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Hadiyya language information

Native toEthiopia
RegionHadiya Zone of Southern Nations, Nationalities, and People's Region
Native speakers
1,300,000 (2007 census)[1]
Language family
  • Cushitic
    • Highland East Cushitic
      • Hadiyya
  • Hadiyya
  • Soro
  • Leemo
Writing system
Latin, Ge’ez
Language codes
ISO 639-3hdy
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Hadiyya (speakers call it Hadiyyisa, others sometimes call it Hadiyigna, Adiya, Adea, Adiye, Hadia, Hadiya, Hadya) is the language of the Hadiya people of Ethiopia. It is a Highland East Cushitic language of the Afroasiatic family. Most speakers live in the Hadiya Zone of the Southern Nations, Nationalities, and People's Region (SNNPR).[2]

The closely related Libido language, located just to the north in the Mareko district of Gurage Zone, is very similar lexically, but has significant morphological differences. Hadiyya has a set of complex consonant phonemes consisting of a glottal stop and a sonorant: /ʔr/, /ʔj/, /ʔw/, /ʔl/.

In their book (English version 1999) Braukämper and Mishago compiled a reasonable size collection of the presently vanishing art of traditional songs of Hadiyya. The lyrics adhere to the strict rule of Hadiyya traditional poetry where rhythmical rhyming occurs at the beginning of the verse.[3]

The New Testament of the Christian Bible has been translated into Hadiyya, published by the Bible Society of Ethiopia in 1993. It was originally done using the traditional Ethiopic syllabary. A later printing used the Latin alphabet.

  1. ^ Ethiopia 2007 Census
  2. ^ Simons, Gary F. and Charles D. Fennig (eds.). 2018. Ethnologue: Languages of the World. Twenty-first edition. Dallas, Texas: SIL International. Online version:
  3. ^ Braukämper, Ulrich and Tilahun Mishago. 1999. Praise and Teasing: Narrative Songs of the Hadiyya in Southern Ethiopia. Frankfurt: Frobenius Institute. Page 116 has a good map of Hadiyya dialects and locations.

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