Lamenu

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A language of Vanuatu

Alternate Names
Lamen, Lewo, Lewo-Lamen, Varmali
Population

850 (Lynch and Crowley 2001). Very few monolinguals.

Location

Shefa province: Varmali region, Epi island northwest tip, Lamenu island; Luganville, Port Vila, and Sara villages.

Language Maps
Language Status

5 (Developing).

Dialects

Galoparua, Galokumali, Galovasoro. Lexical similarity: borderline with Lewo [lww], but strong local identification as separate language.

Language Use

Vigorous. Kindergarten, oral and some written use in church, oral use in commerce. All ages. Positive attitudes. All also use Bislama [bis]. Also use Paama [pma].

Language Development
Literacy rate in L1: 50%. Literacy rate in L2: 40%. Taught in primary schools. Dictionary. Bible portions: 1987–2002.
Writing

Latin script [Latn].

Other Comments

Population of Lamenu and Epi was over 14,000, but was reduced to 800 in early 1900s due to disease and economic dependence. Christian.

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