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Zunian Family

 Native American Nations | Linguistic Families                  

  • Zuņi, Turner in Pac. R. R. Rep., III, pt. 3, 55, 91-93, 1856 (finds no radical affinity between Zuņi and Keres). Buschmann, Neu-Mexico, 254, 266, 276-278, 280-296, 302, 1858 (vocabs. and general references). Keane, App. Stanford’s Com. (Cent. and So. Am.), 479, 1878 (“a stock language”). Powell in Rocky Mountain Presbyterian, Nov., 1878 (includes Zuņi, Las Nutrias, Ojo de Pescado). Gatschet in Mag. Am. Hist., 260, 1882.
  • Zuņian, Powell in Am. Nat., 604, August, 1880.

Derivation: From the Cochití term Suinyi, said to mean “the people of the long nails,” referring to the surgeons of Zuņi who always wear some of their nails very long (Cushing).

Turner was able to compare the Zuņi language with the Keran, and his conclusion that they were entirely distinct has been fully 139 substantiated. Turner had vocabularies collected by Lieut. Simpson and by Capt. Eaton, and also one collected by Lieut. Whipple.

The small amount of linguistic material accessible to the earlier writers accounts for the little done in the way of classifying the Pueblo languages. Latham possessed vocabularies of the Moqui, Zuņi, A´coma or Laguna, Jemez, Tesuque, and Taos or Picuri. The affinity of the Tusayan (Moqui) tongue with the Comanche and other Shoshonean languages early attracted attention, and Latham pointed it out with some particularity. With the other Pueblo languages he does little, and attempts no classification into stocks.

Geographic Distribution
The Zuņi occupy but a single permanent pueblo, on the Zuņi River, western New Mexico. Recently, however, the summer villages of Tâiakwin, Heshotatsína, and K´iapkwainakwin have been occupied by a few families during the entire year.

Population.—The present population is 1,613.

Indian Linguistic Families of America North of Mexico, 1891

Linguistic Families


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