|11 million (2011)|
|Latin (Spanish alphabet)|
Much of Cuban Spanish derives from the Spanish spoken in the Canary Islands of Spain. This is because large numbers of Canarian people moved to Cuba in the 19th and early 20th centuries. People from other Spanish communities, such as Galicians, Catalans, Basques and Asturians, also moved here, but did not have as much influence on the language as the Canarians did. Many words in Cuban Spanish come from the Canarian dialect, but some words are from other parts of Spain. There are also words that come from West African languages, French, or from the indigenous Taíno language.
The language is spoken differently from east to west. The eastern part of the island had large plantations where many African slaves worked during the 18th and 19th centuries. Therefore, the east has a stronger influence from African languages (such as Yoruba and Kikongo) than the west. It is closer to Dominican Spanish than to the Spanish spoken in the western part of the island. The Haitian Creole language influenced the eastern Cuban culture after the Haitian Revolution. Some words of the eastern dialect can be traced back to Haitian Creole words used every day locally. Some Cubans can still speak Haitian Creole.
- Guitart, Jorge M. (1997), "Variability, multilectalism, and the organization of phonology in Caribbean Spanish dialects", in Martínez-Gil, Fernando; Morales-Front, Alfonso (eds.), Issues in the Phonology and Morphology of the Major Iberian Languages, Georgetown University Press, pp. 515–536 Missing