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🏝 French Spoken in Martinique

Hélène By Hélène - updated on Jul 7, 2020

Bonjou! Sa ou fè ? In Martinique, people speak traditional French but also French creole. Learn French Martinique Creole vocabulary and martinican expressions.

1 – French In Martinique

In Martinique, we speak French and Creole, Kréyol!

Creole does not have the status of official language, but regional; it’s spoken on the whole island. It’s very close to the Creole spoken on each of the other French-speaking islands of the West Indies archipelago.

Like all creolized languages, the Creole of Martinique is a hybrid language, born from the colonial process and inseparable from the massive importation of West African slaves in particular, with very diverse African languages.

Banned from being spoken at school fifty years ago, Creole is now taught at school in Martinique.

2 – Martinique French Creole Expressions

Oral language above all, with French as a lexical base, here are some common expressions in Martinican Creole:

  1. Bonjou : Bonjour – hi
  2. Bonswa : Bonsoir – good evening
  3. Sa ou fè ? : Comment vas-tu ? – how are you?
  4. Souplé : S’il vous plaît – please
  5. Mési : Merci – thanks
  6. Mi plisi : ça me fait plaisir – my pleasure
  7. Pani pwoblem : Pas de problème – no problem
  8. Ka sa yé : Qu’est-ce que c’est ? – what is it?
  9. I bon : C’est bon – it’s good
  10. I pa bon : C’est mauvais – it’s bad
  11. Tanzantan : Parfois, de temps en temps – sometimes
  12. A plus : Au revoir – bye
  13. Doudou : Chéri(e) – sweetie
  14. Vini là : Viens là – come here
  15. Man ka vini : J’arrive – I’m coming
  16. Côté ou ka allé : Où vas-tu ? – where are you going?
  17. An nou pran on lagout : On va prendre une goutte de rhum – we’ll have a drop of rum
  18. Ba mwen an ti punch : Donne-moi un punch – give me a punch cocktail
  19. Zouké : danser – to dance
  20. An nou zouké ô swé a : On va danser ce soir – let’s go dance tonight

3 – Common Martinique Creole Phrases video

Let’s hear some common French Martinique creole phrases and expressions.

Now that you know how to speak the French creole of Martinique, let me take you on a virtual trip and share my family vacation – with many pictures – in this bilingual French story.

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