Decipherment of Ancient Maya Writing", U. of Oklahoma Press, 2001.


Aulie, H. Wilbur; Evelyn W. Aulie, eds. (1998) [1978]. Diccionario Ch'ol de Tumbalá, Chiapas, con variaciones dialectales de Tila y Sabanilla [Ch'ol Dictionary of Tumbalá, Chiapas with dialectal variations from Tila and Sabanilla]. Serie de vocabularios y diccionarios indígenas "Mariano Silva y Aceves", No. 121. Emily Stairs (electronic reproduction with March 2005 corrections, 2nd ed.). Coyoacán, D.F.: Instituto Lingüístico de Verano. ISBN 968-31-0291-3. OCLC 42692322. 
Coon, Jessica (2010). "Complementation in Chol (Mayan): A Theory of Split Ergativity" (electronic version). Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Retrieved 2010-07-15.  [includes a grammatical sketch of the language]
Schumann, Otto Gálvez (1973). La lengua Chol de Tila (Chiapas). UNAM. .
Warkentin, Viola; Ruby Scott (1980). Gramática Ch'ol. Summer Institute of Linguistics. 

External links[edit]