Chile language

Chile's flag

The Republic of Chile is a country that belongs to South America, whose capital is Santiago. It has a population of about 19 million inhabitants (64th) and an area of ​​756,096 km 2 (37th). Its human development index is very high (44º) and its official currency is the Chilean peso. But what language is spoken in Chile?

What language do they speak in Chile?

Chile does not have any official language. However, Spanish is the de facto national language.

In addition, various indigenous languages ​​are spoken in Chile, which are: Mapudungun (250,000 speakers), Aymara (19,000), southern Quechua (6,180), Rapanui (1,000), Kawésqar (12), Chesungun (a few elders). Yámana only has one speaker (Cristina Calderón). There are some indigenous languages ​​that have become totally extinct or only in Chile: aonikenk, cacán, chono, gününa këna, kunza and slk’nam.

map indigenous peoples chile

The most widely spoken immigrant languages ​​are German (20,000 speakers), Croatian, Catalan, Italian and Vlax Romani.

In education, English is a compulsory subject, and is taught from primary school. In most private schools, English is taught from kindergarten.

The Spanish language

Spanish is spoken by more than 99% of Chileans. It is the majority, the dialect used is Chilean Spanish, with minorities being Andean dialects (with influences from native languages ​​such as Quechua and Aymara) and Chilote (used in the Chiloé archipelago).

In Chile, there are not many differences between the Spanish spoken in the north, center and south (as there are usually in other countries). The exception is found in the extreme south, in the regions of Aysén, Magallanes and the aforementioned Chiloé. In Arica (extreme north) notable differences can also be found. But the real differences are differentiated by social classes.

In general, the intonation of Chileans is usually very fast and with ups and downs in the tonalities (especially in Santiago and surroundings). Most speakers aspirate /s/ when it is at the end of a syllable. As in the rest of the continent, there is the seseo. In addition, most Chileans have yeísmo when speaking (there is no distinction between ll and y).

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