Chapter 8: Heavens, Weather, Winds, & Time

by Dr. Frank Waabu O'Brien, Aquidneck Indian Council

This short treatise stems from the research of the Massachusett-Narragansett Revival Program, a project for the reconstruction of the extinct American Indian languages of southeastern New England. Our intention is to make these works available to a wide audience. The present paper shows translations for about 250 names for weather, heavenly bodies, time and related terms taken from the extinct American Indian Algonquian languages of southeastern New England, Narragansett, Massachusett. Occasionally vocabulary words are borrowed from Mohegan-Pequot (Prince & Speck, 1904) and a north Boston-Shore dialect (Pawtucket, William Wood, 1634) when no extant terms were discovered or for purposes of comparison. Reconstruction of such words in Massachusett-Narragansett may be modeled on these terms from similar Algonquian languages.

The vocabulary listing is presented alphabetically as a table of three columns. On the left is the English language term being translated, as translated in the middle column (with language/dialect identified), and any useful comments on the right side (including etymology). The main contributing language is Massachusett (Eliot, Cotton and Trumbull references). “Reconstructed” refers to my own creation. The abbreviation Narr. refers to the Narragansett language as recorded by Roger Williams (1643). The author is responsible for the spelling rearrangements for some material in A Key. Pequot is a reference to the glossary of Prince and Speck (1904), which includes the Ezra Stiles 1762 vocabulary. The abbreviation “Wm. Wood” refers to the 275-word vocabulary compiled by William Wood in 1634. William Wood wrote an expository work of his 17th century experiences in the New World, entitled New Englands Prospect, which summarized his observations among the Massachusêuck (Massachusett Indians, “People of the Great Hills”). Notes in the COMMENT column are itemized by “bullets” when multiple Algonquian translations are listed; the order of the “bullets” in each column correspond.

Pronunciation of words is not attempted owing to the scanty knowledge of this language. For technical guidelines, see Goddard & Bragdon (1988). Strong Woman . Moondancer (1998) provide a long guide to interpretation of vowel sounds and consonant-vowel clusters along with the special diacritical symbols seen in the vocabulary.

Heavens, Weather, Winds, & Time

We know very little about the accomplishments of our ancestors in mathematics, astronomy,
meteorology, botany, pharmacology &c. Like other First Indigenous Peoples of America, the
Wampanoag & other Algonquian-speaking peoples of our region must have been keen
observers of the Laws of Nature for their very survival depended on being able to read the
stars, the winds, clouds, the leafs, and all of the Great Spirit’s Signs and Omens....
Wampanoag Cultural History, p. 31

The Heavens, Weather, Winds, and Time

Algonquian
(Narr. = Narragansett)
(∞ = oo as in food)

Comment

air, atmosphere

mamahche[4] kesuk

“empty or void sky”

autumn, Fall (see “Fall”)

   

cloud

· mahtohqs

· mattâqus (Narr).

· wompatokqs

· moowatokqs

· musquatokqs

· cloud, “moisture, wet”

· cloud, “moisture, wet”

· white cloud

· black cloud (reconstructed)

· red cloud (reconstructed)

cold (see “weather”)

   

constellation[5] , Great Bear Constellation

mosk or paukúnawwaw[6] (Narr.)

 

constellation, the Brood-hen Constellation [Pleiades]

chippápuock (Narr.)

from “they are separate”

constellation, the Golden Metewand Constellation [Belt of Orion].

shwishcuttowwáuog[7] (Narr.)

-og indicates word is “animate” plural as are other items in this subclass of natural objects

constellation, the Morning Star Constellation

mishánnock (Narr.)

“great (large) star”

dark, it is dark

paukúnnum (Narr.)

 

day, 1 day

· nquittaqúnnegat[8] (Narr.)

· sawup (Wm. Wood)

· “first day”

· “1 sleepes”

v “The Indians count their time by nights, and not by dayes ….” (Wm. Wood)

day, 2 days

· neesqúnnegat (Narr.)

· isoqunnocquock (Wm. Wood)

· nees= 2; cf. “month, 2 months”

· “2 sleepes”

day, 3 days

· shuckqunóckat (Narr.)

