Dëne Sųłıné Resources

Overview

Dëne Sųłıné is a prominent member of the Dene-Athabaskan language family. While widely known by its exonym Chipewyan in northern parts of Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Manitoba, the Northwest Territories is the only province or territory where it has official status.

In 2019, there were 535 speakers in the NWT.

Speakers may refer to Dëne Sųłıné Yatıé itself, or one of the NWT dialects: 

  • Dëne Dédlıné Yatı (Fort Resolution, t-dialect)
  • Dëne Sǫłıné Yatıé (Łutselkʼe, k-dialect)
  • Tatsǫ́t'ıné Yatıé (Old Yellowknife)

Dëne Sųłıné is the primary Indigenous language spoken in:

  • Fort Resolution
  • Łutselkʼe

There is also a significant number of people who speak Dëne Sųłıné in:

  • Fort Smith
  • Hay River

International Standards Organization (ISO) codes

  • Chipewyan – CHP

Orthographic conventions

Diacritics

  • Acute (high tone): ◌́
  • Ogonek (nasalization): ◌̨
  • Diaeresis (only on «e», sounds like «u» in but): ë
  • No tittle (dot) on «i». Correct forms use «ı» as a base.
  • An epsilon «ε» which is sometimes found in southern Dëne Sųłıné text is not used in the Northwest Territories where the vowel is represented by the plain «e».

Consonants

ɂ

b

ch

ch’

d

dh

ddh

dl

dz

g

gh

 

h

j

k

k’

l

ł

m

n

 

r

s

sh

t

t’

th

tł’

ts

ts’

tth

tth’

w

x

y

z

 

Vowels and diphthongs

a

ą

ą́

e

é

ę

ę́

ë

ë́

ę̈́

ı

ı́

ı̨

ı̨́

o

ó

ǫ

ǫ́

u

ú

ų

ų́

au

ay

ıe

ue