Arikara (Sáhniš)

Arikara is a Northern Caddoan language spoken in Fort Berthold Reservation in North Dakota in the USA by about 10 people. Arikara, which is also known as Ree, is closely related to Pawnee, but is not mutually intelligible with it. The Arikara and Pawnee were once one tribe, and are thought to have separated during the 15th century.

Arikara has been documented and a number of books of stories have been published, as well as textbooks for learners and linguistic studies. Efforts to revive the language are underway and it is taught at Fort Berthold Community College, White Shield School, and at the Arikara Cultural Center.

Arikara is featured in the 2015 film The Revenant, which was based partly on the adventures of Hugh Glass (c. 1783 - 1833), a frontiersman who learned Arikara. The language and Arikara people are referred to as "Ree" in the film.

Arikara alphabet and pronunciation

Arikara alphabet and pronuciation

Arikara has a high tone, marked with an acute accent (á), and a low tone, which is not marked.

Download an alphabet chart for Arikara (Excel)

Sample text

Nootiwísat niiʾahnaraateehuúnu. Tsu tinaaríči tanáhaʾ noowituhkúx wehnuhkuxáxi wešiniinawiráta.


Then he arrived there, where it was planned. But this buffalo, then he ran away, his running off after they beat him.


Sample text provided by Michael Peter Füstumum

Sample video

Information about Arikara | Numbers


Information about the Arikara language

Caddoan languages

Arikara, Caddo, Pawnee, Wichita

Languages written with the Latin alphabet

Page last modified: 23.04.21


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