Rarotongan
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
Cook Islands

Geographical region
Cook Islands

Language codes
RAR (POLLI); RRT (Grimes 1996: Ethnologue); CKM (Biggs 1971)

Alternate language names
Cook Islands Maori, Cook Island, Kuki Airani, Rarotongan-Mangaian

Genetic affiliation
Austronesian, Malayo-Polynesian, Central-Eastern Malayo-Polynesian, Eastern Malayo-Polynesian, Oceanic, Central-Eastern Oceanic, Remote Oceanic, Central Pacific, Eastern Fiji-Polynesian, Polynesian, Nuclear Polynesian, East Polynesian, Central Polynesian, Tahitic

Dialect names
Mitiaro, Mauke, Atiu, Mangaia, Rarotonga, Aitutaki

Rarotngan spaeking population
16,800 in Cook Islands, possibly including second language speakers in the northern atolls (Government report 1979); 25,000 in New Zealand (1989); 869 in French Polynesia (1977); 43,000 total.

Subsistence type
Fishermen, agriculturalists: arrowroot, coconut, sweet potato, yam, taro, banana, citrus fruit, pineapple, papaya, mango, chestnut

Status of language
Work in progress

Alphabet
A, E, I, O, U, ', NG, K, M, N, P, R, T, V - may be incomplete.

Remarks
83% lexical similarity with Tuamotuan, 79% with Hawaiian, 75% with Magarevan, 73% with Marquesan. Rarotongan is the trade language for all of Cook Islands. The government is deciding on the orthography (1987).

Data last updated
20 December 1999



SELECTED BIBLIOGRAPHY - RAROTONGAN

BUSE, J.
1995. A Cook Island Maori Dictionary. Canberra. Australian National University Press

BUSE, JASPER / TARINGA, RAUTUTI (edited by Biggs, B. / Moekaaa, Rangi).
1996. Cook Islands Maori dictionary (with English-Cook Islands Maori finderlist) (in series: Pacific linguistics, series C, no 123). Canberra. The Australian National University

MACCAULEY, J.J.
No date. Te Ata o Ikurangi [The Shadow of Ikurangi]. Rarotonga. The Curriculum Production Unit, Education Department

MARSHALL, DONALD S.
1956. Notes on Rarotongan kinship terminology (in: Journal of Austronesian studies, vol 1, pp 8-19)

PAKOTI, JOHN.
1895. Te autara ia Aitutaki; tona kitira anga ia: Ko te autara teia ia Ru (The first inhabitants of Aitutaki: The history of Ru) (in: Journal of the Polynesian Society, vol 4, p 69-70). Wellington. The Polynesian Society

RERE, TIARA.
1976 (new edition). Conversational Maori: Rarotongan Languge. Suva. University of the South Pacific

[TRAD.].
1851-1888. The Bible

[TRAD.].
1836. New Testament

[TRAD.].
1828-1981. Portions of the Bible

[TRAD.] (translated by United Bible Societies)
1978 (?). Te Evangeria a Mareko [St. Mark]. Suva. University of the South Pacific



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