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Indigenous Languages In Guatemala

Spanish is the official language in Guatemala, but 23 languages are recognized by the government. Twenty-one distinct Mayan languages are spoken in Guatemala, and two Amerindian languages—Garifuna and Xinca—round out the list. Garifuna is spoken by roughly 17,000 descendants of the original Carib Indians of the island of St. Vincent, who trace their ancestry to escaped West African slaves. In the southern portion of Guatemala, near El Salvador, around 13 percent of the 16,214 indigenous Xinca people speak their own isolated language, not believed to be part of the family of Mayan languages.

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10 Jun 2010

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