Shiri and Sanzhi

Shiri and Sanzhi belong to two different Dargi languages (see Figure 1 above). Shiri is mainly spoken in the villages of Chinar and Shiri, and Sanzhi in the village of Druzhba (see map below). They are not only different from each other, but also different from Standard Dargwa. Nevertheless, they are structurally similar enough to make documenting both of them at the same time feasible. These claims are in contrast with what many published sources state about Dargi languages. But a comparison of Shiri and Sanzhi with other related varieties and with Standard Dargwa supports our position.

Another very important point is that Shiri and Sanzhi speakers do not understand literary standard Dargwa, because Akusha Dargwa, the base for the standard language, is very different from Shiri and Sanzhi. Although some Shiri and Sanzhi children have standard Dargwa classes in school, they usually do not learn this language, which is a foreign language for them, well enough. As a result, they are not able to speak literary standard Dargwa or to read newspapers and books or watch TV programs in this language.