Talk:Gilbertese language

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search


Please: do not make confusion : I-Kiribati is the people and kiribati (or more exactly te taetae ni kiribati) the name of the Gilbertese language. --Enzino 19:42, 9 Oct 2004 (UTC)


Move this article to Kiribati language? --Revolución hablar ver 03:11, 20 February 2006 (UTC)

  • Move Ethnologue calls it Kiribati [1]. Also, the vast majority of the people in Kiribati call it Kiribati , not Gilbertese and regard it as a relic of colonialism. --Revolución hablar ver 03:11, 20 February 2006 (UTC)
    • Don't move. Ethnologue is not the Bible. kiribati is the local name (the complete is te taetae ni kiribati) but Gilbertese is the historical name. You find it in Stevenson. And it's not a relic of colonialism, because Gilberts=Kiribati (Gilbertese rendition of Gilberts is Kiribati). Gilbertese is as English as French (and not français), German (and not Deutsch) or Japanese (and not Nihongo). Please respect English language and history.
  • Don't move. Practically for the same reasons as the one before me. "Gilbertese" is indeed the most common name for the language, although the people themselves might call their language differently. --N-true 14:14, 12 March 2006 (UTC)
  • No vote. But the comment is correct that Kiribati is simply the local pronunciation of the English name Gilberts. The requested move is a little like asking that Japanese language be moved to Zyapaniizu rangezi, which is how the Japanese commonly pronounce the English phrase. (I presume that [t] and [s] are allophones in Gilbertese as they are in several other languages of the Pacific, and that Bingham recognized this in his orthography.) kwami 11:52, 20 March 2006 (UTC)
  • Move, urgently Because:
  1. All other pages relating to Kiribati use Kiribati making this page an anomaly.
  2. It is true that the etymology of the word Kiribati derives from Gilbert but it is not true as Kwamikagami suggests that it is simply the local translation, it is the actual, international use. Regardless of its etymological roots, Kiribati is the word actually used and is so far removed from the original that only etymologists would know.
  3. It is the actual UN-gazetted English name, which is why, at the Olympics, or the Commonwealth games the team comes in under the, English, name Kiribati.
  4. If we don't move this page we create a long series of problems with many other pages that use Kiribati, for example, Foreign relations of Kiribati cannot be Foreign relations with the Gilbert Islands, because there is no such political entity to have relations with. Many other clashes here, try "US State Government". Retrieved 01 August 2014.  Check date values in: |access-date= (help) or China–Kiribati relations, many, many more.
  5. Gilbert Islands and Kiribati cover different geographical areas! The formal name, Kiribati, and the geographical area was created at independence.
  6. Ethnologue, and anybody who has lived or worked in the South Pacific, would be quite right in saying that the use of Gilbert harks back to British rule, the name was changed at independence and it is considered a little rude to use the archaic term, which also refers to a different set of islands. Ex nihil (talk) 13:19, 1 August 2014 (UTC)

Deleted comment[edit]

I deleted the comment

Bingham had only a typewriter with a broken "S" so it does not occur in the language and "ti" is used for that sound instead.

This sounds like an urban myth (well, without the urban part, maybe!). If s had been missing, Bingham would simply have written it in by hand. Later in the article, it says that Bingham wrote Jesus as Iesu, and it was only later respelled Ietu to get rid of the s, which contradicts the broken-typewriter tale. kwami 11:52, 20 March 2006 (UTC)

More simple: no typewriter in the luggage of Bingham, and of course, some S like in Iesu proves it...Enzino 19:54, 26 September 2006 (UTC)

s in the language[edit]

does kiribati lack an s sound altogether? or is it just that the letter s isn't used and ti is used in place of it? if that's the case, does anyone know the reason why?

