Samoan

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A language of Samoa

Alternate Names
Gagana Samoa
Population

199,000 in Samoa (1999). Total users in all countries: 430,677.

Language Status

1 (National). Statutory national language (1960, Constitution, Article 54).

Dialects

No significant dialect variation, but important register-based distinctions in phonology. Lexical similarity: 70% with Wallisian [wls], 67% with Rarotongan [rar], 66% with Tongan [ton].

Typology

VSO; prepositions; noun head initial; dual number; definite and indefinite articles; ergativity; causatives; 9 consonants, 10 vowels, 6 diphthongs; non-tonal; stress on penultimate syllable; inclusive/exclusive pronouns.

Language Development
New media. Dictionary. Grammar. Bible: 1855–1970.
Writing

Latin script [Latn].

Other Comments

Christian.

Also spoken in:

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