Australian Aboriginal Languages - Classification - Families


Australian languages divide into a dozen or so families. Note when cross-referencing that most language names have multiple spellings: rr=r, b=p, d=t, g=k, dj=j=tj=c, j=y, y=i, w=u, u=oo, e=a, and so on. A range is given for the number of languages in each family, as sources count languages differently.

  • Presumptive isolates:
    • Tiwi
    • Giimbiyu (extinct)
    • Marrgu (extinct)
    • Wagiman (moribund)
  • Previously established families:
    • Bunaban (2)
    • Daly (four to five families, with 11–19 languages)
    • Iwaidjan (3–7)
    • Jarrakan (3–5)
    • Nyulnyulan (8)
    • Wororan (7–12)
  • Newly proposed families:
    • Mirndi (5–7)
    • Darwin Region (4)
    • Arnhem macrofamily, including Gunwinyguan (22)
    • Greater Pama–Nyungan:
      • Tangkic (5)
      • the Garawa (3)
      • Pama–Nyungan proper (approximately 270 languages)

Read more about this topic:  Australian Aboriginal Languages, Classification

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