Antigua and Barbuda Languages

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Description[edit | edit source]

English is the official language in Antiqua and Barbuda. Spanish is spoken by around 10,000 inhabitants. [1]

  • The Barbudan accent is slightly different from the Antiguan.
  • In the years before Antigua and Barbuda's independence, Standard English was widely spoken in preference to Antiguan Creole.
  • Generally, the upper and middle classes shun Antiguan Creole.
  • The educational system dissuades the use of Antiguan Creole and instruction is done in Standard (British) English.
  • Many of the words used in the Antiguan dialect are derived from British as well as African languages.
  • Common island proverbs can often be traced to Africa.

Word List(s)[edit | edit source]

Antigua And Barbuda Creole English (Leeward Caribbean English Creole)

  • pickney: child
  • pickanyegah: children
  • ahyue: collective address in the manner of "you all" or "y'all"
  • ah wah mek: why
  • smaddy: somebody
  • likkle: little
  • 'ooman: woman
  • nyam: eat
  • sudden/subben/leff dee 'ooman sudden/leff dee 'ooman subben: can refer to an object or thing/ leave her things alone
  • cassy/cassie: a thorn, such as from a rosebush
  • t'all: no, not me, not at all
  • ah wah dee/da joke yah tarl/ah wah me ah see ya tarl: what in the world is going on?
  • leh meh lone: leave me alone
  • ah good/tek dat/ah baay/inna ya battum ho'al: that's good for you/take that
  • tap lie: stop lying
  • tap ya chupitniss: stop being silly
  • ah true/choo: it's the truth
  • ahnna true/choo: it's not true
  • look yah: look here
  • look day: look there
  • kum ya: come here
  • a fu you: Is it yours?
  • move from dey: get away from there
  • ah wat a gwaan/ wa gwaan: what's going on?
  • luk day: look there!
  • a fu you ee fah?: is it yours?
  • dadday: that
  • day'ya: there
  • me nuh eeben know way dadday day: I don't know where it is.
  • gyal: girl
  • yaad: (my, her, his) house (She ah go day'ya she yaad; She's going home.)
  • min: used to indicate the past tense of a verb (example: me min nyam; I ate | Ya min cook; Did you cook? | She min day'ya sleep, She slept.)
  • dun: strictly used to tell that something has finished (E dun?; Is it finished? | Ya dun?; Are you finished?)
  • siddung: sit down
  • git up: get up
  • tun rung: turn around
  • tun um ahn: Switch it on (Example: Tun de light ahn; Switch on the lights)
  • tun um ahf: Switch it off
  • gwaan/gwaan head: go ahead
  • innaddy: in (de sudden innaddy bax; it's in the box)
  • cunchee: countryside (he libba cunchree; He lives in the countryside)
  • tung: town or city (usually referring to the country's capital; Example: Me ah go tung/Me a go'ah tung; In going into the city)
  • see you: see you later
  • bruk: to break, broke (E bruk?; Did it break? | Muh bruk; I'm broke | She bruk um/She min bruk um; She broke it)
  • muh nuh nuh: I don't know
  • muh nuh; muh dun nuh: I know; I already know, I knew that already

Spanish

Alphabet and Pronunciation[edit | edit source]

Antigua And Barbuda Creole English (Leeward Caribbean English Creole)

Spanish

Language Aids and Dictionaries[edit | edit source]

Antigua And Barbuda Creole English (Leeward Caribbean English Creole)

Spanish

Additional Resources[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

  1. Wikipedia contributors, "Antigua and Barbuda," in Wikipedia: the Free Encyclopedia, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Antigua_and_Barbuda#Languages, accessed 21 Jul 2021.