Languages of Tamil Nadu


Official Languages of Tamil Nadu
Putthandu (Tamil New Year) Decoration
Tamil is the major and official language of Tamil Nadu. It is spoken by the 88.67 percent of Tamil populace. It is followed by Telegu (5.87%), Kannada (1.78%), Urdu (1.75%), Malayalam (1.01%), and other languages. English is an additional official language of Tamil Nadu. Tamil Nadu is also home to tribal languages such as Irula, Kurumba, Badaga, Yerukala, Sholaga, Kannikaran, Malsar, Malapandaram, Eravallan, Wayanad Chetti, Muthuvan, Kadar, Toda, and Kota.

Official Language of Tamil Nadu

Tamil is the official language of the Tamil Nadu. It is spoken by the majority of people in Tamil Nadu, and outside India, it is spoken in Sri Lanka, Singapore and Malaysia. Tamil is one of the oldest classical languages in the world, and it has 2500 years old documented literature. According to a 2001 survey, there were 1863 newspaper and magazines publishes in Tamil.

Minor/Tribal Languages of Tamil Nadu

Irula
Irula is a Dravidian language spoken by the Irulas who live in the area of the Nilgiri mountains, around the bordering area of Tamil Nadu and Karnataka. It is written in the Tamil script. It is closely related to Tamil with the influence of Kannada.

Kurumba
Once thought to be a dialect of Kannada, Kurumba is a language in its own right. It is spoken by Kurumba people who lives majorly in Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, and Andhra Pradesh.

Badaga
Badaga is a southern Dravidian language spoken by about 135,000 people in the Nilgiri Hills of Tamil Nadu. It is similar to Kannada but has distinct vocabulary, diction, and grammar.

Yerukala
Yerukala is spoken by Yerukala tribes of South India. It is lexically similar to Ravula and Irula.

Sholaga
Sholaga (or Soliga) is a Dravidian language related to Kannada and Tamil. It is spoken by the Soliga people, who are mainly found in the bordering areas of Karnataka and Tamil Nadu.

Kani Karan
Kanikkaran is a Dravidian language spoken by 19,000 Kanikkars in southern India. They dwell in forests or near to forests in Thiruvananthapuram and Kollam in Kerala and they also found in Nagercoil and Tirunelveli in Tamil Nadu.

Malasar
Malasar (Malayar) is an unclassified Dravidian language spoken by Malasar people of India, who lives in the bordering are of Kerala and Tamil Nadu.

Malapandaram
Malapandaram or also known as Hill Pandaram is a tribal Dravidian language and mostly spoken in the bordering area of Kerala and Tamil Nadu. It is closely related to Malayalam.

Eravallan
Eravallan is a tribal Dravidian language related to Tamil with the majority of speakers living in the Palakkad district of Kerala, and Coimbatore district of Tamil Nadu.

Wayanad Chetti
Wayanad Chetti, or simply Chetti, is an unclassified Dravidian language spoken by Wayanadan Chetti community. These people can be found in Wayanad district of Kerala, and Coimbatore, Nilgiris and Erode districts of Tamil Nadu.

Muthuvan
Muthuvan is a tribal Dravidian language with major influence of Tamil and Malayalam. It is majorly spoken by Muthuvan people in Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, and Kerala.

Kadar
Kadar is one of the Dravidian languages primarily spoken by Kadar people, and they mainly live in the border area of Kerala and Tamil Nadu. Kadar language has Malayalam and Tamil influence.

Toda
Toda is a Dravidian language spoken mainly by the Toda people, live in Nilgiri Hills of Tamil Nadu. It is noted for its many fricatives, trills, and rhotics. It is a transitional language originated from Tamil and Kannada.

Kota
Kota is one of the Dravidian languages spoken mainly by the tribal Kota people, who live in the foothills of Nilgiris.