Native toEthiopia, South Sudan
RegionGambela Region, Greater Upper Nile
EthnicityAnuak people
Native speakers
200,000 (2007–2017)[1]
Language codes
ISO 639-3anu

Anuak or Anywaa is a Luo language which belongs to the western Nilotic branch of the Nilotic language family. It is spoken primarily in the western part of Ethiopia and also in South Sudan by the Anuak people. Other names for this language include: Anyuak, Anywa, Yambo, Jambo, Yembo, Bar, Burjin, Miroy, Moojanga, Nuro.[1] Anuak, Päri, and Jur-Luwo comprise a dialect cluster.[2] The most thorough description of the Anuak language is Reh (1996) Anywa Language: Description and Internal Reconstructions, which also includes glossed texts.


Anuak is notable for lacking phonemic fricatives.[2]


Labial Dental Alveolar Palatal Velar
Nasal m n ɲ ŋ
fortis p t c k
lenis b d ɟ ɡ
Approximant w l j
Trill r


Front Back
Unrounded Rounded
Close i iː u uː
Near-Close ɪ ɪː ʊ ʊː
Close-mid e eː o oː
Open-mid ɛ ɛː ʌ ʌː ɔ ɔː
Open a aː


Front Back
Close ie uo
Near-Close ɪɛ ʊɔ


Description IPA
Rising ˩˥
High ˦
Mid ˧
Low ˨


  1. ^ a b Anuak at Ethnologue (25th ed., 2022) Closed access icon
  2. ^ a b Reh, Mechthild (1996): Anywa Language: Description and Internal Reconstructions. Köln: Rüdiger Köppe. p.5