Northern Eastern Sudanic
Sudan, Eritrea, Egypt, Chad
Linguistic classificationNilo-Saharan?

The Northern Eastern Sudanic, Eastern k Sudanic, Ek Sudanic, NNT or Astaboran languages may form a primary division of the yet-to-be-demonstrated Eastern Sudanic family. They are characterised by having a /k/ in the first person singular pronoun "I/me", as opposed to the Southern Eastern Sudanic languages, which have an /n/. Nyima has yet to be conclusively linked to the other languages, and would appear to be the closest relative of Ek Sudanic rather than Ek Sudanic proper.

The most well-known language of this group is Nubian. According to Claude Rilly, the ancient Meroitic language appears on limited evidence to be closest to languages of this group.

A reconstruction of Proto-Northern Eastern Sudanic has also been proposed by Rilly (2010: 347-349).[1]

Internal classification

Rilly (2009:2)[2] provides the following internal structure for the Northern Eastern Sudanic languages.

Northern East Sudanic

External relationships

Based on morphological evidence such as tripartite number marking on nominals, Roger Blench (2021) suggests that the Maban languages may be closely related.[3]

See also


  1. ^ Rilly, Claude. 2010. Le méroïtique et sa famille linguistique. Leuven: Peeters Publishers. ISBN 978-9042922372
  2. ^ Rilly, Claude. 2009. From the Yellow Nile to the Blue Nile: The quest for water and the diffusion of Northern East Sudanic languages from the fourth to the first millennia BCE. Paper presented at ECAS 2009 (3rd European Conference on African Studies, Panel 142: African waters - water in Africa, barriers, paths, and resources: their impact on language, literature and history of people) in Leipzig, 4 to 7 June 2009.
  3. ^ Blench, Roger. 2021. The Maban languages and their place within Nilo-Saharan.