Cookies Policy

This site uses cookies. By continuing to browse the site you are agreeing to our use of cookies.

I accept this policy

Find out more here

Early Notices Regarding Creole Portuguese in Former Portuguese Timor

No metrics data to plot.
The attempt to load metrics for this article has failed.
The attempt to plot a graph for these metrics has failed.
The full text of this article is not currently available.

Brill’s MyBook program is exclusively available on BrillOnline Books and Journals. Students and scholars affiliated with an institution that has purchased a Brill E-Book on the BrillOnline platform automatically have access to the MyBook option for the title(s) acquired by the Library. Brill MyBook is a print-on-demand paperback copy which is sold at a favorably uniform low price.

Access this article

+ Tax (if applicable)
Add to Favorites
You must be logged in to use this functionality

image of Journal of Language Contact

The area of Bidau, in the East Timorese capital of Dili, was home to the only documented form of Creole Portuguese in Timor. Although Bidau Creole Portuguese is now extinct, by most accounts, a few scattered records allow a glimpse into what it must have been like, and reveal its clear relationship with other Southeast Asian Portuguese-based creoles; Baxter’s (1990a) study of Bidau Creole Portuguese was based mostly on a set of recordings made in the context of the Missão Antropológica de Timor [“Anthropological Mission to Timor”, 1953–1954]. In this article, Baxter (1990a: 3) mentions that “[s]o far, the earliest located reference to Bidau Creole Portuguese, and one which contains some impressionistic examples of conversations and the verse of a song, is Castro (1943: 56, 177)”. However, since the publication of this study, a few earlier references to what can be interpreted as Portuguese-based creole in Timor have been located in unpublished archival sources. These sources are letters sent to two important philologists of the late 19th and early 20th century, Hugo Schuchardt and José Leite de Vasconcelos, who were greatly interested in ascertaining whether a creole was spoken in Timor and what the local Portuguese was like. The present study introduces and contextualises these epistolary sources, discussing the linguistic and sociolinguistic material contained therein, and its relevance for the confirmation of different threads of language contact involving Portuguese.

Affiliations: 1: Universidade Federal da Bahia, ; 2: Universidade de Lisboa,


Full text loading...


Data & Media loading...

