Kapingamarangi (Kirinit)

Kapingamarangi is a Polynesian language spoken in Pohnpei state in the Federated States of Micronesia. In 1995 there were about 1,000 speakers of Kapingamarangi on Kapingamarangi atoll, and 2,000 speakers in the village of Pohnrakied on Pohnpei island. There are also some Kapingamarangi speakers on other nearby islands.

Kapingamarangi is taught in schools, and is widely used in the community, churches and literature. It is related to Nukuoro, Rarotongan, Samoan, Tuamotuan and Tahitian.

Written Kapingamarangi

Kapingamarangi was first documented in 1557 by Hernando de Grigalvan, a Spanish explorer. In 1914 a Japanese resident of Kapingamarangi atoll introduced a way to write the language based the on Japanese script, although this was never widely used. A way to write Kapingamarangi with the Latin alphabet and based on the Nukuoro orthography was developed in 1917 by a Nukuoro missionary. This was used until 1947, when Americans started to make changes to the spelling system. In 1974 a standard way to write the language was introduced in the Kapingamarangi Lexicon.

Kapingamarangi alphabet and pronunciation

Kapingamarangi alphabet and pronunciation


Download an alphabet chart for Kapingamarangi1 (Excel)

Sample text (The Lord's Prayer - Luke 11: 2-4)

  1. Jesus ga helekai gi digaula, “Di godou madagoaa ma ga dalodalo, dalodalo beenei: ‘Tamana, do ingoo gi dabuaahia. Do henua gi dau mai.
  2. Gaamai madau meegai gi humalia mai gi gimaadou i nia laangi huogodoo.
  3. Weedee madau ihala la gi daha, idimaa, gimaadou e dumaalia gi nia hala o nia daangada huogodoo ala ne hai mai gi gimaadou. Hudee dugu anga gimaadou gi nia hagamada haingadaa.’”

Source: https://www.bible.com/bible/1354/LUK.11.KPG


  1. And he said unto them, When ye pray, say, Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done, as in heaven, so in earth.
  2. Give us day by day our daily bread.
  3. And forgive us our sins; for we also forgive every one that is indebted to us. And lead us not into temptation; but deliver us from evil.

Source: https://www.bible.com/bible/1/LUK.11.KJV

Sample video in and about Kapingamarangi

Information about Kapingamarangi | Numbers | Tower of Babel


Information about the Kapingamarangi languages

Kapingamarangi talking dictionary http://talkingdictionary.swarthmore.edu/kapingamarangi/

Polynesian languages

Anutan, Austral, Emae, Futuna-Aniwa, Futunan, Hawaiian, Kapingamarangi, Mangareva, Māori, Marquesan (North), Marquesan (South), Mele-Fila, Moriori, Niuafoʻou, Niuatoputapu-Tafahi, Niuean, Nukumanu, Nukuoro, Nukuria, Ontong Java, Penrhyn, Pukapukan, Rakahanga-Manihiki, Rapa, Rapa Nui, Rarotongan, Rennellese, Samoan, Sikaiana, Tahitian, Takuu, Tikopia, Tokelauan, Tongan, Tuamotuan, Tuvaluan, Vaeakau-Taumako, Wallisian, West Uvean

Languages written with the Latin alphabet

Page last modified: 01.05.24


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