Ethnologue:

Oman

2,018,000 (1993 census), of which 535,000 are expatriates. Sultanate of Oman, Saltanat

ARABIC, DHOFARI SPOKEN (DHOFARI, ZOFARI) [ADF] 70,000 (1996). In Salala and its nearby coastal regions. Afro-Asiatic, Semitic, Central, South, Arabic. Distinct from Omani Spoken Arabic. Related to Hadromi Spoken Arabic and Gulf Spoken Arabic. Survey needed.

ARABIC, GULF SPOKEN (OMANI BEDAWI ARABIC, BEDAWI, GULF ARABIC, KHALIJI) [AFB] 441,000 in Oman (1995); 40,000 in Iraq; 200,000 in Saudi Arabia; 500,000 in Kuwait; 200,000 in Iran; 744,000 in UAE; 100,000 in Bahrain; 103,000 in Qatar; 10,000 in Yemen; 2,440,000 in all countries (1995). Most coastal regions and most border regions with the UAE. Afro-Asiatic, Semitic, Central, South, Arabic. Muslim. Survey needed.

ARABIC, OMANI SPOKEN (OMANI HADARI ARABIC) [ACX] 720,000 in Oman (1996); 80,000 in UAE (1996) 195,000 in Tanzania (1993); 15,000 in Kenya (1995; 1,010,000 in all countries. Mainly in the Hajar Mts. highlands and a few coastal regions. Afro-Asiatic, Semitic, Central, South, Arabic. Survey needed.

ARABIC, STANDARD [ABV] Middle East, North Africa. Afro-Asiatic, Semitic, Central, South, Arabic. Used for education, official purposes, books, newspapers, formal speeches. National language. Braille Scripture in progress. Bible 1984-1991. NT 1980-1982. Bible portions 1984.

BALOCHI, SOUTHERN (BALUCHI, BALUCI, BALOCI) [BCC] 130,300 out of 312,000 ethnic population in Oman (1993); 100,000 in United Arab Emirates; 405,000 in Iran; 2,350,000 in Pakistan (1996); 2,985,300 in all countries. Most were in Mutrah, but have dispersed a bit up the coast. Indo-European, Indo-Iranian, Iranian, Western, Northwestern, Baluchi. Dialects: MAKRANI (LOTUNI, ZADGAALI), BARAHUWI, BASHGAADI, HUUTI. Speakers come from Pakistan. The majority are not Omani citizens. Ethnic Baloch who immigrated long ago are Omani citizens, but no longer speak Balochi. Sunni Muslim. Bible portions 1992-1994. Work in progress.

BATHARI (BAUTAHARI, BAT-HARI, BOTHARI) [BHE] 1,000 (1993). Dhofar Province coast north from Salala. Afro-Asiatic, Semitic, South, South Arabian. Spoken by the Batahira (Botahara) people. Close to Mehri; Johnstone (1987) calls it a dialect. Muslim. Survey needed.

FARSI, WESTERN (PERSIAN) [PES] 25,000 in Oman (1993); 26,523,000 in all countries. Scattered in cities along the coast. Many in a community in Jabroo, on the way out of Mutrah, going toward Ruwi. Also Iran, Iraq, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, Bahrain, Qatar, USA, Canada, United Arab Emirates. Indo-European, Indo-Iranian, Iranian, Western, Southwestern, Persian. Many women speak only Farsi. Men who go outside the community speak Arabic as second language, and many know 2 or 3 other languages. Shi'a Muslim. Bible 1838-1995. NT 1815-1979. Bible portions 1546-1965.

HARSUSI (HARSIYYAT, HARSI HSS] 700 including 600 Harasis and 100 Afro-Asiatic, Semitic, South, South Arabian. Spoken by the Harasis. Close to Mehri, but usually considered to be a separate language. It is reported that they are increasing in use of Mehri and proficiency in it, and also bilingual in Arabic. Survey needed.

HOBYOT (KALAM RIFI) [HOH] Hundreds (1995). Also in Yemen, on both sides of the border. Afro-Asiatic, Semitic, South, South Arabian. A separate language from Jibbali. Related to Mehri; Johnstone (1987) says it is a dialect. Muslim. Survey needed.

JIBBALI (GEBLET, SHERET, SHERI, SHAHARI, JIBALI) [SHV] 25,000 (1993). Dofar, in the mountains north of Al-Salala. Afro-Asiatic, Semitic, South, South Arabian. Dialects: CENTRAL JIBBALI, EASTERN JIBBALI, WESTERN JIBBALI. Spoken by the Qara (Ehkeló, Ahkló), Shahra (Sheró, Shahara), Barahama, and Bait Ash-Shaik. Eastern Jibbali includes Kuria Muria ('Baby' Gibbali). Shehri is also a dialect, but it is not clear how that fits with those listed. Speakers are reported to be increasingly bilingual in Arabic. Muslim. Survey needed.

KUMZARI (KUMZAI) [ZUM] 3,000. Spoken only on the Musandam Peninsula of northern Oman. Indo-European, Indo-Iranian, Iranian, Western, Southwestern, Luri. Distinct from Khunsari of Iran. Fishermen. Muslim. Survey needed.

LUWATI [LUV] 5,000 (1996). In a walled quarter of Mutrah, facing the old harbor, and in Muscat and other cities. Indo-European, Indo-Iranian, Unclassified. The people are called 'Luwathiya'. Their ancestors are reported to have migrated from Iran to Hyderabad, then to Mutrah. Sometimes called 'Persians'. Businessmen. Shi'a Muslim. Survey needed.

MEHRI (MAHRI) [MHR] 15,000 in Oman; 58,000 reportedly in Yemen; 3,537 in Kuwait (1967); 76,500 in all countries. Dhofar Province. Nagdi is in Oman, Southwestern Mehri in Yemen. Afro-Asiatic, Semitic, South, South Arabian. Dialects: NAGDI, SOUTHWESTERN MAHRI (QISHN-JADIB). Spoken by the Mahra and Bil Haf. The Bait Kathir speak Arabic. Muslim. Bible portions 1902. Survey needed.


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Part of the Ethnologue, 13th Edition, Barbara F. Grimes, Editor.
Copyright © 1996, Summer Institute of Linguistics, Inc. All rights reserved.

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