Relating to or denoting a small family of almost extinct languages of the northern Pacific coast, including Kwakiutl and Nootka.
- ‘The Salishan and Wakashan languages are the favorite candidates for languages lacking the noun/verb contrast, but there have been several other proposals.’
The Wakashan family of languages.
- ‘The ‘keepers of the language’ should be the language family - Algonquin, Athapaskan, Eskimo-Aleut, Haida, Iroquoian, Hutenai, Salishan, Siouan, Tlingit, Wakashan.’
From Nootka waukash ‘good’(said to have been applied to the people by Captain Cook) + -an.