25 Most Endangered Languages In The World

Posted by , Updated on June 9, 2014

Countries around the world may boast of languages inherent to them alone, but the fact remains that if they do not do something about their own endangered languages, they may quietly go into extinction. There are many reasons why a certain language became endangered. It may be because the population who speaks the language is in physical danger due to natural disasters, war, and genocide but it can also be because the speakers are prevented from speaking the language due to political repression or cultural hegemony. Whatever the reason these are the 25 most endangered languages in the world.

Subscribe to List25
20

Dumi

Dumi

This is a Kiranti language mainly spoken in the area around the Tap and Rava rivers and in the mountains of Khotang District in Nepal. With only 8 people speaking the language, which is a part of the Tibeto-Burman language family, this is considered to be critically endangered. Preservation of the language has been made by creating a dictionary, as well as a number of books written about the language’s grammar and syntax.

19

Dusner

Dusner

The spoken tribal language in the Wandamen Bay area Cenderawasih in Papua, Indonesia, this language is critically endangered as it was reported that there are only three remaining speakers of this language, and they were reported to be injured during natural disasters. Linguists from the University of Oxford are striving to preserve the Dusner language as it was reported that two of those remaining native speakers narrowly escaped death during a flood while the other one is living near a volcano when it erupted.

18

Kaixana

Kaixana

This language is said to be critically endangered with its sole remaining speaker, which is a 78-year old man named Raimundo Avelino who is residing in Limoeiro, a municipality of Japura in the state of Amazons. It was once spoken in a village near the banks of the Japura River until the Portuguese settlers took it over.

17

Kansa

Kansa

Kansa, a Siouan language of the Dheqihan group, was once spoken by the Kaw people of Oklahoma. However, its last native speaker, Walter Kekahbah, has died in 1983. It is a good thing that before he died, a linguist named Robert L. Rankin met Kekahbah, and other surviving native speakers like Ralph Pepper and Maud McCauley Rowe; and made an extensive recordings of the three to document the language and help the Kaw Nation to develop language learning materials.

16

Lemerig

Lemerig

This is an Oceanic language that is spoken in Vanuatu, an island situated in the southern part of the Pacific Ocean, which is about 1000 miles east of northern Australia. This language is not actively spoken anymore, as there are only 2 remaining speakers of the language as of 2008, making it critically endangered. Lemerig is known to consist of four different dialects and all of which are probably extinct.

SEE ALSO: 25 Most Expensive Things In The World »

NOW WATCH: 25 Psychology Hacks to Control (Almost) Any Situation

Subscribe to List25

Show Us Your Love
Join Over 2 Million+ List25 Fans