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Encyclopedia > Native American languages

Native American languages are the indigenous languages of the Americas, spoken by Native Americans from the southern tip of South America to Alaska and Greenland. The Native American languages consist of dozens of distinct language families as well as many language isolates. Many proposals to group these into higher-level families have been made by some linguists, but several of these have not been generally accepted. The Americas (sometimes referred to as America) is the area including the land mass located between the Pacific Ocean and the Atlantic Ocean, generally divided into North America and South America. ... Native Americans (also Indians, Aboriginal Peoples, American Indians, First Nations, Alaskan Natives, Amerindians, or Indigenous Peoples of America) are the indigenous inhabitants of The Americas prior to the European colonization, and their modern descendants. ... South America South America is a continent crossed by the equator, with most of its area in the Southern Hemisphere. ... State nickname: The Last Frontier, The Land of the Midnight Sun Other U.S. States Capital Juneau Largest city Anchorage Governor Frank Murkowski (R) Official languages English Area 1,717,854 km² (1st)  - Land 1,481,347 km²  - Water 236,507 km² (13. ... A language isolate is a natural language with no demonstrable genetic relationship with other living languages; that is, one that has not been proved to descend from a common ancestor to any other language. ...

Contents


Background

Archeological and DNA evidence suggests that the Americas were peopled by migrants from Siberia about 17,000-10,000 years ago. From Alaska, the descendants of those first migrants went on to people the rest of North and South America. The language or languages spoken by these early migrants, and the process by which the current diversity of Native American languages emerged, are a matter of speculation. Some evidence suggests that the ancestors of the Na-Dene and Eskimo-Aleut speakers arrived separately from Siberia some time after the earliest settlers. Siberia Siberia (Russian: , common English transliterations: Sibir’, Sibir; from the Tatar for “sleeping land”) is a vast region of Russia and northern Kazakhstan constituting almost all of northern Asia. ... It has been suggested that Northern America be merged into this article or section. ... South America South America is a continent crossed by the equator, with most of its area in the Southern Hemisphere. ... Na-Dené or Na-Dene is a Native American language family which includes the Athabaskan languages, Eyak, and Tlingit. ... Eskimo-Aleut (also called Inuit-Aleut, but both names are considered offensive by some) is a language family native to Greenland, the Canadian Arctic, Alaska, and parts of Siberia. ...


Several Native American languages have developed their own writing systems, including the Mayan languages and Nahuatl, the language of the Aztecs. These and many other Native American languages later adapted the Roman alphabet or Canadian Aboriginal Syllabics. Aleut was first written by missionaries in the Cyrillic Alphabet, and later in the Roman alphabet. A writing system, also called a script, is used to visually record a language with symbols. ... The Mayan languages are a family of related languages spoken from South-Eastern Mexico through northern Central America as far south as Honduras. ... Nahuatl is a native language of central Mexico. ... The Aztecs were a Mesoamerican people of central Mexico in the 14th, 15th and 16th century. ... ... Canadian aboriginal syllabic writing (often syllabics for short) is a family of writing schemes which are used to write a number of aboriginal Canadian languages from the Algonquian, Athabaskan and Inuit language families. ... Aleut is a language of the Eskimo-Aleut language phylum. ... The Cyrillic alphabet (or azbuka, from the old name of the first letters) is an alphabet used to write six natural Slavic languages (Belarusian, Bulgarian, Macedonian, Russian, Serbian, and Ukrainian) and many other languages of the former Soviet Union, Asia and Eastern Europe. ... ...


Subsequent to the arrival of Christopher Columbus in the Americas in 1492, Spanish, English, Portuguese, French, and Dutch were brought to the Americas by European settlers and administrators, and constitute the official languages of the independent states of the Americas, although Bolivia, Paraguay and Peru have one or more Native American languages as an official language in addition to Spanish. Several indigenous creole languages developed in the Americas from European languages. Christopher Columbus For information about the film director, see the article on Chris Columbus. ... The English language is a West Germanic language that originates in England. ... A Creole is a language descended from a pidgin that has become the native language of a group of people. ...


The attitudes of the most of the European colonizers and their successor states toward Native American languages ranged from benign neglect to active suppression.


However, the Spanish missionaries preached to the natives in local languages. They actually spread Quechua beyond its original geographic area. Native American languages vary greatly in the number of speakers, from Quechua, Aymara, Guarani, and Nahuatl with millions of active speakers to a number of languages with only a handful of elderly speakers. Many Native American languages are endangered, and many others are extinct, with no living native speakers. Quechua (Runasimi in Quechua; Runa, People + Simi, speech, literally mouth) is a Native American language of South America. ... Help wikipedia by translating [Spanish article] into this article. ... Guaraní (gwah-rah-nee) [gwarani] (local name: avañeẽ) is a language spoken in Argentina, Bolivia, Paraguay and southwestern Brazil. ... Nahuatl is a term applied to some members of the Aztecan or Nahuan sub-branch of the Uto-Aztecan language family. ...


Language families & isolates by region

Notes:

  • Extinct languages or families are indicated by: (†).
  • The number of family members is indicated in parentheses (e.g. Alacalufan family consists of 2 languages).

An extinct language is a language which is no longer natively spoken: it is estimated that one natural human language dies every two weeks. ...

South America

Although both North and Central America are very diverse areas, South America has a linguistic diversity rivalled by only a few other places in the world with approximately 350 languages still spoken and an estimated 1,500 languages at first European contact. The situation of language documentation and classification into genetic families is not as advanced as in North America (which is relatively well-studied in many areas). Therefore many relationships between languages and language families have not determined and some of those relationships that have been proposed are on somewhat shaky ground. South America South America is a continent crossed by the equator, with most of its area in the Southern Hemisphere. ...


The list of language families and isolates below is a rather conservative one based on Campbell (1997). Many of the proposed (and often speculative) groupings of families can be seen in Campbell (1997), Gordon (2005), Kaufman (1990, 1994), Key (1979), Loukotka (1968), and in the Language stock proposals section below. Native American languages (or Amerindian Languages) are the indigenous languages of the Americas, spoken by Native Americans from the southern tip of South America to Alaska and Greenland. ...


