Chinook Jargon Phrasebook

Kahta Mamook Kopa Chinook Wawa - How to speak Chinook

Kamloops Wawa Word List:

This is a list of basic Chinook Jargon words as reproduced in Kamloops Wawa, a publication of the Oblate missionary community in British Columbia during the 1890s.  This is not, as far as I can tell, the same list as one in another edition of Kamloops Wawa, as there are some differences in spelling that I remember from the other version.  This list is produced separately here from the rest of the Phrasebook because of the wide divergence in spelling and apparent prononciation from the other versions of the lexicon, most of which were published in the United States.  There are also some words included here which do not appear in the usual sources (Gibbs, Shaw, etc.).

The original version of this list as it appeared in Kamloops Wawa included renderings of the words given in the Duployan shorthand script developed for the Jargon by Fr. Lejeune; there were apparently at one time over 2000 people fluent in reading the Jargon in this shorthand, and many copies of the Kamloops Wawa are nearly entirely in the shorthand alone.  The texts in yellow are my own additions, consisting of the usual (or alternate) spellings of the Jargon words noted, plus comments about their usual meanings and possible contexts; when necessary I have added links to appropriate pages elsewhere in this site that are pertinent to the word cited.  At the bottom of the word list there is some editorializing concerning the Jargon and the Duployan shorthand that was included in the same issue of the Kamloops Wawa as the word list, and for your convenience in studying the Duployan script glyphs of each word, the table of forms and associated phonemes may be viewed by clicking here (144kb)A later revision of this page will attempt to align the glyphs according to the baseline used in the original, which is too large of a GIF to be viewed here in any legible format; many of the angle-lines shown here are below this baseline.

NB:  concerning prononciation, the final "-e" and "-ale" on most words should be understood to be a pronounced syllable, rather than a modifier of the preceding vowel as it is in English.  e.g. the word poolale here is usually given in other Jargon lexicons as pollalie.

Current alphabetization is based on the spellings as transliterated by LeJeune.  Later improvements to these pages will cross-reference the Kamloops Wawa spellings with the more common Gibbs/Shaw system, and perhaps the new phonologically-strict orthography of the Grand Ronde Creole.  Note that some words are placed alphabetically; e.g. "ice" is under 'A" because of the opening vowel, unlike other i-words which have "ih" at the start.  Similarly, whip and wheat are in 'h" because LeJeune transcribed them with the whispered-h pronuncation once proper in English..

A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W | X | Y | Z

Sections:

A-E-I-H-Y

B-F-P

G-K (inclues "ch" )

L-M-N-R

D-T

S


 


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