Ajië language

Last updated
Region Houailou, New Caledonia
Native speakers
5,400 (2009 census) [1]
Language codes
ISO 639-3 aji
Glottolog ajie1238 [2]

Ajië (also known as Houailou (Wailu), Wai, and A'jie) is an Oceanic language spoken in New Caledonia. It has approximately 4,000 speakers.




Labial Alveolar Palatal Velar Glottal
Stop voicelessptck(ʔ)
Nasal mnɲŋ
Fricative vɣ
Rhotic ɾr, (r̃)
Approximant jw

A glottal stop, only appears after oral vowels. Different speakers may realize /v/ as a bilabial sound /β/. A nasal trill [r̃] is heard as an allophone of /r/.


Front Central Back
High iɯu
High-mid eəo
Low-mid ɛʌɔ
Low a

Nasal vowels

Front Central Back
High ĩɯ̃ũ
High-mid ə̃õ
Low-mid ɛ̃ʌ̃ɔ̃
Low ã


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  1. Ajië at Ethnologue (18th ed., 2015)
  2. Hammarström, Harald; Forkel, Robert; Haspelmath, Martin, eds. (2017). "Ajie". Glottolog 3.0 . Jena, Germany: Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History.
  3. de La Fontinelle, Jacqueline (1976). La langue de Houailou, Nouvelle-Calédonie: description phonologique et description syntaxique. Peeters Publishers.