Kalapuyan languages

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Ethnicity Kalapuya people
Northwest Oregon
Linguistic classification Penutian ?
  • Kalapuya
Glottolog kala1402[1]

Kalapuyan (also Kalapuya) is a small extinct language family that was spoken in the Willamette Valley of Western Oregon, United States. It consists of three languages.

Family division[edit]

Kalapuyan consists of

1. Northern Kalapuya (also known as TualatinYamhill)
2. Central Kalapuya (also known as Santiam)
3. Yoncalla (also known as Southern Kalapuya)

Genetic relations[edit]

One of the boulders engraved with Kalapuyan words along the paths of east Alton Baker Park in Eugene, Oregon; this one is next to the Willamette River: Whilamut (meaning, Where the river ripples and runs fast)

Kalapuyan is usually connected with the various Penutian proposals, most recently as part of an Oregon Penutian branch along with Takelma, Siuslaw, and Coosan. A special relationship with Takelma had been proposed, together forming a Takelman family; however, subsequent research found evidence against such a relationship.


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

External links[edit]