Dagaare language

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Native toGhana, Burkina Faso
EthnicityDagaaba people
Native speakers
1.1 million (2001–2003)[1]
Latin (Dagaare alphabet)
Dagaare Braille
Language codes
ISO 639-3Variously:
dga – Southern Dagaare
dgd – Dagaari Dioula
dgi – Northern Dagara
Glottologsout2789  Central Dagaare
daga1272  Dagaari Dioula
nort2780  Northern Dagara
Languages of Burkina Faso.png
Majority areas of Northern Dagara speakers, in red, on a map of Burkina Faso.

Dagaare is the maternal language of the Dagaaba people in Ghana and Burkina Faso. It has been described as a dialect continuum that also includes Waale and Birifor.

Ethnologue divides Dagaare into three languages:

  • Southern/Central Dagaare language, which is spoken mainly in Ghana
  • Northern Dagara language, which is spoken mainly in Burkina Faso
  • Dagaari Dioula, which is spoken mainly in Burkina Faso, and has significant influence from the genetically unrelated Dioula language


The consonant and vowel sounds in the Dagaare languages:


Front Central Back
Close i u
ɪ ʊ
Close-mid e o
Open-mid ɛ ɔ
Open a


Bilabial Labio-
Alveolar Post-
Palatal Labio-
Velar Glottal
Stop voiceless p t k ʔ
voiced b d ɡ
Affricate voiceless t͡ɕ k͡p
voiced d͡ʑ ɡ͡b
Fricative voiceless f s h
voiced v z
implosive ʼh
Nasal plain m n ɲ ŋ͡m ŋ
implosive ʼm
Lateral plain l
implosive ʼl
Approximant j w

Allophones of /d, ɡ/ include [r, ɣ].[2]


  1. ^ Southern Dagaare at Ethnologue (18th ed., 2015)
    Dagaari Dioula at Ethnologue (18th ed., 2015)
    Northern Dagara at Ethnologue (18th ed., 2015)
  2. ^ Bodomo, Adams (1997). The Structure of Dagaare. Stanford University.

External links[edit]