Gwandara language

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Native toNigeria
Native speakers
Language codes
ISO 639-3gwn

Gwandare is a West Chadic language, and the closest relative of Hausa. Its several dialects are spoken in northern Nigeria, predominantly in the north central region of Nigeria by about 30,000 people. They are found in large numbers in a resettlement town of New Karshi, Karu LGA, Nasarawa State. New Karshi has a Gwandara first class emir Muhammadu Bako III (PhD).

The Nimbia dialect has a duodecimal numeral system (they count in base 12), whereas other dialects, such as Karshi below, have decimal systems:[3]

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 ten eleven twelve
Nimbia da bi ugu furu biyar shide bo'o tager tanran gwom kwada tuni
Karshi da bi uku huru biyari shida bakwe takushi tara gom gom sha da gom sha bi

It is thought that Nimbia, which is isolated from the rest of Gwandare, acquired its duodecimal system from neighboring East Kainji languages. It is duodecimal even to powers of base twelve:

tuni mbe da 13 (dozen and one)
gume bi 24 (two dozen)
gume bi ni da 25 (two dozen and one)
gume kwada ni kwada 143 (eleven dozen and eleven)
wo 144 (gross)
wo bi 288 (two gross)


  1. ^ Gwandare at Ethnologue (18th ed., 2015)
  2. ^ Hammarström, Harald; Forkel, Robert; Haspelmath, Martin, eds. (2017). "Gwandara". Glottolog 3.0. Jena, Germany: Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History.
  3. ^ Matsushita, 'Decimal vs. Duodecimal'