The Gunwinyguan languages
form the second largest family
of Australian Aboriginal languages
. They are spoken in Arnhem Land
in northern Australia. The most populous language is Gunwinygu
, with some 1500 speakers.
Although the validity of the Gunwinyguan family is widely accepted, the inclusion of some lesser known language isolates is debated. Ethnologue, for example, includes the Burarran languages, Kakadu, and Enindhilyagwa, which are not included here. What follows is based on a 1997 classification by Nicholas Evans at the Australian National Universtity.
- Gunwinyguan proper: Jawoyn (Djauan), Ngandi, Ngalakgan, Kunwinjku (Gunwinggu, Kunwinjku), Kunbarlang, Ngalkbun, Rembarrnga, Wagiman, Wardaman, Yangman
- Maran languages: Alawa, Warndarrang, Marra
- Kungarakany language
- Nunggubuyu language
- Waray language
- Mangarayi language
Evans has proposed that Gunwinyguan is related to the Pama-Nyungan languages in a family he calls Macro-Pama-Nyungan.
- McConvell, Patrick and Nicholas Evans. (eds.) 1997. Archaeology and Linguistics: Global Perspectives on Ancient Australia. Melbourne: Oxford University Press