From Roses, Tulips, & Liberty
Language family
Chinese Coast Pidgin
  • Sino–Dutch Creole
    • Tauaans
Writing system
Latin (Dutch alphabet)
Chinese characters

Tauaans (Tauzi, 桃語, [taʊ.tɕi]) is a Dutch-based creole language with predominately Hakka, Hokkien, Corean, and Cantonese influences, spoken on the island of Tauland and surrounding islets. It originated along the Chinese littoral during the 17th century, when European powers such as the Portuguese, Dutch, and English increasingly dealt with eastern Asian populations. Today, it is the prevailing vernacular within Tauland and has gained worldwide popularity due to its usage in music, entertainment, and diaspora communities.

While fundamentally being a language based on Dutch, speakers of Tauaans can hold conversations with speakers of Chinese dialects, Dutch, and other Asiatic creoles depending on their register and specific variety spoken. On average, the Tauaans lexicon's origins lay 55% in Dutch, 37% in Chinese varieties, and 8% other languages such as Japanese, Corean, Malay, and Portuguese.





Labial Alveolar Dorsal Glottal
Nasal m 明 n 泥 ɲ~ŋ 我
Affricate t͡s~t͡ɕ 語
Plosive voiceless p 幫 t 桃 k 見 (ʔ) 亞
voiced b 拜 d 大
Fricative voiceless f 非 s 生 x~ɦ~h 和
voiced ʋ~w 歪 z 挃
Approximant l 了 j 一


Front Central Back
unrounded rounded
short long short long short long
Close i ø øː u
Mid e ə o
Open a

Tone and stress

A tonal system, consisting of two high (H) & low (L) and often described as 'sparse' or 'restricted', exists in most varieties of Tauaans. It is variously termed 'pitch', 'stress', or 'tone' by linguistic scholars of Tauaans. Similar systems also exists in the southeastern Jôngnam dialect of Corean, several varieties of Japanese, and a number of Scythian languages such as Swedish.

These tones are phonemic are used to contrast minimal pairs in both multi-syllabic and monosyllabic words (e.x 號 hóu 'wail' as opposed to hòu 'keep'). High tone is indicated with the acute accent ◌́, while low is represented with the grave ◌̀. However, it is only high tone that is often written, with most transcriptions of Tauaans not indicating tone at all outside of academic contexts.


While most commonly written using the Latin script, Tauaans can be transcribed with Chinese characters, Hankoel, hiragana, and significantly more rarely, Arabic and indigenous Indonesian scripts. Chinese characters (Tonzy, 唐字), being a logographic writing system, employs photo-semantic matching, meaning it conceals the non-Chinese origin of the word by representing it with both a phonetically and semantically related character.


As a creole, Tauaans is a highly analytical language and has many features characteristic of its nature, such as topic prominence, zero copula, and no strict necessity for the usage of articles and plural markers.

Sentence structure

Sentence structure is most often either sentence–object–verb (SOV) or sentence–verb–object (SVO), similar to Tauaans' parent languages of Dutch and Chinese. Speakers of basilectal varieties generally have no regard for strict word order rules and adhere to the concept of topic prominence — in these cases, some phrases may employ object–subject–verb (OSV) order. A speaker's decision to place words in a certain order may also be influenced by their social circumstance and the sentence structure of their mother tongue.


Tauaans almost exclusively uses the clitic plural marker -(n)en. Stemming from the Dutch plural suffix, its usage has been reinforced by and is often written with the Hokkien character 儂, which was originally used for only pluralizing pronouns. It has numerous pronunciations, the most standard being /nən/.

















暱 愛 二 券 為 廣州 夾.

I' wil twii kaartenen vooi Kanton koop.

I want two ticketPL to Canton purchase

"I want to purchase two tickets to Canton."

Speakers in the southernmost and easternmost districts on the island of Tauland employ reduplication to indicate a plural. This has been hypothesized to be a result of the influence of indigenous Formosan languages, Malay, or the Luzonese languages of the Philippines. The 1943 song Zio-zioko (手銬), its title meaning 'handcuffs', is a popular example of this phenomenon in Tauaans.

See also