· sucqunnocquocke (Wm. Wood)

· shwe = 3?; cf. “month, 3 months”

· “3 sleepes”

day, 4 days

· yowunnóckat (Narr.)

· yoawqunnocquock (Wm. Wood)

· should read yowqunnockat ?

· “4 sleepes”

day, 10 days

· piuckaqúnnegat (Narr.)

· pawquo qunnocquock (Wm. Wood)

·  

· “10 sleepes”

day, 11 days

piuckaqunnegat nab naquit[9] (Narr.)

“ten days plus one”

day, 12 days

piuckaqunnegat nab neeze (Narr.)

 

day, 20 days

neesneechek tashuck

qunnóckat (Narr.)

tashuck means “so many” relative to measurement (animate plural form)

day, 21 days &c.

neesneechek tashuck

qunnóckat nab naquìt[10] (Narr.)

all one phrase; “20 + 1”

day[11] (see “morning”)

wómpan (Narr.)

womp- is a root for “white, dawn”; -an seems to be a root for “going beyond, exceeding”

day, a clear day

weitagcone (Wm. Wood)

"a clear day"[12]

day, a cloudy day

goopkwod  (Pequot)

-kwod = “day” analogous to

-kod,  -quot, -quat &c in Massachusett & Narragansett; cf. “weather, overcast”

day, a day

kesŭkod

kesŭkodash = “days”

day, a long day

quawquonikeesakat (Narr.)[13]

“[it is ] a long day”

v quawquonikéesaqútcheas[14] (Narr.) = “long days”

day, a quarter of an hour      [15](Narr.)

“[it is ] a short day”

day, all the day long       

mamusse quinne kesŭkod

“the whole long day”

day, break of day

p∞touwāshâ

passive voice?

day, by day

kéesqush (Narr.)

 

day, daybreak

· kitompanisha[16] (Narr.)

· pouckshaa (Wm. Wood)

· passive voice?

· “it is broken”

day, daybreak, about cock-crowing time[17]

chouóeatch[18] (Narr.)

English roosters ?

day, daybreak, it is break of day

· mautáubon or

· chicháuquat wompan

· “it is day (morning)” or  

· “it is day-break (day-light)”

day, daytime

kesŭkkâttae  ahquompi[19]

“it is the time of day (of the sun)”

day, it is almost day

quequas nim (Wm. Wood)

"it is almost day"

day, it is broad day

aumpatâuban (Narr.)

 

day, it is day

keesuckquâi (Narr.)

 

day, Lord's day

sontim∞e kesukod

 

day, market day

oattehchae ukkesukodum

 

day, next day

nesqunnoh

 

day, one days walk

nquittakeesiquóckat[20] &

nquittakeespúmmishen[21] (Narr.)

“[it is ] one day’s walk”;

root -pum- means “along in space or time”

day, our days

nukkesukodtumunnônash 

 

day, two days hence (or ago)

nesŭkquinōgkod

 

day, three days hence (or ago)

nishikqunnohquod

“(or ago)” is presumed

day, four days hence

yauukqunnohquod

 

day, seven days hence  (or ago)  

nesasuk tashikqunnohquod

“(or ago)” is presumed

day, week, or one part of a month

nequt chippi pasuk keessoocht

 

day, yesterday· wawnauco (Wm. Wood)

· wunnnonkou

· wunnonkon

· weyongoo (Pequot)

· “yesterday”

· “[it was] last evening”

· last evening”

· “yesterday”

day, yesterday (day before)

 

neesukquinogkod

 

dew

· nechĭppog

· néechipog (Narr.)

“broken rain”; -og indicates animate plural form

directions

· nannummiyeu = north

· wompaniyeu = east

· sowwaniyeu = south

· sowwaníu (Narr.) = southwest[22]

· pahtatunniyeu = west

-iyeu, -iu is a “particle” (uninflected root) indicating  directions (cf. comment for “earth,” “heavens (sky)”))

drizzle, mist (see “rain, drizzle,….”)

   

earth, land

aúke (Narr.)

aukeeaseíu = “towards the earth”

earthquake

quequan

“shake! shake!”; shows example of frequentative form (see footnote for “weather, it is cold”)

evening

· wunnáuquit[23] (Narr.)

