Hupa language

Hupa Language

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Hupa language

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Hupa (native name: Na:tinixwe Mixine:whe<nowiki>'</nowiki>) is an Athabaskan language (of Na-Dené stock) spoken in the Trinity valley in California by the Hupa (Natinixwe).

According to the results of Census 2000, the language is spoken by 64 persons between the ages of 5 and 17, including 4 monolingual speakers.


The Hupa alphabet is as follows:

a, a:, b, ch , ch' , chw , chw' , d , dz, e, e:, g , gy , h , i, j , k , k' , ky , ky', l, ł, m, n , ng, o, o:, q, q', s, sh, t, t', tł, tł', ts, ts', u, w, wh, x, xw, y, '


Vowels may be lengthened.


Verb themes and classes

As with other Dene languages, the Hupa verb is based around a theme. Melissa Axelrod has defined a theme as “the underlying skeleton of the verb to which prefixes or strings of prefixes or suffixal elements are added in producing an utterance. The theme itself has a meaning and is the basic unit of the Athabaskan verbal lexicon.” In addition to a verb stem, a typical theme consists of a classifier, one or more conjunct prefixes, and one or more disjunct prefixes.Sapir, Edward & Victor Golla (2001). Hupa Texts, with Notes and Lexicon. In _The Collected Works of Edward Sapir, Victor Golla & Sean O'Neill (eds.), volume XIV_, 19-1011. Mouton de...
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