N/U

Alternative name(s): 

Language family: Khoisan

Geographical use: Upington, Andriesvale, Raaswater, Sesbrugge, and Olifantshoek in South Africa

Information: N/u is one of the smallest languages in the world with only eight speakers left. However, thanks to a project which started in 2009 the language may yet survive.

Thanks to a gift of the South African airline company (Acsa) by initiative of mrs. Esmaralda Barnes, board member of the Internasionale Lughawe Upington, a building can be used to offer Boesmans classes.

The classes are given by the only two living speakers in Upington, mrs. Antjie Kassie and Katrigwa Esau. Aside from them, the language is also spoken by two people on Andriesvale and one person in Raaswater, Sesbrugge, and Olifantshoek.

In Upington the language is taught to around 30 children  – 10 toddlers and 20 school children. The path of the Boesmans has been difficult. They had to watch their language and culture disappear and they were forced to adopt other languages and cultures.

Once the N/u language was the most important language in southern Kalahari, which goes from Keimoes to Olifantshoek and from Tweerivieren to the border with Botswana.
 

 

Norwegian

Nubian