· wunnonk∞onk[24]

· evening (when it is)

·  

Fall

'ninnauāet

see “seasons”

fall of leaf & Autumn

taquònck (Narr.)

see “seasons”

flood

tamóccon

· nanashowetamóccon[25] (Narr.) = “half a flood”

· taumacoks (Narr.) = “upon the flood”

· mishittommóckon (Narr.) = “a great flood”

fog (see “rain, drizzle, …”)

   

frost, a

· taquattin (Narr.)

· tópu (Narr.)

· taquatsha (Narr.)

· a frost

· “it is frost”

· “it is frozen”; auke tequátsha = “frozen ground”

frost, a great frost

missittópu (Narr.)

“it is a great frost”

hail (noun)

· missegkon

· mussekon

“big rain (snow)”

harvest, this harvest last

yò taquónticup[26]  (Narr.)

 

heavenly body (sun, moon, star ?)

munnánnock[27] (Narr.)

“a name of the sun or moon”

heavens (sky)

kéesuck[28] (Narr.)

v keesucquíu (Narr.)= “towards the sky”;

v kessuckquànd[29] (Narr.)= “Sun Spirit”

v annōgssūe kesuk = “the starry heavens”

hot, warm (see “weather, hot”)

kĕsu       

“it is hot”

ice

· capát[30] (Narr.)

· kuppat

“hard”, “blocked up”

ice, slippery ice

toonukquesŭe kuppat

 

light, it is light

wequâi (Narr.)

of the moon (Roger Williams, p. 64)

lightening

cutshâusha[31] (Narr.)

passive voice

mist (see “rain, drizzle,….”)

   

month, a

nepauz 

cf. “sun”

month, 1 month (“one moon”)[32]

· nquitpawsuck nepaûus[33] (Narr.)

· a quit-appause (Wm. Wood)

· see footnote for “sun”

· “1 moneths”

month, 2 months (“two moons”)

· neespausuck npaûus[34] (Narr.)

· nees-appasue (Wm. Wood)

· “pausuck” same as “pawsuck” above

· “2 moneths”

month, 3 months (“three moons”)

· shwepausuck npaûus (Narr.)

· nis-appasue (Wm. Wood)

·  

· “3 moneths”

month, 2 months, when 2 moons have passed (?)

neesneáhettit[35] (Narr.)

is nepaûus represented by

-ne(a)-  ?

month, 3 months, when 3 moons have passed (?)

shwinneáhettit (Narr.)

 

month, 4 months, when 4 moons have passed (?)

yowinneáhettit (Narr.)

 

month, harvest month

taquontikéeswush[36]  (Narr.)

 

month, spring month

sequanakéeswush (Narr.)

 

month, summer month

neepunnakéeswush (Narr.)

 

month, winter month

paponakéeswush (Narr.)

 

moon, the

· napauzshad

· Nanepaùshat[37] (Narr.)

· wuske nepauzsae

· paushesui (Narr.)

· wequáshim[38] (Narr.)

· yo wompanámmit[39] (Narr.)

· pashpíshea (Narr.)

· weyoun, weyhan (Pequot)

 

· moon (diminutive of “nepauz = “sun”?)

· Moon Spirit, “he walks in the night”

· a new moon, “new moon”

· a half moon, “it’s half” (of anything)

· moonlight, “a light-colored moon"; wequâi (Narr.)= “it is light”

· the moon so old

· the moon is up

· moon

morning

· mohtompan

· mautáubon (Narr.)

· youmbewe (Pequot)

· nompoae

· appause (Wm. Wood)

· “it is morning”

· “it is day (morning)”

· “early morning”

· “early in the morning”

· “the morn”

vcowompanu sin (Wm. Wood) = “Good morrow”

vweegwasun[40] (Pequot) = “good-morning”

mud, dirt

pissagk

pishagqua[41] = “[it is] muddy or miry”

night

nukon, nukkon

“descending”

 

nights (plural)

nukkonash 

 

night, by night

náukocks (Narr.)