Families (south)

  1. Alacalufan (2) (a.k.a. Alacaluf)
  2. Arauan (8) (a.k.a. Arahuan, Arawán, Arauanas) (†)
  3. Araucanian (Chile, Argentina) (2) (a.k.a. Mapudungu, Araucanas)
  4. Arawakan (South America & Caribbean) (60) (a.k.a. Arahuacan, Arawakanas, Maipurean, Maipuran, Maipúrean, Maipureano)
  5. Arutani-Sape (2) (a.k.a. Arutani-sapé)
  6. Aymaran (3) (a.k.a. Jaqi, Aru, Aymara, Jaqaru)
  7. Barbacoan (8) (a.k.a. Barbacoanas)
  8. Bororoan (a.k.a. Boróroan)
  9. Cahuapanan (2) (a.k.a. Jebero, Kawapánan, Cahuapananas)
  10. Cariban (29) (a.k.a. Caribe, Carib)
  11. Catacaoan (a.k.a. Katakáoan) (†)
  12. Chapacura-Wanham (9) (a.k.a. Chapacuran, Txapakúran, Chapakúran)
  13. Charruan (a.k.a. Charrúan) (†)
  14. Chibchan (Central America & South America) (22)
  15. Chimuan (†)
  16. Chipaya-Uru languages (a.k.a. Uru-Chipaya)
  17. Choco (10) (a.k.a. Chocoan)
  18. Cholonan (†)
  19. Chon (2) (a.k.a. Patagonian)
  20. Guajiboan (4) (a.k.a. Wahívoan) (†)
  21. Guaykuruan (a.k.a. Waikurúan)
  22. Harákmbut (2) (a.k.a. Tuyoneri)
  23. Huarpe (a.k.a. Warpe) (†)
  24. Jirajaran (3) (a.k.a. Hiraháran, Jirajarano, Jirajarana) (†)
  25. Jabutian (a.k.a. Jabutían)
  26. Jê (13) (a.k.a. Gê, Jean, Jêan, Gêan, Je, Ye)
  27. Jivaroan (4) (a.k.a. Hívaro)
  28. Kamakanan (a.k.a. Kamakánan) (†)
  29. Karajá
  30. Katukinan (3) (a.k.a. Catuquinan)
  31. Maku (6)
  32. Mascoyan (5) (a.k.a. Maskóian, Mascoian)
  33. Mataco-Guaicuru (11)
  34. Maxakalían (a.k.a. Mashakalían)
  35. Mosetenan (a.k.a. Mosetén)
  36. Muran (4) (a.k.a. Mura)
  37. Nambiquaran (5)
  38. Otomacoan (2) (a.k.a. Otomákoan) (†)
  39. Paezan (4)
  40. Panoan (a.k.a. Pánoan)
  41. Peba-Yaguan (2) (a.k.a. Yaguan, Yáwan, Peban) (†)
  42. Puinavean (a.k.a. Makú)
  43. Purian (a.k.a. Purían) (†)
  44. Quechuan (46)
  45. Salivan (2) (a.k.a. Sálivan)
  46. Tacanan (a.k.a. Takánan)
  47. Timotean (2) (a.k.a. Timoteano, Timoteana, Timótean) (†)
  48. Tiniguan (2) (a.k.a. Tiníwan) (†)
  49. Tucanoan (25) (a.k.a. Tukánoan)
  50. Tupian (70)
  51. Witotoan (6) (a.k.a. Huitotoan, Bora-Witótoan)
  52. Yanomaman (4)
  53. Zamucoan (2)
  54. Zaparoan (7) (a.k.a. Sáparoan)

Kawésqar, also known as Qawasqar, Alacaluf, and Halakwulup, is a language isolate spoken in southern Chile. ... The Aruan languages are : Arua, Banawá, Culina, Dení, Jamamadí, Jaruára, Paumarí and Suruahá. For the languages that is still living languages, they are spoken in Brazil. ... The Araucanian languages are an indigenous language family of central Chile and west central Argentina in South America. ... The Arawakan languages are an indigenous language family of South America and the Caribbean. ... South America South America is a continent crossed by the equator, with most of its area in the Southern Hemisphere. ... ... The Aymaran languages are a South American language family. ... Barbacoan (also Barbakóan, Barbacoano, Barbacoana) is a language family spoken in Colombia and Ecuador. ... The Cariban languages are an indigenous language family of South America. ... The Chapacura-Wanham languages are a nearly extinct Native American language family of South America. ... Chibchan languages are a language family indigenous to Colombia and Central America. ... Central America is the region of North America located between the southern border of Mexico and the northwest border of Colombia, in South America. ... South America South America is a continent crossed by the equator, with most of its area in the Southern Hemisphere. ... The Choco languages are a small family of Native American languages spread across Colombia and Panama. ... The two Chon languages are Selknan which died out two years ago and Tehuelche. ... The Muran language family is a language family of Brazil. ... Paezan (also Páesan, Paezano) is a family of languages spoken in Colombia and Ecuador. ... The Peba-Yaguan language family is located in the northwestern Amazon, but today Yagua is the only remaining spoken language of the family. ... The Quechuan languages are a family of related languages in South America. ... The Tupi languages are a language family of 70 languages which are spoken by Indian tribesmen in South America. ...

