Most people probably aren’t aware, but Indonesia is one of the most linguistically diverse countries on Earth. With more than 1300 different ethnic groups inhabiting its territory, the country is home to more than 700 languages spoken indigenously across its many islands. To ensure smooth interethnic communication, a lingua franca is clearly necessary, and in Indonesia, the Indonesian language fulfills this role. But most Indonesians aren’t native speakers of the language—rather, they speak a local indigenous language as their first one.
Across the province of North Sumatra, the Batak languages are spoken, with Toba Batak the most prominent. However, the other Batak languages, including Batak Simalungun, are also collectively spoken by millions of people. Batak Simalungun has around 1.2 million speakers, to be precise. The language is still used for everyday communication by many Simalungun people, it’s been taught in schools since the 1990s, and it’s used in churches and religious activities—but nonetheless, Simalungun youth are showing a preference for Indonesian, leaving Batak Simalungun threatened. At TranslationServices.com, we’re passionate about all languages, so we’re proud to help preserve Batak Simalungun by offering translation services for the language.
Why not request a free quote for our Batak Simalungun translation services today?
What kind of language is Batak Simalungun?
The primary region of Batak Simalungun speakers is Simalungun Regency, located to the north of Toba Lake, as well as Pematang Siantar, an independent enclave within Simalungun Regency. Simalungun is written in the Latin alphabet, but it used to be written in the dedicated Batak script. The language is closely related to Batak Toba and the other Batak languages spoken in the area, and it is also related to Indonesian, albeit much more distantly. That’s because they’re both part of the Malayo–Polynesian subfamily of the Austronesian family.
Batak Simalungun features many of the same key characteristics of other languages in Indonesia, such as a politeness system that uses different pronouns depending on the social status of the speaker and listener. For example, Batak Simalungun speakers can use the honorific form of the second-person singular or, alternatively, the second-person plural to show respect. Derivational inflection in Batak Simalungun is expansive, with a number of affixes used to change the meaning of root words, and Simalungun active verbs are explicitly marked with a prefix.
Batak Simalungun is difficult—we won’t pretend otherwise. But our translators are native speakers, so the challenge is easy for them.
What direction do you want for your Batak Simalungun translation services?
Whether it’s translation into Simalungun or translation out of Simalungun, our translation team is dedicated to fulfilling your translation expectations. With translators representing a wide array of translation specialties, we can even handle specialty documents like historical papers or Batak Simalungun literature, translating them into flowing English. If you’re looking for educational materials in Batak Simalungun to ensure local children are learning in their native language, we can help, and if you want to translate English-language books, poems, websites, games, or apps, we can help with that too. Translating interesting content into Simalungun can help invigorate enthusiasm among youth and help preserve the language for the future.
Let’s get started with Batak Simalungun translation today! Get the ball rolling by getting in touch with us.