 

night, dark, when it is

póppakunnetch[42] or aucháugotch (Narr.)

separate terms

night, it is night (this night)

nokannáwi[43] (Narr.)

v connucke sommona (Wm. Wood) = “it is almost night” ;

v connu (Wm. Wood)= “good night to you”

night, midnight

nanashowatíppocat[44] (Narr.)

fragment nashow- from “middle, between”; 2nd syllable -na- seems to intensify “middle” (‘exactly the middle’)

night, toward

túppaco[45] (Narr.)& otematíppocat[46] (Narr.)

tuppac-, -tippoc- is root for “night”; see “night, midnight”

noon  & forenoon & afternoon

· nummáttaquaw[47] (Narr.)

· páweshaquaw (Narr.)

· pohshequae[48]

· nawwâuwquaw (Narr.)

· quâttuhqŭohquâ

· forenoon

· noon, “it is half way"

· noon

· afternoon

· afternoon

rain

 

· sókenun[49] (Narr.)

· zoogeryon (Pequot)

· “it rains”

· “it rains”

vsókenitch (Narr.) = “when it rains”

vsokenonni = “it’s raining now”

vanamakéesuck[50] sókenun (Narr.) = “it will rain today”

vahqunnon = “the rain ceases” (literally “ceases, the falling water”)

rain, a great rain & much rain

· mishúnnan (Narr.)

· mishian (Pequot)

· michunnan

· mogkinnon

· “much rain”

· “a heavy but short rain”

· “much rain”

· “great rain”

rain, a light rain

posher (Pequot)

“it rains”

rain, a rain shower

papadtippáshin

“there is a shower”; reduplicative form, papa- = “drops”?

rain, drizzle, mist, fog

nishkenon

“small or broken (“double”) rain”

rain, snow, shower (rain, snow)

neepanon

 

rainy weather (see “weather, rainy weather”)

   

rough (as seas)

koshhesu

“it is rough”

seasons:

the Indian year seems to have had at least 6 seasons

(A Key, Trumbull, ed., 1866)

· aukeeteámitch ("when he plants") — seed time

· séquan ("when water runs again" or  "when water is long?") — early Spring

· néepun — midsummer, latter part

· núnnowa ("the corn dries, grows dry") — harvest time

· taquònck ("beginning of cold") — fall of the leaf, Autumn

· papòne — Winter

 

Narragansett words

sky (see “heavens”)

   

sky, clear sky

· pohkok

· pâuqui (Narr.)

 

· “when it is clear”;

vpóhkok msqui = “the sky is red”

· it clears (the sky)

snow  (a wet, fast snowfall ?)

· sóchepo[51] (Narr.)

· soojpoh    (Pequot)

· souch’pou  (Pequot)

 

“it snows”, the root -ch is sound of wet falling snow;

v animanâukock[52] sóchepo (Narr.) = “it will snow tonight”

v sóchepwutch (Narr.) = “when it snows”

snow (a soft, slow snowfall ?)

muhpoo

“it snows” ( the sound of soft snow falling?);

v muhp∞e  kesukod = “a snowy day”

snow (fallen)

cône[53] (Narr.)

 

general term, snow on ground;

v mudjon goone (Pequot) = “the snow is gone”

spring or seed-time

aukeeteámitch (Narr.)

“when he puts into earth”; see “seasons”

spring, springtime

séquan (Narr.)

early summer

spring, this spring last

saséquacup (Narr.)

frequentative form (?) with past tense marker -up; see footnote for “weather, cold, it is”

star, a

anóckqus (Narr.)

anócksuck (Narr.) = “stars”

storm , northerly storm, tempest

· nashquttin

· uhquŏhquot

 

· northerly storm

· tempest

storm , southerly storm

sowanīsshin

 

storm, wind storm

mishitáshin[54]

v awêpesha (Narr.)= “The storm calms”

v awêpu (Narr.) = “a calm”

v nanoúwashin (Narr.) = “A great calm (from storms)”

summer

· néepun & quaqúsquan (Narr.)

