Kyrgyz, also spelled Kirghiz, is a Turkic language spoken in Kyrgyzstan and neighbouring countries. It is closely related to Kazakh and Karakalpak. Kyrgyz is written in the Cyrillic script.
The Kyrgyz language is one of the Turkic languages, which are a subfamily of the Altaic languages. Turkic languages are spoken in a wide area from Eastern Europe to Siberia and Western China. Kyrgyz is one of the Kyrgyz-Kipchak languages, which also includes Karakalpak and Kazakh. Kyrgyz is spoken by about 4.5 million people, mainly in Kyrgyzstan, but also in Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan and Russia.
The Kyrgyz language has two dialects, Northern and Southern. The Northern dialect is spoken in Kyrgyzstan and the Southern dialect is spoken in Kazakhstan. Kazakh is also spoken in Kyrgyzstan, but it is not a Kyrgyz-Kipchak language.
The Kyrgyz language is written in the Cyrillic script. The first Kyrgyz alphabet was based on the Arabic script and was used from the 15th century. In the 19th century, the Latin script was introduced, but in the 1930s, the Cyrillic script was introduced and has been used since then.
The Kyrgyz language is an agglutinative language. This means that words are made up of small units (prefixes, suffixes and root words) that are added together. For example, the word for 'book' is kiş-tük-ün, which is made up of the root word kiş 'book', the suffix -tük 'to read' and the suffix -ün 'the act of'.
Kyrgyz has a rich vocabulary and many loanwords from other languages. For example, from Russian there are loanwords such as компьютер (komp'yuter) 'computer', молоко (moloko) 'milk' and почта (pochta) 'post'. From Arabic there are loanwords such as машина (mashina) 'car', карандаш (karandash) 'pencil' and бумага (bumaga) 'paper'.
The Kyrgyz language is a member of the Turkic language family and is closely related to Kazakh and Karakalpak. Kyrgyz is written in the Cyrillic script and has two dialects, Northern and Southern. Kyrgyz has a rich vocabulary and many loanwords from other languages.