Hodï language

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Not to be confused with Hoti language.
Region central Venezuela
Native speakers
640 (2007)[1]
Language codes
ISO 639-3 yau
Glottolog yuwa1244[2]
This article contains IPA phonetic symbols. Without proper rendering support, you may see question marks, boxes, or other symbols instead of Unicode characters.

The Hodï (Jodï, Jotí, Hoti) language, also known as Yuwana (Yoana), Waruwaru, or Chikano (Chicano), is a small unclassified language of Venezuela. Very little is known of it; its several hundred speakers are monolingual hunter-gatherers.


No classification of Hodï has yet been established to the satisfaction of linguists.

Attempts have been made to link Hodï with the nearby Piaroa–Saliban languages. A recent proposal classifies Hodï and (Piaroa–)Saliban as the branches of a single Jodï–Saliban macrofamily.[3] However, similarities in vocabulary with the Piaroa–Saliban languages may in fact be due to sprachbunding: Henley, Mattéi-Müller and Reid (1996) argue that the apparent cognates between Hodï and Piaroa–Saliban are rather loanwords.

Limited by poor data, Henley et al. argue that Hodï may be related to the Nadahup languages.[4] The only linguist to speak Hodï and Piaroa, Stanford Zent, has collected more reliable data and argues that it is "probably" related to the Piaroa–Saliban languages.[5]

Since 1985 a relationship to the Yanomaman languages has also been suggested, in part on the grounds that Hodï shares 20% of its vocabulary with this family,[6] but this hypothesis has since been largely rejected.


The first phonological analysis is Vilera (1985).[7]

oral nasal
front central back front central back
close i ɨ u ĩ ɨ̃ ũ
close-mid e ɘ o ɘ̃ õ
open a ã
labial alveolar palatal velar labiovelar glottal
plain preasp. plain preasp. plain preasp. plain preasp. plain preasp. plain preasp.
voiceless stops t ʰt c ʰc k ʰk ʰkʷ ʔ
voiced stops b ʰb d ʰd ɟ ʰɟ
fricatives h
flaps ɾ ʰɾ
approximants w ʰw j ʰj

The voiced stops are realized as nasals [m n ɲ] between nasal vowels.

External links[edit]

  • Alain Fabre 2005. Diccionario etnolingüístico y guía bibliográfica de los pueblos indígenas sudamericanos: HOTI


  1. ^ Hodï at Ethnologue (18th ed., 2015)
  2. ^ Hammarström, Harald; Forkel, Robert; Haspelmath, Martin; Bank, Sebastian, eds. (2016). "Yuwana". Glottolog 2.7. Jena: Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History. 
  3. ^ Labrada, Rosés; Emilio, Jorge (2015). "Jodi-Saliban". Glottolog 2.7. Jena: Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History.
  4. ^ Henley, Paul; Marie-Claude Mattéi-Müller y Howard Reid 1996. "Cultural and linguistic affinities of the foraging people of North Amazonia: a new perspective"; Antropológica 83: 3-37. Caracas.
  5. ^ Zent S & E Zent. 2008. Los Hoti, in Aborigenes de Venezuela, vol. 2, second edition [1]
  6. ^ Migliazzi, Ernesto C. 1985. "Languages of the Orinoco-Amazon region"; H.M.Klein & L. Stark (eds.): South American Indian Languages: 17-139. Austin: University of Texas Press.
  7. ^ Vilera Díaz, Diana C. 1985. "Introducción morfológica de la lengua Hoti". Thesis in Anthropology. Caracas: Universidad Central de Venezuela.