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Ethnicity, Language, & Religion of St. Vincent & the Grenadines

Ethnicity

Nearly two thirds of the population of St. Vincent & the Grenadines is primarily or wholly of African descent, many of whose ancestors were brought over with the slave trade. Many of the people today have traces of Igbo, an African group from modern day Nigeria in them, but there were numerous other African ethnicities introduced through slavery and later immigration. Nearly another quarter of the population is of mixed descent, generally including some percentage of Carib, a local American Indian group who held the island of St. Vincent for years; these people also tend to contains traces, or even majorities of varying European and African ethnicities. Two other groups that make up distinct minorities are the Indians (from India) and those who are fully Carib, an American Indian group, for whom the Caribbean Sea is named.

Language

English is the only official language in St. Vincent & the Grenadines and tends to be the language of choice for communication and in schools. Many people on the islands are native English speakers and those who are not generally learn the language. French patois is a common native language among many people on the islands as well; this language is similar to French, but has various introductions from other languages, most noticeably from English. Many French patois speakers learn English and use English to communicate with non-French patois speakers.

Religion

Nearly half of the population of St. Vincent & the Grenadines are Anglican Christian, while another 30% is Methodist. Roman Catholics make up about 13% of the country and the rest of the people follow various other religions, most notably Hinduism.

The Anglican Church is a protestant religion. Like all Christian and protestant faiths, Anglicans believe there is one God and that His son, Jesus is the savior and forgiver of sins. Anglicans also believe that the Bible, which includes the Old and New Testaments, is the only true word of God. It is generally in the interpretation of the Bible that protestant religions vary and this is true in the case of Anglicanism.

This page was last updated: May, 2014