Index compiled with data collected by AUSTLANG
Data on the language
Alternatives names: Gugu Yimidhirr, Guugu Yimithirr, Guugu-Yimidhirr, Guguyimidjir, Kokoimudji, Gugu Yimithirr, Kuku Yimidhirr
For additional names and alternative spellings, see the AUSTLANG website.
According to Haviland (1979:29), Guugu Yimidhirr can be divided into two dialects:
- a Coastal dialect called dhalun-dhirr (’with the sea’)
- an Inland dialect, waguurr-ga (’of the outside’).
Sutton (in Oates 1975:258-259, 2006 p.c.) also identifies Ngegudi/Gugu Nyiguudyi as a dialect of Guugu Yimidhirr.
Classification: Pama-Nyungan language family, Paman group, Eastern Paman sub-group
The classification of this language is still under discussion.
Area: Guugu Yimidhirr is an indigenous Australian language, spoken in Queensland (QLD), North of the Annan River and Cooktown to the mouth of Jeannie River, West to approximately the mouth of the Jack River, South to the area of the Normanby River called Battle Camp, in addition to several islands, including Lizard Island (Haviland, 1979:31).
According to Tindale, (1974), the area of Guugu Yimidhirr extends North to the Southern vicinity of Cape Flattery, inland to the vicinity of Battle Camp and Welcome, and to Cape Bedford.
Number of speakers:
In 2004, the National Indigenous Language Survey (NILS) estimated 1 000 speakers. The Australian Bureau of Statistics 2006 Census estimated 783 speakers remaining.
Vitality & transmission:
AUSTLANG considers Guugu Yimidhirr to be a relatively strong language (level 5 on their 0 to 5 scale measuring the endangerment of a language). On the other hand, th website Ethnologue signals a growing divestment of Guugu Yimidhirr by younger generations for the sake of other languages.
Sources & bibliography
De Zwaan, Jan Daniel. 1969. An Analysis of the Gogo-Yimidjir language. University of Queensland: PhD.
Haviland, John. 1975. Guugu – Yimidhirr word list, ms.
Haviland, John. 1979. “Guugu Yimidhirr”. In Handbook of Australian languages vol 1, eds. RMW Dixon and B Blake, 26-180. Canberra: ANU Press.
Oates, Lynette. 1975. The 1973 supplement to a revised linguistic survey of Australia.
Tindale, Norman. 1974. Tribal Boundaries in Aboriginal Australia. Canberra: Division of National Mapping, Department of National Development.
Haviland, John. 1979. “Guugu Yimidhirr”. In Handbook of Australian languages Vol. 3, eds. RMW Dixon and B Bake, 27-180. Canberra: ANU Press.
Patz, Elizabeth. 2002. A grammar of the Kuku Yalanji language of north Queensland. Canberra: Pacific Linguistics.
Cape York Bama Languages Aboriginal Corporation: http://www.slq.qld.gov.au/info/ind/languages/qld/centres/capeyork
Hopevale Community Learning Centre: http://www.aboriginalartdirectory.com/shop/community-centre/hopevale-community-arts-and-culture-learning-centre.php
AUSTLANG website: http://austlang.aiatsis.gov.au/main.php
Ethnologue webpage: http://www.ethnologue.com/show_language.asp?code=kky
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