12 ago. 2010

The Hunza of Pakistan

Name: Hunza
Living Area: Hunza, Nagar, and Yasin valleys of northern Pakistan (Asia)
Language: Burushaski
Comments:   
They are predominantly Muslims. Their language, Burushaski, has not been shown to be related to any other. They have an East Asian genetic contribution, suggesting that at least some of their ancestry originates north of the Himalayas.
The Hunza people, or Hunzakuts, descend from the principality of Hunza. They live alongside the Wakhi and the Shina. The Wakhi reside in the upper part of Hunza locally called Gojal. Wakhis also inhabit the bordering regions of China, Tajikstan and Afghanistan and also live in Gizar and Chitral district of Pakistan. The Shina-speaking people live in the southern part of Hunza. They have come from Chilas, Gilgit, and other Shina language-speaking areas of Pakistan.
Based on internationally recognized survey data, the literacy rate of both in males and females of Hunza is more than 95%, which is much higher than the rest of the country. The people of Hunza are highly educated, hospitable and well-mannered. Hunza is a major tourist attraction in Pakistan, and many Pakistani as well as foreign tourist travel to the region to enjoy the picturesque landscape and stunning mountains of the area. The district has many modern amenities and is quite advanced by Asian standards.
Well-known by: Local legend states that Hunza may have been associated with the lost kingdom of Shangri La. The people of Hunza are by some noted for their exceptionally long life expectancy, others describe this as a longevity narrative and cite a life expectancy of 53 years for men and 52 for women, although with a high standard deviation. DNA research groups the male ancestry of the Hunza with speakers of Pamir languages (Afghans) and the Sinte Romani (Gypsies).
Burusho legend maintains that they descend from the village of Baltir, which had been founded by a soldier left behind from the army of Alexander the Great—a legend common to much of Afghanistan and northern Pakistan. However, genetic evidence only supports a Greek genetic component in the Pashtun ethnic group of Pakistan and Afghanistan, not the Burusho.
Some words in Burushaski:   
hello: leh
my name is ... : jaa eik ... bila
yes: awa
no: bee
goodbye: khuda hafiz

© Text and images: Wikipedia
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