· nepinnāe 

· sequan (Wm. Wood)

· see “seasons”

· “it is summer”

· “the summer”

vneepunitch (Narr.) = “when it is summer” (reconstructed)

summer, it is a warm summer

woenaunta (Wm. Wood)

“it is a warm summer”

summer, this summer last

yo neepúnnacup (Narr.)

-up indicates past tense

sun, the (see “moon,” “heavens”)

· nippâwus[55] (Narr.)

· nepaz, nēpáuz

· cone (Wm. Wood)

· meeün (Pequot)

· munnánnock[56] (Narr.)

· from “he rises up”

· from “he rises up”

· “the sun[57]” ??

· sun

· “a name of the sun or moon”

sun rising

· upposhpishaonk nepaz

· pausepissoi (Wm. Wood)

· nepaz = “sun”

· the sun is rising”

sun setting

oowayaonk nepaz

nepaz = “sun”

sunrise

· nepauz  pashpishant

· páspisha[58] (Narr.)

· waacoh  (Wm. Wood)

· “sun bursts/blooms forth”

· “it is sunrise”

· “the day breaks”

sunset

· wayaàwi[59] (Narr.)

· wa aoy (Wm. Wood)

· the sun sets

· “the sun is down”

sunset, almost sunset

yáhen[60] waiyàuw (Narr.)

 

thaw, a

míchokat (Narr.)

míchokatch[61] (Narr.) = “when it thaws”

thunder[62]

· nimbau

· padtohquōhhan

· neimpâuog (Narr.)

 

· singular

· unkquinneunkque pattohquōhhon = “terrible thunder”

· “it thunders”, plural form, from “to hear, be heard” ?

v  neimpâuog  peskhómwock (Narr.)= “thunderbolts are shot”

thunder, to thunder

peskhómmin[63]

péskunck[64] = “flintlock rifle”

thunderbolt

ukkitshamun

“makes sound of thunder”

time (see “daytime” & related temporal terms)

 

read entry for “day” in Trumbull Dictionary, pp. 241-2

time, what time is it

tou wuttútan (Narr.) ?

“how high is it [the sun] (what time of day is it)”?

today, this day

· anamakéesuck[65] (Narr.)

· autchu wompocke  (Wm. Wood)

·  

· “today”

tomorrow

· saup

· saûop (Narr.)

· a saw upp (Wm. Wood)

· wompoca (Wm. Wood)

· “tomorrow”

· “tomorrow”

· “tomorrow”

· “tomorrow”

warm, hot (see “hot, warm”)

   

weather,  calm weather

auweppŏhquot

-quot, -quat related to “day”

weather,  cloudy weather

matohquodt

cf. “cloud”

weather,  cold weather

taúkocks[66] (Narr.)

-s may indicate diminutive form

weather, cold, it is  a cold night

takitíppocat (Narr.)

 “it is a cold night”· tahki (Narr.)

· tekiyo (Pequot)

· tauh coi (Wm. Wood)

· “it is cold”

· “cold”

· “it is very cold”

vtahkeès[67] (Narr.)= “it is a little cold”

vtátakki[68] (Narr.) = “very, very cold”

v     sonkqui = “it is (feels) cold to the touch”

weather, dry weather

nnáppaquat (Narr.)

from nnáppi (Narr.) = “it is dry”

weather, fair weather

· wekineaûquat (Narr.)

· weekŏhquat

v wekineaûquocks (Narr.) = “when it is fair (weather)”;

wek(in)- or week- indicates “sweet, nice, warm”

 

weather, hot weather

káusitteks (Narr.)

kussutah (Narr.) = “it’s hot today”

weather, overcast weather

· máttaquat  or

· cúppaquat

· “bad weather”

· “closed-up day”

weather, pleasant weather

wunnuhquat

wunnegen keesuk = “beautiful day”

weather, rainy weather

onnohquat

‘nnoh- indicates “falling water”

weather, warm weather

wekeneahquat

 

weather, warm, it is a warm night

wekitíppocat

 

weather, wet & stormy

wuttapŏhquot kah nashquittin

 

weather, wet weather

·   wuttapŏhquot

·   wutuyayow (Pequot)

· wet weather/day

· “it is wet”

wind, a cross wind

mattagehan (Narr.)

matta- = “bad”

wind, a fair wind

wunnágehan[69] or

wunnêgin waúpi (Narr.)

wunna- = “good, fair, pleasing”

wind, a great calm

mishaowepin (Narr.)

