Tu

A language of China

ISO 639-3: mjg
 

Population 152,000 (1999 Li Keyu). Very few monolinguals. Ethnic population: 190,000.
Region East Qinghai Province, Huzhu Tu Autonomous County; Gansu Province.
Alternate names   Mongour, Monguor, Mongor
Dialects Huzhu (Mongghul, Halchighol, Naringhol), Minhe (Mangghuer). Said to be the most divergent of all the Mongolian languages. Intelligibility is reported to be low between dialects. Dongren speech of Huzhu is considered to be the standard.
Classification Altaic, Mongolian, Eastern, Mongour
Language use Positive language attitude. Most can also speak Chinese or Tibetan. Written Chinese or Tibetan are used. 30,000 people have shifted to Chinese.
Language development Literacy rate in second language: 42%. About 2,000 can read it, 200 can write it. Roman script. Magazines. Films. Dictionary. Grammar.
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Part of the Tu nationality. An unwritten language. SOV; postpositions; genitives, adjectives, numerals and relative clauses precede head noun; question word appears in the position of the thing being questioned; verbs may bear up to three or four suffixes; word order distinguishes subject and direct object; topicalized noun phrases are often fronted; case is marked by enclitic postpositions; verbs are marked for the pragmatic category of perspective (a binary distinction between the perspective of the speaker and that of anyone else); causatives are extremely common; syllables (C)(C)V(C) (clusters must involve a glide in Mangghuer, while Mongghul allows a wider range of onset clusters); stress falls on the final syllable of a phonological word; no vowel harmony (in Mangghuer). Mountain slope, riverine. Agriculturalists. Buddhist (Lamaist), traditional religion.