Western Sisaala (Isaalo)

Western Sisaala is member of the Southern Gur branch of Niger-Congo language family. It is spoken by about 10,000 people in the Upper West Region of northern Ghana, particularly in the town of Lambussie and the villages of Korru, Zinni, Pererimi, Nieto and Nietie in the Lambussie Karni District.

Western Sisaala is also known as Sissala, Sisala, Busillu Sisala, Sisai, Issala or Hissala. It is closely related to Tumulung Sisaala and Paasaal, which are spoken in Ghana, and Sisaali, which is spoken in Burkina Faso. Some sources classify them as dialects of the Sisaala language, however there is limited mutual intelligibility between them.

A way to write Western Sisaala using the Latin alphabet was developed in Steven Paul Moran in his A grammatical sketch of Isaalo (Western Sisaala) in 2006. There was little documentation of Western Sisaala before then.

Western Sisaala alphabet and pronunciation

Sisaala alphabet and pronunciation


Western Sisaala has a high tone, which can be marked with an acute accent (á), and a low tone, which can be marked with a grave accent (à).

Download an alphabet chart for Western Sisaala (Excel)

Sample text (Wawʊlɛnɛrɛ aba ku)

Wawʊlɛnɛrɛ aba ku baŋ kyalangyi dɔwo. Wawʊlɛnɛrɛ nɛŋala bé katomo gya ane ba bule po buli oŋ kuoko o bulepa kuu e kuo buuli pa tɔ narra wu as pʊɔli li wase úku wɩdin tapula bape né.

Translation (The spider and the chief)

The spider and the chief continue to challenge each other. Somebody went to the soothsayers' house and the soothsayer told him that when he returns he should tell the chief that he should announce to all the villagers that a sickness will come within the next seven days.

Sample text provided by Michael Peter Füstumum

Sample videos in Western Sisaala

Information about Western Sisaala | Numbers


Information about Western Sisaala

Gur languages

Berba, Birifor (Northern), Birifor (Southern), Dagaare, Dagbani, Frafra, Gourmanchéma, Kabiye, Kasem, Konkomba, Kusaal, Láá Láá Bwamu, Mampruli, Moba, Mossi, Paasaal, Safaliba, Sisaali, Tammari, Tem, Tumulung Sisaala, Turka, Waama, Western Sisaala

Languages written with the Latin alphabet

Page created: 02.06.23. Last modified: 08.09.23


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