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Sinhala language resources

Sinhala is spoken on a daily basis in: Sri Lanka Sinhala--> --> --> -->

Additional background on Sinhala

Sinhala (also referred to as Sinhalese; earlier referred to as Singhalese) is the mother tongue of the Sinhalese, the largest ethnic group of Sri Lanka. It belongs to the Indo-Aryan branch of the Indoeuropean languages. The term Sinhala is derived from the Sinhalese term ????? (si?hala, pronounced /'si?h?l?/).

Sinhala is spoken by about 16 million people in Sri Lanka, about 13 million of whom are native speakers. It is one of the constitutionally-recognised official languages of Sri Lanka, along with Tamil. Sinhala has its own writing system (see Sinhala alphabet) which is an offspring of the Brahmi script.

The oldest Sinhala inscriptions were written in the 3rd and 2nd centuries BCE; the oldest literary works date from the 9th century BCE.

The closest relative of Sinhala is the language of the Maldives, Dhivehi.


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