Tonga isn’t a very well-known country—as a Pacific Island nation with a small population, many people outside of the region haven’t even heard of it. Nonetheless, Tonga is an independent country that boasts its own culture and language, both of which have developed over a long history. Most people in Tonga, who are overwhelmingly ethnically Tongan, speak Tongan as their first language, although English is also widely used in the country.
The estimated number of native Tongan speakers stands at roughly 187,000, with about 96,000 living in Tonga and 73,000 living elsewhere, such as New Zealand, Australia, and the United States. The Tongan language provides a sense of identity to the island and its people, but the widespread use of English can dilute Tongan, resulting in limited literature published in Tongan even today. This also means that most translation companies overlook Tongan, opting instead for bigger languages that drive larger profits. But we at TranslationServices.com value more than just profits—we’re interested in helping people. We’re proud to offer professional Tongan translation services to help anyone who needs them.
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Learn some details about Tongan here!
Tonga is part of Polynesia, with Samoa, Fiji, and New Caledonia constituting some of the closest neighboring territories. Thus, the Tongan language shares similarities with other Pacific Island languages, such as Samoan, Tahitian, Māori, and Hawaiian. The language is written in the Latin alphabet, like English, as are most languages in Polynesia. The grammatical structure features many characteristics foreign to English speakers, such as a three-way definiteness distinction—whereas English only has “a/an” and “the,” Tongan has a nonspecific indefinite, a specific indefinite (i.e., the speaker has a particular instance of the noun in mind, but the listener isn’t expected to know which one), and a definite article.
Tongan also features three separate registers—ordinary language, a register used with chiefs, and a register used with royalty. These registers can incorporate entirely different vocabulary. The Tongan possessive pronoun system is also remarkably complex, with distinctions for three numbers—singular, dual, and plural—as well as ordinary, emotional, and emphatic versions of each pronoun. Pronouns are then further divided into definite and indefinite categories, and each one also makes a distinction between alienable and inalienable possession.
Tongan translation services they way you want them.
Don’t be too intimated by Tongan—our Tongan translators are native speakers, so all these challenges are second nature to them. That means we can easily handle all sorts of Tongan translation needs, including translation both to and from Tongan. For example, do you have Tongan-language historical documents? How about traditional folk stories? Let our team translate these to share Tongan culture with the world! We can also translate business materials, academic content, and whatever else you may want. As for translation into Tongan, our team can help you reach new customers in Tonga with Tongan-language business content, and we can help you communicate with locals for research purposes through Tongan-language surveys. If you want to translate books, poems, websites, apps, games, or other creative content into Tongan, we can help with that, too!
Let’s get started with Tongan translation services today. All you have to do is reach out with the details!