Isolates or unclassified (south)

  1. Aguano (†)
  2. Ahuaqué (a.k.a. Auaké, Uruak, Awaké)
  3. Aikaná (Brazil: Rondônia)
  4. Andoque (Colombia, Peru) (a.k.a. Andoke)
  5. Andoquero (†)
  6. Aushiri (a.k.a. Auxira)
  7. Baenan (Brazil: Bahia) (a.k.a. Baenán, Baenã) (†)
  8. Betoi (Columbia) (a.k.a. Betoy, Jirara) (†)
  9. Callahuaya
  10. Camsá (Colombia) (a.k.a. Sibundoy, Coche, Kamsá)
  11. Candoshi (a.k.a. Maina, Kandoshi)
  12. Canichana (Bolivia) (a.k.a. Canesi, Kanichana)
  13. Carabayo
  14. Cayubaba (Bolivia)
  15. Chiquitano
  16. Coeruna (Brazil) (†)
  17. Cofán (Colombia, Ecuador) (a.k.a. Kofán)
  18. Cueva
  19. Culle (Peru) (a.k.a. Culli, Linga, Kulyi)
  20. Cunza (Chile, Bolivia, Argentina) (a.k.a. Atacama, Atakama, Atacameño, Lipe, Kunsa) (†)
  21. Esmeralda language (a.k.a. Takame) (†)
  22. Fulnió
  23. Gamela (Brazil: Maranhão) (†)
  24. Gorgotoqui (Bolivia) (†)
  25. Guamo (Venezuela) (a.k.a. Wamo) (†)
  26. Guató
  27. Huamoé (Brazil: Pernambuco) (†)
  28. Huarpe (Warpe)
  29. Irantxe (Brazil: Mato Grosso)
  30. Itonama (Bolivia) (a.k.a. Saramo, Machoto)
  31. Jeikó (†)
  32. Jotí (Venezuela) (a.k.a. Hotí, Waruwaru)
  33. Kaimbe
  34. Kaliana (a.k.a. Caliana, Cariana, Sapé, Chirichano)
  35. Kapixaná (Brazil: Rondônia) (a.k.a. Kanoé, Kapishaná)
  36. Karirí (Brazil: Paraíba, Pernambuco, Ceará) (†)
  37. Katembrí (†)
  38. Kawésqar (Alacaluf, Alakaluf, Kawaskar, Kawesqar, Qawasqar, Qawashqar, Halawalip, Aksaná, Hekaine, Chono, Caucau, Kaueskar, Aksanás, Kaweskar, Kawéskar, Kakauhau, Kaukaue)
  39. Koayá (Brazil: Rondônia) (†)
  40. Kukurá (Brazil: Mato Grosso) (†)
  41. Leco language (Lapalapa, Leko) (†)
  42. Lule (†)
  43. Maku language (a.k.a. Macu)
  44. Malibú (a.k.a. Malibu)
  45. Matanawí (†)
  46. Mocana
  47. Movima (Bolivia)
  48. Munichi (Peru) (a.k.a. Muniche)
  49. Mutú (a.k.a. Loco)
  50. Muzo (†)
  51. Nambiquaran (Brazil: Mato Grosso)
  52. Natú (Brazil: Pernambuco) (†)
  53. Nonuya (Peru)
  54. Ofayé
  55. Old Catío-Nutabe (Colombia) (†)
  56. Omurano (Peru) (a.k.a. Mayna, Mumurana, Numurana, Maina, Rimachu, Roamaina, Umurano) (†)
  57. Otí (Brazil: São Paulo) (†)
  58. Pakarara (†)
  59. Palta
  60. Panche (†)
  61. Pankararú (Brazil: Pernambuco) (†)
  62. Pantagora (†)
  63. Panzaleo (Ecuador) (a.k.a. Latacunga, Quito, Pansaleo)
  64. Patagón
  65. Pijao
  66. Puelche (a.k.a. Guenaken, Gennaken, Pampa, Pehuenche, Ranquelche) (†)
  67. Puquina (Bolivia) (†)
  68. Resígaro (Colombia-Peru border area)
  69. Rikbaktsá
  70. Sabela (Ecuador, Peru) (a.k.a. Auca, Huaorani, Wao, Auka)
  71. Sechura language (Atalan, Sec) (†)
  72. Salumã (Brazil)
  73. Tairona (Colombia) (†)
  74. Tarairiú (Brazil: Rio Grande do Norte) (†)
  75. Taruma (†)
  76. Taushiro (Peru) (a.k.a. Pinchi, Pinche)
  77. Tequiraca (Peru) (a.k.a. Tekiraka, Avishiri) (†)
  78. Teushen (†) (Patagonia, Argentina)
  79. Ticuna (Colombia, Peru, Brazil) (a.k.a. Magta, Tikuna, Tucuna, Tukna, Tukuna)
  80. Trumai (Brazil: Xingu, Mato Grosso)
  81. Tuxá (Brazil: Bahia, Pernambuco) (†)
  82. Urarina (a.k.a. Shimacu, Itukale, Shimaku)
  83. Vilela
  84. Wakona (†)
  85. Warao (Guyana, Surinam, Venezuela) (a.k.a. Guarao)
  86. Xokó (Brazil: Alagoas, Pernambuco) (a.k.a. Shokó) (†)
  87. Xukurú (Brazil: Pernambuco, Paraíba) (†)
  88. Yámana (Chile) (a.k.a. Yagan, Yahgan, Yaghan, Yamana, Yámana)
  89. Yaruro (a.k.a. Jaruro)
  90. Yuracare (Bolivia)
  91. Yuri (Colombia, Brazil) (a.k.a. Jurí) (†)
  92. Yurumanguí (Colombia) (a.k.a. Yurimangui, Yurimangi) (†)

Kawésqar, also known as Qawasqar, Alacaluf, and Halakwulup, is a language isolate spoken in southern Chile. ... The Ofayé (also spelled as Opaié or Ofayé) are an indigenous people of Central Brazil. ... The Puelche are an extinct tribe of South American Indians. ... Chibcha hieroglyph Colombias first inhabitants migrated from North and Central America. ... Ticuna is a language spoken by approximately 21,000 people in Brazil, Peru, and Colombia. ... Yagán, also known as Yámana, Yaghan, and Háusi Kúta, is one of the indigenous languages of Tierra del Fuego, spoken by the Yagán people. ... The Yaruro are Native Americans who live primarily in Venezuela near the Orinoco River and its tributaries. ...

Mexico and Central America

Central America is the region of North America located between the southern border of Mexico and the northwest border of Colombia, in South America. ...

