Panare language

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E’ñapa Woromaipu
Native to Venezuela
Region just south of the Orinoco River, Estado Bolívar
Ethnicity 4,300 Panare people (2001 census)[1]
Native speakers
3,500 (2001 census)[1]
2,480 monolinguals (mostly women)[1]
  • Venezuelan Carib
    • Pemóng–Panare
      • Panare
Language codes
ISO 639-3 pbh
Glottolog enap1235[2]

Panare is a Cariban language, spoken by approximately 3,000–4,000 people in Bolivar State in southern Venezuela. Their main area is South of the town of Caicara del Orinoco, south of the Orinoco River. There are several subdialects of the language. The autonym for this language and people is eñapa, which has various senses depending on context, including 'people', 'indigenous-people', and 'Panare-people'. The term "Panare" itself is a Tupí word that means "friend." [3] It is unusual in having object–verb–agent as one of its main word orders, the other being the more common verb–agent-object. It also displays the typologically "uncommon" property of an ergative–absolutive alignment in the present and a nominative–accusative alignment in the past.


  1. ^ a b c Panare at Ethnologue (18th ed., 2015)
  2. ^ Nordhoff, Sebastian; Hammarström, Harald; Forkel, Robert; Haspelmath, Martin, eds. (2013). "E'napa Woromaipu". Glottolog. Leipzig: Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology. 
  3. ^ Payne, Thomas E. (1997). Describing morphosyntax: A guide for field linguists. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. p. 13.

Gildea, Spike. 1992. Comparative Cariban Morphosyntax: On the Genesis of Ergativity in Independent Clauses. Ph.D. Dissertation, University of Oregon. Henley, Paul. 1982. The Panare: Tradition and Change on the Amazonian Frontier. London and New Haven: Yale University Press. Payne, Thomas E. & Doris L. Payne. 2012. A typological grammar of Panare: A Cariban Language of Venezuela [Brill Studies in the Indigenous Languages of the Americas 5]. Leiden: Brill Publishing.

External links[edit]

Audio resources exist for this language at the University of Oregon Library. Thomas E. Payne and Doris L.Payne. 1989. Panare language sound recordings. [1]