Saramaccan, spoken in Suriname and French Guyana like Sranan, is a maroon language. It is largely used by the descendants of slaves who escaped from the Jewish-owned plantations on the middle Suriname River. The Jewish population had probably arrived indirectly from Brazil and had brought Portuguese-speaking slaves with them who influenced the local Sranan. This gave rise to a new creole language, the precursor of Saramaccan. Just like the other Surinamese creoles it is often considered a ‘radical’ creole because of its considerable divergence from English. It used to be spoken in semi-autonomous communities founded by escaped slaves in the early to mid 18th century.

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