Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Timothy Detudamo (b. in Uaboe, d. in April 1953) was a nauruan politician and linguist. He was the father of Buraro Detudamo . He is known as the founder of the modern nauruan society. In his young years he acted as a pastor.
In 1917 Detudamo travelled along with Philip Delaporte, whom he had assisted in creating a nauruan dictionary, to the United States to still assist him in translating religious scripts to Nauruan. To finance the travel Detudamo needed 500 US$ (a lot of money in this age) which he raised of donations. He stayed in the U.S. up to 1921 when he returned to Nauru and became political active. In 1928 Detudamo was elected head chief of Nauru. He hold office up to 1942.
Around 1940 he tried to reform the nauruan language by making it more understandable for Europeans and Americans. His reforms weren't stable, so today the old orthography is more common. Anyway, he is considered as the most important nauruan linguist. He spoke five languages: Nauruan, German, English, Marshallese and Gilbertese.
Until June 30, 1943, Detudamo was governor of Nauru, when in WWII he was deported to Truk by Japanese invadors, along with most Nauruans. On January 31, 1946, he became again head chief of Nauru, until on December 18, 1951, the nauruan executive has been professionalized and modernized. Then Detudamo was Nauru administration's president until he died in April 1953.
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