Salinan language

Salinan language

states=United States
region=central coast California

Salinan was the indigenous language of the Salinan people of the central coast of California. It has been extinct since the death of the last speaker in 1958.

The language is attested to some extent in colonial sources such as Sitjar (1860), but the principal published documentation is Mason (1918). The main modern grammatical study, based on Mason's data and on the field notes of John Peabody Harrington and William H. Jacobsen, is Turner (1987), which also contains a complete bibliography of the primary sources and discussion of their orthography.

Two dialects are recognized, "Antoniaño" and "Migueleño", associated with the missions of San Antonio and San Miguel, respectively. There may have been a third, "Playano" dialect, as suggested by mention of such a subdivision of the people, but nothing is known of them linguistically.

Salinan may be a part of the hypothetical Hokan family. Sapir (1925) included it in a subfamily of Hokan, along with Chumash and Seri. This classification has found its way into more recent encyclopedias and presentations of language families, but serious supporting evidence for this subfamily has never been presented.


*cite book |last=Campbell |first=Lyle |year=1997 |title=American Indian languages: the historical linguistics of Native America |publisher=Oxford University Press |location=Oxford

*Mason, J. Alden (1918) "The language of the Salinan Indians". University of California Publications in American Archaeology and Ethnology 14.1-154.

*Sapir, Edward. (1925) The Hokan affinity of Subtiaba in Nicaragua. "American Anthropologist" 27: (3).402-34, (4).491-527.

*Sitjar, Fr. Buenaventura (1861) "Vocabulario de la lengua de los naturales de la mission de San Antonio, Alta California." Shea's Library of American Linguistics, 7. Reprinted 1970 at New York by AMS Press.

*Turner, Katherine (1987) "Aspects of Salinan Grammar". Unpublished Ph.D. dissertation, University of California at Berkeley.

External links

* [ Ethnologue entry]

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