Families (central)

  1. Algic (North America & Mexico) (29)
  2. Chibchan (Central America & South America) (22)
  3. Comecrudan (Texas & Mexico) (3)
  4. Guaicurian (8) (a.k.a. Waikurian)
  5. Jicaquean
  6. Lencan
  7. Mayan (31)
  8. Misumalpan
  9. Mixe-Zoquean (19)
  10. Na-Dené (North America & Mexico) (40)
  11. Oto-Manguean (27)
  12. Tequistlatecan (3)
  13. Totonacan (2)
  14. Uto-Aztecan (North America & Mexico) (33)
  15. Xincan
  16. Yuman-Cochimí (North America & Mexico) (11)

The Algic languages are an indigenous language family of North America. ... It has been suggested that Northern America be merged into this article or section. ... Chibchan languages are a language family indigenous to Colombia and Central America. ... Central America is the region of North America located between the southern border of Mexico and the northwest border of Colombia, in South America. ... South America South America is a continent crossed by the equator, with most of its area in the Southern Hemisphere. ... Comecrudan refers to a group of possibly related languages spoken in the southernmost part of Texas and in northern Mexico along the Rio Grande. ... State nickname: Lone Star State Other U.S. States Capital Austin Largest city Houston Governor Rick Perry (R) Official languages None. ... The Mayan languages are a family of related languages spoken from South-Eastern Mexico through northern Central America as far south as Honduras. ... The Misumalpan languages are a small family of Native American languages spoken on the east coast of Nicaragua and nearby areas. ... Na-Dené (also Na-Dene, Nadene) is a Native American language family which includes the Athabaskan languages, Eyak, and Tlingit. ... It has been suggested that Northern America be merged into this article or section. ... Oto-Manguean languages are a large family of Native American languages spoken in Mexico. ... The Uto-Aztecan languages are a Native American language family. ... It has been suggested that Northern America be merged into this article or section. ... Yuman-Cochimí is a family of languages spoken in Baja California and northern Sonora in Mexico and southern California and southwestern Arizona in the USA. Genetic relations The Yuman-Cochimí family consists of 11 languages: I. Cochimí 1. ... It has been suggested that Northern America be merged into this article or section. ...

Isolates or unclassified (central)

  1. Alagüilac (Guatemala)
  2. Coahuilteco (US: Texas; northeast Mexico)
  3. Cotoname (northeast Mexico; US: Texas)
  4. Cuitlatec (Mexico: Guerrero)
  5. Huetar (Costa Rica)
  6. Huave (Mexico: Oaxaca)
  7. Maratino (northeastern Mexico)
  8. Naolan (Mexico: Tamaulipas)
  9. Quinigua (northeast Mexico)
  10. Seri (Mexico: Sonora)
  11. Solano (northeast Mexico; US: Texas)
  12. Tarascan (Mexico: Michoacán) (a.k.a. Purépecha, Tarasco)

Coahuilteco (also Pajalate) was a language isolate that was spoken in southern Texas and northeastern Mexico. ... The Seri language is spoken by the Seri people, in two villages on the coast of Sonora, Mexico. ... Solano County is a county located in central California, about halfway between San Francisco and Sacramento. ... Tarascan men reeling cord for nets & making nets, 1899. ...

Greenland, Canada & USA

distribution of North American languages north of Mexico
distribution of North American languages north of Mexico

There are approximately 275 spoken (or formerly spoken) North American languages north of Mexico. Download high resolution version (1005x912, 422 KB) Wikipedia does not have an article with this exact name. ... Download high resolution version (1005x912, 422 KB) Wikipedia does not have an article with this exact name. ...


Families (north)

  1. Algic (30)
  2. Alsean (2)
  3. Caddoan (5)
  4. Chimakuan (2)
  5. Chinookan (3)
  6. Chumashan (6)
  7. Comecrudan (North America & Mexico) (3)
  8. Coosan (2)
  9. Eskimo-Aleut (7)
  10. Iroquoian (11)
  11. Kalapuyan (3)
  12. Keresan (2)
  13. Kiowa-Tanoan (7)
  14. Maiduan (4)
  15. Muskogean (6)
  16. Na-Dené (North America & Mexico) (40)
  17. Palaihnihan (2)
  18. Plateau Penutian (4) (a.k.a. Shahapwailutan)
  19. Pomoan (7)
  20. Salishan (23)
  21. Shastan (4)
  22. Siouan-Catawban (16)
  23. Tsimshianic (2)
  24. Utian (12)
  25. Uto-Aztecan (33)
  26. Wakashan (6)
  27. Wintuan (4)
  28. Yokutsan (3)
  29. Yuman-Cochimí (11)

The Algic languages are an indigenous language family of North America. ... The Alsean (also Yakonan) language family consists of two closely related languages that were spoken along the central Oregon coast. ... The Caddoan languages are a family of Native American languages. ... The Chimakuan language family consists of two languages that are spoken in northwestern Washington, USA on the Olympic Peninsula. ... Interior of a Chinookan plankhouse in the 1850s Chinookan refers to several groups of Native Americans in the Pacific Northwest region of the United States. ... Chumashan is a family of languages that were spoken on the southern California coast (from San Luis Obispo to Malibu), in neighboring inland regions (San Joaquin Valley), and on three nearby islands (San Miguel, Santa Rosa, and Santa Cruz). ... Comecrudan refers to a group of possibly related languages spoken in the southernmost part of Texas and in northern Mexico along the Rio Grande. ... It has been suggested that Northern America be merged into this article or section. ... The Coosan (also Coos or Kusan) language family consists of two languages spoken along the southern Oregon coast: Hanis Miluk (a. ... Eskimo-Aleut (also called Inuit-Aleut, but both names are considered offensive by some) is a language family native to Greenland, the Canadian Arctic, Alaska, and parts of Siberia. ... The Iroquoian languages are a Native American language family. ... The Kalapuya (also spelled Calapooya or Calapooia) are a Native American ethnic group that once inhabited the area present-day western Oregon in the United States. ... The Keres language is a group of seven related dialects spoken by Pueblo peoples in New Mexico, U.S.A. Each is mutually intelligible with its neighbors. ... The Kiowa-Tanoan languages are a Native American language family. ... The Maidu are a group of Native Americans who lived in Northern California. ... Muskogean (also Muskhogean, Muskogee) is a language family of the Northern American Southeast. ... Na-Dené (also Na-Dene, Nadene) is a Native American language family which includes the Athabaskan languages, Eyak, and Tlingit. ... It has been suggested that Northern America be merged into this article or section. ... Palaihnihan is a language family consisting of two languages: Atsugewi Achumawi The Palaihnihan family is often connected with the hypothetical Hokan stock. ... Plateau Penutian (also Shahapwailutan) is a family of languages in spoken in northern California, reaching through central-western Oregon to northern Washington and central-northern Idaho. ... Pomoan is a family of endangered languages spoken in northern California on the Pacific coast. ... The Salishan (also Salish) languages are a group of languages of western Canada and the Pacific Northwest of the United States. ... The Shastan family consisted of four languages, spoken in Northern California and southern Oregon: Shasta, Okwanuchu, New River Shasta, Konomihu. ... Siouan-Catawban is a language family of North America. ... Tsimshianic is a family of languages spoken in northern British Columbia and southern Alaska. ... Utian (also Miwok-Costanoan) is language family consisting of Miwokan languages and Costanoan languages. ... The Uto-Aztecan languages are a Native American language family. ... Wakashan is a family of languages spoken around Vancouver Island. ... The Wintuan languages (also Wintun, Wintoon, Copeh, Copehan) are a group of languages spoken in the Sacramento Valley of north central California. ... Yokutsan (also Yokuts) is a family of languages spoken in the interior of southern California in and around the San Joaquin valley. ... Yuman-Cochimí is a family of languages spoken in Baja California and northern Sonora in Mexico and southern California and southwestern Arizona in the USA. Genetic relations The Yuman-Cochimí family consists of 11 languages: I. Cochimí 1. ...

