Dawei in Myanmar (Burma)


Population
Main Language
Largest Religion
Christian
Evangelical
Progress
Progress Gauge

Introduction / History

The main Tavoyan town of Dawei (formerly known as Tavoy) has been inhabited for at least 500 years. As early as 1586, the town was one of the main producers of tin in Asia, supplying all of India. In the mid-1700s the town became the possession of the Ayutthaya rulers in today's Thailand, who used it as a trade port.

Dawei people inhabit a long coastal stretch of the Tanintharyi Division (known as Tenasserim prior to 1989) in southern Myanmar. There are five major ethnic groups present in the Tanintharyi Division, which runs parallel with Thailand in the thin tract of land that separates the Andaman Sea from the Gulf of Thailand. The Dawei inhabit the northern part of the state, centered around their ancient homeland of Dawei City.

A small number of Dawei people have made their way across the border and now live in refugee camps inside Thailand. They fled to Thailand to escape oppression at the hands of the Burmese authorities. In the mid-1990s, more than 15,000 local civilians were forced to work on the construction of the Ye to Dawei railway. The inhumane conditions resulted in hundreds of deaths. The railway was not constructed for tourism or trade, but to help the Burmese military rapidly deploy troops to the troubled border areas.


What Are Their Lives Like?

For centuries the Dawei people have been peace loving and gentle people, but their patience has been pushed to the limit by the evil activities and abuses of the Burmese junta. Even after arriving in Thailand, one group of refugees was reportedly attacked by a battalion of Myanmar's 62nd Infantry.

Many young Tavoyan men in Dawei have been forced to attend Burmese military training to counter insurgency groups. Today there are at least 22 rebel armies operating against the Burmese in Myanmar.

It is difficult to identify the Dawei today because of their close ethnic and linguistic affinity to the Burmese. It is not easy to judge where one group stops and the other begins.

In addition to cultural differences, their dialect is different enough from standard Burmese to make communication difficult. The Ethnologue states that they are “one of the better known varieties of nonstandard Burmese with profound pronunciation and vocabulary differences from Burmese.”


For centuries the Dawei people have been a peace-loving and gentle people.
Prayer Points

Scripture Prayers for the Dawei, Tavoyan in Myanmar (Burma).


Profile Source:   Joshua Project  

Additional Info
Global Prayer Digest: 2014-06-06
Global Prayer Digest: 2020-06-29
People Name General Dawei, Tavoyan
People Name in Country Dawei, Tavoyan
Natural Name Dawei
Pronunciation dah-WAY
Population this Country 455,000
Population all Countries 456,000
Total Countries 2
Indigenous Yes
Progress Scale 1
Unreached Yes
Frontier People Group Yes
GSEC 1  (per PeopleGroups.org)
Pioneer Workers Needed 9
Alternate Names Dawai; Dawei; Tavoy; Tavoya
People ID 19250
ROP3 Code 114965
Country Myanmar (Burma)
Region Asia, Southeast
Continent Asia
10/40 Window Yes
National Bible Society Website
Persecution Rank 12  (Open Doors top 50 rank, 1 = highest persecution ranking)
Location in Country They inhabit a long coastal stretch of the Tanintharyi Division in southern Myanmar. The Tavoyan inhabit the northern part of the state, centred around their ancient homeland of Dawei City. A small number of Tavoyan people have made their way across the border and now live in refugee camps inside Thailand.   Source:  Peoples of the Buddhist World, 2004
Country Myanmar (Burma)
Region Asia, Southeast
Continent Asia
10/40 Window Yes
National Bible Society Website
Persecution Rank 12  (Open Doors top 50 rank, 1 = highest persecution ranking)
Location in Country They inhabit a long coastal stretch of the Tanintharyi Division in southern Myanmar. The Tavoyan inhabit the northern part of the state, centred around their ancient homeland of Dawei City. A small number of Tavoyan people have made their way across the border and now live in refugee camps inside Thailand..   Source:  Peoples of the Buddhist World, 2004
Map of Dawei, Tavoyan in Myanmar (Burma) Ethnolinguistic map or other map

Primary Language Tavoyan (455,000 speakers)
Language Code tvn   Ethnologue Listing
Language Written Unknown
Total Languages 1
Primary Language Tavoyan (455,000 speakers)
Language Code tvn   Ethnologue Listing
Total Languages 1
People Groups Speaking Tavoyan

Primary Language:  Tavoyan

Bible Translation Status:  Unspecified

Resource Type Resource Name
Audio Recordings Audio Bible teaching
Primary Religion: Buddhism
Religion Subdivision: Theravada
Major Religion Percent
Buddhism
98.00 %
Christianity  (Evangelical 0.04 %)
0.10 %
Ethnic Religions
1.90 %
Hinduism
0.00 %
Islam
0.00 %
Non-Religious
0.00 %
Other / Small
0.00 %
Unknown
0.00 %
Christian Segments Percent
Anglican
0.0 %
Independent
0.0 %
Orthodox
0.0 %
Other Christian
0.0 %
Protestant
100.0 %
Roman Catholic
0.0 %
Photo Source Copyrighted © 2022  Suparat - Shutterstock  All rights reserved.  Used with permission
Map Source People Group location: IMB. Map geography: ESRI / GMI. Map design: Joshua Project.  
Profile Source Joshua Project  
Data Sources Data is compiled from various sources. Read more