A language of Indonesia

Alternate Names
Madhura, Madurese
Basa Mathura

6,770,000 (2000 census), decreasing. 86,000 Bawean. 2000 census reports large population decrease. Due to intermarriage, language attitudes, and other socioeconomic issues, the Madurese population is likely underreported. Ethnic population: 7,180,000 (2011 census). Total users in all countries: 6,770,900.


East Java province: Java island coast south and west of Surabaja city, Bawean, Kangean, and Sapudi islands; South Kalimantan province: Java Sea area.

Language Maps
Language Status

5 (Developing).


Bawean (Babean, Bhebien, Boyanese), Bangkalan (Bangkalon), Pamekesan (Pamekasan), Sampang, Sapudi, Sumenep. Dialect continuum. Reports differ about inherent intelligibility among dialects: some Sumenep and Sampang report they cannot understand Pamekasan or Sumenep. Difficult intelligibility with Kangean [kkv]. Bawean may be a separate language. Lexical similarity: 75% with Kangean [kkv].


SVO; nontonal; partial reduplication.

Language Use

Vigorous on Madura Island and East Java. All domains. All ages. Also use Indonesian [ind], Javanese [jav].

Language Development
Literacy rate in L2: 40%. Literacy higher among Bangkalon. Taught in primary schools (religious education). Taught in secondary schools (religious education). Literature. Newspapers. Radio. Videos. Dictionary. Grammar. Texts. Bible: 1994.

Latin script [Latn].

Other Comments

Mainly rural. Bawean consider their language separate from Madurese. East Madurese, especially Sumenep, is considered high, or standard Madurese. Sumenep is isolated culturally and geographically. Bangkalon, spoken in Surabaya, is important economically because that city is highly urbanized and is most affected by Bahasa Indonesia. Muslim.

Also spoken in:

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