“great cease of wind”

wind, a great wind

mishâupan (Narr.)

“big wind”

wind, east wind

wopâtin[70] (Narr.)

 

wind, north wind

nanúmmatin & sunnâdin (Narr.)

 

wind, northeast wind

chepewéssin[71] (Narr.)

 

wind, northwest wind

chekesu (Narr.)

v chékesitch (Narr.) = “when the wind blows northwest”

wind, south wind

touwúttin (Narr.)

 

wind, southeast wind

nanóckquittin (Narr.)

 

wind, southwest wind

sowwannatin (Narr.)

this wind is the warmest and most  pleasing wind for the southwest is house of the Great Spirit, Kautantowwit (in Narr.) or Keihtanit (in Natick Wampanoag dialect)

wind, strong northeast wind

sáchimoachepewéssin (Narr.)

word “sachim” (as in village leader) means “strong”

wind[72], the wind

· wapan (or) waban

· wetun (Pequot)

· waûpi (Narr.)

· wappinne (Wm. Wood)

· wahbayoh (Pequot)

· from “what is up, above”

· wind

· from "it is above"

· “ the wind”

· “windy”

wind, west wind

papônetin (Narr.)

“wind of winter”

wind, winds (plural)

wâupanash (Narr.)

“the winds”; inanimate form

winter

· papòne (Narr.)

· poponăe

· papowne (Wm. Wood)

· see “seasons”

· “it is winter”

· “ winter”

winter last winter

papapôcup (Narr.)

-up indicates past tense

winter, a sharp winter

ahauqushapapòne (Narr.)

 

year, 1 year

nquittecautúmmo[73]  (Narr.)

See footnote for “day, 1 day”

year, 2 years

neesecautúmmo (Narr.)

 

year, 3 years

shwecautúmmo (Narr.)

 

year, 4 years

yowecautúmmo (Narr.)

 

year, 10 years

piuckquecautúmmo (Narr.)

 

year, 11 years

Piukquecautúmmo nab naquit &c[74] (Narr.)

rearranged

year, the last year

yaûnedg (Narr.)

past tense marker?

yesterday (see “day, yesterday”)

   


[1] Errata sheet not included; write to author

[2] John Eliot translated the entire Bible into Natick dialect of the Massachusett (or Wampanoag) language.

[3] Moondancer and O’Brien are the same person.

[4] Repetition or duplication of first syllable ma augments or intensifies meaning of mahche (“empty”); cf. “earthquake,” “rain, a rain shower,” “Spring, this Spring last,” or “night, midnight”. See footnote for “weather, cold, it is cold”.

[5]Constellations are any of 88 arbitrary configurations of stars or an area of the celestial sphere covering one of these configurations or "figures" or shapes formed by the positions of the stars in the night sky. One can "connect-the-dots" to make pictures of people, animals, and objects and possibly come up with the same shapes and names that have been associated with some constellations for hundreds of years.The Internet contains many “tutorials” on constellations. Some names given by Roger Williams such as Golden Metewand (“yardstick”) no long exist.

[6]Both words mean "a bear". Mosk may be the black bear (female?). Paukúnawwaw means "night or darkness walker"; (cf. “dark” , “night”).

[7] Literally “wetu (wigwam) with three fires”.

[8] Literally, "in one day" ( qunne = "duration, length"); the prefixed terms are ordinal numbers (first, second,…); -at seems to be a locative indicating “at, of, in,” &c.

[9] Some Narr. entries have been rewritten to highlight word structure.

[10] If form is correct, we hypothesize that “30 days” is written shwincheck tashuck qunnóckat; adding nab neeze gives “31” &c.

[11] See footnotes for “heavens” and “time”. Cotton vocabulary (see p. 15 “Time”) provides names for 7 days of the week.

[12] Literal translations are cited for Wood’s vocabulary.

[13] Sun stays up longer. In this word and for the next entry, we note reduplication (quawquo-) , “long, long.”

