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Language Information

The Seneca Indians lived for centuries in the western third of New York State, being one of the Five Nations that formed the League of the Iroquois. Today about 1,000 Senecas live on two reservations in western New York—the Cattaraugus Reservation near the town of Irving, and the Allegany Reservation near Salamanca.

The Seneca language belongs to the Iroquoian family. The alphabet consists of only twelve letters of the English alphabet (a, c, e, h, i, k, n, s, t, u, w, y) plus the additional vowel œ.

Seneca is spoken/used in United States of America

Language Family
Family: North American Indian
Subgroup: Iroquoian

Copyright © Kenneth Katzner, The Languages of the World, Published by Routledge.

Writing Sample

Writing Sample


The Bear and the Chipmunk quarreled. The Bear wanted it to be night all the time, it is said. The Chipmunk, it is said, wanted it to he day and night. (The Bear said) "Dark all the time, dark all the time, dark all the time" (faster and faster). The Chipmunk said, "Day and night, day and night, day and night" (faster and faster). Then, it is said, the Chipmunk won. That is why it now dawns and grows dark. Then, it is said, the Bear got angry. He scratched the Chipmunk on his back. That is why the Chipmunk has three stripes down his back.

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