West Java’s language has a highly distinct and intriguing feature to learn. Even if you don’t speak the language spoken by the people of West Java, you’re probably familiar with their distinct accent, having heard celebrities from the island or having Sundanese acquaintances.
Demonstrating the language or accent of west Java must be quite intriguing for us regular folks. In general, each area, such as Central Java, Maluku, East Java, Sumatra, and so on, has distinct linguistic traits. Likewise, the West Javanese language that we shall explore.
We must have been able to tell whether it was a West Javan language or not just by listening to the accent. However, if we do not know or comprehend the West Javanese language, it is impossible for us to grasp what is being stated.
That is why learning West Java appears to be enjoyable.
In this post, we will not only explore what languages are often spoken by the people of West Java, but also the diversity of languages, their history and spread, and language writing systems that are not commonly used in West Java, all of which are fascinating to discover.
Spoken Regional Languages
Sundanese are the most numerous tribe in West Java, hence it’s no surprise that Sundanese is the most widely spoken regional language. Even yet, additional languages are spoken by inhabitants of West Java, such as the Cirebon language, which is spoken by people in the Cirebon Regency or City.
Cirebon’s language is nearly identical to Banyumasan’s, with the exception of a distinctive Brebes dialect. These two West Java regional languages, Sundanese and Cirebon, are the most extensively spoken languages in everyday life, both in Cirebon, Priangan, and other areas.
The Sundanese language is more extensively spoken in West Java than the Cirebon language. One of the reasons is because Sundanese culture is so ingrained in and diffused over West Java. This is inextricably linked to the history of the Mataram Kingdom, which invaded West Java in the past.
As a result, we focused on Sundanese in our evaluation because it is more commonly spoken in West Java. You will learn a variety of intriguing facts about the Sundanese language and will have a better understanding of the West Java language.
Sundanese contains a wide range of dialects, ranging from Sundanese-Central Javanese dialects to Sunda-Banten dialects, each with its own set of traits. Who would have guessed that, in addition to these two dialects, there are still other dialect differences that we frequently meet in the center of Sundanese culture in everyday life?
Sundanese is divided into six dialects, including western dialects, northern dialects, southern dialects, eastern middle dialects, northeast dialects, and southeast dialects, according to several experts. Depending on the mix of languages, each dialect has a distinct style, as do the places where it is spoken.
People in the Pandeglang and Lebak areas, for example, speak a West Java regional language with a western dialect, with the exception of South Tangerang, Tangerang city, and Tangerang regency. The southeast dialect, which is spoken by people of Banjar, Cilacap, Pangandaran, and Ciamis in the western portion of Banyumas, is another example.
There used to be an Ancient Sundanese language that was frequently discovered in written documents, such as those found on dried leaf sheets and in stones, before the Sundanese language as it is now. It’s unclear how the ancient Sundanese language evolved into current Sundanese.
Sundanese History and Spread
It’s interesting to talk about the history and expansion of Sundanese in West Java, in addition to learning about the many Sundanese languages. Sundanese is a language spoken by people in the west of the island of Java, namely in the Pasundan or SundaNese Tatar communities (formerly West Java name).
Because both Cilacap and Brebes were previously part of the galuh kingdom, this West Java language is also spoken in the western section of Central Java, such as the Cilacap and Brebes districts. It’s no surprise that several of Cilacap’s regional names, such as Dayeuhluhur District, sound Sundanese.
According to legend, the sundanese language reached the Dieng Plateau in Central Java about the 6th century.
Dieng is also derived from the Sundanese word dihyang, which means “ancient Sundanese.” Ethnic Sundanese transmigrated and immigrated to numerous locations outside of Java only after then.
West Kalimantan, South Sumatra, Southeast Sulawesi, Riau, Lampung, and Jambi are some of the Sundanese ethnic’s favorite destinations. Furthermore, ethnic Sundanese visit a variety of other places, however the regions indicated above are the most popular.
The Writing System of the Sundanese
Sundanese characters, Sundanese alphabet, smallpox, and Sundanese pegon alphabet are all included in the Sundanese writing system. Sundanese was once written using Sundanese characters as Brahmi characters, which were derived from Pallawa characters via Kawi characters. The inscription serves as evidence of this writing.
After the VOC delivered its ultimatum on November 3, 1705, the old Sundanese and Rikasara Cirebon characters began to go extinct. People could only write in the Pegon alphabet, Latin script, and Latin alphabet for Javanese and Sundanese during the period, and the Latin alphabet was then enhanced to transcribe Sundanese works.
Writing West Java or Sundanese, as a Javanese script to write Sundanese at the time, is likewise linked to smallpox. After the VOC ultimatum, this character was already in use. The smallpox script has been in use for for 300 years and is still in use today.
In ancient times, the Sundanese Pegon alphabet was also employed to write Sundanese. Pegon’s alphabetic lettering incorporates both traditional Arabic letters and innovative styles. Although it has some normal Arabic characters, arabs who do not know sundanese will be unable to interpret it.
Because West Java was ruled by the Mataram Kingdom in the 17th century, the Javanese language affected the usage of Sundanese in the region. This is what gives rise to the presence of basa in the West Javanese language. So, what does this base-undak-usuk mean?
The usage of Sundanese language must be tailored to the social level, which is referred to as base-usuk. As a result of basa-presence, usuk’s numerous terminology must be understood, including rough, medium lemes, extremely rough (Cohag or rough pisan), and very smooth (sublime or lemes pisan).
When speaking with a new acquaintance, parent, office, or public figure, we frequently utilize subtle language. Meanwhile, while speaking with peers or close friends, vulgar language is more common, so it seems more natural if you use it.
The Sundanese language has a distinct flavor that would pique anyone’s interest in studying it. Especially with a unique dialect that adds to the appeal of Sundanese. You should study more about west Java for further information.