Santali language

Spoken in

  • Austro -Asiatic languages Munda languages North Munda languages Santali




Santali is the most spoken language of the Munda subgroup of the Austro-Asiatic language family.

The Speaker of the Santali belong to the Adivasi tribe of the Santal. Most live in eastern and northeastern India, especially in the states of Jharkhand, Orissa, West Bengal, Bihar and Assam. Santali is one of the 22 officially recognized languages ​​in India. In the Indian census of 2001, some 6.5 million Santali speakers were registered. It also has around 160,000 speakers in Bangladesh and 40,000 in Nepal.

The Norwegian Paul Olaf Bodding translated the Bible into the Santalisprache (1914 completed ), thus establishing the Latin alphabet, which is still commonly used. In addition, Santali is written depending on the region but also in Bengali script, the Oriya script or Devanagari. Since the variety of writing systems used hindered the development and standardization of the language, the teacher Pandit Raghunath Murmu in 1925 created its own, the phonetic peculiarities of Santali fairly nascent alphabet, which is known as Ol Chiki or Ol Cemet '. In contrast to the Indian Abugida fonts, this is how the Latin alphabet, a pure alphabetic writing. The problem for the dissemination of this alphabet, however, the low literacy rate among the Santal population that is under 28 percent.