|1.4 million (1994)|
khg – Khams
kbg – Khamba
tsk – Tseku
Khams Tibetan (Wylie: Khams skad, THL: Khamké) is the Tibetic language used by the majority of the people in Kham, which is now divided between the eastern part of Tibet Autonomous Region, the southern part of Qinghai, the western part of Sichuan, and the northwestern part of Yunnan, China. It is one of the five main spoken Tibetic languages, the other four being Central Tibetan language, Amdo, Ladakhi and Dzongkha. These Tibetic languages share the same written script, but their pronunciations, vocabularies and grammars are different. These differences may have emerged due to geographical isolation of the regions of Tibet. Khams Tibetan is used alongside Standard Tibetan and Amdo Tibetan in broadcasting Khams Tibetan is not mutually intelligible with other Tibetic languages.
Like Central Tibetan, Khams Tibetan is a tonal language.
There are five dialects of Khams Tibetan proper:
- Central Khams, spoken in Dêgê County and Chamdo
- Southern Khams, spoken in the Diqing Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture. There are several subdialects due to the mountainous terrain, as well as contact with neighboring language communities for trade.
- Northern or Northeastern Khams, spoken in Nangqên County and Yushu Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture
- Eastern Khams, spoken in Kangding
- Hor, or Western Khams, spoken in Nagqu Prefecture
- The Gêrzê dialect is sometimes considered Western Khams
These have relatively low mutual intelligibility, but are close enough that they are usually considered a single language. Khamba and Tseku are more divergent, but classified with Khams by Tournadre (2013).
- George van Driem, Languages of the Himalayas, p 892
- Khams at Ethnologue (18th ed., 2015)
Khamba at Ethnologue (18th ed., 2015)
Tseku at Ethnologue (18th ed., 2015)
- Hammarström, Harald; Forkel, Robert; Haspelmath, Martin; Bank, Sebastian, eds. (2016). "Khams–Hor". Glottolog 2.7. Jena: Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History.
- van Driem, George L. (1993). "Language Policy in Bhutan" (PDF). London: SOAS. Retrieved 2011-01-18.
- N. Tournadre (2005) "L'aire linguistique tibétaine et ses divers dialectes." Lalies, 2005, n°25, p. 7–56 
- A Bibliography of Tibetan Linguistics
- A grammar of the Tibetan Dege (Sde dge) dialect (Introduction) - Häsler, Katrin Louise. 1999.
- The Tibetan Language School of Sichuan Province
- www.zangthal.co.uk Kham dialect notes
|Wikibooks has a book on the topic of: Research on Tibetan Languages: A Bibliography|