Kabyle is a Berber language with about 7-8 million speakers, most of whom live in Algeria, mainly in Kabylie in the north of the country. There are also some Kabyle speakers in France, Belgium, the USA and a number of other countries.
Kabyle was written with the Tifinagh alphabet until the 7th century. After that it was written with a version of the Arabic script. In the 18th century, a French ethnologist devised a way of writing the language with the Latin alphabet, based on French spelling. He published the first French-Kabyle dictionary.
After 1962, when Algeria became independent, some Kabyle activists tried to bring the Tifinagh script back into use for Kabyle. They modernised the script by changing some of the letters and adding vowels. They met with little success, and Tifinagh is used mainly f or decorative purposes in Algeria.
A new Latin orthography for Kabyle, not based on the French spelling system, was devised by Mouloud Mammeri in the late 20th century.
Kabyle has no official status in Algeria, but there some radio and TV programmes in the language, and it is taught in schools in Kabyle speaking areas.
Download an alphabet chart for Kabyle (Excel)
ⵉⵎⴷⴰⵏⴻⵏ, ⴰⴽⴽⴻⵏ ⵎⴰ ⵍⵍⴰⵏ ⵜⵜⵍⴰⵍⴻⵏ ⴷ ⵉⵍⴻⵍⵍⵉⵢⴻⵏ ⵎⵙⴰⵡⴰⵏ ⴷⵉ ⵍhⵡⴻⵔⵎⴰ ⴷ ⵢⵉzⴻⵔⴼⴰⵏ- ⵖⵓⵔ ⵙⴻⵏ ⵜⴰⵎⵙⴰⴽⵡⵉⵜ ⴷ ⵍⵄⵇⵓⴻⵍ ⵓ ⵢⴻⵙⵙⴻⴼⴽ ⴰⴷ-ⵜⵉⵍⵉ ⵜⴻⴳⵎⴰⵜⵜ ⴳⴰⵔ ⴰⵙⴻⵏ.
Imdanen, akken ma llan ttlalen d ilelliyen msawan di lhwerma d yizerfan- ghur sen tamsakwit d lâquel u yessefk ad-tili tegmatt gar asen.
All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They
are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another
in a spirit of brotherhood.
(Article 1 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights)
Information about the Kabyle language
Ancient Berber, Ghadamès, Ghomara, Guanche, Kabyle, Riffian, Shilha (Tashelhit), Shawiya, Shenwa, Siwi, Tamahaq, Tamasheq, Tamazight, Tawallammat Tamajaq, Tayart Tamajeq, Zenaga, Zuwara Berber
Kabyle, Riffian, Shilha (Tashelhit), Siwi, Tamasheq, Tamazight, Tayart Tamajeq
Adamaua Fulfulde, Afrikaans, Arabic (Algerian), Arabic (Bedawi), Arabic (Chadian), Arabic (Egyptian), Arabic (Gulf), Arabic (Hassaniya), Arabic (Hejazi), Arabic (Lebanese), Arabic (Libyan), Arabic (Modern Standard), Arabic (Moroccan), Arabic (Najdi), Arabic (Syrian), Arabic (Tunisian), Arwi, Äynu, Azeri, Balanta-Ganja, Balti, Baluchi, Beja, Belarusian, Bosnian, Brahui, Chagatai, Chechen, Chittagonian, Comorian, Crimean Tatar, Dargwa, Dari, Dhatki, Dogri, Domari, Gawar Bati, Gilaki, Hausa, Hazaragi, Hindko, Indus Kohistani, Kabyle, Kalkoti, Karakalpak, Kashmiri, Kazakh, Khowar, Khorasani Turkic, Khwarezmian, Konkani, Kumzari, Kurdish, Kyrgyz, Lezgi, Luri, Maguindanao, Malay, Malay (Terengganu), Mandinka, Marwari, Mazandarani, Mogholi, Morisco, Mozarabic, Munji, Nubi, Ormuri, Palula, Parkari Koli, Pashto, Persian/Farsi, Punjabi, Qashqai, Rajasthani, Rohingya, Salar, Saraiki, Sawi, Serer, Shabaki, Shina, Shughni, Sindhi, Somali, Tatar, Tausūg, Tawallammat Tamajaq, Tayart Tamajeq, Torwali, Turkish, Urdu, Uyghur, Uzbek, Wakhi, Wanetsi, Wolof, Xiao'erjing, Yidgha
Languages written with the Latin alphabet
Page last modified: 27.04.21
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