Cham is unsual among Austronesian Languages - for its clearly establishes on the Asian mainland.There, nearly two thousand years ago, it was the main language of the Hindu Kingdom of Champa.When this kingdom fell, as a result of a Vietnamese victory in 1471, many of its people migrated mainland: this is the origin of Cambodian speakers of Cham, now the largest group. Cham speakers are traditionally fishermen and traders along the waterways of Cambodia and Vietnam.
Cham is one of the languages in which men's and women's speech differs most noticeably.Men, tradtionally literate, use expressions from the oldest Cham literary language; women traditionally not taught to read,speak in modern style.
The languages related to Cham are widely scattered. Although Cham was the language of an early Hindu kingdom, the first four groups : Western Cham, Eastern Cham, Huihui and Achehnese are predominantly Muslim.
Cham is spoken/used in the following countries:
Family: Malayo-Polynesian (Austronesian)
Copyright © Kenneth Katzner, The Languages of the World, Published by Routledge.