From World Afropedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Northeast Afrika
Linguistic classification:Negro-Egyptian
  • Cushitic
ISO 639-2 / 5:cus

The Cushitic languages are a branch of the Negro-Egyptian language family spoken in the Horn of Africa, Tanzania, Kenya, Ethiopia, Sudan and Egypt. They are named after the Biblical character Cush, who was traditionally identified as an ancestor of the speakers of these specific languages as early as AD 947 (in Masudi's Arabic history Meadows of Gold). The most populous Cushitic language is Oromo with about 35 million speakers, followed by Somali with about 18 million speakers, and Sidamo in Ethiopia with about 2 million speakers. Other languages with more than one million speakers are Hadia (1.6 million), Kambata (1.4 million), and Afar (1.5 million).