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What’s with this “Wren” thing?
The oldest extant version of the fable
are presenting here appeared in 1913 in the first volume of a two-volume anthology
Saxon folktales (Plattdeutsche
Volksmärchen “Low German Folktales”)
collected by Wilhelm Wisser (1843–1935). Read
ABC Islands Creole
capital of Curaçao—
one of the places in
which Papiamentu is used.
Papiamentu (also known as Papiamento) has been an official language of Aruba
(alongside Dutch) for some time. On March 7, 2007, it was instated as an official language of Curaçao
Kòrsou), alongside Dutch and English.
The beginnings of
Papiamentu seem to have been in contacts between Portuguese, African languages and indigenous Arawak varieties,
Ladino (Judeo-Spanish), Dutch, Spanish and English, among others.
of the language originally meant something like “colloquially,” based
on the archaic Portuguese and Spanish verb papear or papiar ‘to converse’, originally perhaps ‘to chat’ or ‘to babble’.
Primarily West Africans,
including Cape Verdeans,
arrived on the ABC Islands (Aruba, Bonaire and Curaçao) by way of slave trade,
especially between 1660 and 1713.
This trade was dominated by Sephardic Jews from Portugal
Brazil (many of whom had had Spanish and Ladino proficiency as well, as did
educated Sephardim of Amsterdam and Hamburg) whose ancestors had escaped the
Iberian Inquisition and had forged connections with what are now the Netherlands
and Northern Germany. They were later joined by Ladino speakers
in Spain. All the languages that
a mix of Portuguese and Spanish.
by anyone’s standard, each slave “house” (like
old salt mines) was “home” to six
Papiamentu is the
first language of the majority of people born and raised in Aruba and in
Netherlands Antilles (Papiamentu Antias Hulandes, Antias Ulandes, Antias Neerlandes). However, only as a result
of language activism did it begin to enjoy a positive and official status
in 1995, and it is now widely used in the media. In Bonaire (Papiamentu Boneiru)
Curaçao it is currently used in the first two years of primary education. Most
are conversant in Dutch, English and Spanish as well.
Lately, the language
is being more and more influenced by Spanish, which is considered
prestigeous in the
region, in part because of the close geographic proximity of Spanish-speaking
countries (with only short boat and plane rides to Venezuela).
Sint Maarten, Saba,
Sint Eustatius and Puerto Rico.
Papiamentu is widely
regarded as being a rare tonal Creole, influenced by tonal West African languages.
While it is true that a high tone (here ´) and a low
tone (here `)
used, probably West African in origin, these appear to be merely realizations
syllables respectively; e.g., sálà ‘living-room’ (cf.
Spanish sala), sàlá ‘to salt’ (cf. Spanish salar); biáhà ‘voyage’(cf. Spanish viaje), biàhá ‘to travel’ (cf. Spanish viajar). In other words, Papiamentu has tonal stress: primary stress carries a high
tone, while other syllables carry a low tone.
Historical Lowlands language contacts: Dutch, English