Vincentian Creole

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Vincentian Creole
Native toSaint Vincent and the Grenadines
Creole
  • Vincentian Creole
Language codes
ISO 639-3svc
Glottologvinc1243  Vincentian Creole English

Vincentian Creole is an English-based creole language spoken in Saint Vincent and the Grenadines. It contains elements of Spanish, Antillean Creole, and various Iberian Romance languages. It has also been influenced by the indigenous Kalinago/Garifuna elements and by African language brought over the Atlantic Ocean by way of the slave trade. Over the years the creole has changed to be a mix of all of those languages.

Pronunciation[edit]

  • Hard sounds at the end of words are avoided. There are mainly two ways hard sounds are evaded:
  • For words ending in "-er", the "-er" sound changes to an "ah" sound. Example: "never" is pronounced as "nevah" and clever as "clevah"
  • For words ending in "-th", the soft "-th" sound is replaced by the hard "t" sound as if the "h" were dropped. Example: "with" is rendered as "wit" and "earth" as "eart"
  • For words ending in "-own", the "-own" is rendered as "-ung". Examples: down is rendered "dung" and town is rendered "tung"
  • Words beginning with "dr" change to " j". Examples: driver is rendered 'jiver' and "drop off" as "jop off"

Grammar[edit]

Generally, there is no need for concord. The verb in its plural form is simply placed after the subject of the sentence. The object of the sentence is then placed after the verb, as in English. If there are both a direct object and an indirect object, the indirect object is placed directly after the verb followed by the direct object.

The subject pronouns are as shown in the following table.

Pronouns Origin English Equivalent
me me (English) I or me
yo you (English) you (singular, as both object and subject)
e/i (pronounced "ee") he (English) he/she/it
ahwe all of we (incorrect grammatically, English) we or us
aryo/alyo all of you (English) you (plural, as both object and subject)
dem/demdey them/them there (English) they or them

With regards to tense, the present tense is indicated by the use of the modal "does" (for habitual actions) or by the use of the present participle ending in "-ing" (for actions one is currently doing). The past tense is indicated by the use of either what is in English the plural form of the present tense of the verb, the modal "did", "been"/"bin" or the past participle of the verb. The future tense is indicated by the use of the present participle of the verb "to go", which is "going" (gine or gwine in the creole), or the plural form of the verb, "go".

Tense Example
Present Me does give / Me givin'
Past Me give / Me did give / Me bin give
Future Me gine give/ Me gwine give / Me go give


Vocabulary[edit]

Expression Origin Meaning
maanin morning (English) Good Morning!/morning
mek? what made ____ (what caused _____) ? why?
naygah equivalent to negro (English) people
pikney pequenino (Portuguese) child
buh but (English) but
caah cause 'because' (English) because or cannot
parisohl parasol (Spanish) umbrella
dohtish/chupit doltish (English) stupid
paa/weypaa where (English) where or what
nyam nyam (Wolof/Fula) eat
comess konmès (Antillean Creole) gossip
yah/yahso here (English) here
dey/deyso there (English) there
outadoh/out dey outdoors (English) outside
pyar pyar Unknown poor
chook jukka (Fula) poke
huunch Unknown to elbow someone

See also[edit]

References[edit]