Zhuang, Southern

A language of China

ISO 639-3: ccy

Population 4,000,000 (1990 Svantesson). About 50% monolingual. Population includes Yongnan 1,400,000, Zuojiang 1,400,000, De-Jing 980,000, Yan-Guang (not available), Wen-Ma 100,000.
Region Southwest Guangxi and southern Wenshan Zhuang-Miao Autonomous Prefecture of southeastern Yunnan Province. Yongnan is south of the Yongjiang River from Yongning in the east to Long'an in the west; Zuojiang is in southwestern Guangxi around Tiandeng, Daxin, Chongzuo, Longzhou, Pingxiang, and Ningming, down to the Viet Nam border; De-Jing is in southwestern Guangxi around Debao, Jingxi, and Napo, down to the Yunnan and Viet Nam borders; Wen-Ma is in southeastern Yunnan Province south of Wenshan and Malipo, but excluding an area west of Maguan; Yan-Guang is in southeastern Yunnan Province north of Wenshan and Malipo, including Yanshan and north to Guangnan, and west of Maguan along the Viet Nam border.
Dialects Yongnan (Yungnan), Zuojiang (Tsochiang), De-Jing (Teching), Yan-Guang (Yenkuang), Wen-Ma (Wenma). Dialect continuum into Viet Nam. Speakers of the varieties between the Youjiang River and the Viet Nam border (particularly Zuojiang and De-Jing) refer to the language as 'Tho', share many regional characteristics, and are intelligible with the Tay ("Tho") of Viet Nam. The Yan-Guang and De-Jing varieties are intelligible with Nung (and Tay) of Viet Nam, and refer to their language as 'Nong'. Cao Lan may be close to the Yan-Guang dialect (if found in China—that name is not used) of Viet Nam. Lexical similarity 70% between dialects, 65% with Northern Zhuang.
Classification Tai-Kadai, Kam-Tai, Be-Tai, Tai-Sek, Tai, Central
Language use Vigorous. Speakers of other languages in the area can speak it. All domains. All ages. Speakers also use Chinese, Hmong, Mien, or Dong.


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Part of the Zhuang nationality. Similar to Northern Zhuang, but has aspirated stop series. Plains. Agriculturalists; animal husbandry. Traditional religion, Daoist.