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Larantuka is a subdistrict of East Flores Regency, on the eastern end of Flores Island, East Nusa Tenggara, Indonesia. Like much of the region, Larantuka has a strong a colonial Portuguese influence. This overwhelmingly (83.4%) Roman Catholic area enjoys some international renown for its Holy Week celebrations.

Larantuka Malay (also known as Ende Malay), a local dialect over 80% cognate with Indonesian, is used as a lingua franca in this area. Portuguese is used in certain Catholic religious rituals.


Briefly before 1600 Portuguese traders left Solor and settled in Larantuka. The traders were in conflict with the Dominicans in Solor, because they were more interested in trade than in Christianization. In 1613 the Dutch occupied Solor and the Dominicans moved to Larantuka, too.

In the beginning Larantuka was an interstation for the trade of sandalwood from Timor and became the Portuguese trading center of South East Indonesia. It became even a place of refuge for deserters of the Dutch East India Company (VOC).

Two waves of immigration brought additionally boost. As the Dutch conquered Malacca in 1641, many Portuguese surged to Larantuka and the population exploded. Two villages, Wureh and Konga, also accommodated the new people. As the Dutch...
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