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a family of languages spoken by American Indians in most of inland northwest Canada and Alaska, in coastal Oregon and California, and in Arizona and the Rio Grande basin, and including especially Navajo, Apache, and Chipewyan.
Compare (def 14).
a member of any of various American Indian peoples speaking Athabaskan.
belonging to or characteristic of the Athabaskans.
Historical Examples

The Apaches of Arizona, preminent even among red men for atrocious cruelty, are an offshoot from the Athabaskan stock.
The Discovery of America Vol. 1 (of 2) John Fiske.

Their dialect is the softest and most copious of the Athabaskan tongues.
The Natural History of the Varieties of Man Robert Gordon Latham

The Athabaskan languages form as clearly unified, as structurally specialized, a group as any that I know of.
Language Edward Sapir

Now as these last are Athabaskan, there must have been displacement.
Opuscula Robert Gordon Latham

Eskimo characteristics appear in the Athabaskan, Athabaskan in the Koluch forms of speech.
Opuscula Robert Gordon Latham

Some of them were half wolf—creatures that were the result of inter-breeding on the part of Athabaskan Indians.
Colorado Jim George Goodchild

As a general rule, the southern limit of the Eskimo is the northern limit of the Athabaskan area.
The Natural History of the Varieties of Man Robert Gordon Latham

All the Athabaskan languages or dialects are mutually intelligible.
The Ethnology of the British Colonies and Dependencies Robert Gordon Latham

In the same parts the Athabaskan forms of speech differ most from each other.
Opuscula Robert Gordon Latham

The water-system in question forms the centre of the great Athabaskan area—the centre, but not the whole.
The Ethnology of the British Colonies and Dependencies Robert Gordon Latham


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