Cuban Spanish is the most popular language in Cuba. It is spoken by close to 11 million people. Cuban Spanish belongs to the Indo-European language family and the West Iberian language group. It’s known to be one of the most difficult forms of Spanish spoken in the world. The grammar and pronunciation of the Cuban Spanish is quite different from the Castalian Spanish used in mainland Spain. The language has a soft pronunciation of consonants especially at the end of words. Letters such as “s” and “r” are at times not pronounced at all or rather pronounced softly or weakly. Its use of diminutive ending –ica- and –ico- is also different from the Spanish standard of –ita- and –ito-.Furthermore, their “n” is pronounced as “eng.”

90% of the citizens of Cuba speak Spanish as their first language. Besides Spanish, about 400,000 people speak Creole. In fact, in provinces such as Havana, Matanzas, and Guantanamo, classes are conducted in Creole.

Some common Cuban Spanish greetings include “hola” which is a greeting similar to the English word “hello.” Other words used for greetings are “buenos dias” for good morning, “buenas tardes” for good afternoon, and “buenas noches” for good evening. For one to introduce themselves, they say “me Ilamo…” followed by their name.

The minority languages in Cuba include the Galican, Haitian Creole, Corsican, and Lucumí. Haitian Creole is the second most spoken language in Cuba. It is used by about 4% of the population. It is a pidgin dialect used by the Haitian Cuban people who are about 300,000 in number. Lucumí is a West African language. It’s a minor language in Cuba influenced by the West Yoruba language. It originated from Yoruba slaves who were brought to Cuba during the trans-Atlantic slave trade in the 18th century. Galician, Corsican, Catalan, and English are all foreign languages.

This page was last modified on May 1st, 2018

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