Tai Aiton language

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Tai Aiton
Native to India
Region Assam
Ethnicity Tai Aiton people
Native speakers
1,500 (2006)[1]
Burmese script
Official status
Official language in
Regulated by Language Academy
Language codes
ISO 639-3 aio
Glottolog aito1238[2]

The Tai Aiton language is spoken in Assam, India (in the Dhonsiri Valley and the south bank of the Brahmaputra). It is currently classified as a threatened language, with less than two thousand speakers worldwide.


The Tai Aiton language is a part of the Southwestern branch of the Tai family of languages. There are three other actively spoken languages in this branch: Khamti, Phake, and Khamyang.[3]


According to the oral and written records of the Tai Aiton people, they originated from a place named Khao-Khao Mao-Lung, a Burmese state near the Chinese border.[4]

Geographic Distribution[edit]

Tai Aiton is spoken predominantly in India, in the northeastern state of Assam.

According to Morey (2005), Tai Aiton is spoken in the following villages:

Tai Aiton Villages (Morey 2005)
Tai name Translation of Tai name Assamese/English name District
baan3 nam3 thum3 Flood village (บ้านน้ำท่วม) Duburoni Golaghat
baan3 sum3 Sour village (บ้านส้ม) Tengani Golaghat
baan3 hui1 luŋ1 Big fruit village Borhola Golaghat
baan3 hin1 Stone village (บ้านหิน) Ahomani Karbi Anglong
baan3 luŋ1 Big village (บ้านหลง) Bargaon Karbi Anglong
baan3 nɔi2/dɔi2 Hill village (บ้านดอย) Sukhihola Karbi Anglong
baan3 saai2 Sand village (บ้านทราย) Kalyoni Karbi Anglong
baan3 saai2 Sand village (บ้านทราย) Balipathar Karbi Anglong
baan3 saai2 Sand village (บ้านทราย) Jonapathar Lohit

Buragohain (1998) reports a total of 260 Tai Aiton households, comprising a total population of 2,155.

Tai Aiton Villages (Buragohain 1998)
Village District Year founded No. of houses Population
Ahomani Karbi Anglong 1939 31 267
Baragaon Karbi Anglong 1835 39 359
Balipathar Karbi Anglong 1898 59 528
Chakihola Karbi Anglong unknown 18 180
Kaliyani Karbi Anglong Man era 1239 15 154
Borhola Golaghat 1836 26 235
Dubarani Golaghat unknown 43 334
Tengani Golaghat unknown 19 150
Jonapathar Lohit 1950s 15 148



  1. ^ Tai Aiton at Ethnologue (18th ed., 2015)
  2. ^ Hammarström, Harald; Forkel, Robert; Haspelmath, Martin; Bank, Sebastian, eds. (2016). "Aiton". Glottolog 2.7. Jena: Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History. 
  3. ^ Morey, Stephen. "Tonal change in the Tai languages of Northeast India." Linguistics of the Tibeto-Burman Area 28.2 (2005): 139-202.
  4. ^  Burgohain, Joya. "The Aitons: Some aspects of their life and culture." (2013).
  • Buragohain, Yehom. 1998. "Some notes on the Tai Phakes of Assam, in Shalardchai Ramitanondh Virada Somswasdi and Ranoo Wichasin." In Tai, pp. 126–143. Chiang Mai, Thailand: Chiang Mai University.
  • Morey, Stephen. 2005. The Tai languages of Assam: a grammar and texts. Canberra: Pacific Linguistics.

External links[edit]