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HILL TRIBE LANGUAGES
- The task of neatly classifying the different hill tribe groups of Vietnam is not an easy one. Ethnologists typically classify the Mon-tagnards by linguistic distinction and commonly refer to three main groups (which further splinter into vast and quite complex sub-groupings). The Austro-Asian family includes the Viet-Muong, Mon-Khmer, Tay-Tai and Meo-Dzao language groups; the Austronesian family includes Malayo-Polynesian languages; and the Sino-Tibetan family encompasses the Chinese and Tibeto- Burmese language groups. In addition, within a single spoken language there are often myriad dialectical variations. The following words and phrases should prove useful when visiting members of the larger Vietnamese hill tribes. If you're planning on spending a lot of time within hill tribe areas, consider taking Vietnam Travel Guide's Hill Tribes Phrosebook with you. For more information on hill tribes and the areas they inhabit see.
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The Hill Tribes