Federated States of Micronesia Languages
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Micronesians speak English plus a native tongue. Linguists divide the native languages into the “nuclear” group spoken in the Federated States of Micronesia, Marshall Islands, Kiribati, and Nauru; and the “western” group spoken in Palau, Guam, and Marianas. The latter group is thought to have their origins in the ancient language called proto-Austronesian. The native tongue of Guam is Chamorro, while Japanese is widely spoken as well. In the Northern Mariana Islands, Chamorro and Carolinian are spoken. There are eight indigenous languages in the Federated States of Micronesia, primarily Trukese and Pohnpeian. The native tongue in Palau is Palauan. In the Marshall Islands, the native tongue is Marshallese. Kiribati has one indigenous language, known as Gilbertese or locally as I-Kiribati. Nauruan is the native tongue of Nauru. The records are in Spanish, German, English, or the native tongue, depending on the time period and the island or island group.
For word lists and help researching in Federated States of Micronesia records, see:
- The Family History Department of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, “Family History Record Profile: Micronesia,” Word document, private files of the FamilySearch Content Strategy Team, 1987-2001.