Uzbek, Northern

A language of Uzbekistan

ISO 639-3: uzn

Population 16,539,000 in Uzbekistan (1995 UN). Population total all countries: 18,795,591.
Region Uzbekistan and throughout Asian republics of the former USSR. East of the Amu Darya and around the southern Aral Sea. Possibly in Munich, Germany. Also spoken in Australia, China, Israel, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia (Asia), Tajikistan, Turkey (Asia), Turkmenistan, Ukraine, USA.
Alternate names   Özbek
Dialects Karluk (Qarlug), Kipchak (Kypchak), Oghuz. Distinct from Southern Uzbek of Afghanistan, Pakistan and Turkey. Russian influences in grammar, use of loanwords, script. Oghuz may be a dialect of Khorasani Turkish (see Turkey) rather than Uzbek.
Classification Altaic, Turkic, Eastern
Language use Official language. Vigorous. Turks of Fergana and Samarkand speak Uzbek. There are Uzbek-speaking Gypsy communities in Russian central Asia. All ages. Children speak Uzbek at home. Positive language attitude. 49% of speakers also use Russian, but rural people have low proficiency.
Language development Literacy rate in second language: High. Taught in primary and secondary schools. Cyrillic script; Arabic, Sogdian, Roman, and Cyrillic scripts in China. Radio programs. TV. Dictionary. Grammar. NT: 1992–1995.
Comments People are about one-third urbanized. Much Persian influence in language and culture. Patrilineal. 'Sart' is an obsolete name for sedentary Uzbek, possibly those who are ethnically Tajik. SOV; has lost its historical vowel harmony and its vowel system now resembles that of Tajiki. Valleys. Desert, semiarid. Agriculturalists: cotton, fruit, vegetables, grain; pastoralists: sheep; silk production; technicians, professionals, industrial workers, communications, medicine, educators, administrators. Muslim (Hanafi Sunni).

Also spoken in: China
Language name   Uzbek, Northern
Population 5,000 in China (2000 Aixinjueluo Chentgshiliang).
Region North and west Xinjiang; Urumqi, Kashgar, and Yining (Ghulja) cities, especially Ili.
Alternate names   Ozbek, Ouzbek, Usbeki, Usbaki
Dialects Andizhan, Tashkent, Samarkand, Fergana.
Language use Vigorous. Some speakers of other languages in the area can also speak Uzbek. All domains. All ages. Positive language attitude. They use Uyghur and Kazakh as literary languages. Some also speak Chinese.
Language development Literacy rate in second language: 79%.


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An official nationality. Desert, oases. Agriculturalists; some traders; merchants; animal husbandry; government workers; teachers; medical doctors. Muslim (Sunni).