Isolates or unclassified (north)

  1. Adai (US: Louisiana, Texas)
  2. Atakapa (US: Louisiana, Texas)
  3. Beothuk (Canada: Newfoundland)
  4. Cayuse (US: Oregon, Washington)
  5. Chimariko (US: California)
  6. Chitimacha (US: Lousiania)
  7. Coahuilteco (US: Texas; northeast Mexico)
  8. Cotoname (northeast Mexico; US: Texas)
  9. Esselen (US: California)
  10. Haida (Canada: British Columbia; US: Alaska)
  11. Karankawa (US: Texas)
  12. Karuk (a.k.a. Karok) (US: California)
  13. Kootenai (Canada: British Columbia; US: Idaho, Montana)
  14. Natchez (US: Mississippi, Louisiana)
  15. Salinan (US: California)
  16. Siuslaw (US: Oregon)
  17. Solano (northeast Mexico; US: Texas)
  18. Takelma (US: Oregon)
  19. Timucua (US: Florida, Georgia)
  20. Tonkawa (US: Texas)
  21. Tunica (US: Mississippi, Louisiana, Arkansas)
  22. Wappo (US: California)
  23. Washo (US: California, Nevada)
  24. Yana (US: California)
  25. Yuchi (US: Georgia, Oklahoma)
  26. Yuki (US: California)
  27. Zuni (a.k.a. Shiwi) (US: New Mexico)

Adai (also Adaizan, Adaizi, Adaise, Adahi, Adaes, Adees, Atayos) is the name of a people and language that was spoken in eastern Louisiana. ... Atakapa is the name of a group of small bands and the language of Native Americans that lived along the Gulf of Mexico. ... The Beothuk language was the language spoken by the Beothuk indigenous people of Newfoundland. ... Sahaptin Tribal Representatives to Washington D.C. (1890) Cayuse is a Native American group in the state of Oregon in the United States. ... The Chitimacha are a Native American group that lives in the U.S. state of Louisiana, mainly in St. ... Coahuilteco (also Pajalate) was a language isolate that was spoken in southern Texas and northeastern Mexico. ... The Esselen were the Native American inhabitants of what is now known as Big Sur on the Central Coast of California. ... Haida Copper Shield The Haida are the Indigenous Peoples of the west coast of North America. ... The Karankawa Indian tribes played a pivotal part in early Texas history. ... Karuk (also Karok) are an indigenous people of California in the United States. ... Kootenai Group Near Tipis (ca. ... The Natchez Nation was a powerful Native American people in the early days of European colonisation. ... The Salinan Native Americans lived in what is now Northern California, in the Salinas Valley. ... Siuslaw is one of the three Confederated Tribes of Coos, Lower Umpqua, and Siuslaw located on the southwest Oregon Pacific coast in the United States. ... The Takelma were a people that lived in western Oregon along the Rogue River. ... The Timucua were a Native American tribe that lived in North Central Florida, mainly around the St. ... The Tonkawa are a people native to eastern Texas. ... The Tunica (or Tonica) language was a language isolate spoken in present-day Louisiana in the United States. ... The Washoe language is a Native American language spoken by the Washoe. ... The Yuchi language is the language of the Yuchi people originally native to various areas of the southeastern United States. ... Due to copyright problems with the author. ...

Language stock proposals

Many hypothetical language phylum proposals concerning American languages are often cited as uncontroversially demonstrated in more popular writings. However, many of these proposals have, in fact, not been fully demonstrated if even at all. Some proposals are viewed by specialists in a favorable light, believing that genetic relationships are very likely to be established in the future (e.g. the Penutian stock). Other proposals are more controversial with many linguists believing that some genetic relationships of a proposal may be demonstrated but much of it undemonstrated (e.g. Hokan, which, incidentally, Edward Sapir called his "wastepaper basket stock"). Still other proposals are almost unanimously rejected by specialists (e.g. Amerind). Below is a (partial) list of some such proposals: The Penutian is a phylum (or stock) of language families that include many Native American languages of western North America, predominantly spoken at one time in Washington, Oregon, and California. ... The Hokan languages are a group of languages spoken in North America by Native Americans. ... Edward Sapir. ... In addition to its use by social scientists to refer (broadly) to the various indigenous languages of The Americas, the term Amerind languages may controversially refer to one of the three families in Joseph H. Greenbergs classification of all Native American languages—the other two being Na-Dene and...