There is an [s] in Gilbertese, of course. It's just written "t" (ti is [si] and tu sometimes [su], sometimes [tu])…Enzino 20:16, 20 April 2006 (UTC)

Who was Gilbert?[edit]

--Greasysteve13 06:08, 12 July 2006 (UTC)

Captain Thomas Gilbert of the Charlotte, which sailed through in 1788. --Henrygb 16:23, 20 February 2007 (UTC)


This is the name of the people. The alternate name for the language is "Kiribati", not "i-Kiribati". The article should be consistent throughout. --Cromwellt|talk|contribs 16:49, 25 September 2006 (UTC)

This "no letter 's'" business[edit]

Can someone with a little expertise shed some light on this? Why would the written language lack an 's', when the language is written with the Roman alphabet? Was there some curious motivation for writing "ti" instead of 's'? It would be nice to know... —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 23:55, 8 February 2007 (UTC).

I'm assuming that when the consonant /t/ is followed by the vowel /i/, it changes its sound to [s]. This is called an "allophone" in linguistics. languagegeek (talk) 05:27, 8 November 2009 (UTC)
Hold on, if they had no written language before, then why would the sound of "t" change? Surely it just means that "tee" is not a valid syllable / phoneme in their language, like in Japanese, not that the sound changes per se?? (Though you could say that the "t" sound in Japanese does change when followed by "i" as the writing system indicates)
Try this: The Kiribati language first appeared in writing in the mid 19th century. Rev. Hiram Bingham, Jr. of the Protestant mission based in Hawaii arrived in the Gilberts in 1857, devised a way of writing Kiribati using the Latin alphabet and used it to produce a translation of the Bible. Other missionaries devised different spelling systems.
In the mid-1970s the Kiribati Language Board was established to standardise the orthography and grammar of the Kiribati language, to compose and update a dictionary and to work towards development of a Kiribati literature.
Kiribati alphabet and pronunciation
A a B b E e I i K k M m N n Ng ng O o R r T t U u W w
ah bee eh ee kee mm nn ngg oh ree see oo wee
[ a ] [ b ] [ e ] [ i ] [ k ] [ m ] [ n ] [ ŋ ] [ o ] [ r ] [ s ] [ u ] [ w ]
Sample text in Kiribati
I a butiiko ma kawiiremweko riki n taetae ao tai kaboonganai taeka aika a kaangaanga b'a I aonga ni waetata n rabakau.
Please speak slowly, and don't use difficult words, so that I can learn more quickly.'' Ex nihil (talk) 13:33, 1 August 2014 (UTC)

Written Kiribati[edit]

A correction is needed in this section where it states: "...published the best English-Kiribati Dictionary: Dictionnaire Gilbertin-Français". Was this intended to be a sarcastic comment or was it just a slip? I don't know, but obviously this was a French-Kiribati dictionary and thus could not be termed the best English-Kiribati dictionary. Perhaps the best Western language Kiribati dictionary? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 02:10, 21 October 2007 (UTC)

Gilbertese language template[edit]

If you are a native speaker of Gilbertese then you can add this template onto your userpage:

gil Tia karaoia aei iai Kiribati ngkai kain te aba te taetae.

--Amazonien (talk) 05:22, 20 January 2009 (UTC)

Hiram Bingham II's work on Gilbertese[edit]

Hiram Bingham II

Te Baibara : ae ana taeka te atua ae kanoana te o tetemanti ma te nu tetemanti ae kaetaki man taetae nako ake e moa ni koreaki iai

Te Euankerio are koreaki iroun Ioane, ae kaetaki man taetae n erene

Rajmaan (talk) 15:00, 9 March 2014 (UTC)

External links modified[edit]

Hello fellow Wikipedians,

I have just modified one external link on Gilbertese language. Please take a moment to review my edit. If you have any questions, or need the bot to ignore the links, or the page altogether, please visit this simple FaQ for additional information. I made the following changes:

When you have finished reviewing my changes, you may follow the instructions on the template below to fix any issues with the URLs.

You may set the |checked=, on this template, to true or failed to let other editors know you reviewed the change. If you find any errors, please use the tools below to fix them or call an editor by setting |needhelp= to your help request.

  • If you have discovered URLs which were erroneously considered dead by the bot, you can report them with this tool.
  • If you found an error with any archives or the URLs themselves, you can fix them with this tool.

If you are unable to use these tools, you may set |needhelp=<your help request> on this template to request help from an experienced user. Please include details about your problem, to help other editors.

Cheers.—InternetArchiveBot (Report bug) 22:50, 11 January 2017 (UTC)