Deori language

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Native toIndia
RegionAssam, Arunachal Pradesh
Native speakers
Language codes
ISO 639-3der

Deori[3] is a Sino-Tibetan language spoken by the Deori people of Assam and Arunachal Pradesh. Only one clan of the Deori tribe, the Dibongya, has retained the language, the others having shifted to Assamese, but among the Dibongya it is vigorous. It is related to the Bodo-Garo languages. It was earlier known as Deori-Chutia language and was spoken by the entire Chutiya tribe and was the original language of Upper Assam.[4] According to PRT Gurdon(1903), the Deori-Chutia language is very similar to the Moran dialect of Assamese and it can well be stated that the Moran language was nothing but a transitionary language between Deori and Assamese language for the Chutias, Morans, and a section of Deoris(Tengaponia, Borgoya).

The Deori and their language are frequently called Jimochaya. The Deoris are traditionally priests of the Chutiya kingdom.

Deori is spoken in Lohit district, Arunachal Pradesh, and in Lakhimpur district, Dhemaji district, Tinsukia district, and Jorhat district of Assam. It was once the original language of Upper Assam.

The Deori language is one of the most influential languages which has helped develop the Assamese language in Upper Assam. In the early centuries, the Deori language mixed with Prakrit to give rise to a lingua franca which later formed the Assamese language.

The Chutia/Deori word for water is "Di/Dji", which apparently forms the first syllable of all major rivers of Upper Assam including Dibang, Disang, Dikhou, Dikrong, Dikarai, Dihing, Digaru, Difolu, which shows that this group of people were the dominant tribe in the entire region with their seat in Sadiya, the earliest known power and civilisation of Chutias.[5]

Some of the words of Deori language present in Assamese are:

Deori word Assamese word Meaning
Khang Khong Anger
Hiloi Hiloi Gun
Dong Dong Irrigation Channel
Dekagu Deka Young man
Kalahaas Kalahas Alkaline prepared from banana stem
Kharisa Kharisa Bamboo Shoot
Bisu Bihu Folk Festival of Assam
Anali Anali Troubles
Tangan Tangan Beating Stick
Boutar Batar Weather
Haphalu Haphalu Out Hill
Jakhala Jakhala Ladder
Hoja Hoja Simple
Dokhar Dokhar Piece of cut off
Mena Mena Crooked
Habang Hebang Silly
Bonda Bonda Male cat
Chang Chang Platform
Lapha Lapha A type of green-leafy be
Khaofi Ufi Dandruff
Aapa Aapa Boys
Medali Madoli A type of Assamese Jewelry


  1. ^ Deori at Ethnologue (18th ed., 2015)
  2. ^ Hammarström, Harald; Forkel, Robert; Haspelmath, Martin, eds. (2017). "Deori". Glottolog 3.0. Jena, Germany: Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History.
  3. ^ [1]
  4. ^ Brown, William Barclays (2015) [1895]. An Outline grammar of the Deori Chutiya language spoken in Upper Assam. Shillong.
  5. ^ Endle 1911, p. 4.