[13] Passive Voice with reference to "freeing, breaking".

[14] -as is the plural in this word whereas plural marker  -ash is normal for "inanimate nouns".

[15] Sun goes down early.  An n or nn probably should be included to read tiaqunnockaskéesakat.

[16] Passive Voice with reference to "freeing, breaking".

[17] Just before sunrise.

[18] Suffix  -atch indicates "when it is, when it has" (indefinite subjunctive form); other written forms seen are –etch, –itch,  -otch, -utch.

[19] Translated as “time (a time), a period, a season”.

[20] "Of one sun's length".  Length of time always includes the root "long" (qunne).  Note: it appears that this entry is misspelled for n or nn should most likely appear after the second u to read nquittakeesiqunnóckat

[21] "Of one sun's walk".  Of interest is the distance Colonial era Indians could travel on foot. Roger Williams (Ch. XI) relates that a good runner could cover about 100 miles in one day, and return in two (after a good rest, we presume).

[22] The most sacred direction where lives Kautántowwìt, The Great Spirit.

[23] -it = "when it is, at, in".

[24] Nouns ending in – onk are abstract nouns (indicating a collection or classification, state of being or action or abstract ideas <justice, love, truth, strength, foods &c.>).  Try to locate other “abstract nouns.”

[25] “Between” (intensified), “with”, “flood”.

[26] Ending - up or - ip for verbs means simple past tense.

[27] Roger Williams uses word to mean also “moon ” & “sun”. Root is "alone, by self".

[28] This word means either (a) visible heavens, the sky (b) the sun,  “source of heat and light” or (c) space of one day—"one sun". The last k in kéesuck is pronounced with a strong guttural sound—say "cup" without the "p". Note that Cotton gives kesŭkod = “a day”.

[29] The names for Spirits end in -and , -anit , -it, -at . The words for Spirits are based on a contraction or shortening of the word manit for manito (Spirit). For Spirit Names, see ED 471405 (“Spirits and Family Relations”).

[30] "When it is closed up or dense".  The same root is seen in word for “overcast weather” (cúppaquat

[31] Imitative sound?

[32] The Indian "calendar" had thirteen months, based on the 13 full moons in one year (which are "calculated" on the 13 squares of a turtle's outer shell).  In one northern dialect (Abenaki), the seasons of the year corresponding to our modern names of the months are given in the Trumbull’s 1866 ed. of A Key (footnote 141):

ø Great-Cold Moon (January); Fish Moon (Feb.); End-of-Fishing Moon (Mar.); Herring Moon, or Sowing Moon (Apr.); Covering Moon, or  Corn-Planting Moon (May); Hoeing Moon (June); Berry Moon, or Eel Moon (July); Moon-of Great-Sun, or Long-Day Moon (Aug.); Acorn Moon (Sept.); Thin-Ice Moon, or Moon-When-Margins-Of-Streams-Freeze (Oct.); Beaver-Catching Moon, or Moon When-Holes-Are-Made-In-The-Ice-And-Watched-For-Beavers (Nov.); Long Moon (Dec.) ø

[33] Original text reads Nqnitpawsuckenpaûus. Following A Key, (Trumbull, ed., 1866, footnote 41), nquitpawsuck nepaûus seems to mean: nquit = 1 (first in order) + pawsuck = 1 unit + nepaûus. Likewise, “2 months” = 2 (2nd in order) + 1 unit + moon.

[34] Same as word above, spelled nepaûus.

[35] Is this and next two entries possibly the subjunctive form, -hettit  (they); literally, “when there are two (of anything)”?

[36] -keeswush = "season, 'moon', month" (cf. keesuck = "day, time, sky, heavens"). The season names are then prefixed; see “seasons”.

[37] Roger Williams uses this word to mean “Moon” & “Moon Spirit”. Moreover, the repetition of the first syllable may be reduplication on an animate intransitve verb which Trumbull likens to “He rises/stands up” (in Narr., neepouwe).

[38] "light-ish”. The letters - sh- often indicate something "less than, inferior, a little," etc. For example, the light of the moon is less bright than that of the sun; could also describe "dull, dim or scanty moonlight".