  1. Ahuaque-Kalianan
  2. Algonkian-Gulf   (= Algic+Beothuk+Gulf)
  3. Almosan   (= Algic+Kutenai+Salishan+Wakashan+Chimakuan)
  4. Almosan-Keresiouan (= Almosan+Keresiouan)
  5. Amerind   (= all languages excepting Eskimo-Aleut & Nadene)
  6. Aztec-Tanoan   (= Uto-Aztecan+Kiowa-Tanoan)
  7. Chibchan stock
  8. Chibchan-Paezan
  9. Chikitano-Boróroan
  10. Coahuiltecan   (= Coahuilteco+Cotoname+Comecrudan+Karankawa+Tonkawa)
  11. Cunza-Kapixanan
  12. Dene-Caucasian
  13. Esmeralda-Yaruroan
  14. Guamo-Chapacuran
  15. Gulf   (= Muskogean+Natchez+Tunica)
  16. Hokan   (= Karok+Chimariko+Shastan+Palaihnihan+Yana+Pomoan+Washo+Esselen+Yuman-Cochimí+Salinan+Chumashan+Seri+ Tequistlatecan)
  17. Hokan-Siouan   (= Hokan+Subtiaba-Tlappanec+Coahuiltecan+Yukian+Keresan+Tunican+Iroquoian+Caddoan+Siouan-Catawba+Yuchi+Natchez+Muskogean+Timucua)
  18. Javaroan-Cahuapanan
  19. Je-Tupi-Carib
  20. Kalianan
  21. Kaweskar language area
  22. Keresiouan
  23. Lule-Vilelan
  24. Macro-Andean
  25. Macro-Arawakan
  26. Macro-Carib
  27. Macro-Jê (a.k.a. Macro-Ge)
  28. Macro-Katembrí-Taruma
  29. Macro-Kulyi-Cholónan
  30. Macro-Lekoan
  31. Macro-Mayan
  32. Macro-Otomákoan
  33. Macro-Paesan
  34. Macro-Panoan
  35. Macro-Puinávean
  36. Macro-Siouan   (= Siouan+Iroquoian+Caddoan)
  37. Macro-Tekiraka-Kanichana
  38. Macro-Tucanoan
  39. Macro-Tupí-Karibe
  40. Macro-Waikurúan
  41. Macro-Warpean
  42. Mosan   (= Salishan+Wakashan+Chimakuan)
  43. Mosetén-Chonan
  44. Mura-Matanawian
  45. (Sapir's) Nadene (including Haida)   (= Haida+Tlingit+Eyak+Athabaskan)
  46. Nostratic-Amerind
  47. Paezan-Barbacoan
  48. Pano-Tacanan
  49. Penutian   (= many languages of California and sometimes languages in Mexico)
    1. California Penutian   (= Wintuan+Maiduan+Yokutsan+Utian)
    2. Oregon Penutian   (= Takelma+Coosan+Siuslaw+Alsean)
    3. Mexican Penutian   (= Mixe-Zoque+Huave)
  50. Quechumaran
  51. Takelman   (= Takelma+Kalapuyan)
  52. Tunican   (= Tunica+Atakapa+Chitimacha)
  53. Wappo-Yukian   (= Wappo+Yukian)
  54. Yok-Utian   (= Yokutsan+Utian)
  55. Yuri-Ticunan
  56. Zaparoan-Yaguan

Good discussions of past proposals are found in Campbell (1997) and Campbell & Mithun (1979). In addition to its use by social scientists to refer (broadly) to the various indigenous languages of The Americas, the term Amerind languages may controversially refer to one of the three families in Joseph H. Greenbergs classification of all Native American languages—the other two being Na-Dene and... Coahuiltecan A general group of people living in the southern Texas region near the Rio Grande. ... The Dene-Caucasian (or Sino-Caucasian) language family is a conjectural macrofamily containing the Sino-Tibetan, North Caucasian, Yeniseian and Na-Dene languages. ... The Hokan languages are a group of languages spoken in North America by Native Americans. ... Several of the major language stocks of South America are thought to be related. ... The Macro-Siouan languages are a proposed language family that includes the Siouan, Iroquoian, and Caddoan languages. ... Na-Dené (also Na-Dene, Nadene) is a Native American language family which includes the Athabaskan languages, Eyak, and Tlingit. ... Haida Copper Shield The Haida are the Indigenous Peoples of the west coast of North America. ... The Penutian is a phylum (or stock) of language families that include many Native American languages of western North America, predominantly spoken at one time in Washington, Oregon, and California. ... Oregon Penutian is a language family in the Penutian language phylum comprising languages spoken at one time by several groups of Native Americans in present-day western Oregon and western Washington in the United States. ...

Pidgins, mixed languages, & trade languages

  1. Labrador Eskimo Pidgin (a.k.a. Labrador Inuit Pidgin)
  2. Hudson Strait Pidgin
  3. Greenlandic Eskimo Pidgin
  4. Eskimo Trade Jargon (a.k.a. Herschel Island Eskimo Pidgin, Ship's Jargon)
  5. Mednyj Aleut (a.k.a. Copper Island Aleut, Medniy Aleut, CIA)
  6. Haida Jargon
  7. Chinook Jargon
  8. Nootka Jargon
  9. Broken Slavey (a.k.a. Slavey Jargon, Broken Slavé)
  10. Kutenai Jargon
  11. Loucheux Jargon (a.k.a. Jargon Loucheux)
  12. Inuktitut-English Pidgin
  13. Michif (a.k.a. French Cree, Métis, Metchif, Mitchif, Métchif)
  14. Broken Oghibbeway (a.k.a. Broken Ojibwa)
  15. Basque-Algonquian Pidgin (a.k.a. Micmac-Basque Pidgin, Souriquois)
  16. Montagnais Pidgin Basque (a.k.a. Pidgin Basque-Montagnais)
  17. American Indian Pidgin English
  18. Delaware Jargon (a.k.a. Pidgin Delaware)
  19. Pidgin Massachusett
  20. Jargonized Powhatan
  21. Ocaneechi
  22. Lingua Franca Creek
  23. Lingua Franca Apalachee
  24. Mobilian Jargon (a.k.a. Mobilian Trade Jargon, Chickasaw-Chocaw Trade Language, Yamá)
  25. Güegüence-Nicarao
  26. Carib Pidgin (a.k.a. Ndjuka-Amerindian Pidgin, Ndjuka-Trio)
  27. Carib Pidgin-Arawak Mixed Language
  28. Guajiro-Spanish
  29. Media Lengua
  30. Catalangu
  31. Callahuaya (a.k.a. Machaj-Juyai, Kallawaya, Collahuaya, Pohena, Kolyawaya jargon)
  32. Nheengatú (a.k.a. Lingua Geral Amazônica, Lingua Boa, Lingua Brasílica, Lingua Geral do Norte)
  33. Lingua Geral do Sul (a.k.a. Lingua Geral Paulista, Tupí Austral)

