Tigrinya language

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Tigrinya ( ትግርኛ, tigriññā), also spelled Tigrigna, Tigrina, Tigriña, less commonly Tigrinian, Tigrinyan, is a Semitic language spoken by the Tigrinya people in central Eritrea (there referred to as the "Tigrinya" people), where it is one of the two main languages of Eritrea, and in the Tigray Region of Ethiopia (whose speakers are called "Tigray"), where it has official status, and among groups of emigrants from these regions, including some of the Beta Israel now living in Israel. Tigrinya should not be confused with the related Tigre language, which is spoken in the lowland regions in Eritrea to the north and west of the region where Tigrinya is spoken.

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History and literature

The earliest written example of Tigrinya is a text of local laws found in the district of Logosarda, southern Eritrea, which dates from the 13th century.[2]

In Eritrea, during British administration, the Ministry of information put out a weekly newspaper in Tigrinya that cost 5 cents and sold 5,000 copies weekly. At the time, it was reported to be the first of its kind.[3]

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