1. Ao Sio Heng. 2013. Aquisição da morfologia verbal do Português Europeu: um caso de aprendentes de Chinês-L1 - Acquisition of verbal morphology in European Portuguese: a case of L1-Chinese leaners . PhD dissertation, Universidade de Macau.
2. Aparício da Silva,, Sebastião M. 1885. Catecismo da doutrina christã em Tétum . Macau: Tipografia do Seminário.
3. Baker Philip, and Peter Mühlhäusler,. 2007. "Creole linguistics from its beginnings, through Schuchardt to the present day". In Charles Stewart (ed.), Creolization: History, Ethnography, Theory , 84107. Walnut Creek, CA: Left Coast Press.
4. Baxter Alan N. 1988. A grammar of Kristang (Malacca Creole Portuguese) . Canberra: Pacific Linguistics / Australian National University.
5. Baxter Alan N. 1990a. "Notes on the Creole Portuguese of Bidau, East Timor". Journal of Pidgin and Creole Languages Vol 5.1: 138.
6. Baxter Alan N. 1990b. "Some observations on verb serialization in Malacca Creole Portuguese". Boletim de Filologia Vol XXXI: 161184.
7. Baxter Alan N. 1995. "Um importante sincretismo no português crioulo de Malaca: a preposição multifuncional ku". In Cilene da Cunha Pereira and Paulo Dias Pereira (eds.), Miscelânea de Estudos Linguísticos, Filológicos e Literários In Memeoriam Celso Cunha , 1533. Rio de Janeiro: Nova Fronteira.
8. Baxter Alan N. 1996. "Portuguese in the Pacific and Pacific Rim". In Stephen A. Wurm, Peter Mühlhäusler, and Darrell T. Tryon (eds.), Atlas of Languages of Intercultural Communication in the Pacific, Asia and the Americas , vol. II.1, 299338. Berlin/New York: Mouton de Gruyter.
9. Baxter Alan N. 2002. "Semicreolization?—The restructured Portuguese of the Tongas of São Tomé, a consequence of L1 acquisition in a special contact situation". Journal of Portuguese Linguistics Vol 1: 739.
10. Baxter Alan N., and Bastos Augusta. 2012. "A closer look at the post-nominal genitive determiner in Asian Creole Portuguese". In Hugo C. Cardoso, Alan N. Baxter, and Mário Pinharanda Nunes (eds.), Ibero-Asian Creoles: Comparative Perspectives , 4779. Amsterdam: John Benjamins.
11. Boxer Charles Ralph. 1947. The Topasses of Timor . Amsterdam: Koninklijke Vereeniging Indisch Instituut.
12. Bybee Joan. 1995. Morphology: A Study of the Relation Between Meaning and Form . Amsterdam: John Benjamins.
13. Cardoso Hugo C. 2009. The Indo-Portuguese Language of Diu . Utrecht: Landelijke Onderzoekschool Taalwetenschap.
14. Cardoso Hugo C., and Silvio Moreira de Sousa,. 2015. "A correspondência entre José dos Santos Vaquinhas e Hugo Schuchardt". In Hurch Bernhard (ed.) (2007–), Hugo Schuchardt Archiv . Online edition available at (accessed January 7, 2016).
15. Carvalho Maria José Albarran de. 2001. "Timor Lorosa'e, características das línguas crioulas e do português conservado na zona: Contribuição para a língua oficial". Studies of Languages and Cultures of East Timor Vol 4: 2036.
16. de Castro Afonso. 1867. As Possessões Portuguezas na Oceania . Lisbon: Imprensa Nacional.
17. de Castro, Alberto Osório. 1908. Flores de Coral; Últimos Poemas . Dili: Imprensa Nacional.
18. de Castro Alberto Osório. 1943. A ilha Verde e Vermelha de Timor . Lisbon: Agência Geral das Colónias.
19. Clements J. Clancy. 2009. The Linguistic Legacy of Spanish and Portuguese: Colonial Expansion and Language Change . Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
20. Clements J. Clancy, and Koontz-Garboden Andrew J. 2002. "Two Indo-Portuguese creoles in contrast". Journal of Pidgin and Creole Languages Vol 17.2: 191236.
21. Coelho F. Adolfo. 1882. "Os dialectos românicos ou neo-latinos na África, Ásia e América; Notas complementares". Boletim da Sociedade de Geografia de Lisboa 3ª série, vol. Vol 8: 451478.
22. Crawfurd John. 1852. A Grammar and Dictionary of the Malay Language ; vol. Vol 1. London: Smith, Elder and Co.
23. Davidson L., and Goldrick M.,. 2003. "Tense, agreement and defaults in child Catalan: An Optimality Theoretic analysis". In Montrul Silvina, and Ordóñez Fernando (eds.), Linguistic Theory and Language Development in Hispanic Languages , 193211. Cambridge, MA: Cascadilla Press.
24. das Dores Rafael. 1901. A Força Armada em Timor . Lisbon: Imprensa Nacional.
25. das Dores Rafael. 1903. Apontamentos para um Dicionário Corográfico de Timor . Lisbon: Imprensa Nacional.
26. das Dores Rafael. 1907. Diccionario Teto-Português . Lisbon: Imprensa Nacional.
