Hanis language

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This article is about Hanis language. For the Akkadian god, see Hani (god).
Pronunciation há·nis
Region Coos Bay, Oregon
Ethnicity Hanis people
Extinct 1972[1]
with the death of Martha Harney Johnson (1886–1972).[2]
  • Hanis
Language codes
ISO 639-3 csz
Glottolog coos1249[3]

Hanis, or Coos, was one of two Coosan languages of Oregon, and the better documented. It was spoken north of the Miluk around the Coos River and Coos Bay. The há·nis was the Hanis name for themselves. The last speaker of Hanis was Martha Harney Johnson, who died in 1972.[1][4] Another speaker was Annie Miner Peterson, who worked with linguist Melville Jacobs to document the language.[5]

As of 2007, classes in Hanis were offered by the Confederated Tribes of Coos, Lower Umpqua and Siuslaw Indians.[1] A book and CD, Hanis for Beginners, were published in 2011, and a companion website is available for tribal members at hanis.org.[6]


m n
tsʰ tɬʰ tʃʰ
p t ts k q ʔ
tsʼ tɬʼ tʃʼ
s ɬ ʃ x χ h
w l j ɣ

The /p t ts tɬ tʃ k q/ series are optionally voiced. /l m n/ may be syllabic. Vowels /i e a u/ may be long or short; there is also a short /ə/. Stress is phonemic.


  1. ^ a b c Hanis at Ethnologue (18th ed., 2015)
  2. ^ https://books.google.com/books?id=glU0vte5gSkC&pg=PA1148
  3. ^ Hammarström, Harald; Forkel, Robert; Haspelmath, Martin; Bank, Sebastian, eds. (2016). "Coos". Glottolog 2.7. Jena: Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History. 
  4. ^ Whereat, Patty (June 2001). "Hanis Tlii'iis: Hanis Coos Language: A Word List" (PDF). Retrieved 2014-04-05.  Fragments of the language can be scarcely found in Martha's husbands side of the family where she passed some pieces down to her grandchildren. The family name of her husbands side was the common last name of Bennett, also residents of Oregon.
  5. ^ Whereat, Don (October 1991). "Coos Language and Ethnology" (PDF). Retrieved 2014-04-05. 
  6. ^ "Hanis for Beginners" (PDF). Confederated Tribes of Coos, Lower Umpqua and Siuslaw Indians. 2001. Retrieved 2014-04-06. 
  • Frachtenberg, Leo J. (1913). Coos texts. California University contributions to anthropology (Vol. 1). New York: Columbia University Press. (Reprinted 1969 New York: AMS Press).
  • Frachtenberg, Leo J. (1922). Coos: An illustrative sketch. In Handbook of American Indian languages (Vol. 2, pp. 297–299, 305). Bulletin, 40, pt. 2. Washington:Government Print Office (Smithsonian Institution, Bureau of American Ethnology).
  • Grant, Anthony. (1996). John Milhau's 1856 Hanis vocabularies: Coos dialectology and philology. In V. Golla (Ed.), Proceedings of the Hokan–Penutian workshop: University of Oregon, Eugene, July 1994 and University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, July 1995. Survey of California and other Indian languages (No. 9). Berkeley, CA: Survey of California and Other Languages.
  • Pierce, Joe E. 1971. Hanis (Coos) phonemics. Linguistics 75. 31-42.

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