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Friday, December 21, 2012

I tend to write "ki jan" (two words) instead of "kijan". The same with "w ap", instead of "wap". I tend to keep words apart versus combining them. Am I wrong? Mesi.

I believe that one day there will be guidelines about whether to combine these words or not, but since the Creole language is a work in progress we only find suggestions and recommendations (usually from Creole linguists, interpreters, and educators like Yves Dejean, J. C Bernard, Roger Savain, etc....)
One word may have one or two different spellings because of the variation in the Creole spoken in different regions.  For example, you'll find many ways to say the next day in Creole thanks to these variants: "lelandemen, lelandmen, nan landmen, nan demen".  And there are many instances where all of the different terms for one word are very popular.  Some examples:

bonmache or bon mache to translate cheap
lindemyèl or lin de myèl for honeymoon
larezon or rezon for good judgment
zanj, lanj, anj, lezanj, zany for angel
tenb or tenm for postage stamp
zwazo or zwezo for bird
chimen or chemen for path
ponko, ponkò, poko, pako for not yet

Both "kijan" and "ki jan"  are acceptable.  Some of our most respected Haitian writers write "wap", some "w'ap" or "w-ap", an others write "w ap".

Haitian Creole ↔ English Reference, Look up Haitian Creole and English Words


  1. My next question on this subject is: Do you
    tend to combine or do you tend not to combine words? In other words, what is YOUR style in
    this matter?

    Mesi anpil,

    Kreyol Lwiziyen

  2. I tend to combine words like kijan, bonmache, lindemyèl, etc...
    I tend to use lots and lot's of apostrophes.