Native toKenya
Native speakers
180,000 (2009 census)[1]
  • Endo (Northern)
  • Sambirir (Southern)
Language codes
ISO 639-3enb

Markwet (Markweeta) is a Kalenjin language of Kenya. The regional terms Endo and Sambirir (or the clan name Talai) have been used for northern and southern Markweta, but they are not distinct dialects. The unmarked word order is Verb–subject–object.



Markweta has five basic vowels: /a, e, i, o, u/. All vowels have variants based on tongue root position and length, for a total of 20 distinct vowel phonemes.

The vowels /o:/ and /a:/ are both pronounced like /ɔ:/, and can only be distinguished by looking at affixes.[2]


Markweta has 13 consonants:

Bilabial Alveolar Palatal Velar
Nasal m n ɲ ŋ
Plosive p t c k
Fricative s
Approximant l j w
Trill r


Markweta has gender. Gender is realized as a prefix added primarily for person nouns and animal names, but sometimes inanimate objects.

The prefixes kaa- and kii- are used to indicate nominalization.


  1. ^ Markwet at Ethnologue (18th ed., 2015) (subscription required)
  2. ^ Zwarts, Joost. (2004). The phonology of Endo : a southern Nilotic language of Kenya. LINCOM EUROPA. ISBN 3895868205. OCLC 249588881.