Early History of Written Oromo Language up to 1900
AbstractThe purpose of this paper is to make known historical development of written Afaan Oromo to 1900. The study draws upon primary and secondary sources. The primary data are drawn from oral and archival sources. Books and articles in Afaan Oromo and in other languages about Afaan Oromo were consulted. Many of these sources are not only indicators of the status of written Oromo but also of situations that the Oromo people have endured over decades and centuries. The paper reveals how the assimilation activity targets above all the language of the society to be assimilated and how Afaan Oromo had been able to survive such assimilation policy of successive Ethiopian regimes. In addition, it puts an overview on how the missionaries, foreign travelers, religious personalities and some Ethiopians attempted to reduce Afaan Oromo into written language. It gives an idea about the beginning of writing Afaan Oromo in
the early 17th century. The study also indicates the school founded in those problematic periods to teach in Afaan Oromo and the translations of many books into Afaan Oromo.
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