Welcome to Uto-Aztecan.org, a website devoted to the comparative study of the Uto-Aztecan (UA) language family. Located in the southwestern United States and western Mexico, UA consists of some 30 related Native American languages descended from a common parent language that linguists now call Proto-Uto-Aztecan (PUA). Hopi, Ute, Pima, and Aztec/Nahuatl are among the better known UA languages. The valuable works of many other linguists are listed in the bibliography and some are discussed in the introduction accessible above, but the initial offerings of this website are portions of the book, Uto-Aztecan: A Comparative Vocabulary (by brian stubbs), intended to encourage and facilitate the comparative study of Uto-Aztecan languages. The book’s introduction with discussion on the branches of UA, the book’s section on comparative Uto-Aztecan phonology, some sample cognate sets, and the book’s Uto-Aztecan bibliography, are all accessible above by clicking on the desired section. (The contents of this website are from the 2008 edition, which has 95% of the now-available 2011 edition.)
The book presently contains some 2700 Uto-Aztecan cognate sets (groups of related words). After four preliminary editions (since 2006), the first “real” edition is now completed (2011) and available. (To order, see info below.) After three decades of compiling and revising the book, I realized that an undertaking as large as a language family has no end, like running a race without a finish line. Each new discovery creates ripples of adjustments to so much else, and there is no end to new discoveries, dictionaries, etc. So there seems little hope of completing the undertaking before my own undertaking, but we do what we can while we can. Though my contributions to date are primarily in Uto-Aztecan, other language families are additional passions (as periodic rests from UA). –Brian D. Stubbs
Other articles and thoughts on Uto-Aztecan (by several) will periodically be added to this website to be available for linguists and the public generally. Uto-Aztecanists (linguists working in UA) are too many to feature (see the list of their works in the bibliography), but a few especially merit mention. Following Kroeber, Sapir, Whorf, the Voegelins, and other early icons of UA endeavor, Wick R. Miller was a mentor of mine and of many, published Uto-Aztecan Cognate Sets (1967), and was a leader in UA studies for three decades until his tragic passing in 1994. Alexis Manaster Ramer is another prolific contributor to Uto-Aztecan studies via a tidal wave of articles produced through the 1980’s and early 1990’s (see bibliography) until an illness prevented his completing and publishing a number of ideas and unfinished articles on Uto-Aztecan, which we hope to write up and periodically add to this site. Kenneth C. Hill produced an excellent and improved update of Wick R. Miller’s latest but unpublished database of potential UA cognate sets. Kenneth Hill and Ekkehart Malotki were also the leading linguists in the production of the superb Hopi Dictionary. Kenneth Hill is also a specialist in Serrano and much else, and has a good comprehensive grasp of the whole language family. Jane Hill, Karen Dakin, Andres Lionnet, Pamela Munro, Zarina Estrada Fernandez, and others have also made significant contributions, apparent in impressive resumes of UA output. Ronald Langacker and Jason Haugen have authored excellent books dealing with UA grammar. Lyle Campbell, among the most prominent of Americanists, is also a Uto-Aztecanist. Besides his voluminous dictionary of Pipil (an Aztecan dialect) and other contributions in UA, he authored American Indian Languages: The Historical Linguistics of Native America, the highly respected recent word on all American languages, and Historical Linguistics: An Introduction, among the more popular textbooks on historical linguistics.
While not many work on the whole language family, a host of other linguists working on a specific language or branch of UA have made perhaps the most valuable contributions of all and their works are listed in the bibliography (accessible above), whose works and thoughts ought to be sought as well. For example, Ekkehart Malotki, an exceptional and prolific producer of Hopi materials, has authored several excellent bilingual books in Hopi with English translation on the facing page. Having some of his works is a must for anyone interested in studying Hopi.
At the phonology section are two choices: the first is a pdf file containing the whole of the book’s phonological phenomena section, with print slightly enlargeable; second is perhaps a more readable version of the first half. So for browsing and the first half, read that, but for those interested in the whole section, the pdf file is available.
Besides the parts of the book accessible at the top of the page (though all 2703 cognate sets are available only in the book), note that the mountain (my office) pictured on this website can be enlarged by clicking on them.
Uto-Aztecan: A Comparative Vocabulary ($55.00) can be ordered by emailing Brian Stubbs (firstname.lastname@example.org). The book (430 pages, hardbound 8″ x 11″) contains an introduction, discussion of the branches, lexical statistics between languages, a map, 30 pages of comparative phonology, 2703 comparative sets, and a sizable bibliography.
Items of interest for Uto-Aztecanists
Larry Hagberg passed away last May 11, 2010. A very good man and scholar of the Mayo language, Larry was an exceptional husband and father, authored many articles, and furthered the Mayo dictionary considerably, which a committee is continuing toward completion. He will be missed, and our sympathies to his widow and seven children, some still young.
The Next Friends of Uto-Aztecan Conference will be held in Mexico, August 9-11, 2012.
A preliminary draft of White Mesa Ute, a dictionary of the White Mesa Ute dialect in southeastern Utah, has been completed and is being proofread by Native speakers and may be available in year or two.
We’re sad to hear of the passing of Eugene Casad in February 2011, another Uto-Aztecanist who helped in numerous UA-related projects.
Uto-Aztecan online materials and websites useful to Uto-Aztecanists
Ronald Langacker’s four volumes of Studies in UA Grammar (see bibliography for details) Overview of UA Grammar (1): http://www.sil.org/acpub/repository/21478.pdf Modern Aztecan Grammatical Sketches: http://www.sil.org/acpub/repository/15223.pdf NUA Grammatical Sketches (3): http://www.sil.org/acpub/repository/15222.pdf SUA Grammatical Sketches (4): http://www.sil.org/acpub/repository/18401.pdf
Uto-Aztecan: Structural, Temporal, and Geographic Perspectives, Casad and Willett, eds. http://www.books.google.com/books?isbn=9706890300
The articles in IJAL (International Journal of American Linguistics) in the bibliography are available online if published more than 5 years ago.
Chemehuevi language materials are available at www.chemehuevilanguage.org