[eng] 3,820,000 in New Zealand (2013 census). L2 users: 150,000 in New Zealand (Crystal 2003a). Status: 1 (National). De facto national language. Classification: Indo-European, Germanic, West, English. Comments: Non-indigenous.
[mri] Far north, North Island, east coast. 148,000 in New Zealand (2013 census). 100,000 understand but do not speak it (1995 Maori Language Commission); 30,000–50,000 adult speakers over 15 years old (1995). Ethnic population: 599,000 (2013 census). Total users in all countries: 158,640. Status: 6b (Threatened). Statutory language of national identity (1987, Maori Language Act, No. 176, Article 3), legal domains mostly. Alternate Names: New Zealand Maori, te reo Maori. Dialects: North Auckland, South Island, Taranaki, Wanganui, Bay of Plenty, Rotorua-Taupo, Moriori. Formerly fragmented into regional dialects, some of which diverged quite radically from what became the standard dialect. Lexical similarity: 71% with Hawaiian [haw], 57% with Samoan [smo]. Classification: Austronesian, Malayo-Polynesian, Central-Eastern Malayo-Polynesian, Eastern Malayo-Polynesian, Oceanic, Central-Eastern Oceanic, Remote Oceanic, Central Pacific, East Fijian-Polynesian, Polynesian, Nuclear, East, Central, Tahitic. Comments: Moriori dialect in Chatham Islands has no remaining speakers. Christian.
New Zealand Sign Language
[nzs] Scattered. 20,200 (2013 census), decreasing. Active Deaf community estimated 3,000–4,000 (2016 R. McKee). Marked decline across all age groups since 2001 (McKee and McKee 2016). Status: 6b (Threatened). Recognized language (2006, New Zealand Sign Language Act, No. 18, Article 6). Alternate Names: NZSL. Dialects: None known. Many structural and lexical similarities between British Sign Language (BSL) [bfi], Australian Sign Language (Auslan) [asf], and New Zealand Sign Language (NZSL) [nzs] and a high degree of mutual intelligibility (2003 T. Johnston, McKee and Kennedy 2000). Linguists sometimes use the name BANZSL to refer to them as a group, while still recognizing them as separate related languages. Classification: Sign language. Comments: Interpreting services. Some use in schools; available as foreign language in two universities.