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Atlantic–Congo languages

The Atlantic–Congo languages are a major division constituting the core of the Niger–Congo language family of Africa, characterised by the noun class systems typical of the family. They comprise all of Niger–Congo except Mande, Dogon, Ijoid and the Katla and Rashad languages (previously classified as Kordofanian). Mukarovsky's West-Nigritic corresponded roughly to modern Atlantic–Congo.

Linguistic classificationNiger–Congo
  • Atlantic–Congo
ISO 639-5alv
The Atlantic–Congo languages shown within the Niger–Congo language family. Non-Atlantic–Congo languages are greyscale.

In the infobox at the right, the languages which appear to be the most divergent are placed at the top.[2] The erstwhile Atlantic branch has been broken up into Senegambian, Mel, and the isolates Sua, Gola and Limba, which are left next to each other merely because there is no published evidence to move them; Volta–Congo is intact apart from Senufo and Kru.

There are a few poorly attested languages, such as Bayot and Bung, which may prove to be additional branches.


  1. ^ Hammarström, Harald; Forkel, Robert; Haspelmath, Martin, eds. (2017). "Atlantic–Congo". Glottolog 3.0. Jena, Germany: Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History.
  2. ^ Roger Blench, Niger-Congo: an alternative view