Krio

Krio (or Sierra Leone Krio) is used natively primarily by residents of the Western Area Peninsula (including Freetown) and as a lingua franca by more than 4 million of the approximately 5.5 million residents of Sierra Leone in general. It is additionally used as a lingua franca by an indeterminate number of speakers of Sierra Leone origin living outside of Sierra Leone. The default lect documented in APiCS is reflective of standard usage by me and other native Krio speakers residing in Freetown and supported by my and their intuitions as native Krio speakers. Additional examples used in the data set were from a variety of published sources (including A Krio–English dictionary by Clifford Fyle and Eldred Jones, 1980).

The use of Krio in Sierra Leone has become more widespread since it was incorporated into the educational curriculum and is now one of the most popular languages taught in schools. Krio grammar has further been influenced by input from non-native Krio speakers (formerly residents in the provinces, where Krio was used non-natively as a lingua franca) who were displaced by the civil war in the 1990s and resettled in Freetown. Krio became the language used almost exclusively by most of the new Freetown residents who produced some variant Krio grammatical forms (possibly due to transfer from their primary languages) that were incorporated into Krio grammar and now coexist as parallels to the original Krio forms and expressions. The APiCS data do not reflect these variant forms.

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No. Feature Value % Details Source
No. Feature Value % Details Source

Consonants

bilabial
labiodental
dental
dental/alveolar
dental/alveolar
affricate
palato-alveolar
retroflex
palatal
velar
labial-velar
uvular
glottal
plosive/affricatepbtdt͡sd͡zt͡ʃd͡ʒʈɖcɟkgk͡pg͡bqʔ
aspirated plosive/affricatet͡sʰt͡ʃʰ
glottalized stop/affricateɓt͡sʼt͡ʃʼ
nasalmnɳɲŋ
trill, tap or flaprɾ
fricativeɸβfvθðszʃʒxɣχh
lateral/approximantɬlɭjw

Vowels

frontnear-frontcentralnear-backback
high
higher-mid
mid
lower-mid
low

Legend

 Exists (as a major allophone)
 Exists only as a minor allophone
 Exists only in loanwords
 Does not exist
No. Feature Value % Details Source