Bislama (Vanuatu)

Bislama is widely spoken in Vanuatu, which is an independent republic located in the southwest Pacific, between Fiji and Australia, with a population of about 170,000. Vanuatu was first settled by Melanesian people speaking Oceanic languages several thousand years ago, but the first major contact with Europeans was not until around the mid-1800s when stands of sandalwood were discovered. In the 1870s and 1880s, many thousands of Ni-Vanuatu (as people from Vanuatu call themselves) were recruited to work on plantations in Queensland, along with smaller numbers in Fiji. These multilingual situations resulted in the formation of a pidgin, which has evolved over the last hundred years or so to become the language that is spoken today. Language Varieties. Read more…

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