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Project information

The Ossetic National Corpus is found here.

The written Corpus of the Digor dialect of Ossetic is found here.

This is the website of a project dedicated to the documentation and description of Ossetic. Our aim is to create a corpus of interlinear texts in Ossetic (and its main dialects), to study the underdescribed aspects of its grammar and, in a long-term perspective, to create a typologically-oriented grammar of literary Iron Ossetic.

Ossetic belongs to the Iranian genus of the Indo-Iranian branch of the Indo-European language family and is considered, along with Yaghnobi, to be one of the only two surviving North-East Iranian languages. According to official data of the Russian census of 2002, there are more than 500 000 Ossetians living in Russia; their total number is about 700 000. According to Ethnologue, the number of speakers is 641 450. Based on recent data, however, presented in Kambolov 2007 and in the UNESCO Atlas of the World's Languages in Danger (''vulnerable'' status, 550 000 speakers estimated), and also based on the project participants' personal experience, the real number of speakers is much lower than officially stated and is steadily decreasing due to growing urbanization and the influence of Russian.

For the most part, Ossetic is spoken on the territory of the Republic of North OssetiaÔÇöAlania, part of Russia, and in South Ossetia, located in South Caucasus. There are also small communities of Ossetic speakers in Turkey, Georgia and other countries.

Ossetic is traditionally considered to consist of two major dialects: Iron and Digor. Recently, however, some scholars have started to consider Kudar (traditionally regarded as a sub-dialect of Iron, cf. e. g. Bekoev 1985 in the ''Monographs'' section below) a separate, third dialect of Ossetic (for more information see: Dziccojty Ju. A. ├łtnogenez ju┼żnyx osetin po dannym dialektologii. In:┬áIzvestija Jugo-Osetinskogo nau─Źno-issledovatel'skogo instituta im. Z. N. Vaneeva, issue XXXV, 1998).

On this site we provide materials on all dialects of Ossetic: spoken and written interlinear texts, handouts and papers by the project's participants, and also scans of grammars, dissertations and articles. For the most part, the material presented herein has been collected during fieldtrips to North Ossetia in 2007-2009.

Any original materials presented herein can only be used with reference to this webpage.