Southern Altai language

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Southern Altai
Oirot, Oyrot (before 1948)
тÿштÿк алтай тил, tüştük altay til
Native toRussia
RegionAltai Republic
Native speakers
55,720 (2010)[1]
Language codes
ISO 639-2alt
ISO 639-3alt
ELPSouthern Altai

Southern Altai (also known as Oirot, Oyrot, Altai and Altai proper) is a Turkic language spoken in the Altai Republic, a federal subject of Russia located in Southern Siberia on the border with Mongolia and China. The language has some mutual intelligibility with the Northern Altai language, leading to the two being traditionally considered as a single language. According to modern classifications—at least since the middle of the 20th century—they are considered to be two separate languages.[5] Due to certain similarities with Kyrgyz, it has been grouped as the Kyrgyz–Kipchak subgroup with the Kypchak languages which is within the Turkic language family.[2][3]

A man, named Dmitry, speaking Southern Altai.

The written Altai is based on Southern Altai. According to some reports, however, it is rejected by Northern Altai children. Dialects include Altai Proper and Talangit.[6]


  1. ^ "Информационные материалы об окончательных итогах Всероссийской переписи населения 2010 года". Russian Federal State Statistics Service. 2010. Retrieved 23 July 2018.
  2. ^ a b Baskakov, N. A. (1958). "La Classification des Dialectes de la Langue Turque d'Altaï". Acta Orientalia Academiae Scientiarum Hungaricae (in French). 8: 9–15. ISSN 0001-6446.
  3. ^ a b Kormushin, I. V. (2018). "Алтайский язык" [Altai language]. Большая российская энциклопедия/Great Russian Encyclopedia Online (in Russian).
  4. ^ Tekin, Tâlat (January 1989). "A New Classification of the Chuvash-Turkic Languages". Erdem. 5 (13): 129–139. ISSN 1010-867X.
  5. ^ Nikolay Baskakov (1958). The Altai language. Moscow: Nauka.
  6. ^ Raymond G. Gordon, Jr, ed. 2005. Ethnologue: Languages of the World. 15th edition. Dallas: Summer Institute of Linguistics.

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