Spoken by almost half of the population of the
island of Guam (approximately 70 thousand people).
About 80% of ethnic Chamorros have some command of the language.
spoken in Northern Mariana Islands.
A large number of Chamorro words have
etymological roots (e.g. tenda "shop/store" from Spanish tienda), which may
lead some to mistakenly conclude that the language is a Spanish Creole:
However, Chamorro very much uses its loan words in a Micronesian way (eg:
bumobola "playing ball" from bola "ball, play ball" with infix -um- and
reduplication of root).
Chamorro can also be considered a mixed language (Hispano-Austronesian) or a
language that resulted of a contact and creolization process in the Mariana
Islands. Modern Chamorro grammar has many elements of
origin: articles, numbers, prepositions.
Chamorro's nearest grammatical relatives are found in the Philippines. Some
of the similarities between the Chamorro language and languages of the
Philippines may be due at least in part to the fact that after 90%-95% of
the native Chamoru population was wiped out during Spanish rule, large
numbers of Filipinos began to be shipped to the archipelago, thus possibly
influencing Chamoru language and culture. (Filipinos outnumber Chamorus in
the Northern Mariana Islands.)
Chamorro Language Resources: 1908 Bible, 1918 Chamorro-English Dictionary, Chamorro Language Grammer book
Chamorro Bible (technically called a portion) containing six books: Y Salmo
Sija, Y Ybangelio Según San Mateo, Y Ybangelio Según San Marcos, Y Ybangelio
Según San Lucas, Y Ybangelio Según San Juan, Y Checho Y Apostoles Sija. The
Bible books are in HTML format accompanied by scanned images (low-resolution
and high-resolution) of the corresponding pages in the original Bible. The
translation was done by Francis Marion Price (1850-1937). ChamorroBible.org
also contains a Chamorro language resources section which includes the
scanned images of a 1918 Chamorro-English/English Chamorro dictionary by
Edward R. von Preissig, Ph.D and a Chamorro language grammar
book by William Edwin Safford. All the books can be freely copied, printed,