Listen to Gullah Language | Gullah Net

Click on an English word to see and hear the Gullah word.

 

About Gullah Language

Gullah is also a language. It was developed among Africans as a way to communicate with people from other tribes and Europeans. For years, people thought Gullah was poor English. In the 1930s, African-American scholar Lorenzo Dow Turner studied Gullah on the Sea Islands. He determined that this language is made up of English and over 4,000 words from many different African languages.

People who speak Gullah sound like people who speak Krio, one of the common languages spoken among the people from Sierra Leone, West Africa. The similarity in the languages is an example of the connection between West Africans and the people from the Sea Islands of South Carolina and Georgia.

Gullah is a spoken language and written the way it sounds.

Gullah Krio English
de di the
ooman uman woman
yez yeys ears

 

WORD BANK

Gullah (gul.lah) n. - one of a group of people of African ancestry that live in the Sea Islands and coastal areas of South Carolina, Georgia, and northern Florida; the creolized language of the Gullahs, based on English and several other African languages and spoken in Sea Island communities.

tribe (tribe) n. - a group of people who live together, share the same culture, language and history; and have a traditional way of life.

scholar (schol.ar) n. - a person who has a great deal of knowledge, usually about a particular subject.

Sierra Leone (sier.ra le.one) n. - a country on the coast of West Africa.