19th Edition



A language of United States

Alternate Names
Shiwi’ma, Zuñi

9,650 (2000 SIL), increasing. 2000 census lists 7,010 who use the language in the home. Few, if any, monolinguals (2000). Ethnic population: 9,650.


New Mexico: south McKinley County Reservation, south of Gallup.

Language Status

6b (Threatened).

Language Use

Some children raised to speak the language (1998). Slowly shifting to English [eng] (Golla 2007). Home, traditional tribal council meetings, all religious ceremonies, and occasionally in religious services. Mainly adults. Positive attitudes. All also use English [eng].

Language Development
Literacy rate in L2: 75%–100%. The Zuni Tribe has collaborated with the public school district in developing a literacy program to help preserve the written language (Golla 2007). Schools in English [eng]. Some study of oral and written Zuni in primary school. Radio programs. Films. Grammar. Bible portions: 1941–2007.

Latin script [Latn].

Other Comments

Traditional religion.

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