27. Emmerich Charlotte. 1984. A Língua de Contato no Alto-Xingu: Origem, Formação e Função . PhD dissertation, Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro.
28. Ezeizabarrena María José. 2002. "Root infinitives in two pro-drop languages". In Ana Teresa Pérez-Leroux and Juana Muñoz Liceras (eds.), The Acquisition of Spanish Morphosyntax: The L1/L2 Connection , 3565. Dordrecht: Kluwer.
29. Ferraz Luiz Ivens,. 1987. "Portuguese Creoles of West Africa and Asia". In Gilbert Glenn (ed.), Pidgin and Creole Languages: Essays in Memory of John E. Reinecke , 337360. Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press.
30. de Garavito Joyce Bruhn,. 2003. "Learners’ competence may be more accurate than we think: Spanish L2 and agreement morphology". In Juana M. Liceras,, Helmut Zobl,, and Helen Goodluck (eds.), Proceedings of the 6th Generative Approaches to Second Language Acquisition Conference (GASLA 2002) , 1723. Somerville, MA: Cascadilla Proceedings Project.
31. de Garavito Joyce Bruhn, and Cristina Atoche,. 2006. "Variability in contact Spanish". In Claire Lefebvre,, Lydia White, and Christine Jourdain (eds.), L2 Acquisition and Creole Genesis: Dialogues , 87111. Amsterdam: John Benjamins.
32. Gil David,. 2004. "Riau Indonesian sama: Explorations in macrofunctionality". In Haspelmath Martin (ed.), Coordinating constructions , 371424. Amsterdam: John Benjamins.
33. Gunn Geoffrey C. 1999. Timor Loro Sae: 500 years . Lisbon: Livros do Oriente.
34. Hancock Ian F. 1975. "Malacca Creole Portuguese: Asian, African or European?" Anthropological Linguistics Vol 17.5: 211236.
35. Holm John. 1989. Pidgins and Creoles , vol. Vol 2. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
36. Hull Geoffrey. 1996. Mai Kolia Tetun; A Beginner’s Course in Tetum-Praça the Lingua Franca of East Timor . Sydney: Australian Catholic Relief and Australian Catholic Social Justice Council.
37. Hull Geoffrey. 1999. Standard Tetum English Dictionary , 2 nd edition. Sydney: Allen and Unwin/University of Western Sydney.
38. Jackson K. David. 2012. "Flying with the Papagaio Verde (green parrot): An Indo-Portuguese folkloric motif in South and Southeast Asia". In Laura Jarnagin (ed.), Portuguese and Luso-Asian Legacies, 1511–2011, vol. 1 (Intricacies of Engagement), 178202. Singapore: Institute of Southeast Asian Studies.
39. Kihm Alain, and Rougé Jean-Louis. 2013. "Língua de Preto, the Basic Variety at the root of West African Portuguese Creoles: A contribution to the theory of pidgin/creole formation as second language acquisition". Journal of Pidgin and Creole Languages Vol 28.2: 203298.
40. Krajinović Ana. 2015. O Sistema Verbal dos Crioulos Indo-Portugueses do Malabar . MA dissertation, Universidade de Lisboa.
41. Kupisch Tanja, and Esther Rinke. 2008. "A fresh look at root infinitives from a cross-linguistic perspective". Nordlyd Vol 34.3: 87109.
42. Liceras Juana M., Elena Valenzuela, and Lourdes Díaz. 1999. "L1/L2 Spanish grammars and the pragmatic deficit hypothesis". Second Language Research Vol 15.2: 161190.
43. Lipsky John. 2008. Afro-Bolivian Spanish . Frankfurt am Main: Vervuert/Iberoamericana.
44. Marsden William. 1812. A grammar of the Malayan language with an introduction and praxis . London: author’s publication.
45. Matos Artur Teodoro de. 1974. Timor Português: 1515–1769: Contribuição para a sua História . Lisbon: Instituto Histórico Infante Dom Henrique, Faculdade de Letras da Universidade de Lisboa.
46. Mattos e Silva,, Rosa Virgínia,, Myrian Barbosa da Silva,, Maria del Rosário Albán,, and Pedro Agostinho. 1988. Sete Estudos sobre o Português Kamayurá . Salvador: PROED.
47. Maurer Philippe. 2011. The former Portuguese Creole of Batavia and Tugu (Indonesia) . London: Battlebridge.
48. McCarthy Corrine,. 2006. "Default morphology in second language Spanish: Missing inflection or underspecified inflection?" In Montreuil Jean-Pierre, and Chiyo Nishida (eds.), New Perspectives on Romance Linguistics: Selected Papers from the 35thLinguistic Symposium on Romance Languages , 201212. Amsterdam: John Benjamins.
49. McCarthy Corrine. 2007. Morphological Variability in Second Language Spanish . PhD dissertation, McGill University.
50. Montrul Silvina A. 2004. The Acquisition of Spanish: Morphosyntactic Development in Monolingual and Bilingual L1 Acquisition and Adult L2 Acquisition . Amsterdam: John Benjamins.
51. Morais-Barbosa Jorge. 1967. Estudos Linguísticos Crioulos . Lisbon: Academia Internacional de Cultura Portuguesa.
