The traditional Wiyot language is along the Pacific coast around Humboldt Bay, from Little River in the south to Bear River mountains in the north. In pre-contact times, there were about 1,000 speakers (Kroeber 1925). In the 21st century, there are no first-language speakers (Golla 2011). However, tribal members and language activists have been pursuing language revitalization and reclamation (Wiyot Tribe).
Wiyot belongs to the Algic language family, which also includes Yurok, spoken immediately to the north, as well as all the Algonquian languages (Cree, Ojibwe, and many others), which are spoken across central and eastern Canada and the northern United States from the Rocky Mountains to the Atlantic coast.
Selected archival materials at Berkeley
Selected materials in other archives
- Golla, Victor. 2011. California Indian languages. Berkeley: University of California Press.
- Reichard, G. A. 1925. Wiyot grammar and texts. University of California Publications in American Archaeology and Ethnology 22: 1-215. [PDF]
- Teeter, Karl V. 1964. The Wiyot language. Berkeley: University of California Press.
- Teeter, Karl V. and John D. Nichols. 1993. Wiyot handbook I: Glossary and concordance. (Algonquian and Iroquoian Linguistics Memoirs, Volume 10.) Winnipeg, Manitoba: Department of Linguistics, University of Manitoba.
- Teeter, Karl V. and John D. Nichols. 1993. Wiyot handbook II: Interlinear translation and English index. (Algonquian and Iroquoian Linguistics Memoirs, Volume 11.) Winnipeg, Manitoba: Department of Linguistics, University of Manitoba.