Ute-Southern Paiute


A language of United States

Alternate Names
Colorado River Numic, Southern Paiute, Ute-Chemehuevi

1,900 (2015 census). 3 Chemehuevi on Chemehuevi Reservation, 10 on Colorado River Reservation (Hinton 1994). 20 monolinguals (1990 census). Ethnic population: 6,230 (Golla 2007). Ute: 4,800; Southern Paiute: 1,430 (Golla 2007).


Colorado: southwest and Utah: southeast and northeast (Ute dialect); Utah: southwest; Arizona:north; Nevada: south; New Mexico: northwest (Southern Paiute dialect); California: lower Colorado river (Chemehuevi dialect).

Language Status

6b (Threatened). Language of registered tribe: Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians of the Agua Caliente Indian Reservation, Cabazon Band of Mission Indians, Chemehuevi Indian Tribe of the Chemehuevi Reservation, Colorado River Indian Tribes of the Colorado River Indian Reservation (Arizona and California), Kaibab Band of Paiute Indians of the Kaibab Indian Reservation, Las Vegas Tribe of Paiute Indians of the Las Vegas Indian Colony, Moapa Band of Paiute Indians of the Moapa River Indian Reservation, Morongo Band of Cahuilla Mission Indians, Paiute Indian Tribe of Utah, San Juan Southern Paiute Tribe of Arizona, Soboba Band of Luiseño Indians, Southern Ute Indian Tribe of the Southern Ute Reservation, Torres-Martinez Desert Cahuilla Indians, Twenty-Nine Palms Band of Mission Indians of California, Ute Indian Tribe of the Uintah and Ouray Reservation, Ute Mountain Ute Tribe (Colorado; New Mexico; Utah).


Southern Paiute, Ute, Chemehuevi.

Language Use

Some young people, all adults. Mainly adults but children in San Juan are still acquiring Southern Paiute as L1 (Golla 2007). Also use English [eng].

Language Development

Literacy rate in L2: 75%–100%. Dictionary. Grammar. Texts. Bible portions: 2006. Tribally sponsored language programs in Ute. No language programs in Southern Paiute. Arizona Chemehuevis have started revitalization program but few materials and no agreement on orthography (Golla 2007).


Latin script [Latn].

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