Kumeyaay (K’miai)

Kumeyaay is a Yuman-Cochimí language spoken in Baja California state in northern Mexico, and in San Diego and Imperial counties in southern California in the USA. In 2011 there were 290 speakers of Kumeyaay in Mexico, and there were 40-50 speakers in the USA. In Mexico the language is recognised as national language.

Kumeyaay has various other names, including: Campo, Cochimí, Comeya, Cuchimí, Diegueno, Diegueño, Central Diegueño, Jamul Diegueño, Jamul Tiipay, Kamia, Kamiai, Kamiyahi, Kamiyai, Ki-Miai, Ko’al, Ku’ahl, Kumeyaai, Kumeyaay, Kumia, Kw’aal, Quemayá, Tiipay, Tipai’, Tipái and Tipéi.

Speakers of Kumeyaay in the USA are known as Tipai-Ipai, and used to be called Kamia or Diegueño. In Mexico they are known as Kumiai. Their language is classified by some linguists as three separate languages: Kumeyaay proper, Ipai (Northern Kumeyaay) and Tipai (Southern Kumeyaay). Kumeyaay speakers see them as mutually intelligible variants of one language.

Kumeyaay is taught in some classes in California. An associate degree in Kumeyaay Studies is offered at the Rancho San Diego campus of Cuyamaca Colllege, and at Kumeyaay Community College on the Sycuan reservation.

Kumeyaay alphabet and pronunciation

Kumeyaay alphabet and pronunciation

Download an alphabet chart for Kumeyaay

Information about the Kumeyaay alphabet compiled by Wolfram Siegel

Sample videos in and about Kumeyaay


Information about Kumeyaay

Yuman languages

Cocopah, Ipai, Kiliwa, Kumeyaay, Maricopa, Mojave, Paipai, Quechan, Tiipai

Languages written with the Latin alphabet

Page last modified: 23.04.21


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