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The Canarians speak Castillian Spanish ((Castellano), the official language of Spain. The only difference is that the pronunciation is slightly different and they have a slightly lilting Caribbean accent.

Some Guanche words are still in use, including 'guagua' for bus and 'papa' for potato.

Castellano (Castilian) has been the official state language since around 1250. Abroad, Castellano is actually always called "Spanish". Castellano is a Romance language with many derivations from Latin, but also from many other languages. Spanish contains about 100 words that were brought to the peninsula by the Visigoths and others.

During the domination of the Moors, approximately 4,000 words were introduced into the Spanish language. Furthermore, many words have been borrowed from French and Italian, and more recently from English.

Examples of derivations are:
Arabic French West Gothic English
Alcázar monje guardia lider
Aldea vinagre ropa mitin
Acequia menú tapa tractor
Alcoba coqueta espuela fútbol

The Castellano language differs in some respects from other Romance languages, particularly in pronunciation. The letters of the Spanish alphabet are: a, b, c, ch, d, e, f, g, h, i, j, k, l, ll, m, n, ñ, o, p, q, r, s, t, u, v, x, y, z.


Evers, K. / Gran Canaria, Fuerteventura, Lanzarote

Gawin, I. / Fuerteventura
Zuidnederlandse Uitgeverij

Grimm, P. / Lanzarote & Fuerteventura

Lipps, S. / Fuerteventura

Schütte, H. / Fuerteventura
Van Reemst

CIA - World Factbook

BBC - Country Profiles

Last updated April 2024
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