Nanai (Нанай / Nanaj)

Nanai belongs to the Southern (Amur, or Nanai) branch of the Manchu-Tungus languages. It is spoken by about 5,000 speakers in Siberia, specifically in the Khabarovsk and Primorye territories, and in the Poronay district of the Sakhalin region of the Russia Federation. A slightly different dialect, known as Hezhen (赫哲语), is spoken along the Amur River in the North Eastern Chinese province of Heilongjiang (黑龙江).

Nanai was first written in the 1930s with a version of the Latin alphabet. Since 1937 it has been written with the version of the Cyrillic alphabet shown below.

Nanai alphabet

Nanai alphabet

Information on pronunciation compiled by Wolfram Siegel

Sample text (Lord's Prayer)

  1. Нёани дахамдичии уӈкини: «Кэсивэ гэлэйдуэри туй ундусу: „Боаду, уйлэ би, Эндур Ама! Гэбукуди гэрбуси бигини. Си боа яловани далачайси эрин исигини! Наду-да, боаду-да Си чихалайси бигини!
  2. Ини таондоани сиагопова эпэмбэ бунду буру
  3. Буэ оркимпова гудиэсигуру, буэ-дэ оркиӈку, наӈдаку гурумбэ гудиэсиэпу, буэ мурумпувэ-дэ эди памаванда, хай-да дялимбани, оркимбани эди дял дяпаванда“».


  1. He said to them, "When you pray, say: 'Father, hallowed be your name, your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.
  2. Give us each day our daily bread.
  3. Forgive us our sins, for we also forgive everyone who sins against us. And lead us not into temptation"

Source: The Gospel of Luke in Nanai language, Institute for Bible Translation, Moscow 2002

Sample videos in Nanai

Information about Nanai | Numbers in Nanai


Information about the Nanai language

Information about the Nanai people (in Russian)

Southern Tungusic languages

Jurchen, Manchu, Nanai, Orok / Uilta, Ulch, Xibe

Other languages written with the Cyrillic alphabet

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