Documentation and grammatical description of Chechen including the Cheberloi dialect

Documentation and grammatical description of Chechen including the Cheberloi dialect

Language: Chechen (ISO639-3:che)
Depositor: Zarina Molochieva
Location: Russian Federation
Deposit Id: 0232
Grant id: IGS0057
Funding body: ELDP
Level: Deposit

Summary of deposit

The data represented in this project was collected from the elderly speakers exclusively. The goal of the project is to collect the data from the elderly speakers who are monolingual speakers of Chechen of different varieties. Nowadays, the Chechen speakers are bilingual (Chechen-Russian). This project focuses on the Chechen folklore, culture-specific texts, and traditional activities.

Group represented

Chechen varieties. The data represented in this deposit was collected from the monolingual speakers, i.e. from speakers older than 70 or 80 years who grew up in the highlands and did not attend school in the city. The reason of collecting the data from the remaining monolingual speakers, was that their language has not been too much influenced by Russian.

Language information

Chechen is a Northeast Caucasian (aka Nakh-Dagestanian) language with several dialectal variants: the lowland dialect (Ploskostnoi), Itumkala, Melxin, Kistin, Cheberloi, Akki, and Galanchozh dialect. Chechen is spoken by approx. 1,350,000 speakers. Most speakers who are younger than 70 years old are bilingual. The number of monolingual speakers is very low: they are over 70 years old. Language proficiency in Chechen depends on the place of origin of the speaker and the language spoken at home in his/her family.

Chechen is not traditionally a written language. The first version of the Chechen alphabet was introduced in the 19th century with a version of the Arabic alphabet. In the 1920s it was written using the Latin alphabet, but in the 1930s an orthographic system based on the Cyrillic alphabet was created and adopted.

Special characteristics

The data represented in the deposit consist of texts of the monolingual speakers of different dialects of Chechen. The data also includes texts from a Cheberloi dialect, spoken originally in the south-eastern highland, but nowadays a majority lives in the lowland.

The special characteristics of the data are several: 1) it was collected mainly from the elderly speakers, 2) the speakers are dominant in the their dialects, and 3) the data consists of culture-specific texts, such as ethnographic texts, recipes, descriptions of traditional procedures.

The aim of this deposit is to collect the data from the remaining monolingual speakers who preserve structures and lexicon which the bilingual speakers may not use.

Deposit contents

The deposit mainly consists of the texts such as folk tales, fairy tales, some traditional recipes, description of traditional procedure, and old songs. Some texts consist of the description of preparation the traditional food, the description of preparation of fabrics used to make clothes in the highland in the past.

Deposit history

The data was collected during the fieldwork 2007 and 2008 in the Chechen Republic in the frame of the PhD project 'Documentation and grammatical description of Chechen including the Cheberloi dialect.'

Acknowledgement and citation
To refer to any data from the collection, please cite the corpus in this way:

Molochieva, Zarina. 2008. Documentation and description of Chechen including the Cheberloi dialect. London: SOAS, Endangered Language Archive. URL: Accessed on [insert date here].


Collection online
Resources online and curated


Zarina Molochieva
Affiliation: University of Regensburg

Deposit Statistics

Data from 2020 October 23 to 2020 October 23
Deposit hits:2
Downloaded files
Without statistics

Showing 1 - 10 of 21 Items

telling stories

Recorded on: 2007-09-03

singing songs

Recorded on: 2007-09-07

singing songs

Recorded on: 2007-09-10

singing songs

Recorded on: 2007-09-07

old Chechen songs; taking pictures; choosing scarves

Recorded on: 2007-09-24

telling stories; a story about how an Ingush man asked a Chechen girl about horses; description of dancing parties in the past; a story how a girl slapped a man at a dancing party

Recorded on: 2007-09-24

A fairy tale about an old man and a wolf. The wolf was followed by hunters. The old man helped the wolf and put it into his sack. The wolf was sitting in the sack and the old man was carrying it. The wolf did not want to get out. Then the old man saw a fox. The fox helped him to get the wolf out of the sack. On his way the old man also met an horse herder but he couldn't help him. Dialect: Standard Equipment: Marantz PMD 660, Microphone 1000 DX Access: U

Recorded on: 2007-09-07

Keywords: Folklore - Xizhan

A short story about a beetle. The beetle set a cart with two ants. The beetle said that he was going t to get married. On its way the ant saw a girl then a rabbit. The beetle ran away when they asked what it was doing. Dialect: Standard Equipment: Marantz PMD 660, Microphone 1000 DX Access: U

Recorded on: 2007-07-09

Keywords: Folklore - Xizhan

A story about three girls who went to pick strawberries. One of the girls finished picking strawberries fater than the others. She left them and later she fell asleep. The other girls tied her up and left. The girl asked to help a bird first then a crow but they didn't help her. A pigeon helped her later to untie her braids. Then the girl asked her mother how to get home. Her mother (the voice) told her how to do it. On her way back home the girl saw a witch who had three dauthers. She ran away from them and killed one of the witch's daughters. The witch was following her. Dialect: Standard Equipment: Marantz PMD 660, Microphone 1000 DX Access: U

Recorded on: 2007-09-03

Keywords: Folklore - Xizhan - Alman