Dialect map of Hunan. Waxianhua is the bit of dark blue in the medium blue (SW Mandarin) just above the red (Xiang)
As noted by Laurent Sagart (2011) and others, Waxiang appears to share some words with the Caijia language of western Guizhou. Sagart (2011) considers Caijia to be a sister of Waxiang. Currently, Waxiang is classified as a divergent Chinese variety rather than a non-Sinitic language. Similarities among Old Chinese, Waxiang, Caijia, and Bai have also been pointed out by Wu & Shen (2010).
Qu & Tang (2017) show that Waxiang and Miao (Qo Xiong) have had little mutual influence on each other.
Liubaohua 六保话, a dialect closely related to Waxianghua, is spoken in several villages in southeastern Guazhang County (including in Shaojitian Village 筲箕田村, Shanzao Township 山枣乡) and parts of Luxi County. Liubaohua is spoken in the following locations (Zou 2013).
Guzhang tsu3, pMin *tšyiB, MC 水sywijX > shuǐ "water"
Guzhang tɕiəu1, pMin *tšyA, MC 書syo > shū "writing"
In some words, Waxiang and Proto-Min have voiced affricates where Middle Chinese has y-:
Guzhang dzoŋ3, pMin *-džioŋB, MC 癢yangX > yǎng "itch"
Waxiang and Caijia
Sagart argues that Waxiang and Caijia together constitute the earliest branching of Chinese.
Like Waxiang, Caijia preserves Old Chinese *l-, has a voiced fricative reflex of *r-, and retains the Old Chinese word 字 'love', which has been replaced by 愛 in all other Chinese varieties.
Waxiang and Caijia also share two words not found in other Chinese varieties:
'two': Caijia ta⁵⁵, Waxiang tso⁵³, from Old Chinese 再 *[ts]ˤə(ʔ)-s 'twice'
'milk': Caijia mi⁵⁵, Waxiang mi⁵⁵, which Sagart suggests is a non-Sinitic word
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