The two languages recognized in the Bahamas are Standard English, the official language, and a Bahamian Creole which is a unique combination of British English and some African languages. It is mostly spoken and is recognized as the vernacular language of most Bahamians. The other widely used language in the country is Haitian Creole, which is both written and spoken. However, the language is not officially recognized in the Bahamas.
As the official language, English is the most widely used language in the country. Bahamian Creole shares similarities with other Creole languages, such as those spoken on Jamaica and St. Vincent and the Grenadines. However, the amount of research that has been conducted on Bahamian Creole is quite limited, as it has longtime been assume that the language is just a variation on the English language. However, what little research has been done has suggested that this is not the case.
The following are some popular phrases found in Bahamian Creole; “What You Sayin? “(“How are you?”); “What da wybe is?” (What’s new?”), and “Ha It Go?” (“How is it going?”). The “h” is often dropped so that you have “te” instead of “the” or you can also hear “Das your ouse?” meaning (Is that your house?”). A few common phrases from Haitian Creole are, “a demen!” meaning “see you tomorrow!” from the French “à demain!” and “dezole” for “I’m sorry”. In French, one would say “désolé”.
This page was last modified on May 1st, 2018
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