Alabama is a native American language spoken today primarily by members of the Alabama-Coushatta Reservation near Livingston, Texas. It belongs to the Muskogean language family which now also includes the languages Koasati (spoken by the Coushatta tribe), Chickasaw, Choctaw, Creek, Seminole, and Mikasuki. Some of these languages are more closely related to each other than are others. For instance, Chickasaw/Choctaw, Creek/Seminole, and Alabama/Koasati have sometimes been described as pairs of dialects. Alabama and Koasati, however, are better considered as two separate languages; a speaker of Alabama who has not by chance learned to speak Koasati too would not be able to understand a fluent speaker of Koasati very well, and vice versa.

The Alabama Dictionary presented in these pages is derived from:

Dictionary of the Alabama Language
Cora Sylestine, Heather K.Hardy, and Timothy Montler.
Austin: University of Texas Press. 1993.

See that reference for further introductory material or click here for a pdf version of the introduction.

The Alabama dictionary was created using a version of the Lexware software and band format developed by Bob Hsu at the University of Hawaii.  Click here to see a sample of the band-format dictionary.  Both the print and hypertext versions of the dictionary were generated from this band-format database.  The same, fairly simple, Spitbol (Snobol4) program was used to create both versions.  For the print version the program entered WordPerfect 5.1 codes based on the band label, which is the tag at the beginning of a record.   UT Press used this camera-ready copy for the print version in 1993.  For the hypertext version, created in 1999, the program entered HTML markup. 

Today (2004) I would convert the band-format dictionary into XML.  XML can be directly formatted for display using an XSL style sheet.  The hierarchical structure of  the band format lends itself to direct conversion into XML.  Click here to get a program that will convert any band format file to XML.