The Multilingual Population Of Mauritius
Most citizens of Mauritius are bilingual while a significant number also speak more than two languages. English and French are generally regarded as the official languages of the country while Mauritian Creole serves as the lingua franca of Mauritius. Several Asian languages are also spoken by the Mauritians.
Official Languages Of Mauritius: English And French
Although there is no clear mention of any official language in the Constitution of Mauritius, English, and French are generally granted this status in the country. Both languages are used widely in Mauritius. They are spoken by a majority of the people of the country and also used extensively in government administration, courts proceedings, and business. Educational institutions also use French and English as the primary languages of instruction. The Constitution of the country is written in English while some laws like the Civil Code are written in French.
Native Language Of Mauritius
Mauritian Creole is the first language of the majority of the population of Mauritius. Around 1 million people speak the language today. The Mauritian Creole has a French base and also borrows a number of words from English, African and South Asian languages that have been spoken in the country. Many Mauritians of Indian origin also speak Mauritian Creole as their ancestral tongue. In fact, Creole was created centuries ago by immigrants to Mauritius from different parts of the world. There are a few variants of Creole spoken in the different islands of Mauritius like the Rodriguan Creole, Mauritian Creole, Chagossian Creole, and the Agalega Creole. These variants have little differences among them. Creole is also used as a medium of instruction in Mauritian educational institutions along with French and English.
Asian Languages Spoken In Mauritius
Asian languages are spoken by people of Asian ancestry living in Mauritius. Since the nation houses a significant population of people of Indian descent, Indian languages like Bhojpuri, Marathi, Telugu, Tamil, and Urdu are spoken by these people. Chinese is spoken by the Chinese community living here. Other communities of Mauritius also speak their native languages at home. Although Asian languages are not used in official communications, they are used in cultural and religious activities and events in the country. Students have the option to study some of these languages in schools of Mauritius. Arabic is taught in some of the mosques in the country.