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Gbaya encompasses those languages belonging to the Gbaya-Mandja-Ngbaka group of Adamawa Eastern (Adamawa-Oubangian). (Webbook)
(dont be confused with the small Gbaya language of southern Sudan.)
Ethnologue lists four kinds of Gbaya, all classified as follows but with an additional subclassification for each: Niger-Congo, Atlantic-Congo, Volta-Congo, North, Adamawa-Ubangi, Ubangi, Gbaya-Manza-Ngbaka. A fifth language - Bokoto - is listed together with those as languages in the "macrolanguage" of Gbaya by SIL International. Another - Suma - has the same classification and possible interintelligibility with one of the others.
In addition there are several others in the same family: Ali, Boffi, Gbanu, Manza (Mandja), Ngbaka (Ngbaka Minangende), Nbaka Manza.
There are also small numbers of speakers of some dialects in the Congo.
According to information compiled from Ethnologue:
Total of all speakers: > 2.25 million
Noss (personal communication, 1986) states there is considerable dialect variation in Gbaya, with some of the dialects being mutually unintelligible in Cameroon alone. Yaayuwee and Bangando, for example, only share 74 percent of their basic vocabulary. Moñino is presently preparing a reconstruction of Proto-Gbaya, which includes dialect delineation. Tucker and Bryan (1956) consider Gbaya along with Manja and Mbaka (Ngbaka [Ma'bo]), sometimes termed "languages," to be dialects of the same language. Noss and Fr. M. Campagna are preparing a lexicon in four Cameroonian dialects (Yaayuwee, Lai, Dooka, and Mbodomo) of Gbaya using 2,000 basic words with French equivalents. (Webbook)
SIL International considers Gbaya to be a "macrolanguage" with Bokoto, Gbaya-Bossangoa, Gbaya-Bozoum, Northwest Gbaya, and Southwest Gbaya listed under it. According to information compiled from Ethnologue on these five and several others, the dialects are:
Gbaya is an important regional language; Grimes (1978) notes that 27 percent of the Central African Republic's population speak Gbaya. It is also an official media (radio) language of eastern Cameroon (Noss, personal communication, 1986). (Webbook)
Ethnologue says the following about Ngbaka in DRC: "Vigorous. Speakers of Gilima, Ngbundu, Mbandja, and Mono use it as second language. All domains. Oral and written use in administration, religion, oral use in commerce, oral literature. Used in some schools for first three years. All ages. Positive language attitude. One-third speak Lingala, 5% speak French."
Noss (personal communication, 1986) reports that "an orthography has been established for a number of dialects, including Yaayuwee, Bangando, Ngbaka, and others." (Webbook) [need more information]
Alphabet as reported by Hartell (1993) and presented in Systèmes alphabétiques: http://sumale.vjf.cnrs.fr/phono/AfficheTableauOrtho2N.php?choixLangue=gbaya
Not aware of any.
Gbaya (CAR) [SIL, the RA for ISO-639-3, includes bdt, gbp, gbq, gya, & mdo under this heading]
Latin & diacritic character picker http://people.w3.org/rishida/scripts/pickers/latin/
Although the speakership of this language is important, would the complex dialect situation pose a challenge for localisation efforts?
There is a need for clarification on what dialects/languages are closely related and which ones are more distant (in terms of intelligibility).
SIL International, Ethnologue: Languages of the World, "Ali," http://www.ethnologue.com/show_language.asp?code=aiy
______, "Bofi," http://www.ethnologue.com/show_language.asp?code=bff
______, "Bokoto," http://www.ethnologue.com/show_language.asp?code=bdt
______, "Gbanu," http://www.ethnologue.com/show_language.asp?code=gbv
______, "Gbaya, Northwest," http://www.ethnologue.com/show_language.asp?code=gya
______, "Gbaya, Southwest," http://www.ethnologue.com/show_language.asp?code=mdo
______, "Gbaya-Bossangoa," http://www.ethnologue.com/show_language.asp?code=gbp
______, "Gbaya-Bozoum," http://www.ethnologue.com/show_language.asp?code=gbq
______, "Manza," http://www.ethnologue.com/show_language.asp?code=mzv
______, "Ngbaka," http://www.ethnologue.com/show_language.asp?code=nga
______, "Nbaka Manza," http://www.ethnologue.com/show_language.asp?code=ngg
______, "Suma," http://www.ethnologue.com/show_language.asp?code=sqm
SIL International, "Documentation for ISO 639 identifier: gba," http://www.sil.org/iso639-3/documentation.asp?id=gba
______, "ISO 639 Code Tables," http://www.sil.org/iso639-3/codes.asp
______, "ISO 639-3 Macrolangauge Mappings," http://www.sil.org/iso639-3/macrolanguages.asp
U.S. Library of Congress, "ISO 639.2: Codes for the Representation of Names of Languages: Alpha-3 codes arranged alphabetically by the English name of language," http://www.loc.gov/standards/iso639-2/php/English_list.php
Wikipedia, "Gbaya language," http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gbaya_language