Kanum language

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Region New Guinea
Native speakers
340 (1996)[1]
Language codes
ISO 639-3 Variously:
kcd – Ngkâlmpw Kanum
khd – Bädi Kanum
krz – Sota Kanum
kxq – Smärky Kanum
Glottolog kanu1280

Kanum is a language complex with difficult mutual intelligibility spoken by the Kanum people of New Guinea. Language varieties within Kanum have variously been referred to as Ngkâlmpw Kanum, Enkelembu, Kenume and Knwne.[2]

Kanum has a base-6 numeral system. For example, the numeral 200 is:

swabra ptae ynaoaemy ntamnao
5 6²s (36s) (and) 2 (and) 3×6


  1. ^ Ngkâlmpw Kanum at Ethnologue (18th ed., 2015)
    Bädi Kanum at Ethnologue (18th ed., 2015)
    Sota Kanum at Ethnologue (18th ed., 2015)
    Smärky Kanum at Ethnologue (18th ed., 2015)
  2. ^ Hammarström, Harald; Forkel, Robert; Haspelmath, Martin; Bank, Sebastian, eds. (2016). "Kanum language". Glottolog 2.7. Jena: Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History.