Cuicatec language

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Native to Mexico
Region Oaxaca
Ethnicity Cuicatec
Native speakers
13,000 (2010 census)[1]
Language codes
ISO 639-3 Either:
cux – Tepeuxila
cut – Teutila
Glottolog cuic1234[2]
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The Cuicatecs are an indigenous group of the Mexican state of Oaxaca, closely related to the Mixtecs. They inhabit two towns: Teutila and Tepeuxila in western Oaxaca. According to the 2000 census, they number around 23,000, of whom an estimated 65% are speakers of the language.[3]

The name Cuicatec is a Nahuatl exonym, from [ˈkʷika] 'song' [ˈteka] 'inhabitant of place of'.[4]

The Cuicatec language is an Oto-Manguean language of Mexico. It belongs to the Mixtecan branch together with the Mixtec languages and the Trique language.[5] The Ethnologue lists two major dialects of Cuicatec: Tepeuxila Cuicatec and Teutila Cuicatec. Like other Oto-Manguean languages, Cuicatec is tonal.

Cuicatec-language programming is carried by the CDI's radio station XEOJN, based in San Lucas Ojitlán, Oaxaca.


  1. ^ INALI (2012) México: Lenguas indígenas nacionales
  2. ^ Hammarström, Harald; Forkel, Robert; Haspelmath, Martin, eds. (2017). "Cuicatec". Glottolog 3.0. Jena, Germany: Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History. 
  3. ^ Website of the Comisión Nacional para el Desarrollo de los Pueblos Indígenas,, accessed 28 July 2008.
  4. ^ Campbell 1997:402)
  5. ^ The proposal to group Mixtec, Trique and Cuicatec into a single family (none more closely related to one than to the other) was made by Longacre (1957) with convincing evidence.


  • Anderson, E. Richard & Hilario Concepción R. 1983. Diccionario cuicateco: español-cuicateco, cuicateco-español. Mexico City: Instituto Lingüístico de Verano.
  • Bradley, David P. 1991. A preliminary syntactic sketch of Concepción Pápalo Cuicatec. In C. Henry Bradley and Barbara E. Hollenbach (eds.), Studies in the syntax of Mixtecan languages 3, pp. 409–506. Dallas: Summer Institute of Linguistics and the University of Texas at Arlington.
  • Campbell, Lyle. 1997. American Indian languages: the historical linguistics of Native America. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
  • Needham, Doris & Marjorie Davis. 1946. Cuicateco phonology. International Journal of American Linguistics 12: 139-46.