FACTOID # 21: 15% of Army recruits from South Dakota are Native American, which is roughly the same percentage for female Army recruits in the state.
 
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Encyclopedia > Algonquian language

The Algonquian languages are a subfamily of Native American languages that includes most of the languages in the Algic language family (others are Wiyot and Yurok of northwestern California). They should be carefully distinguished from Algonquin, which is only one language of many Algonquian languages.


Before the European colonisation of the Americas, peoples speaking Algonquian languages stretched from the east coast of North America all the way to the Rocky Mountains. This large family can be divided roughly into three major subfamilies:

The group may also have included the extinct Beothuk language of Newfoundland, although evidence is scarce. Etchimin and the pre-colonial language of the Lumbees may also have been Algonquian languages, but in both cases documentary evidence is at best very weak.


The Algonquian language family is renowned for its complex morphology and sophisticated verb system. Statements that take many words to say in English can be expressed with a single "word". Ex: (Menominee) enae:ni:hae:w "He is heard by higher powers" or (Plains Cree) kāstāhikoyahk "it frightens us." Languages in this family typically mark at least two distinct third persons, so that speakers can keep track of central characters in narrative. These languages have been famously studied in the structuralist tradition by Leonard Bloomfield and Edward Sapir among others. Many of these languages are extremely endangered today, while others have died completely.


Because Algonquian languages were some of the first that Europeans came in contact with in North America, the language family has given many words to English. Many eastern U.S. states have names of Algonquian origin (Massachusetts, Illinois, Michigan, Ohio, Wisconsin), as do many cities: Milwaukee, Chicago, et al. The capital of Canada is named after an Algonquian nation - the Odawa.


For information on the peoples speaking Algonquian languages, see Algonquian peoples.


English words of Algonquian origin

External links

  • Algonquian Family (http://www.native-languages.org/famalg.htm)
  • Algonquin First Nation, Language Resource (http://fox.nstn.ca/~hila/nation/speak2.html)





  Results from FactBites:
 
Algonquian languages - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (1234 words)
The Algonquian (also Algonkian) languages are a subfamily of Native American languages that includes most of the languages in the Algic language family (the two Algic languages that are not Algonquian are Wiyot and Yurok of northwestern California).
Algonquian is sometimes said to have included the extinct Beothuk language of Newfoundland, although evidence is scarce and poorly recorded, and the claim is mainly based on geographic proximity.
The Algonquian language family is renowned for its complex polysynthetic morphology and sophisticated verb system.
Native American Languages - Search View - MSN Encarta (3303 words)
Languages that have switch reference indicate whether a subject or object of a clause is the same as or different from the subject or object of an earlier clause.
Algonquian languages, Southern Paiute, O’Odham, and Yuman languages have this trait in North America, Jicaque (Tol) in Middle America, and Ecuadorian Quechua (Napo Quichua) in South America.
Languages such as Russian and Latin, which distinguish the role of a noun (such as subject, direct object, or indirect object) by case marking are said to have nominal case systems.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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