[39] “Moon that shines till wompan (dawn)”.

[40] This Mohegan-Pequot word is similar to Narr. asco wequássin ["may you live happily" (from week = "sweet")].

[41] The corrupted place name Pisquasent (Charlestown, RI), translated as “muddy rocks place,” shows partly this root word.

[42] "When it is very dark"; - etch has same sense as - otch. ("when it is"); intensifier on “dark”.

[43] The "present definite" (it is going on right now).

[44] “Midway of the darkness”.

[45] "In the dark night".

[46] May mean "time of darkness" or "between evening and morning".

[47] -waw = "state, condition".

[48] Yáhen Páushaquaw = “almost noon” in Narr.

[49] Sókenun (rain) is from verb "he pours"; -nan , -non , -nnan,  -nnon &c indicate “falling water” as seen in this and next several entries.

[50] "This day". Anama may mean "this".

[51] Sóchepo is probably "snow falling".

[52] "This night".  Anima may mean "this".

[53] Cône is believed to be "snow on the ground" and corresponds to neighboring Pequot (Prince & Speck, 1904). In Pequot it's pronounced gûn with û said like u in "rule". In Pequot dialect, we tend to hear our c or k sound as a hard g as in "go".

[54] "Big many winds"; see “wind”.

[55] Literally "He rises". Word used for "a moon" or "month", as in neespausuck napaûs ("2 months, 2 moons"); keesuck is used for “sun” as a source of light and heat (see “hot”).

[56] Roger Williams uses word to mean also “moon ” & “sun”. Root is "alone, by self".

[57] Appears to be word for “snow”?

[58] Same word for "flower" meaning "He blooms forth''.  Verbs ending in -sha seem to be Passive Voice unless iiit is an intransitive verb.

[59] To say "when the sun sets, has set," we'd write wayont (“when he goes away”).

[60] "Almost"?

[61] Original text reads Míchokateh.

[62] Mayhew gives a place name on Martha’s Vineyard related to “thunder”—Nempanicklickanuk, a place called “The place of Thunder-clefts”, because “there was once a Tree there Split in piecees by the Thunder.” (p. 16). Note that Trumbull spells this place name so that he uses i for the e and h for the l .

[63] Infinitive form. This word means, "to burst into pieces with a noise".  We see the root word -shk- (or -shq- sometimes) to mean "violence, disaster".

[64] “Thunder stick”.

[65] Keesuck is related to "gives life to"; anima = “this”.

[66] In Windham County, Conn. is a place called Towcocks (Nipmuck Language) that appears related to taúkocks.

[67] The ending - es means "little", characteristic diminutive form.

[68] The repetition or duplication of the first syllable ta is a common feature in the Algonquian Indian languages, referred to as frequentative or reduplication. It is a way of describing or emphasizing something that is going on repeatedly or habitually. For example, momonchu (“he is always on the move”; “he is always moving”). Popowuttáhig (“drum”) is another example—emphasizing the repetition of the popow sound of a drum.; mameech = “s/he eats a lot”

[69] Wunnágehan = "the thing that is extended (the air or wind) —it is good".  Wunnêgin waúpi = "It is good—the wind."

[70] Original text (p. 86) reads nopâtin which we (along with Trumbull) think is probably a mistake, as wop- indicates ‘east”

[71] Word is said to come from cheppi or "evil spirit" from which comes this violent cold wind or "Noreaster" as New Englanders now call it.     Storm is used as a symbol of raging warfare; e.g., Chépewess & Mishittâshin = “A northern storm of war” (Roger Williams, p. 182)

[72] For names of Wind Spirits, see Spirits and Family Relationsnote: ending –in, -tin, -din, -sin &c indicates “wind”.

[73] cautúmmo = "year"

[74] Hypotheses: 100 years = nquit pâwsuckcautúmmo. 2000 years = neese mittànnugcautúmmo.  Reason: following previous forms, pick a number from Roger Williams, A Key …., Ch. IV,  pp. 22-25, and to the number add  cautúmmo.

Go on to Chapter 9: Algonquian Prayers and Texts
Go back to the Algonquian Language Revival Table of Contents



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