Definition of Papago in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈpapəˌɡō/ Pronunciation: /ˈpä-/

noun (plural same or Papagos)

1A member of an American Indian people of southern Arizona and northern Sonora.
Example sentences
  • For the Navajo, Hopi, Papago and other Native Americans already living in the Southwest, the land was sacred.
  • The world first came knocking in the 17th century, with Spanish explorers who labeled them the Papago, roughly translated as ‘bean eaters.’
  • Reconstructed traditional houses of the Apache, Maricopa, Papago, and Pima are on display at the Gila River Arts and Crafts Museum in Sacaton, Arizona, south of Phoenix.
2A dialect of the Uto-Aztecan Pima-Papago language.
Example sentences
  • Tohono O'odham (formerly Papago) is spoken in Southern Arizona and Northern Mexico.
  • Informally, our proposal is that while English has only one form of plurality, Papago has two: one based on identity and the other on equivalence.


Relating to the Papago or their language.
Example sentences
  • Here, Jesuits sought to settle, or ‘reduce, ‘the seminomadic Pima and Papago people to an agropastoralist mode.’
  • The lands of the Tohono O'Odham, or Papago, people are divided into two areas, each the approximate size of Connecticut, on both sides of the border.
  • I have spent some time on the Pima/Papago language of central Arizona. One advantage of these native languages is the vocabulary is fairly limited - terms for most modern things from the western world have been borrowed.


Via Spanish from an abbreviation of the Papago self-designation bābāwǐ’-o'o’dham.

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: Pap·a·go

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