Tibeto-Burman languages are a sub-category of the Sino-Tibetan language family, which are mainly, but not only, spoken in the highland region of South East Asia and Burma. In the former case, India, China, Nepal and Bhutan form the most significant areas. Other countries where Tibeto-Burman languages are spoken include Vietnam, Thailand, Pakistan, Bangladesh, etc. There are a total of over 57 million speakers of the Sino-Tibetan languages.
The name ‘Tibeto-Burman’ actually comes from the major constituting class of languages that fall under the family, i.e. Tibetic languages and Burmese. However, Tibeto-Burman language family consists of a whole lot of other languages that are not recorded and documented. The oldest documented language in this language family is Pai-Lang.
Sino-Tibetan language family has Sinitic and Non-Sinitic members. Sino-Tibetan languages fall under the non-Sinitic group. Chinese is the most remarkably different language of the family, and there have been attempts by scholars to constitute it in a different category altogether.
In terms of diversity and richness, Tibeto-Burman languages come only after the Indo-European language family. Since most of the languages from the Tibeto-Burman language family are spoken in remote and isolated hilly and mountainous regions, they are poorly documented and studied. Besides this, many of these languages lack a written script. Due to these factors and more, these languages are facing extinction. Linguistic scholars and researchers from across the globe are interested in recording the grammars of these languages for this reason, but geographical conditions continue to pose an obstacle.
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