Medumba language

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Region Cameroon
Ethnicity Bamileke
Native speakers
(210,000 cited 1991)[1]
  • Batongtou
Language codes
ISO 639-3 byv
Glottolog medu1238[2]

Medumba (Mə̀dʉ̂mbɑ̀ mə̀ɟʝʉ̂ᵐbɑ̀) is a Grassfields language of Cameroon. The people who speak it originate from the Nde division of the West Region of the country, with their main settlements in Bangangté, Bakong, Bangoulap, Bahouoc, Bagnoun and Tonga. It is one major Bamileke language.

Educational materials, literature and dictionaries for the language are produced by the Comité de Langue pour l'Etude et la Production des Œuvres Bamiléké-Medumba (CEPOM), based in Bangangte.


Medumba is famous for the extent to which tone shapes grammar. Although having only a two-tone contrast, namely High (H) and Low (L), surface tone melodies are conditioned by a variety of phonological, morphological, syntactic, semantic, and pragmatic factors.


Medumba phonology includes both segmental and tonal phonology.

Consonant Inventory[edit]

Medumba is described by Voohoeve (1965) as having 14 consonants.

Vowel Inventory[edit]

Tone Inventory[edit]


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