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Yoruba

Yoruba is a Niger-Congo language spoken in West Africa. It is a tonal language spoken by the Yoruba people in Nigeria Benin, and Togo and it dates to deep prehistory. As a continuum of several dialects, these dialects can be classified into three major areas: Northwest, Central, and Southeast. Its writing script is called Ajami, which is a form of Arabic.

The current orthography of Yoruba derives from a 1966 report of the Yoruba Orthography Committee, along with Ayọ Bamgboṣe's 1965 Yoruba Orthography, a study of the earlier orthographies and an attempt to bring Yoruba orthography in line with actual speech as much as possible. Still largely similar to the older orthography, it employs the Latin alphabet modified by the use of the digraph ‹gb› and certain diacritics, including the traditional vertical line set under the letters ‹e̩›, ‹o̩›, and ‹s̩›. In many publications the line is replaced by a dot ‹ẹ›, ‹ọ›, ‹ṣ›. The vertical line had been used to avoid the mark being fully covered by an underline.

A B D E Ẹ F G Gb H I J K L M N O Ọ P R S Ṣ T U W Y

a b d e ẹ f g gb h i j k l m n o ọ p r s ṣ t u w y

The Latin letters ‹c›, ‹q›, ‹v›, ‹x›, ‹z› are not used.

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