The Deline or Bear Lake Indians are an Athabaskan
tribe of northern Canada. The Delines are relatives of the
Hare tribe and speakers of
a Hare dialect. Although the Bearlake language itself is a Hare dialect,
the Deline First Nation also includes many Dogrib
families, and both languages are still spoken on the reserve today.
Thanks for your interest in Native American languages!
Names: The tribal name "Deline" comes from a place name in their own language, Délįne, which means
"flowing water." It is also spelled Déline and other ways. Deline people also call themselves Sahtúot'ine
or Sahtu Dene, which is a more general term referring to refers to several related bands including the Delines, the Hares,
and the Mountain Denes. Sahtú is the native name for Great Bear Lake, and so the Deline are also frequently
called the Bearlake, Bearlakes, or Bear Lake tribe in English.
Bearlake Language Tree:
Theories about Deline language relationships compiled by Linguist List.
Our resources about the Hare language, including Deline.
Our resources about the Dogrib language.
Deline First Nation:
Homepage of the Deline Nation in Canada.
Sahtu Secretariat Incorporated:
Economic coalition of Hare, Deline, Mountain Dene, and Metis people in the Northwest Territories.
Tribal profile of the Deline First Nation.
Organization supporting the interests of the Deline and other Dene peoples of the Northwest Territories.