Nepal may not be a large country in area, but it’s significantly ethnically and linguistically diverse. Nestled in the Himalayas between India and Tibet, Nepal has 125 different ethnic groups who speak 123 different languages, although many of these languages are threatened by the prestige and ubiquity of Nepali, the country’s lingua franca. Newar is one of Nepal’s many indigenous languages, spoken by some of the first inhabitants of modern-day Nepali territory.
Newar is an important relic of Nepali history and a valuable cultural artifact for the Newar people and Nepal more broadly. However, brutal historical repression has left modern-day Newar endangered, with the categorization “definitely endangered” from UNESCO. Despite attempts to foster the language, with Newar holding status as an official language in several Nepali cities and the Indian state of Sikkim, the language is still struggling, and most translation agencies don’t want to bother with endangered languages.
TranslationServices.com is the exception—we step in when the others won’t because we see the intangible value of languages like Newar. We’re proud to offer Newar translation services.
To get started with your Newar translation, reach out and request a free quote today.
What is Newar and why is it so important?
Newar, or Nepal Bhasa, as it’s officially known, was the administrative language of the historical region of Nepal Mandala, located in modern-day central Nepal. From the early 1900s until 2006, Newar was heavily repressed, which has left it with an uncertain future. Even though Newar is a Sino–Tibetan language, over the years, it has adopted a significant amount of Indo–European vocabulary due to the extensive contact with Indo European languages. Newar has been written in various scripts throughout history and is currently written in the Devanagari script (like Hindi), the Ranjana script, and the Prachalit Nepal script, which was the original script. Attempts to revive it to more widespread use are ongoing.
Newar has a subject-object-verb word order and a clusivity distinction in its first-person plural pronoun, which is rare for a Tibeto–Burman language. That means Newar has two separate words for “we”—one that includes the listener, and one that excludes them. However, as is common in many East or Southeast Asian languages, Newar uses honorifics to express respect, adding terms differentiated by gender after a name. A suffix meaning “junior” or “lesser” can also be appended for a derogatory nuance.
Our Newar translators are passionate about helping their language thrive now and in the future, which is why they’re so committed to providing high-quality Newar translations.
Newar translations when and how you want them
There are a lot of reasons to purchase Newar translation services. Historians may be interested in translating historical documents or some of the stories, dramas, poems, or prose fiction from Newar’s golden age of literature from the 1500s to the mid-1800s. Academics may like to translate questionnaires into Newar for ethnological research, and those passionate about endangered languages may wish to translate books, games, websites, apps, and more into Newar to help preserve this rich language. Our Newar translation team is ready to harness their passion for Newar in all cases.
Contact us today if you’d like a Newar translation—just tell us what you’re looking for.