Explanation of terms
Batsbi (Tsova-Tush) belongs to the Nakh subgroup of the Northeast Caucasian
language family. Tsova-Tush, the designation preferred by its speakers,
is also known as Bats or Batsbi. The Tsova-Tush call their own langauge
bacbur mot: (lit. "Batsbur language"). (The suffix -ur is borrowed from
Georgian). Their self-name is (male singular) Batsav, (male plural) Batsbi.
The term Tsova-Tush identifies them as a clan of the Tush (tribe), the
other Tush clans being native speakers of Georgian.
Area of distribution
There were approximately 3,000 speakers of Tsova-Tush (1953); according
to recent statistics the number of speakers has been reduced to about 1,600.
Our eraliest knowledge places them in five villages on Mt. Tsovata in Tusheti,
a mountainous region in northeastern Georgia. They began to move down from
the mountains in the early part of the 19th century. Currently they live
in the village of Zemo Alvani on the Alazani River (Akhmeta Rayon) in Kakheti,
in eastern Georgia.
Tsova-Tush is now rapidly replaced by Georgian: all speakers of Tsova-Tush
are billingual, speaking Georgian alongside the Tsova-Tush language.
The consonant system of Batsbi
The vowel system of Batsbi
Project / Manana Tandashvili,
/ Lana Ahlborn
Frankfurt / Tbilisi 2002. All rights reserved.
საავტორო უფლება ეკუთვნის
პროექტს და მანანა
ალბორნს ფრანკფურტი / თბილისი