Neverver is a member of the Southern Oceanic branch of Malayo-Polynesian language family. It is spoken by about 560 people on Malekula Island in Malampa Province of Vanuatu, particularly in the villages of Lingarakh and Limap, on Bushmans Bay, and along the Nurumbat and Netmatlamb river in the centre of the island.

Neverver is also known as Bushman's Bay, Lingarak or Nevwervwer. There are two dialects: Mindu and Wuli. It can be written with the Latin alphabet, although there is no standard spelling system. The orthography shown below was developed by Julie Barbour and appears in her book, A Grammar of Neverver.

Neverver alphabet and pronunciation

Neverver alphabet and pronunciation


The sounds represented by ë and ü are not common in the speech of younger people.

Download an alphabet chart for Neverver (Excel)

Sample text

Nakhabb vangvang i-tokh si. Ale, nat-khan me ni-kkan-ian. Nat-khan nibet. Nat-tav nibet, nat-khan. Ale, las i-skham, lokhavre an nat-somda nakhabb t-nam, lokhavre an nikhijan Bongrari.


There was no fire. So, we just ate food that was raw. We ate breadfruit. We speared breadfruit and ate it. There one time, the village where we found our fire, that village was called Bongrari.

Source: A grammar of the Neverver language of Malakula (Vanuatu) by Julie Barbour (PDF)

Videos in Neverver


Information about Neverver

Oceanic languages

Adzera, Ahamb, Äiwoo, Aneityum, Apma, Araki, Are, ’Auhelawa, Avava, Babatana, Bariai, Bola, Big Numbas, Buhutu, Bwaidoka, Caac, Cheke Holo, Dorig, Hiri Motu, Hiw, Hoava, Kakabai, Kaninuwa, Kokota, Kove, Kurti, Lakon, Lehali, Lenakel, Lewo, Lote, Lo-Toga, Löyöp, Marovo, Maskelynes, Mato, Mavea, Mono-Alu, Motu, Mussau-Emira, Mwotlap, Nafsan, Nahavaq, Namakura, Nanggu, Nduke, Neve‘ei, Neverver, Ninde, North Efate, Nume, Paamese, Raga, Rotuman, Roviana, Sa, Sakao, Saliba, Siar, Sio, Ske, Tamambo, Tami, Teanu, Tigak, Tirax, Tolai, Touo, Ubir, Ughele, Uneapa, Vatlongos, Vitu, Vurës, Western Fijian, Yabem, Yapese

Languages written with the Latin alphabet

Page created: 02.11.22. Last modified: 02.11.22


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