52. Mory Jenna Lynn. 2008. Verbal Acquisition in L2 Spanish . MA dissertation, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
53. Nunes Mário Pinharanda. 2013. "Traces of superstrate verb inflection in Makista". In Hugo C. Cardoso, Alan N. Baxter, and Mário Pinharanda Nunes (eds.), Ibero-Asian Creoles: Comparative Perspectives , 289326. Amsterdam: John Benjamins.
54. Platt John, and Weber Heidi. 1980. English in Singapore and Malaysia: Status, Features, Functions . Kuala Lumpur: Oxford University Press.
55. Pratt Amy, and Grinstead John,. 2007. "The optional infinitive stage in child Spanish". In Belikova A.,, Meroni L.,, and Umeda M. (eds.), Proceedings of Generative Approaches to Language Acquisition - North America , 351362. Montréal: Cascadilla Press.
56. Radford Andrew, and Ploennig-Pacheco Ingrid. 1994. "Morphosyntax of subjects and verbs in Child Spanish: A case study". Essex Research Reports in Linguistics Vol 5: 2367.
57. Rubino Rejane, and Pine Julian. 1998. "Subject agreement in Brazilian Portuguese: What low error rates hide". Journal of Child Language Vol 25: 3559.
58. Schuchardt Hugo. 1890. "Kreolische Studien IX. Über das Malaioportugiesische von Batavia und Tugu". Sitzungsberichte der Kaiserlichen Akademie der Wissenschaften zu Wien (philosophisch-historische Klasse) Vol 122.IX: 1256.
59. Senna Fernandes Miguel, and Alan N. Baxter. 2001. Maquista Chapado; Vocabulário e Expressões do Crioulo Português de Macau . Macau: Instituto Internacional.
60. Sessarego Sandro. 2015. Afro-Peruvian Spanish: Spanish slavery and the legacy of Spanish Creoles . Amsterdam: John Benjamins.
61. Shellabear William G. 1904. A Practical Malay Grammar . Singapore: American Mission Press.
62. Siegel Jeff,. 1997. "Mixing, leveling, and pidgin/creole development". In Spears Arthur K., and Winford Donald (eds.), The Structure and Status of Pidgins and Creoles , 111149. Amsterdam: John Benjamins.
63. Simões Maria Cecília Perroni, and Carol Stoel-Gammon. 1979. "The acquisition of inflections in Portuguese: A study of the development of person markers on verbs". Journal of Child language Vol 6: 5367.
64. Slobin Dan I. 1985. The Crosslinguistic Study of Language Acquisition . Hillsdale, NJ: Erlbaum.
65. Smith Ian R. 1979. "Convergence in South Asia: A creole example". Lingua Vol 48: 193222.
66. Sneddon James Neil. 1996. Indonesian: A Comprehensive Grammar . London/New York: Routledge.
67. Sousa Silvio Moreira de,. 2013. "Die Korrespondenz zwischen João Gomes Ferreira und Hugo Schuchardt". In Hurch Bernhard (ed.) (2007–), Hugo Schuchardt Archiv . Online edition available at (accessed December 16, 2015).
68. Steenbrink Karel A. 2002. Catholics in Indonesia, 1808–1900 . Leiden: KITLV Press.
69. Thomaz Luís Filipe. 1974. "Timor: Notas histórico-linguísticas". Portugaliae Historica Vol 2: 167300.
70. Thomaz Luís Filipe. 1985. "A língua portuguesa em Timor". In Congresso Sobre a Situação Actual da Língua Portuguesa no Mundo - Actas , 313338. Lisbon: Instituto de Cultura e Língua Portuguesa.
71. Vaquinhas José dos Santos. 1885. "Timor". Boletim da Sociedade de Geographia de Lisboa 5ª série, vol. Vol 1: 6164.
72. Vasconcellos José Leite de. 1901. Esquisse d’une Dialectologie Portugaise . Paris: Aillaud & Cie.
73. Viola Maria Alice Marques. 2013. Presença Histórica “Portuguesa” em Larantuka (Séculos XVI e XVII) e suas Implicações na Contemporaneidade . PhD dissertation, Universidade Nova de Lisboa.
74. Klinken Williams-van,, Catharina,. 2002. "High registers of Tetun Dili: Portuguese press and purist priests". In Allen Cynthia (ed.), Proceedings of the 2001 Conference of the Australian Linguistics Society, 1–8. Downloadable at (accessed March 24, 2016).
75. Klinken Williams-van,, Catharina John Hajek,, and Nordinger Rachel. 2002. A Short Grammar of Tetun Dili . Munich: Lincom Europa.

Article metrics loading...



Can't access your account?
  • Tools

  • Add to Favorites
  • Printable version
  • Email this page
  • Subscribe to ToC alert
  • Get permissions
  • Recommend to your library

    You must fill out fields marked with: *

    Librarian details
    Your details
    Why are you recommending this title?
    Select reason:
    Journal of Language Contact — Recommend this title to your library
  • Export citations
  • Key

  • Full access
  • Open Access
  • Partial/No accessInformation