The Kordofanian languages are a geographic grouping of half a dozen language families spoken in the Nuba Mountains of the Kurdufan, Sudan. In 1963 Joseph Greenberg added them to the Niger–Congo family, creating his Niger–Kordofanian proposal. The Kordofanian languages have not been shown to be more distantly related than other branches of Niger–Congo, however, nor have they been shown to constitute a valid group. Today the Kadu languages are excluded and the others usually included in Niger–Congo proper.
Roger Blench notes that the Talodi and Heiban families have the noun class systems characteristic of the Atlantic–Congo core of Niger–Congo, but that the two Katla languages have no trace of ever having had such a system, whereas the Kadu languages and some of the Rashad languages appear to have acquired noun classes as part of a Sprachbund rather than having inherited them. He concludes that Talodi and Heiban are core Niger–Congo whereas Katla and Rashad form a peripheral branch along the lines of Mande.
Lafofa (Tegem) was for a time classified with Talodi, but appears to be a separate branch of Niger–Congo.
The number of Rashad languages, also called Tegali–Tagoi, varies among descriptions, from two (Williamson & Blench 2000), three (Ethnologue), to eight (Blench ms). Tagoi has a noun-class system like the Atlantic–Congo languages—apparently borrowed,—while Tegali does not.
The two Katla languages have no trace of ever having had a Niger–Congo-type noun-class system.
- Herman Bell. 1995. The Nuba Mountains: Who Spoke What in 1976?. Being a study of the published results from a major project of the Institute of African and Asian Studies: the Language Survey of the Nuba Mountains.
- Roger Blench. Unpublished. Does Kordofanian constitute a group and if not, where does its languages fit into Niger-Congo?
- Roger Blench. Unpublished. Kordofanian and Niger–Congo: new and revised lexical evidence.
- Roger Blench, 2011, Should Kordofanian be split up?, Nuba Hills Conference, Leiden
- P. A. and D. N. MacDiarmid. 1931. "The languages of the Nuba Mountains." Sudan Notes and Records 14: 149-162.
- Carl Meinhof. 1915-1919. "Sprachstudien im egyptischen Sudan". Zeitschrift für Kolonialsprachen 9-9. "1. Tagoy." 6: 164-161. "2. Tumale". 6:182-205. "11. Tegele." 7:110-131. "12. Rashad." 7:132.
- Thilo C. Schadeberg. 1981a. A survey of Kordofanian. SUGIA Beiheft 1-2. Hamburg:Helmut Buske Verlag.
- Thilo C. Schadeberg. 1981b. "Das Kordofanische". Die Sprachen Afrikas. Band 1: Niger–Kordofanisch, ed. by Bernt Heine, T. C. Schadeberg, Ekkehard Wolff, pp. 117–28 SUGIA Beiheft 1-2. Hamburg:Helmut Buske Verlag.
- Thilo C. Schadeberg. 1981c. "The classification of the Kadugli language group". Nilo-Saharan, ed. by T. C. Schadeberg and M. Lionel Bender, pp. 291–305. Dordrecht: Foris Publications.
- Brenda Z. Seligmann. 1910-11. "Note on the language of the Nubas of Southern Kordofan." Zeitschrift für Kolonialsprachen 1:167-188.
- Roland C. Stevenson. 1956-57. "A survey of the phonetics and grammatical structure of the Nuba Mountains languages, with particular reference to Otoro, Katcha, and Nyimang." Afrika und Übersee 40:73-84, 93-115; 41:27-65, 117-152, 171-196.
- A. N. Tucker and M. A. Bryan. 1956. The Non-Bantu Languages of North-Eastern Africa. (Handbook of African Languages, Part III.) Oxford University Press: London.
- A. N. Tucker and M. A. Bryan. 1966. Linguistic Analyses/The Non-Bantu Languages of North-Eastern Africa. (Handbook of African Languages.) Oxford University Press: London.
- Lorenz Tutschek. 1848. "Über die Tumale-Sprache." Gelehrte Anzeigen, herausgegeben von Mitgliedern der k. bayer. Akademie der Wissenschaften. Nrs. 91-93; Spalten 729-52. (=Bulletin der königl. Akademie der Wissenschaften. Nrs. 29-31.)
- Lorenz Tutschek. 1848-50. "On the Tumali language". Proceedings of the Philological Society for 1846-47 and 1847-48. Vol 3:239-54. Proceedings of the Philological Society for 1848-49 and 1849-50. Vol. 4:138-9.
- Gerrit Dimmendaal, 2008. "Language Ecology and Linguistic Diversity on the African Continent", Language and Linguistics Compass 2/5:842.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Kordofanian languages.|