The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



the language of the Darghins; one of the Dage-stani languages. The language is spoken in Akusha, Dakhadaevskii, Kaitagskii, Levashi, and Sergokala raions, as well as in several villages in other raions of the Dagestan ASSR. The number of Darghin speakers is approximately 227,000 (1970 census).

Darghin belongs to the Dagestan branch of the Caucasian (Ibero-Caucasian) languages. It is split up into a number of strongly divergent dialects: Akusha, Urakhi (or Khiur-kilinskii), Tsudakhar, Sirkhinskii, Muirinskii, Kubachi. and Kaitagskii (or Khaidakskii). The last two are sometimes regarded as independent languages. The literary language is based on the Akusha dialect.

In phonetics, Darghin is distinguished by the presence of uvular, pharyngeal. laryngeal, and abruptive (or glottalized) consonants and by the presence of a pharyngealized mid-vowel. Darghin grammar is noted for the presence of an ergative construction, a large number of locatives (20), and three noun classes. Numerals are based on a decimal counting system. Verbs are characterized by both class and person conjugations, there is a clearly expressed system of verbal aspects, and there are preverbs in the verb stem that express spatial and several other meanings. In addition to the native word stock, the vocabulary contains borrowings from Arabic, Persian, Russian, and the Turkic languages.

Before the Great October Socialist Revolution, Darghin was not written. At first, the writing system was based on Arabic script; from 1928 to 1938 it was based on the Roman alphabet, and in 1938 it was changed over to a Russian-based alphabet.


Uslar, P. K. Khiurkilinskii iazyk: Etnografiia Kavkaza. lazykoznanie, 5. Tiflis (Tbilisi), 1892.
Abdullaev, S. N. Grammatika dargainskogo iazyka. Makhachkala, 1954.
Abdullaev, S. N. Russko-darginskii slovar’. Makhachkala, 1950.
Magometov, A. A. Kubachinskii iazyk: (Issledovaniia i teksty). Tbilisi, 1963.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.