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Yakama Indian Language (Yakima, Klickitat)

Yakama is a Penutian language of the Western Plateau. It is spoken natively by only a few dozen Yakama and Klickitat elders there, but many Yakama people are moderately fluent in the language and there is an active language revitalization program underway to teach it to the children. Some linguists consider Yakama to be one dialect of a single Sahaptin language, and others consider it to be one of three or four distinct Sahaptin languages. Yakama and Klickitat speakers have some difficulty understanding Umatilla or Walla Walla speakers, but they are similar enough that speakers can usually all communicate relatively well.

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Yakima Indian Language
Yakama language samples and resources.

Yakima Nation Culture and History
Information and links about the Yakama tribe past and present.

Yakama Indians Fact Sheet
Our answers to common questions about the Yakamas.

Yakima Indian Legends
Introduction to Yakama mythology.

Yakama Language Resources

Our Yakama Language Materials

Yakama Vocabulary
     Our list of vocabulary words in the Yakama language, with comparison to words in other Penutian languages.
Sahaptin Dictionary
     Glossary of Yakama Sahaptin nouns from Virginia Beavert's 1975 dictionary.

Yakama Language Lessons and Linguistic Descriptions

Grammar and Dictionary of the Yakima Language:
    Scanned-in Yakama Indian language materials from the Rosetta Project.
A Healthy Sign for the Yakima Language
     Article on language preservation efforts among the Yakima Indians.
Klikitat Prayers * Yakima Prayer * Language Museum: Yakima:
    Klickitat and Yakama translations of the Lord's Prayer and other Christian prayers.
Northwest Sahaptin
     Linguistics texts on the Northwest Sahaptin dialects (including Yakama).
House of Languages: Sahaptin:
    Information about Sahaptin language usage (including Yakima and Klikitat.)
Ethnologue: Yakima:
    Demographic information about the Yakama language.
Sahaptian Language Tree * Klikitat Language Tree * Yakima Language Tree:
    Kittitas Language Tree * Upper Nisqually Language Tree: * Upper Cowlitz Language Tree:
    Theories about Northwestern Sahaptin language relationships compiled by Linguist List.
Northern Sahaptin Language Structures:
    Yakima/Walla Walla linguistic profile and academic bibliography.
*Northwestern Vocabularies:
    Early 20th-century wordlists of Yakima, Klickitat, and Kutenai.

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Links, References, and Additional Information

Lenguas Sahaptin (Yakima, Walla Walla, Nez Perce):
Information about the Yakama language in Spanish.
Yakamas * The Yakima Indians:
Yakama links.
Yakama Tribe:
Yakama Indian books.

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