Pijao language

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Native toColombia
EthnicityPijao people
Language codes
ISO 639-3pij

Pijao (Piajao, Pinao) is an unclassified indigenous American language that was spoken in the villages of Orrega, Coyaima (Koyai, Tupe) and Natagaima in the Magdalena River Valley of Colombia until the 1950s.

A small vocabulary list was collected in 1943; only 30 Pijao words and expressions are known. The few words which resemble Carib are thought to be loans; toponyms in Pijao country are also Carib. Marshall & Seijas (1973) did not detect significative connections between Pijao and other unclassified languages of the area: Colima, Muzo, Pantágora, and Panche, but these are even more poorly attested than Pijao.


amé tree
homéro bow
sumén to drink
čaguála canoe
kahírre dog
alamán crocodile
tínki tooth
tána water
nasés house
hoté star
nuhúgi woman
oréma man
yaguáde jaguar
núna moon
ñáma hand
golúpa cassava
lún eye
oléma ear
pegil foot
tápe stone
orái red
toléma snake
huíl sun
tenú tobacco


  1. ^ Hammarström, Harald; Forkel, Robert; Haspelmath, Martin, eds. (2017). "Pijao". Glottolog 3.0. Jena, Germany: Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History.


  • Marshall Durbin & Haydée Seijas (1973): "A Note on Panche, Pijao, Pantagora (Palenque), Colima and Muzo", International Journal of American Linguistics, Vol. 39, No. 1 (Jan., 1973), pp. 47–51.