A Pidgin, or contact language, is the name given to any language created, usually spontaneously, out of a mixture of other languages as a means of communication between speakers of different tongues. ... A mixed language is a language that arises when two languages are in contact and there is a high degree of bilingualism among speakers. ... Chinook Jargon was a trade language (or pidgin) of the Pacific Northwest, which spread quickly up the West Coast from Oregon State, through Washington State, British Columbia, and as far as Alaska. ... Michif is the indigenous language of the Métis people of Canada. ...

Unattested languages

Several languages are only known by mention in historical documents or from only a few names or words. It cannot be determined that these languages actually existed or that the few recorded words are actually of known or unknown languages. Some may simply be from a historian's errors. Others are of known people with no linguistic record (sometimes due to lost records). A short list is below.

  • Ais
  • Aksaná (Akasanás, Kaueskar)
  • Aramana
  • Ausaima
  • Avoyel
  • Bidai
  • Calusa
  • Chome
  • Cusabo

Loukotka (1968) reports the names of hundreds of languages which do not have any linguistic documentation. AIS can stand for. ... The Calusa, sometimes spelled Caloosa or Calosa, were a Native American group that lived on the coast and along the inner waterways of Floridas southwest coast. ... The Japanese addressing system is used to identify a specific location in Japan. ... This page is about the Tequesta Native American tribe. ... The below article is about Yazoo the music band. ...


Linguistic areas

The languages of the Americas often can be grouped together into linguistic areas or Sprachbunds (also known as convergence areas). The linguistic areas identified so far deserve more research to determine their validity, and also to help differentiate between shared areal traits and true genetic relationship. The following tentative list of linguistic areas is based on primarily Campbell (1997): A Sprachbund (German for language union) (also known as linguistic area, convergence area, diffusion area) is a group of languages that have become similar in some way because of geographical proximity. ...

In geology and earth science, a plateau (alternatively spelt in a false French spelling plâteau, the real spelling in French being plateau) is an area of highland, usually consisting of relatively flat open country if the uplift was recent in geologic history. ... Northern California (sometimes NorCal) refers to the northern portion of the U.S. state of California, roughly covering all of those counties except for the ten counties which make up Southern California. ... Clear Lake is the largest (by area) freshwater lake wholly in California. ... Map showing the Great Basin in orange The Great Basin is a large, arid region of the western United States, commonly defined as the contiguous watershed region, roughly between the Rocky Mountains and the Sierra Nevada, that has no natural outlet to the sea. ... For the town in Colorado, see Pueblo, Colorado Pueblos are traditional Native American communities of the Southwest. ... Plains is the name of several places in the United States of America and one in Scotland: Plains, Georgia Plains, Kansas Plains, Montana Plains, Pennsylvania Plains, Texas Plains, North Lanarkshire There are also The Plains, Ohio; Plainsboro, New Jersey; and Plainsville, Kansas You might also be looking for the geographical... Northeast is the ordinal direction halfway between north and east. ... Southeast is the ordinal direction halfway between south and east. ... Mesoamerica is the region extending from central Mexico south to the northwestern border of Costa Rica that gave rise to a group of stratified, culturally related agrarian civilizations spanning an approximately 3,000-year period before the European discovery of the New World by Columbus. ... The word Andean refers to the geographic area in and around the Andes Mountains of South America, and to the indigenous peoples that inhabit the area, such as the Inca. ... Amazonas is the name of five subnational entities in various South American nations. ... The term Southern Cone (Cono Sur) refers to the southernmost countries of South America. ...

See also

This article is a list of different language classification proposals developed for the languages indigenous to the Americas. ... Current distribution of Human Language Families Most languages are known to belong to language families (families hereforth). ... // Classification of Native Americans: United States and Canada Ethnographers commonly classify the native peoples of the United States and Canada into ten geographical regions with shared cultural traits (called cultural areas). ... Native Americans (also Indians, Aboriginal Peoples, American Indians, First Nations, Alaskan Natives, Amerindians, or Indigenous Peoples of America) are the indigenous inhabitants of The Americas prior to the European colonization, and their modern descendants. ...

