Iraqw (Kángw Iraqw)

Iraqw is a Cushitic language spoken in northern Tanzania, mainly in the Manyara, Arusha, Singida and Dodoma regions. In 2009 there were about 603,000 speakers of Iraqw, which is also known as Erokh, Iraku, Iraqu, Kiiraqw, Mbulu or Mbulunge.

A spelling system for Iraqw was developed by Christian missionaries from Norway in the 1990s, and parts of the Bible have been translated into Iraqw. An older spelling system, known as traditional spelling, is also used.

Iraqw alphabet

Iraqw alphabet


Download an alphabet chart for Iraqw (Excel)

Sample text in Iraqw

Iimu/uungo Looa doori nee yaamu ngiwa tléhh, yaamu i slaqso ó konʾaaká, slám awa gaa wasl. Yaamu kina tuntuúk nee tlawi. Giwti iloodáʾ baraá tlawi gina tuntúk, tam gwa/ateema nina i kahhiyáʾ. Nee Qeeruú Looa i gawaá daanduú maʾáy waá malelee/imiit. Looa iri óʾ, "Gwa/ateema i deeruutiye". Nee gwa/ateema niri deeruutiyéʾ.


In the beginning God created heaven and earth. The earth was formless and empty, and darkness covered the deep water. The spirit of God was hovering over the water. Then God said, "Let there be light!" So there was light.


Sample videos in Iraqw

Information about Iraqw | Numbers


Information about Iraqw

Cushitic languages

Afaan-Oromo, Afar, Awngi, Beja, Blin, Daasanach, Gawwada, Hadiyya, Iraqw, Sidama, Somali, Waata, Xamtanga

Languages written with the Latin alphabet

Page last modified: 02.10.23


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