Malay, Central


A language of Indonesia

Alternate Names
Bengkulu, Besemah, Enim, Lintang, Midden Maleisch, Ogan, Pasemah, Semendo, Serawai

590,000 (2000 census).


South Sumatra Province. East down Lematang and Ogan river valleys; south of Muaraenim town, east and southeast of Lahat town. Bengkulu Province; central Bukit Barisan highlands west to Indian Ocean along Bengkulu coast.

Language Maps
Language Status

6a (Vigorous).


Benakat, Bengkulu, Enim, Kikim, Kisam, Lematang Ulu, Lintang, Ogan, Pasemah, Rambang, Semenda, Serawai. Lexical similarity: 75% with Kaur [vkk], 80% between Pekal [pel] and some dialects such as Pasemah and Bengkulu. A member of macrolanguage Malay [msa].

Language Use

Vigorous. Home, village, commerce, religion. All ages. Positive attitudes. Also use Indonesian [ind], Musi [mui].

Language Development
Indonesian [ind] preferred for educational and religious materials, but L1 for cultural stories and songs. Mixed preference for health and agricultural materials. Not currently used as a written language in most dialects. Taught in primary schools. Dictionary. Grammar. NT: 1995.
Other Comments