Think Spanish is the only language spoken in Colombia? Think again. Indeed, Spanish is the official and dominant language of the South American country, with more than 99% of the country able to speak it. For a minority of Colombians, however, Spanish isn’t their first language—rather, they speak one of the 65+ Amerindian languages indigenous to the land. With languages spanning a dozen families, Colombia’s linguistic landscape is diverse—and amidst this mosaic we find the Barí language.
Barí constitutes the native tongue of about 5,000 people, the Barí people of Colombia and Venezuela. The Barí may also be called “Motilones,” but they don’t use this moniker for themselves—it’s derived from Spanish, with the meaning of “shaved heads.” Although the Barí people have largely assimilated into the dominant Hispanic culture of their countries, they still speak their language, with roughly 150 monolingual elders, and children are still acquiring Barí. To help support the language, we at TranslationServices.com are proud to offer our new Barí translation services.
How about checking out a free quote for our Barí translation services? Request one in a message today!
Barí: a proud indigenous language split between Colombia and Venezuela
You’ll find plenty of Barí speakers on either side of the northern border between Colombia and Venezuela by the Serranía del Perijá mountain range, with the Colombian Barí residing in the departments of Cesar and Norte de Santander and their Venezuelan counterparts living in the state of Zulia. The Barí language is part of the Chibchan family, a major group of related languages from Colombia, Venezuela, Panama, and Costa Rica, with languages such as Ngäbere (Guaymí), Kuna, Buglere, and Kogi also constituting members.
In terms of grammar, Barí is an entirely different world from English. Plural forms only exist for nouns referring to human entities, and even then, it isn’t always used, since the plural marker also indicates definiteness (a nuance equivalent to English “the”). In its pronouns, Barí features multiple third-person plural forms that are used to indicate whether multiple actions in a sentence are performed by the same people. Verbs undergo significant inflection, with markers for both the subject and object in addition to tense, aspect, modality, and more. The default word order in the language is subject-object-verb, the most common word order among languages, but younger speakers have a tendency to employ a subject-verb-object order, which could be due to influence from Spanish or Wayuu, a major Amerindian language in the area.
To ensure your Barí translation encapsulates all the subtle nuances of this complicated language, it’s best to work with native speakers—and that’s precisely who we hire.
Your best bet for Barí translation services of any type
No matter what your translation project is, we’re determined to be your one-stop shop for all your Barí translation needs. Few translation companies work with the language at all, but we endeavor to offer the most comprehensive services we can for Barí, with translation both to and from the endangered language. To the best of our ability, we’ve hired translators from various parts of the Barí-speaking world, helping you access translation services for various dialects in the language.
We’re proud to work with all sorts of clients to produce high-quality Barí translation services, whether it’s for educational purposes, business goals, or personal reasons. Translating educational materials into Barí is a great way to help native-speaking children solidify their knowledge of both their language and the world around them, while translating stories, books, games, apps, and more into Barí can help boost the status of the language and ensure it thrives in the future. We’re also happy to translate native Barí stories into English so the rest of the world can better appreciate this Amerindian culture.
Our team can’t wait to work on your Barí translation project—so reach out today to place an order!