Mongolian: An Elementary Textbook

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Mongolian refers to a number of closely related languages and dialects. Mongolian, the official language of the independent nation of Mongolia, is properly called Khalkha Mongolian, after the four Khalkha provinces that were carved out of this region in the 17th century. Closely related dialects of Mongolian are spoken in the Inner Mongolian Autonomous Region of China, and more distantly related forms of Mongolian are spoken by the Buryats of Siberia and the Kalmyks of European Russia, Xinjiang, and Tibet. Despite their linguistic differences, speakers of all these forms of Mongolian view themselves as people of one ethnicity and culture, a view encouraged by their common use of traditional Mongolian script until the breakup of the Mongolian cultural world in the 20th century.