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Khowar (Khowari, Khowar, Khawar, Chitrali, Citrali, Chitrari, Arniya, Patu, Qashqari, Kashkari)

222,800 (1992). Chitral; Shandur Pass to Gupis in Ghizr Valley, Yasin and Ishkhoman valleys in Gilgit Agency, Ushu in northern Swat Valley, and large communities in Peshawar and Rawalpindi. Indo-European, Indo-Iranian, Indo-Aryan, Northwestern zone, Dardic, Chitral. Dialects: NORTH KHOWAR, SOUTH KHOWAR, EAST KHOWAR, SWAT KHOWAR. 86% to 98% lexical similarity among dialects. The northern dialect is considered to be more ‘pure’. The most important language of Chitral. Related to Kalasha, but distinct. Urdu schools; some girls go through fifth grade or higher. Different second languages used in different areas: Pashto in the south, Shina and Burushaski in the Gilgit Agency, Kalami and some Pashto in Swat, Urdu and English among the educated. ‘Kho’ means ‘people’, ‘war’ means ‘language’. Radio broadcasts. Monthly journal in Khowar. Literacy rate: 15% to 20% men, 1% women. Trade language. Typology: SOV. Mountain valleys. Sunni and Ismaili Muslim.

Source: www.ethnologue.com

© 2002 Muhammad Zaman Sagar
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Last updated September 13, 2002

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