Salish peoples

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The Salish peoples are an ethno-linguistic group of the Pacific Northwest, identified by their use of the Salish languages which diversified out of Proto-Salish between 3,000 and 6,000 years ago.

The term “Salish” originated in the modern era as an exonym created for linguistic research. Salish is an Anglicization of seliš, the endonym for the Salish Tribes of the Flathead Reservation. The seliš were the easternmost Salish people and the first to have a diplomatic relationship with the United States so their name was applied broadly to all peoples speaking a related language.

Modern Salish peoples include the Nuxálk, Comox, Halkomelem, Lushootseed, Nooksack, Pentlatch, Sháshíshálh, Squamish, Klallam, Northern Straits, Twana, Cowlitz, Upper Chehalis, Lower Chehalis, Quinault, Tillamook, Shuswap, Lillooet, Thompson River Salish, Coeur d’Alene, Moses-Columbian, Colville-Okanagan, and Spokane-Kalispel-Flathead.

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