Hul’q’umi’num’ / Halq'eméylem / hən̓q̓əmin̓əm̓

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Language Family: Coast Salish

Dialects: Halq'eméylem, Hul’q’umi’num’, hən̓q̓əmin̓əm̓

Language known as: Hul’q’umi’num’, Halq'eméylem, hən̓q̓əmin̓əm̓ , Halkomelem

"Halkomelem" is the name that linguists have called a group of related dialects spoken from around Parksville to Saanich Inlet on Vancouver Island and on the mainland from the mouth of the Fraser eastward to Harrison Lake and the lower end of the Fraser Canyon. The name "Halkomelem" is a blending of the names of the three dialects: Hul’q’umi’num’, Hən̓q̓əmin̓əm̓, and Halq'eméylem. Hul’q’umi’num’ is spoken primarily by First Nations on Vancouver Island, Hən̓q̓əmin̓əm̓ is spoken by peoples between the mouth of the Fraser River and the Stave River and Halq’eméylem is spoken by First Nations from the Stave River up to the lower Fraser Canyon.1

State of the Language


First Nation Population Fluent Speakers Understand or Speak Somewhat Learning Speakers
Aitchelitz First Nation 241000
BOḰEĆEN (Pauquachin)33674 8810
Chawathil First Nation554001019
Cheam First Nation548351121
Chehalis Indian Band610033632
Chemainus First Nation712541895351
Cowichan Tribes847411502801000
Halalt First Nation9212444
Katzie First Nation1056001815
Kwantlen First Nation1124631048
Kwaw-kwaw-apilt First Nation414unknownunknownunknown
Kwikwetlem First Nation1083002
Leq'á:mel First Nation2354020
Lyackson First Nation122046205
MÁLEXEȽ (Malahat)13314247
Matsqui First Nation22480510
Penelakut Tribe99503021150
Peters Band1462000
Popkum First Nation210000
Qayqayt First Nation94unknownunknownunknown
Qualicum First Nation1064unknownunknownunknown
Scia'new (Beecher Bay)1522312211
Scowlitz First Nation16250200
Seabird Island Indian Band171100251093
Shxw'owhamel First Nation1818011817
Skawahlook First Nation280000
Skowkale First Nation22370720
Skwah First Nation24840625
Skway First Nation19391089
Snaw-Naw-As First Nation 202656810
Snuneymuxw First Nation21unknownunknownunknownunknown
Soowahlie Indian Band223652533
Squiala First Nation2180000
Sumas First Nation23242unknownunknownunknown
Tsawwassen First Nation244510560
Tsleil-Waututh Nation255060321
Tzeachten First Nation24310114
Union Bar Band1184unknownunknownunknown
xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam)10126002938
Yakweakwioose Band2663000
Yale First Nation1504unknownunknownunknown
Total188042436113025

Dialects

Halq'eméylem


This dialect has been called: Upriver Halkomelem

Halq'eméylem is spoken by the Sto:lo First Nations and some of their close neighbours in the Fraser Valley and Fraser Canyon.

Hul’q’umi’num’


This dialect has been called: Halkomelem

Hulq'umín'um' is closely related to Halq'eméylem and Hǝn'q'ǝmin'ǝm'. Some linguists consider these three dialects of the same language which they call "Halkomelem". The Hulq'umín'um' language is spoken by spoken by six separate but closely related First Nations in the southern Georgia Strait area: the Chemainus, Cowichan, Halalt, Lake Cowichan, Lyackson, and Penelakut.

hən̓q̓əmin̓əm̓


This dialect has been called: Downriver Halkomelem, Hənqəminəm

Hən̓q̓əmin̓əm̓ is spoken in the Lower Mainland in the Fraser River delta and up the Fraser River to Fort Langley.

The Musqueam have about 7 semi-fluent speakers. There are about 60 students have completed the hən̓q̓əmin̓əm̓ classes in the First Nations Languages program at the University of British Columbia.27

Footnotes / References
1. Suttles, Wayne, ed. (1990). Central Coast Salish.
2. Language Data from Sto:lo Shxweli Halq'emeylem Language program (2015), Language Needs Assessment #3842
3. Language Data from Pauquachin First Nation (2007), Language Needs Assessment #711
4. Indian and Northern Affairs Canada (2008). First Nation Registered Population.
5. Language Data from Coqualeetza Cultural Education Centre (2013), Language Needs Assessment #2186
6. Language Data from Sts'ailes Community School, Sts'ailes Indian Band (2012), Language Needs Assessment #2172
7. Language Data from Stz'uminus First Nation (2015), Language Needs Assessment #3666
8. Language Data from Coast Salish Employment & Training Society (2015), Language Needs Assessment #3727
9. Language Data from Si'em Media Society (2015), Language Needs Assessment #3550
10. Language Data from Katzie First Nation (2015), Language Needs Assessment #3802
11. Language Data from Kwantlen First Nation (2014), Language Needs Assessment #3324
12. Language Data from Lyackson First Nation (2013), Language Needs Assessment #2940
13. Language Data from Malahat Nation (2015), Language Needs Assessment #3572
14. Language Data from Peters Band Office (2014), Language Needs Assessment #3322
15. Language Data from Beecher Bay First Nations (2007), Language Needs Assessment #679
16. Language Data from Scowlitz (2012), Language Needs Assessment #2712
17. Language Data from Seabird Island Band (2015), Language Needs Assessment #3605
18. Language Data from Shxw'owhamel First Nation (2014), Language Needs Assessment #3466
19. Language Data from Shxwha:y Village (2014), Language Needs Assessment #3123
20. Language Data from Snaw-naw-as Health Centre (2013), Language Needs Assessment #2900
21. Language Data from Snuneymuxw First Nation (2014), Language Needs Assessment #3213
22. Language Data from Soowahlie First Nation (2014), Language Needs Assessment #3228
23. Language Data from Sto:lo Nation (2007), Language Needs Assessment #618
24. Language Data from Tsawwassen First Nation (2013), Language Needs Assessment #3080
25. Language Data from Tsleil-Waututh Nation (2015), Language Needs Assessment #3619
26. Language Data from Yakweakwioose Band (2014), Language Needs Assessment #3448
27. Muqueam website: http://www.musqueam.bc.ca/Language.html