An Indo-European language and a member of an Indo-Aryan group spoken by c.9 million people. Nepali is the lingua franca of the central and eastern Himalaya and the national language of Nepal. It is also recognised by the Indian Constitution as a major language of India (because of its dominance in Sikkim, and in the Darjeeling district of West Bengal).
The first steps towards a literary language were taken in the 18th century, and the modern standard Nepali is based on the Kathmandu norm.
CLASSIFICATION = Indo-European family, SCRIPT = Devanagari
|Nepali: A Beginner's Primer Banu Oja & Shambhu Oja, Department of Asian Studies, Cornell University (with editorial assistance from Mark Turin, (formerly at Cambridge). See also the Digital Himalaya site.)