Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Chamorro, or Chamoru, is the native language used in Guam and Northern Mariana Islands. Although the English language and Japanese language are commonplace on both Guam, and the Northern Marianas Islands, people still use the Chamorro language.
Chamorro has a large Spanish vocabulary (approx 70% of word roots), but contrary to the popular view it is not a Spanish Creole: Chamorro very much uses its loan words in a Micronesian way (eg: bumobola "playing ball" from bola "ball, play ball" with infix -um- and reduplication of root). There are approximately 50,000 speakers of Chamorro throughout the Mariana chain of islands, the majority of them concentrated on Guam.
Chamorro's nearest linguistic relatives are found in the Philippines.
Note that the letter Y is pronounced more like 'dz' as it is in some dialects of Castilian Spanish. Note also that A and Å are not distinguished in written Chamorro, both being written as 'A'; nor are N and Ñ distinguished. Thus the Guamanian place name Yona is pronounced 'dzo-nya', not 'yo-na' as might be expected.
Chamorro basic phrases
Hafa adai "Hello"
Hafa tatmanu hao? "How are you?"
Hayi na'an-mu? "What is your name?"
Si Bruce yu' "I am Bruce"
- Chamorro - English Dictionary: from Webster's Online Dictionary - the Rosetta Edition.
- Dictionary and Grammar of the Chamorro Language of the Island of Guam, by Edward R. von Preissig, Ph.D. From ChamorroBible.org (http://ChamorroBible.org).
- The Chamorro Language of Guam: A Grammar of the Idiom Spoken by the Inhabitants of the Marianne or Ladrones, Islands, by William Edwin Safford. From ChamorroBible.org (http://ChamorroBible.org).
See also: Spanish Creole
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