Daza language

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Not to be confused with Dazawa language.
"Goran language" redirects here. It is not to be confused with Gorani language.
Native to Chad, Niger, Sudan, Libya
Region Chad, BET Region, bahr el Gazel Region, eastern Niger
Ethnicity Daza people/Gouran people
Native speakers
380,000 (2006–2007)[1]
Language codes
ISO 639-3 dzg
Glottolog daza1242[2]
Linguasphere 02-BAA-ab

Daza (also known as Dazaga) is the language of the Daza people of northern Chad. The Daza are also known as the Gouran(Gorane) in Chad.[1] Dazaga is spoken by about 380,000 people primarily in the Djurab desert region and the Tibesti Mountains of Chad (330,000 speakers) and in the eastern Niger, near N'guigmi and to the north (50,000 speakers). It is also spoken to a smaller extent in Libya and in Sudan where there is a community of 3000 speakers in Omdurman. There's also a small diaspora community working in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. The two primary dialects of the Dazaga language are Daza and Kara, but there are several other mutually intelligible dialects including Kaga, Kanobo, Taruge and Azza as well. It is closely related to the Tedaga language, spoken by the Teda, the other[who?] Toubou people who reside primarily in the Tibesti Mountains of Northern Chad and in Southern Libya near the city of Sabha.

Dazaga is a Nilo-Saharan language and a member of the Western Saharan branch of the Saharan subgroup which also contains the Kanuri language, Kanembu language and Tebu languages.[3] Tebu is further divided into Tedaga and Dazaga. The Eastern Saharan branch includes the Zaghawa language and Berti language.[4]


The dialects spoken in Chad and Niger have some French influence whereas the dialects spoken in Libya and Sudan have more of an Arabic influence. The Dazaga language is not a literary language and has a limited vocabulary. It adjusts to this by borrowing from other languages such as Arabic or French. For example, the word for "thank you" did not exist in Dazaga so the Arabic word "shokran" was incorporated into the language and is usually followed by the suffix "num" which acknowledges the second person. The majority of Dazaga speakers are bilingual in their native tongue along with either Arabic, French, Zaghawa, Hausa, Zarma, Kanuri or Tuareg.
The following tables contain words from the Daza dialect spoken in Omdurman, Sudan. This romanization is not standard.


English Dazaga English Dazaga
One Tron Eleven Murdai sa Tron
Two Jow Twelve Murdai sa Jow
Three Aguzo Thirteen Murdai sa Aguzo
Four Twzo Fourteen Murdai sa Twzo
Five Foo Fifteen Murdai sa Foo
Six Disi Sixteen Murdai sa Disi
Seven Troso Seventeen Murdai sa Troso
Eight Woso Eighteen Murdai sa Woso
Nine Yisi Nineteen Murdai sa Yisi
Ten Murdum Twenty Digiram
Thirty Murtta Aguzo Fifty Murtta Foo
Forty Murtta Twzo Hundred Kidri

Basic words and phrases[edit]

English Dazaga English Dazaga
Man Anji Good Morning Wasa Nisira
Woman Ari Good Night Kalar Dizoo
Family Ama Yaga Thank you Shukran Num
Brother Dagi My name is... Tan Sortango
Sister Duroo What is your name? Sornuma Jaa?
Father Abaa How are you? Inta wWsura?
Mother Ayi I am well Kala Layy or Tan Wasu
Friend Laa Please Alano
Life Dina Country Ni
Death Nusw Religion Din


  1. ^ a b Daza at Ethnologue (18th ed., 2015)
  2. ^ Nordhoff, Sebastian; Hammarström, Harald; Forkel, Robert; Haspelmath, Martin, eds. (2013). "Dazaga". Glottolog. Leipzig: Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology. 
  3. ^ Greenberg, Joseph H. 1963. The languages of Africa. International Journal of American Linguistics 29.1. Repr. The Hague: Mouton, 1966.
  4. ^ Cyffer, Norbert. 2000. Linguistic properties of the Saharan languages. Areal and Genetic Factors in Language Classification and Description: Africa South of the Sahara, ed. by Petr Zima, 30-59. Lincom Studies in African Linguistics 47. München: Lincom Europa

External links[edit]

  • Relative Clauses in Dazaga [1]