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Jewish Neo-Aramaic

(3,430 words)

Author(s): Hezy Mutzafi
The Jewish Neo-Aramaic dialects, originally spoken in Kurdistan and Iranian Azerbaijan and now mostly in Israel, are all on the verge of extinction. Three major dialect groups of Jewish Neo-Aramaic, and a further threefold subdivision of one of these groups, can readily be discerned on the basis of the distinct innovations that have shaped the linguistic profile of each of these dialectal divisions. 1. Historical and sociolinguistic details Jewish Neo-Aramaic (JNA) is a general term for a wide array of dozens of regional varieties of North-Eastern Neo-Aramaic (…