Somali translation services


Afro-Asiatic > Cushitic



Text direction



12 million

Other names

Official language


Also spoken

Ethiopia, Somalia, United Arab Emirates, Yemen

Interesting Fact

The Somali language includes extensive vocabulary about camels, including "guree", which means to make room on a loaded camel for a person to ride, and "awradhale", a male camel who, when bred, always produces male camels.


Somali is a Cushitic language spoken in Somalia where it holds an official status alongside Arabic. It is also spoken in areas of Ethiopia, Kenya and other countries in close proximity to Somalia.

Somalia was colonised by Italy and Italian was taught in Somali schools. Only in 1972 was Somali declared the national language; this triggered a swift overhaul of the language. A Latin script was adopted and the Somalian Italian-language newspaper “Stella d’Ottobre” was taken under state control – its title was translated to Somali (Xiddiigta Oktoobar) and it promptly started publishing in Somali. The paper continued to print in Somali until its closure in 2013.

It is not unusual to hear the occasional “ciao” or other Italian phrase, but Somali’s main lexical borrowings now come from Arabic, and are estimated to constitute about 20% of the language’s vocabulary.

Services offered for this language

Translation / Transcreation / Subtitling / Localization / Adaptation / Copywriting / Authoring / Proofreading / Revision / Editing / Translation quality assurance / Terminology / Linguistic validation / Glossary creation / Dubbing / Voice-overs / Transcription / Typesetting / Simultaneous interpreting / Consecutive interpreting / Conference interpreting / Telephone interpreting / Public service interpreting / Interpreting equipment hire / Foreign language consulting

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