Yakthung Pān - Limbu Language

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Language Yakthung Pān
Dialects 1. Taplejunge (Tamorkhole, Taplejung)
2. Panthare (Pantharey, Panchthare, Panchthar, Panthare-Yanggrokke-Chaubise-Charkhole)
3. Phedappe, Chattare (Chhattare, Chhathar, Chatthare, Chatthare Yakthungba Pān, Yakthung Pān) Related to Lohorong and Yakha.


Yakthung Pān is a Tibeto-Burman language spoken in Nepal, Sikkim, Kashmir (Both Indian Kashmir and Pakistani Kashmir) and Darjeeling district of West Bengal, India by the Limbu community.

Yakthung Pān has four main dialects; Panthare, Phedape, Chatthare and Tambar Khole. Panthare dialect is the standard dialect of the Limbu language, where as Phedape is spoken and understood by most.


Limbu has its own unique Tibetan writing system, the Limbu script. Far more Limbus are literate in Nepali than in Limbu, and so many Limbu publications will be accompanied by a Nepali version.
Limbu is also written in Devanagari.

Example of a classical Limbu script:


English transliteration of the above writing: " Tshri; Bshikhum phuma ningwahangma pbhadhunglo. Sakhshing O'mahlo. Kuseng kugren Yakgthunghang bsapla kneetmalo. Kuseng kugren sewa czogmalo. Sen sen ren rensapbla nitmalo. Czhof hukgshig chukralo. Czamen migksan chukralo sabpla nilu Yakgthunghang. Shabpla Yakgthunghang nolo. Sabpla sabtu'g yagk — "


Limbu language has many papers and publications in circulation. Tanchoppa ( Morning Star ), a monthly newspaper/magazine published since 1995. There are many other literary publications. The oldest known Limbu writings were collected from Darjeeling district in 1850's. They are the ancestors of the modern Limbu script. The writings are now a part of collection in India Library in London.


In Nepal, the Limbu language is taught on private initiative. The Government of Nepal has published " Ani Paan" text books in Limbu for Primary education from grades 1 to 5. Kirant Yakthung Chumlung teaches Limbu language and script in its own initiative.

In Sikkim, since late 1970s Limbu, in Limbu script has been offered in English medium schools as a vernacular language subject in areas populated by Limbus. Over 4000 students study Limbu for one hour daily taught by some 300 teachers. Course books are available in Limbu from grades 1 to 12.


Vowel diacritics




Final consonants and punctuation marks



Driem, George van (1987). A grammar of Limbu. (Mouton grammar library; 4). Berlin: Mouton de Gruyter. ISBN 3-11-011282-5


  1. Limbu people



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