Bit language

Native to Laos, China
Native speakers
2,200 (1994–2005)[1]
Language codes
ISO 639-3 bgk
Glottolog bitt1240[2]

Bit (Khabit, Bid, Psing, Buxing) is an Austroasiatic language spoken by around 1,500 people in Phongsaly Province, northern Laos and in Mengla County, China. There are thought to be about another 500 speakers over the border in Yunnan Province, China. It has been classified as Palaungic, Khmuic, and as Mangic.


In China, the Buxing people (布兴, 布幸, or 布醒; IPA: [puʃiŋ]) are also called Kami 佧米人 or Kabi 佧比人 (IPA: [khabit]) (Gao 2004).

Yan & Zhou (2012:157) list the following names for Khabit.

The Khabit name for Khmu is ta mɔi.


Paul Sidwell (2014)[3] and Svantesson (1990) classify Bit as Palaungic. It is most closely related to Kháng and Quang Lam.



In Laos, Bit is spoken by 2,000 people in the following villages (Gao 2004). The speakers call themselves "Laubit."

Kingsada (1999) covers the Khabit (khaa bet) language of Nale village, Bun Neua District, Phongsaly Province, Laos.[4]


In Mengla County, Yunnan, China, Bit (Buxing) is spoken by 539 people as of 2000, in the following villages (Gao 2004).

In Menghai County, Yunnan, China, there is a group of people known as the Bajia 八甲人 of Menghun 勐混 (not to be confused with the Tai-speaking Bajia of Meng'a Township 勐阿镇, Menghai County), which close to the border with Shan State, Myanmar (Zhou 2013). They live in Manbi Village 曼必村,[7] Menghun Town 勐混镇, Menghai County, Yunnan (comprising 48 households and 217 persons), and have recently been classified by the Chinese government as ethnic Bulang people.[8] Their autonym is Manbi 曼必 or Bi 必. The Bajia of Menghun believe that their ancestors had migrated from Laos. They are variously referred to by other ethnic groups as Kabi 卡必, Laotian Bulang 老挝布朗, and Manbi people 曼必人. They do not consider themselves to be Bajia 八甲人, which is a name given to them by government officials, since they do not believe they are related to the Tai-speaking Bajia of Meng'a.


  1. Bit at Ethnologue (18th ed., 2015)
  2. Hammarström, Harald; Forkel, Robert; Haspelmath, Martin; Bank, Sebastian, eds. (2016). "Bit". Glottolog 2.7. Jena: Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History.
  3. Sidwell, Paul. 2014. "Khmuic classification and homeland". Mon-Khmer Studies 43.1:47-56
  4. Kingsadā, Thō̜ngphet, and Tadahiko Shintani. 1999 Basic Vocabularies of the Languages Spoken in Phongxaly, Lao P.D.R. Tokyo: Institute for the Study of Languages and Cultures of Asia and Africa (ILCAA).
  8. Zhang Yanju 张艳菊. 2013. 试论民族识别与归属中的认同问题-以云南克木人、莽人、老品人、八甲人民族归属工作为例. 广西民族研究2013年第4期 (总第114期).

Further reading

External links

This article is issued from Wikipedia - version of the 12/1/2016. The text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share Alike but additional terms may apply for the media files.