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Cia-Cia (Bahasa Ciacia / 바하사 찌아찌아)

Cia-Cia is an Austronesian language spoken by about 80,000 people on Buton Island, a part of Indonesia to the south east of Sualwesi. Most Cia-Cia speakers live in and around the town of Bau-Bau, on the soutern tip of Buton, and there are also speakers on Binongko and Batu Atas Islands.

Cia-Cia, which is also known as Buton(ese) or Butung, has quite a few different dialects, including Kaesabu, Sampolawa, Wabula and Masiri. It is closely related to Wolio, which many Cia-Cia speakers also speak.

Cia-Cia was originally written with the Gundul script, a version of the Arabic script, and is now written with the Latin alphabet.

Since 2009 some students in Bau-Bau have been taught to write Cia-Cia with a version of the Korean Hangeul alphabet using a textbook written by Lee Ho-young, a linguistics professor at Seoul National University. The idea of using Hangeul to write Cia-Cia was first proposed in 2007 by Professor Chun Tai-hyun, a professor of Malay and Indonesian linguistics at Hankuk University of Foreign Studies in Seoul. Contrary to media reports, Hangeul has not been adopted as the official alphabet for Cia-Cia.

Cia-Cia alphabets and pronuciation

Cia-Cia alphabets and pronuciation


  • ᄙ is not considered a separate letter and is used to write /l/ when that sound occurs in medial position, but ㄹ is written twice when it occurs across two syllables, e.g. 빨리 (pali).
  • The empty vowel ㅡ is added before an initial doubled ㄹ, so that initial /l/ is written 을ㄹ-. However, final /l/ is written with a single ㄹ; for final /r/, the empty vowel is added, so that it is written 르 as if it were a separate syllable, as in 사요르 (sayor).

Sample text in Cia-Cia

Latin alphabet

adi sering pali nononto televisi. amano nopo'ombae ia nanumonto televisi kolie nomolengo.

Hangeul alphabet

아디 세링 빨리 노논또 뗄레ᄫᅵ시. 아마노 노뽀옴바에 이아 나누몬또 뗄레ᄫᅵ시 꼴리에 노몰렝오.

Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cia-Cia_language


Information about the Cia-Cia language

News reports about the adoption of Hangeul for Cia-Cia

Languages written with the Hangeul alphabet

Cia-Cia, Korean

Malayo-Polynesian languages

Acehnese, Ajië, Aklan, Anutan, Balinese, Batak, Bikol, Bugis, Buhid, Bushi, Cebuano, Cham, Chamorro, Chuukese, Cia-Cia, Cuyonon, Dawan, Drehu, Fijian, Filipino, Futunan, Hanuno'o, Hawaiian, Hiligaynon, Iban, Iloko, Indonesian, Javanese, Kadazandusun, Kapampangan, Kiribati, Madurese, Makasarese, Malagasy, Malay, Mandar, Maori, Maranao, Marshallese, Minangkabau, Moriori, Nauruan, Ndrumbea, Nias, Paamese, Paicî, Palauan, Pangasinan, Pohnpeian, Raga, Rapa Nui, Rarotongan, Rejang, Rotuman, Sakao, Samoan, Central Sinama, Sundanese, Tagalog, Tagbanwa, Tahitian, Tausūg, Tetum, Tokelauan, Tongan, Toraja-Sa'dan, Tuvaluan, Waray-Waray, Xârâcùù, Yapese,

Other languages written with the Latin alphabet

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