Ngae in Laos

Joshua Project has identified the Ngae only in Laos





Largest Religion

Main Language


Introduction / History

More than 12,000 Ngae (pronounced "Ng-ehh") people live in the three provinces of Xekong, Saravan and Champasak in southern Laos. They inhabit 25 ethnically-mixed villages. Their communities are shared with other people from the Suay, Lao, Alak, Lavae and Tai Oi ethnic groups.

According to one source, the Ngae are called by the derogatory name Kha Koh ('mountain people') by outsiders, but they call themselves Nkriang.

The Ngae language is part of the East Katuic branch of the Mon-Khmer language family. It is closest to the Alak and Khlor languages. They can also understand Katu.

Ngae infants are forbidden to leave the house after birth until a buffalo has been sacrificed. The youngest child of a Ngae family is required to live with his or her parents for life. In many Ngae villages all people smoke tobacco from the age of 8 and older. In the past, the Ngae celebrated ceremonies with the use of traditional shields and swords, but this custom has not been practiced in most places for 50 years.

In Attapu Province the Ngae live in wild, rugged locations. Parts of Attapu are cut off from the rest of Laos for much of the rainy season. Tigers are still common in the area and there is rumored to still be a few rhinos near the Cambodian border. Attapu has little Lao influence, as demonstrated by the fact there are only 14 Buddhist temples in the entire province.

Shamans are still prevalent among the Ngae today. The shaman performs sacrifices in front of the communal spirit house, and oversees all contact between the Ngae people and the spirit world. Rice and eggs are offered to placate evil spirits. For seven days in April the Ngae worship their ancestors.

The Ngae are one of the most Christian groups in southern Laos today. There are at least 600 known believers among them, meeting in more than seven churches.

Before the advent of Communism in 1975, there was much missionary work among the Ngae. A leprosy mission was operated by OMF, which ministered God's love to hundreds of lepers.

Prayer Points

* Thank God for the 600 Ngae Christians. Pray they would follow God with all their hearts.
* Pray the Gospel would also spread to all animistic Ngae people.
* Ask God to raise up Ngae evangelists to carry His Word to the unreached Mon-Khmer groups in southern Laos.

Profile Source:   Peoples of Laos, Paul Hattaway  Copyrighted ©   Used with permission  

People Name General Ngae
People Name in Country Ngae
Population in Laos 16,000
World Population 16,000
Countries 1
Progress Scale 3.1
Least-Reached No
Indigenous Yes
Alternate Names
Affinity Bloc Southeast Asian Peoples
People Cluster Mon-Khmer
People Name General Ngae
Ethnic Code AUG03z
People ID 16145
Country Laos
Region Southeast Asia
Continent Asia
10/40 Window Yes
Persecution Rank 28  (Open Doors top 50 rank, 1 = highest persecution ranking)
Location in Country Xekong, Saravan, and Champasak provinces. 25 villages..   Source:  Faces of the Unreached in Laos, 1999

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Enthologue Language Map

Ethnolinguistic map from University of Texas or other map

Languages & Dialects on file:  1  (up to 20 largest shown)
Ngeq (16,000)
Languages & Dialects (speakers if known) - up to 20 shown
Ngeq 16,000
For Primary Language: Ngeq

Bible Translation Status  (Years)
Bible Portions No
New Testament No
Complete Bible No
Resource Format
Audio Bible teaching (GRN) Audio Recordings
Primary Religion: Ethnic Religions

Major Religion Percent
0.00 %
Christianity  (Evangelical 3.50 %)
4.00 %
Ethnic Religions
96.00 %
0.00 %
0.00 %
0.00 %
Other / Small
0.00 %
0.00 %

Christian Segments Percent
0.0 %
10.0 %
0.0 %
Other Christian
0.0 %
70.0 %
Roman Catholic
20.0 %
Photo Source: Peoples of Laos, Paul Hattaway   Copyrighted ©   Used with permission
Profile Source: Peoples of Laos, Paul Hattaway  Copyrighted ©   Used with permission  
Data Sources: Data is compiled from various sources. Read more

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