Languages of Burkina Faso

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A map of major languages in Burkina Faso.
Commercial signs in French in Ouagadougou.
French is the principal language of instruction in Burkinabé schools.

Burkina Faso is a multilingual country. An estimated 69 languages are spoken there,[1] of which about 60 are indigenous. The Mossi language (Mossi: Mòoré) is spoken by about 40% of the population, mainly in the central region around the capital, Ouagadougou, along with other, closely related Gurunsi languages scattered throughout Burkina.

In the west, Mande languages are widely spoken, the most predominant being Dyula (also spelled Jula or Dioula), others including Bobo, Samo, and Marka. The Fula language (Fula: Fulfulde, French: Peuhl) is widespread, particularly in the north. The Gourmanché language is spoken in the east, while the Bissa language is spoken in the south.

The official language is French, which was introduced during the colonial period. French is the principal language of administrative, political and judicial institutions, public services, and the press. It is the only language for laws, administration and courts.

Education for the deaf in Burkina uses American Sign Language, introduced by the deaf American missionary Andrew Foster, though there is also an indigenous urban sign language in Ouagadougou.

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