Southwest Tanna language

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Southwest Tanna
Native to Vanuatu
Region Tanna Island
Native speakers
4,500 (2011)[1]
Language codes
ISO 639-3 nwi
Glottolog sout2869[2]

Southwest Tanna is a dialect chain spoken on the southwestern coast of Tanna Island in Vanuatu. Lynch (1982) names three major dialects: Nivhaal in the north-west of the language area (spelt "Nauvhal" in publicity for the 2015 film Tanna), Nivai in the south-west, and Nelpwaai in the north-east.[3]


  1. ^ Southwest Tanna at Ethnologue (18th ed., 2015)
  2. ^ Hammarström, Harald; Forkel, Robert; Haspelmath, Martin, eds. (2017). "Southwest Tanna". Glottolog 3.0. Jena, Germany: Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History. 
  3. ^ John Lynch (1982). "South-West Tanna Grammar Outline and Vocabulary". Papers in Linguistics of Melanesia. 4. 

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