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Dzongkha language

From Academic Kids

Dzongkha (རྫོང་ཁ) is the national language of the Kingdom of Bhutan and the native language of eight western districts of Bhutan (viz. Thimphu, Paro, Punakha, Wangdue Phodrang, Gasa, Ha, Dhakana, & Chukha). There are also some speakers near the Indian town of Kalimpong, once part of Bhutan but now in the Darjeeling district of West Bengal. In Bhutan there are approximately 160,000 people whose first language is Dzongkha, but it is also used as the lingua franca throughout the country, and as the medium of instruction in all schools (alongside English), and for government & administration.

Linguistically, Dzongkha is a Central Bodish language belonging to the Tibeto-Burman branch of the proposed Sino-Tibetan group. It is closely related to Dranjongke ('bras ljongs skad), once the national language of the erstwhile kingdom of Sikkim; and to some other Bhutanese languages such as Cho-cha-na-ca (khyod ca nga ca kha), Brokpa (me rag sag steng 'brog skad), Brokkat (dur gyi 'brog skad)<i>, and Laka <i>(la ka).

Dzongkha derives from Old Tibetan, though it has had many centuries of independent linguistic development on Bhutanese soil. "The status of Dzongkha as the language of the royal court, the military elite, educated nobility, government and administration is firmly rooted in Bhutanese history at least as far back as the twelth century".1

The word Dzongkha means the ཁ་ kha "language" spoken in the རྫོང་ dzong "fortress". Dzong are the fortress like monasteries established throughout Bhutan by Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyel (1594-1651) as centers of learning, administration and religion - and as a defence against the 17th century armies of the Tibetans and their Mongol allies.

Dzongkha Writing

Missing image
Bhutanese_Joyig_Script.png
Image:Bhutanese Joyig Script.png

Dzongkha is usually written in Bhutanese forms of the Tibetan script known as Joyi (mgyogs yig) and Joshum (mgyogs tshugs ma). Dzongkha books are frequently printed in the Ucan form of Tibetan script.

See Wikiquote:Bhutanese proverbs for a list of proverbs given in both romanized Dzongkha and English.

References

1 Template:Book reference

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External links

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dz:རྫོང་ཁ fr:RDzong-kha ja:ゾンカ語 ko:종카어 nl:Dzongkha zh:不丹语

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