Native toIndia, Myanmar
Native speakers
246,000 (2011)[1]
Language codes
ISO 639-3nbe
ELPKonyak Naga
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Konyak is a Sino-Tibetan language spoken by the Konyak people in the state of Nagaland, north-eastern India.

The language has 244,000 speakers in the state (as of the 2011 census); most of these (237,000) are in Mon district, with smaller populations in the districts of Dimapur (2,900), Kohima (2,000), Mokokchung (1,100), and Longleng (900).[2] There are also an estimated 2,000 speakers in neighbouring Myanmar, specifically in Hkamti District and in Lahe township.[1]


Konyak (2021)

A list of Konyak dialects from Hoipo Konyak (2021:5) is given below.[3]


Ethnologue lists the following dialects of Konyak.

Tableng is the standard dialect spoken in Wanching and Wakching.


There are three lexically contrastive contour tones in Konyak – rising (marked in writing by an acute accent – á), falling (marked by a grave accent – à) and level (unmarked).[5]


Front Central Back
Close i ɨ u
Mid e ə o
Open a

The vowels /a/, /o/ and /u/ are lengthened before approximants. /ə/ does not occur finally.


Bilabial Dental/
Palatal Velar Glottal
Plosive p
c k
Nasal m ɲ ŋ
Fricative s h
Lateral l
Approximant w j

The stops /p/ and /k/ contrast with the aspirated /pʰ/ and /kʰ/. /p/ and /c/ become voiced intervocalically across morpheme boundaries. The dental /t/ is realised as an alveolar if preceded by a vowel with a rising tone. The approximants /w/ and /j/ are pronounced laxer and shorter after vowels; /w/ becomes tenser initially before high vowels. If morpheme-initial or intervocalic, /j/ is pronounced with audible friction.[6] /pʰ/, /kʰ/, /c/, /ɲ/, /s/, /h/ and /l/ do not occur morpheme-finally, while /ʔ/ does not appear morpheme-initially. Except for morpheme-initial /kp/ and /kʰl/, consonant clusters occur only medially.[7]


  1. ^ a b Naga, Konyak at Ethnologue (25th ed., 2022) Closed access icon
  2. ^ Office of the Registrar General & Census Commissioner, India. "C-16: Population by mother tongue, Nagaland – 2011". Retrieved 7 January 2023.
  3. ^ Konyak, Hoipo. 2021. A preliminary grammar of Chen, a Konyak language of India and Myanmar. M.A. dissertation. Chiang Mai: Payap University.
  4. ^ Statezni, Nathan; Konyak, Hoipo. 2021. Chen villages in Myanmar and India. Unpublished manuscript.
  5. ^ Nagaraja 2010, p. 8
  6. ^ Nagaraja 2010, pp. 21–2
  7. ^ Nagaraja 2010, p. 23


Further reading