Gedeo language

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Native to Ethiopia
Region Gedeo Zone, Guji Zone
Native speakers
980,000 (2007 census)[1]
Language codes
ISO 639-3 drs
Glottolog gede1246[2]

Gedeo is the name of a Highland East Cushitic language of the Afro-Asiatic family spoken in south central Ethiopia. Alternate names for the language include Derasa, Deresa, Darassa, Geddeo, Derasanya, Darasa. It is spoken by the Gedeo people, who live in the highland area, southwest of Dila and east of Lake Abaya.[3]

The languages has SOV word order. Verbs are marked for person, number, and gender of subject. Verbs are marked for voice: active, causative, middle, and passive.

The New Testament was published in the Gedeo language in 1986, using the Ethiopian syllabary.


  1. ^ Gedeo at Ethnologue (18th ed., 2015)
  2. ^ Nordhoff, Sebastian; Hammarström, Harald; Forkel, Robert; Haspelmath, Martin, eds. (2013). "Gedeo". Glottolog. Leipzig: Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology. 
  3. ^ Raymond G. Gordon, Jr, ed. 2005. Ethnologue: Languages of the World. 15th edition. Dallas: Summer Institute of Linguistics.


  • Wedekind, Klaus. 1980. "Sidamo, Gedeo (Derasa), Burji: Phonological differences and likenesses," Journal of Ethiopian Studies 14: 131-76.
  • Wedekind, Klaus. 1985. "Gedeo (Derasa) verb morphology and morphophonemics," The verb morphophonemics of five highland east Cushitic languages, including Burji. Afrikanistische Arbeitspapiere 2. Cologne: Institut für Afrikanistik. Pages 82–109.

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