Customary law and religious beliefs are tightly held among the Archi and even define public opinion. Archi is a Caucasian language spoken in Charodinsky Rajon, in the Republic of Russia. Currently, it has slightly over 1,000 speakers. This places it among the most seriously endangered languages of Russia. The language is still used on a day to day basis as its native speakers use it at home and with relatives.
Archi falls under the Lezgic group of North East Caucasian languages. There has been some controversy about the genetic classification of the language. Some scholars think that it should be considered as a variant of the Avar language, while other scholars place it closer to Lakk. Other scholars think that it is an independent language on its own and can be placed somewhere between Avar and Lakk. Archi, for the most part has been an unwritten language. In 2006, the Surrey Morphological Group developed a Cyrillic alphabet for Archi based on the Avar alphabet and came up with an Archi-Russian-English dictionary. Due to Russian and Avar being pushed as the better means of communication, the Archi language has been severely affected as less people are willing to learn it. Also, territorial isolation and advancing modern culture has not helped much in preserving the language. Just like other North-East Caucasian languages, Archi posses a complex phonological system. It has 26 vowel phonemes and 73-81 consonant phonemes. The grammar of Archi is very different from that of English and other European languages.
Archi culture is one of the most distinctive and well preserved in Daghestan. Its speakers have maintained a rich tradition and culture of folklore narrative and mythology. The people live in eight villages, which all surround one village, Archi, which they sprung from. For three months every year, the people in the rest of the villages used to assemble in Archi and carry out communal work. The Archi are Sunni Muslims. The community embraced Islam in the 10th century but before that, evidence shows that they were Christians. Most Archi got educated in mosque schools before the 10th century. They were mostly taught in Arabic, under the influence of Islam.