Cupeño

The Cupeño language was traditionally spoken near the headwaters of the San Luis Rey River at the foot of Hot Springs Mountain. In pre-contact times, there were probably no more than 500 speakers of Cupeño (Kroeber 1925). There are no first-language speakers today (Golla 2011).

Cupeño is a member of the Takic branch of the Uto-Aztecan language family. Within Takic, it is most closely related to Cahuilla, Juaneño, and Luiseño, and more distantly to Gabrielino, Kitanemuk, Serrano, and Tataviam. The other Uto-Aztecan languages of California are Tubatulabal and the Numic languages (Chemehuevi-Southern Paiute-Ute, Comanche, Kawaiisu, Mono, Northern Paiute, Panamint, and Shoshone).

Selected archival materials at Berkeley

Further reading

  • Golla, Victor. 2011. California Indian languages. Berkeley: University of California Press.
  • Hill, Jane H. 1966. A grammar of the Cupeño language. Ph.D. dissertation, University of California, Los Angeles.
  • Hill, Jane H. 2005. A grammar of Cupeño. Berkeley: University of California Press. [PDF]
  • Hill, Jane H. and Rosínda Nolasquez. 1973. Mulu'wetam: the first people: Cupeño oral history and language. Banning, CA: Malki Museum Press.

Links

We acknowledge with respect the Ohlone people on whose traditional, ancestral, and unceded land we work and whose historical relationships with that land continue to this day.