External Links

Bibilography

  • Boas, Franz. (1911). Handbook of American Indian languages (Vol. 1). Bureau of American Ethnology, Bulletin 40. Washington: Government Print Office (Smithsonian Institution, Bureau of American Ethnology).
  • Boas, Franz. (1922). Handbook of American Indian languages (Vol. 2). Bureau of American Ethnology, Bulletin 40. Washington: Government Print Office (Smithsonian Institution, Bureau of American Ethnology).
  • Boas, Franz. (1929). Classification of American Indian languages. Language, 5, 1-7.
  • Boas, Franz. (1933). Handbook of American Indian languages (Vol. 3). Native American legal materials collection, title 1227. Glückstadt: J.J. Augustin.
  • Bright, William. (1973). North American Indian language contact. In T. A. Sebeok (Ed.), Linguistics in North America (part 1, pp. 713-726). Current trends in linguistics (Vol. 10). The Hauge: Mouton.
  • Bright, William. (1984). The classification of North American and Meso-American Indian languages. In W. Bright (Ed.), American Indian linguistics and literature (pp. 3-29). Berlin: Mouton de Gruyter.
  • Bright, William (Ed.). (1984). American Indian linguistics and literature. Berlin: Mouton de Gruyter. ISBN 3-1100-9846-6.
  • Brinton, Daniel G. (1891). The American race. New York: D. C. Hodges.
  • Campbell, Lyle. (1997). American Indian languages: The historical linguistics of Native America. New York: Oxford University Press. ISBN 0-19-509427-1.
  • Campbell, Lyle; & Mithun, Marianne (Eds.). (1979). The languages of native America: Historical and comparative assessment. Austin: University of Texas Press.
  • Goddard, Ives (Ed.). (1996). Languages. Handbook of North American Indians (W. C. Sturtevant, General Ed.) (Vol. 17). Washington, D. C.: Smithsonian Institution. ISBN 0-1604-8774-9.
  • Goddard, Ives. (1999). Native languages and language families of North America (rev. and enlarged ed. with additions and corrections). [Map]. Lincoln, NE: University of Nebraska Press (Smithsonian Institute). (Updated version of the map in Goddard 1996). ISBN 0-8032-9271-6.
  • Gordon, Raymond G., Jr. (Ed.). (2005). Ethnologue: Languages of the world (15th ed.). Dallas, TX: SIL International. ISBN 1-55671-159-X. (Online version: http://www.ethnologue.com).
  • Kaufman, Terrence. (1990). Language history in South America: What we know and how to know more. In D. L. Payne (Ed.), Amazonian linguistics: Studies in lowland South American languages (pp. 13-67). Austin: University of Texas Press. ISBN 0-2927-0414-3.
  • Kaufman, Terrence. (1994). The native languages of South America. In C. Mosley & R. E. Asher (Eds.), Atlas of the world's languages (pp. 46-76). London: Routledge.
  • Key, Mary R. (1979). The grouping of South American languages. Tübingen: Gunter Narr Verlag.
  • Loukotka, Čestmír. (1968). Classification of South American Indian languages. Los Angeles: Latin American Studies Center, University of California.
  • Mason, J. Alden. (1950). The languages of South America. In J. Steward (Ed.), Handbook of South American Indians (Vol. 6, pp. 157-317). Smithsonian Institution Bureau of American Ethnology bulletin (No. 143). Washington, D.C.: Government Printing Office.
  • Migliazza, Ernest C.; & Campbell, Lyle. (1988). Panorama general de las lenguas indígenas en América. Historia general de América (Vol. 10). Caracas: Instituto Panamericano de Geografía e Historia.
  • Mithun, Marianne. (1999). The languages of Native North America. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. ISBN 0-521-23228-7 (hbk); ISBN 0-521-29875-X.
  • Powell, John W. (1891). Indian linguistic families of America north of Mexico. Seventh annual report, Bureau of American Ethnology (pp. 1-142). Washington, D.C.: Government Printing Office. (Reprinted in P. Holder (Ed.), 1966, Introduction to Handbook of American Indian languages by Franz Boas and Indian linguistic families of America, north of Mexico, by J. W. Powell, Lincoln: University of Nebraska).
  • Powell, John W. (1915). Linguistic families of American Indians north of Mexico by J. W. Powell, revised by members of the staff of the Bureau of American Ethnology. (Map). Bureau of American Ethnology miscellaneous publication (No. 11). Baltimore: Hoen.
  • Rowe, John H. (1954). Linguistics classification problems in South America. In M. B. Emeneau (Ed.), Papers from the symposium on American Indian linguistics (pp. 10-26). University of California publications in linguistics (Vol. 10). Berkeley: University of California Press.
  • Sapir, Edward. (1929). Central and North American languages. In The encyclopædia britannica: A new survey of universal knowledge (14 ed.) (Vol. 5, pp. 138-141). London: The Encyclopædia Britannica Company, Ltd.
  • Sebeok, Thomas A. (Ed.). (1973). Linguistics in North America (parts 1 & 2). Current trends in linguistics (Vol. 10). The Hauge: Mouton. (Reprinted as Sebeok 1976).
  • Sebeok, Thomas A. (Ed.). (1976). Native languages of the Americas. New York: Plenum.
  • Sherzer, Joel. (1973). Areal linguistics in North America. In T. A. Sebeok (Ed.), Linguistics in North America (part 2, pp. 749-795). Current trends in linguistics (Vol. 10). The Hauge: Mouton. (Reprinted in Sebeok 1976).
  • Sherzer, Joel. (1976). An areal-typological study of American Indian languages north of Mexico. Amsterdam: North-Holland.
  • Sturtevant, William C. (Ed.). (1978-present). Handbook of North American Indians (Vol. 1-20). Washington, D. C.: Smithsonian Institution. (Vols. 1-3, 16, 18-20 not yet published).
  • Voegelin, Carl F.; & Voegelin, Florence M. (1965). Classification of American Indian languages. Languages of the world, Native American fasc. 2, sec. 1.6). Anthropological Linguistics, 7 (7): 121-150.
  • Voegelin, Carl F.; & Voegelin, Florence M. (1977). Classification and index of the world's languages. Amsterdam: Elsevier. ISBN 0-4440-0155-7.

  Results from FactBites:
 
Native American languages. The Columbia Encyclopedia, Sixth Edition. 2001-05 (3048 words)
Native American languages cannot be differentiated as a linguistic unit from other languages of the world but are grouped into a number of separate linguistic stocks having significantly different phonetics, vocabularies, and grammars.
A grammatical characteristic of widespread occurrence in Native American languages is polysynthesism.
At present, the aboriginal languages of the Western Hemisphere are gradually being replaced by the Indo-European tongues of the European conquerors and settlers of the New World—English, Spanish, Portuguese, French, and Dutch.
Native American Languages - Search View - MSN Encarta (3303 words)
Native American and European colonial languages have borrowed words from one another; Native American languages have taken words from Dutch (in the Antilles), English, Spanish, Portuguese, Russian (in Alaska), and French (in Canada and Louisiana).
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.
Such languages occur in Kickapoo (Algic) in Mexico near Texas; several Oto-Manguean languages, Nahuatl dialects, and the Totonac languages in Middle America; and the Aguaruna (Jívaroan) and the Sirionó (Tupi) in South America (whistle speech is not restricted to Native American languages, several African languages also use it).
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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