Thursday, February 5, 2009


===begin p 11===

W, and Y, have the same power
that they have when used as conso-
nants in such words as we, wan, ye,
you &c. S is always followed by anoth-
er consonant in words purely Ioway.

It might, however, be proper to re-
mark, that a sometimes appears to
have the short broad sound of a in
wad, what, etc. especially when preceded
by w, and occasionally by m, & n; but
in such situations it so nearly resem-
bles the sound of a in far, (the differ-
ence being about as great as it is in
the sound this same letter has in the
words what, fall,) that it is thought
inexpedient to employ a distinct char-
acter to represent this sound.

In the first printing down at the sta[-]
tion, v was used to designate this
sound. For a similar reason, x, rep-
resenting the short sound of u as in
tub, has also been omitted.

I, as heard in pin, has likewise been
left out; its place is supplied by e.

===end of page 11===

Lance's note

The document they are talking about as
"the first printing down at the station"
was the 1843
An elementary book of
the Ioway language : with an English
, or
"Wv-wv-kv-hæ e-ya e-tu u-na-ha
pa-hu-cæ e-cæ æ-ta-wæ,
mv-he-hvn-yæ e-cæ

This would be written in today's
orthography as:

Wawagaxe iya itu unaha
(writing/book one -?- -?-)

itun = first

unaha might be today's unax'u "hear"

so perhaps (book a first-one-hears =
book a elementary =an elementary book)

Paxuche ich'e etawe,
(Ioway language theirs,)

mahixanye ich'e
(American language)


This last term might be
ra-bredhe-ke ="by the mouth clarity statement"

ra: here a prefix indicating instrumentality
by means of the mouth (Whitman)

bredhe: clear; clarity

ke: statement of fact

So together it would mean more literally

"A book by which one first hears the Ioways'
language, made clear by oral means of the
American language."

You can see that it helps when learning the
Ioway language to play with the words,
move them around, which begins to
help one understand better how sentences
are constructed and the literal word-for-word
meaning underneath.

Often language expressions can NOT be
literally translated, but for me at
least, it helps me to go through and use
literal word for word translation.
This has helped me understand such prefixes as
ra-, in this situation, so that one gets used
to that ra- in some cases means "you" and
in others ra- indicates that something happens
in relation to the mouth.

An example is ranuwe, sometimes spelled
danuwe, which means a tobacco pipe. Sacred pipe
would be ranuwe waxonyita (pipe + sacred).

Whitman analyzed ranuwe as:

ra- (by means of the mouth)
nuwe (two)

This might be indicating the two parts of
a pipe, the bowl and the stem, which
is unified through the mouth, in smoking
the pipe. OR it might refer to the mouth
unifying the person smoking and the
"other" with whom the pipe is being shared.
such as another person, a spirit, or
God, etc.

This is all of course conjecture, but it is
fun nonetheless! :-)