Delivery of the UNESCO Certificate of Protection to the Wayampi
Total population
Regions with significant populations
 Brazil1,221 (2014)
 French Guiana950 (2009)
Wayampi, French Guiana Creole, Portuguese[2]
traditional tribal religion[1]

The Wayampi or Wayãpi are an indigenous people located in the south-eastern border area of French Guiana at the confluence of Camopi and Oyapock rivers, and the basins of the Amapari and Carapanatuba Rivers in the central part of the states of Amapá and Pará in Brazil. The number of Wayampi is approximately 2,171 individuals. Approximately 950 live in French Guiana[1] in two main settlements surrounded by little hamlets,[3] and 1,221 live in Brazil[1] in 49 villages.[4]


The Wayampi are also known as the Wajãpi, Wayapi, Wajapi, Oiampi,[1] Barnaré, Oyampi, Oyampik, Waiapi, Walãpi, Guaiapi, Guayapi, Oiampipucu, Oyampí, Oyampipuku, Oyanpík, Waiampi, Wajapae, Wajapuku, Wayapae, and Wayãpi people.[2]


The Wayampi people speak the Wayampi language, which belongs to Subgroup VIII of the Tupi-Guarani languages. Wayampi has three dialects: Amapari Wayampi, Jari, and Oiyapoque Wayampi. The language is written phonetically based on the International Phonetic Alphabet, and not according the French or Portuguese orthography.[5] The literacy rates are low.[2]


The first Western documents about the Wayampi are Portuguese sources from 1690 mentioning the groups migration from the lower Xingu River to the Jari River, then northward along the Jari and Amapari rivers.[6] The Wayampi had been fighting with the French colonialists. In 1738, a Jesuit mission opened on the Oyapock River near the current town of Camopi. The missionaries brought European diseases and caused a depopulation. In 1763, the Jesuits left and most of the population dispersed.[7] From then on they became totally isolated.[7] Reports from 1770 show a total population of 6,000, as compared with 835 in 1990. From 1820, some northern groups began making contact with French officials and Maroons, but most of the Wayampi continued their isolation in the Amazonian forest throughout the 18th and 19th century. The isolation was such, that only temporary canoes could be built.[8]

Only in the 1940s were the villages of French Guiana contacted by geographers;[9] the Wayampi were in a bad shape, diseases had ravished the community, and the population was estimated at 230 people.[6] Two schools were built in 1956 and 1971.[9] In the 1960s attempts were made in French Guiana to group the population into two bigger villages where the Wayampi had to live with the Teko. The attempts of concentration had limited success.[10] The Wayampi did not have tribal government, therefore a granman (paramount chief) was installed according to the Maroon hierarchy, but failed to catch on.[10] In the 1960s, the French Government contacted all tribes to ask them whether they wanted French citizenship. The Wayampi and the Teko were the only tribes who decided against citizenship.[11] In 2000, they accepted French citizenship.[12]

In the late 1980s, gold was discovered near the Camopi River. Illegal gold miners moved into area, and the villages of Vila Brasil and Ilha Bela were established opposite the town of Camopi where the majority of the French Wayampi were concentrated. With the gold prospectors came the alcohol, prostitution and drugs.[13] In the early 21st century, the tribe started to built hamlets with subsistence farms several kilometres from the main settlements. By 2010, there were 45 hamlets, and most had left the main town of Camopi.[3]

In Brazil, as late as 1973 had FUNAI established contact with the Wayampi. Even as today the various Wayampi communities are moderately acculturated at best.[14] The majority of the Brazilian population lives in the Terra Indígena Waiãpi (Wayampi Indigenous Territory), an autonomous district with restricted access, which had been established in 1996.[15]


The Wayampi practice slash-and-burn agriculture and subsist primarily on cassava, sweet potatoes, yams, and bananas.[14] Among the groups of the Amapari and upper Oyapok rivers hunting is the most important, while bow- and arrow-fishing is predominant for the northernmost group. With the exception of the Mariry community, which carries out limited exploitation of gold claims, there is little participation in the cash economy.

