Gurung language

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Tamu Kyi
Native to Nepal
Ethnicity Gurung people
Native speakers
350,000 (2007)[1]
Tibetan script, Devanagari script
Official status
Official language in


Language codes
ISO 639-3 gvr
Glottolog guru1261[2]
Selected ethnic groups of Nepal; Bhotia, Sherpa, Thakali, Gurung, Kiranti, Rai, Limbu, Nepal Bhasa, Pahari, Tamang

Gurung (also, Tamu Kyi, Devanagari:तमु क्यी) is spoken by the Gurung people in two dialects with limited mutual intelligibility. Total number of all Gurung speakers in Nepal is 227,918 (1991 census). However, a distinction should be made between Gurung as an ethnic group and the number of people who actually speak the language.

Nepali, Nepal's official language, is an Indo-European language, whereas Gurung is a Sino-Tibetan language. Gurung are recognized as an official nationality by the Government of Nepal.


Some miscellaneous grammatical features of the Gurung languages are;

Phonetically, Gurung languages are tonal.

Writing system[edit]

Gurung languages did not originally have a script and are therefore written in the Tibetan script which was adopted when the Gurung peoples embraced Vajrayana Buddhism, particularly of the Nyingma school. Supposedly, Devanāgarī script had also been used but only to a limited effect in approximating their phonetics.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Gurung at Ethnologue (18th ed., 2015)
  2. ^ Nordhoff, Sebastian; Hammarström, Harald; Forkel, Robert; Haspelmath, Martin, eds. (2013). "Gurung". Glottolog. Leipzig: Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology.