Amazonas and Acre, Brazil
Linguistic classificationHarákmbut–Katukinan
  • Katukinan

Katukinan (Catuquinan) is a language family consisting of two languages in Brazil, Katukina-Kanamarí and the perhaps moribund Katawixi. It is often not clear which names in the literature, which are generally tribal names and often correspond to dialects, refer to distinct languages. Indeed, they're close enough that some consider them all to be dialects of a single language, Kanamari (Fabre 2005).

Campbell (2012) note that Adelaar "presents reasonably persuasive evidence that Harákmbut and Katukinan are genetically related."[1]

Language contact

Jolkesky (2016) notes that there are lexical similarities with the Jivaro, Máku, Mura-Matanawi, Puinave-Nadahup, Taruma, Tupi, Yanomami, and Arawak language families due to contact. This suggests that Katukinan and the language families with which it was in contact with had been earlier spoken within a central Amazon interaction sphere.[2]

Languages and dialects

Many ethnic Katukina had shifted to other languages by the time of European contact. Examples are Panoan Katukina and unclassified Katukinaru.

The common suffix dyapa, djapa means 'tribe' or 'clan', for which the varieties are named. Fabre (2005) lists Kanamarí, Txuhuã-djapá, Katukína do Jutaí (Katukina proper), and Katawixi as four attested languages.

Loukotka (1968)

A large number of Katukinan dialects have gone extinct. Loukotka (1968) illustrates data from Catuquina (Wiri-dyapá, of the Jutaí River), Canamari, Parawa (Hon-dyapa), Bendiapa, and Catauxi (Catosé, Hewadie, Katawishi, Quatausi).[3] Canamari, Parawa, and Bendiapa (Beñ-Dyapá) may constitute a single language, as may Tucundiapa (Mangeroma, Tucano Dyapa). He also notes a Tawari (Tauaré, Kadekili-dyapa, Kayarára), and a Buruá (Burue, Buruhe), of which nothing has been recorded. All of them are classified as "Southern Catuquina" except for Catauxi, which is the only "Northern Catuquina" language. The locations of each variety given by Loukotka (1968) are:

Mason (1950)

Mason (1950) gives Pidá-Dyapá and Kutiá-Dyapá as dialects of Catukina, and Cadekili-Dyapá and Wadyo-Paraniñ-Dyapá (Kairara) as dialects of Tawari, corresponding to Loukotka's names Kadekili-dyapa and Kayarára. He adds Catukino and a "miscellaneous" list of Amena-Dyapá, Cana-Dyapá, Hon-Dyapá (which Loukotka identifies with Parawa), Marö-Dyapá, Ururu-Dyapá, and Wiri-Dyapá (which Loukotka identifies with Catuquina). Mason's (1950) internal classification of Catukina is summarized as follows.[4]


Loukotka (1968) lists the following basic vocabulary items for the Catuquinan languages.[3]

gloss Catuquina Canamari Parawa Bendiapa Catauxi
one kexüktü ekek ikek kik wakata
two upaúa ubawa bawa ubawa sahe
three tupaua ekek atehu ikekʔtʔhu kik atehu tiumpa
head ghü tyu-ki chu-ke chu-kii tu-kãe
eye üghó tyu-ekó chu-iku chu-iku erada
tooth ü tyu-hé chu-he chu-hi hí-i
water uatahi otahe wataxi waxi mãnghi
moon vahliá wádya wadia wadya kuéyi
tree oma umang uma umank híhi
snake hüxpang ipa ixpan pagʔ
axe suhe chuwe yuhi chui toñhi

See also



  1. ^ Campbell, Lyle (2012). "Classification of the indigenous languages of South America". In Grondona, Verónica; Campbell, Lyle (eds.). The Indigenous Languages of South America. The World of Linguistics. Vol. 2. Berlin: De Gruyter Mouton. pp. 59–166. ISBN 978-3-11-025513-3.
  2. ^ Jolkesky, Marcelo Pinho de Valhery (2016). Estudo arqueo-ecolinguístico das terras tropicais sul-americanas (Ph.D. dissertation) (2 ed.). Brasília: University of Brasília.
  3. ^ a b Loukotka, Čestmír (1968). Classification of South American Indian languages. Los Angeles: UCLA Latin American Center.
  4. ^ Mason, John Alden (1950). "The languages of South America". In Steward, Julian (ed.). Handbook of South American Indians. Vol. 6. Washington, D.C., Government Printing Office: Smithsonian Institution, Bureau of American Ethnology Bulletin 143. pp. 157–317.