Western Fijian language

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Western Fijian
Native toFiji
Regionwestern half of Viti Levu, Yasawa Islands and Mamanuca Islands
Native speakers
(57,000 cited 1977)[1]
Language codes
ISO 639-3wyy

Western Fijian, also known as Wayan[3]:212 is an Oceanic language spoken in Fiji by about 57,000 people.

It is distinct from Eastern Fijian (also known as Bauan or Standard Fijian), though it is not taught in schools. Colonial linguists considered Eastern Fijian to be superior, and thus marginalized Western Fijian.[citation needed]


Consonant phonemes[3]:212
Labial Dental Alveolar Velar
plain lab.
Nasal m n ŋ ŋʷ
Plosive voiced b d g
voiceless p t k
Fricative voiced v ð
voiceless s
Trill r dr
Approximant w l
Vowel phonemes[3]:212
Front Central Back
High i u
Mid e o
Low a

Most Fijian languages have a unique prenasalized alveolar trill, transcribed here as /dr/. Western Fijian in particular, is unique among Fijian languages for having labialized velar consonants. All vowels come in long and short forms, and so does the bilabial nasal (/m/).[3]:212


  1. ^ Western Fijian at Ethnologue (18th ed., 2015)
  2. ^ Hammarström, Harald; Forkel, Robert; Haspelmath, Martin, eds. (2017). "Western Fijian". Glottolog 3.0. Jena, Germany: Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History.
  3. ^ a b c d Blust, R. A; Pacific Linguistics, Australian National University (2009). The Austronesian languages. ISBN 978-0858836020.