The Wayampi were part of the great commercial link of the Wayana Indians which extended form the Amapari river in Brazil as far as the Tapanahoni river in Surinam. They traded cotton thread, hunting dogs and feather crowns mainly for tools. Today this network has been disrupted by the increased control of national boundaries, though it remains alive between various Wayampi groups. Since the late 1970s Western goods replaced local manufactures, with the exception of baskets and cotton-woven hammocks. Such products as ammunition, fishhooks, pans, and glass beads are increasingly traded.


French Guiana[16][a]
Place Population Comment
Camopi 600-650 main town
Trois Sauts 300-350 cluster of four villages: Roger, Zidock, Yawapa, and Pina.[6]
Place Inhabitants
Akaju 33
Aruwã'ity 49
Cinco Minutos 60
Jakareãkagokã 47
Jovem de Deus 32
Karapijuty 55
Karavovõ 48
Kupa'u 45
Kwapoywyry (Aramirã II) 57
Mogywyry (Piaui) 54
Najaty 53
Okakai 36
Pairakae 42
Suisuimënë 11 (minority)
Tabokal 57
Ytawa 65
Ytuwasu 117
Yvytõtõ 38


  1. ^ Estimation based on the total population of 590 for Trois Sauts[17], and 1,677 for the commune in 2012.[18] The figures do not distinguish tribe, however the figures show that 35% of the commune lives in/around Trois Saults and 65% in/around Camopi.


  1. ^ a b c d e "Wajãpi: Introduction". Instituto Socioambiental (in Portuguese). Retrieved 2 August 2020.
  2. ^ a b c "Wayampi." Ethnologue. 2009. Retrieved 11 April 2012.
  3. ^ a b Davy & Tritsch 2012, p. 16.
  4. ^ "Apina Conselho das Aldeias Wajãpi". Apina (in Portuguese). Retrieved 2 August 2020.
  5. ^ Grenand & Grenand 2017, p. 18.
  6. ^ a b c "Les amérindiens Wayampis, citoyens français d'Amazonie". Medium France (in French). Retrieved 2 August 2020.
  7. ^ a b "Guide Camopi". Petit Futé (in French). Retrieved 3 June 2020.
  8. ^ Pierre Grenand and Françoise Grenand. Living in Abundance: The Forest of the Wayampi (Amerindians from French Guiana) (PDF). Institution française publique de recherche. p. 179-183. Retrieved 2 August 2002.
  9. ^ a b Ailincai, Rodica; Jund, Sandrine; Alì, Maurizio (2012). "Comparaison des écosystèmes éducatifs chez deux groupes d'Amérindiens: les Wayãpi et les Wayana". Revue française d'éducation comparée, Raisons, Comparaison, Education. 8: 55–90.
  10. ^ a b Davy & Tritsch 2012, p. 9.
  11. ^ "Considérations sur la situation des Amérindiens de l'intérieur de la Guyane page 223". Persée (in French). 1990. Retrieved 2 June 2020.
  13. ^ Davy & Tritsch 2012, p. 13.
  14. ^ a b "Wajãpi". Socio Ambiental.org. Retrieved 2 August 2020.
  15. ^ "Terra Indígena Waiãpi". Terras Indigenas (in Breton). Retrieved 2 August 2020.
  16. ^ Thomas Malmontet (2020). "Spectrum of skin diseases in Amerindian villages of the Upper Oyapock, French Guiana". Wiley Publishers: 600. Retrieved 1 August 2020.
  17. ^ Maurizio Alì & Rodica Ailincai (2012). "Comparaison des écosystèmes éducatifs chez deux groupes d'Amérindiens: les Wayãpi et les Wayana" (in French): Table 1 (based on registrations at the local clinic). Retrieved 3 August 2020. Cite journal requires |journal=
  18. ^ "Populations légales 2017 Commune de Camopi (97356)". INSEE (in French). Retrieved 3 August 2020.
  19. ^ "Caracterização do DSEI Amapá e Norte do Pará, conforme Edital de Chamada Pública n. 2/2017 (item 3.1)" (PDF). portalarquivos.saude.gov.br (in Portuguese). 30 June 2016. Retrieved 2 August 2020.


External links

This page was last updated at 2020-12-26 20:54, update this pageView original page

All information on this site, including but not limited to text, pictures, etc., are reproduced on Wikipedia (wikipedia.org), following the . Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License


If the math, chemistry, physics and other formulas on this page are not displayed correctly, please useFirefox or Safari