Language facts sheet by Niklas Jonsson
©1997-1999 POLLI & Niklas Jonsson
A bibliography of works refered to in this file may be found in the
Polynesian Literature List.
Country/territory where spoken
Federated States of Micronesia
Kapingamarangi Island (politically a part of Ponape State in the Federated
States of Micronesia) in the Caroline Islands Group.
KPG (Grimes 1996: Ethnologue);
KAP (Biggs 1971)
Austronesian, Malayo-Polynesian, Central-Eastern Malayo-Polynesian, Eastern
Malayo-Polynesian, Oceanic, Central-Eastern Oceanic, Remote Oceanic, Central
Pacific, Eastern Fiji-Polynesian, Polynesian, Nuclear Polynesian, Samoic-
Kapingamarangi speaking population
1,300 (Bender 1979), including 700 on Kapingamarangi and several hundred in
Porakiet village on Ponape; 1,300 total.
Agriculturalists: taro, breadfruit, banana, coconut, pandanus; fishermen;
livestock: pigs, poultry; woodcarvers
A, E, I, O, U, NG, H, K, L, M, N, P, R, T, W (Biggs 1971:480) - may be
incomplete/incorrect. Also KH, NH, TH? - see Chung (1978:15-20). Loss of an
unstressed vowel between identical consonants may occur (Biggs 1971:482).
Word order typology
55% lexical similarity with Nukuoro, 54% with Rarotongan, 53% with Samoan, 51%
with Tuamotuan, 50% with Tahitian. Active language use. There is intermarriage
with people from Nukuoro.
Data last updated
16 December 1998
SELECTED BIBLIOGRAPHY - KAPINGAMARANGI
ELBERT, SAMUEL H.
1950. Grammar and comparative study of the language of Kapingamarangi: texts
EMORY, KENNETH P.
1965 (reprinted 1985). Kapingamarangi: social and religious life of a Polynesian atoll (in: Bernice P. Bishop Museum Bulletin, no 228). Honolulu. Bernice P. Bishop Museum
LEACH, B.F./WARD, G.
1981. Archaeology on Kapingamarangi atoll