Hočąk Text — The Four Steps of the Cougar

narrated by Jasper Blowsnake
English Translation
Narrative Structure

The following are Greek letters used as morpheme abbreviations in Radin's text. Their values correspond, with the exception of γ, to those given in Radin's notebook Winnebago II, #6, on the interstitial page between 107/108:

γ
ε
ρ
τ
ϕ
9
hą́bera
-gáją
-ánąga
-gíži
hąké
-xjį

In the interlinear text where the translation is missing, it has been supplied whenever possible from the English text of The Road of Life and Death (see Source below). Where a missing translation has been supplied from other sources, it is enclosed in brackets, [ ].


 

p. 265 —
rek’úhuhíra
tciróbotcagíwera
tciróbera
tcagíwekdjané[τ´]
Rek’úhuhíra
čiróbočagíwera
čiróbera
čagíwekjanégíži,
South
the door we go towards*
[the entrance]
whe[n] he's to go toward,
*below this is written, "(the way to go to the entrance)".

 


 

p. 266* —
sániⁿgoicoroídja
rusé
witcáⁿsiⁿtcserédjera†
saⁿdjaⁿxdjíⁿjaⁿ
sánįgoišoroíja
rusé
wičą́sįčseréjera
sąjąxjį́žą,
on the right side
he took from
the long tailed wildcat [cougar]‡
a very awe inspiring one,
*at the top center of the page, Radin has written with reference to the subject of this sentence, "refers to the original South", that is, the South Island Weight as he participated in the original Creation Lodge ceremony of the Medicine Rite.
†/tc/ is inserted above the line by a caret.
‡the translation had originally, "the long tailed tiger", but at the top right of the page "wild cat" is written in, and this is used throughout in the translation of The Road of Life and Death. However, both Miner and the Hočąk Wazijači translate this word as "mountain lion".

 


 

sgaxdjíⁿjaⁿ
tcowéra
hodjídjehíje
tcabónihára
haⁿberá
sgaxjį́žą,
čowéra
hojíjehíže.
Čabónihára
hąberá
an extremely white one,
in front
he placed.
On top of his head
[the light]

 


 

higiu[ρ´]
sirokúra
[γ]
higiu[ρ´]
tcowéra
higiuánąga
sirokúra
hą́bera
higiuánąga
čowéra
he put and
bottom of his feet
light
[he put and]
in front

 


 

hokéreje
witcawaⁿtciⁿcserétcdjega*
tcowérodjidjéhigi
wajaⁿgúⁿzera
hokéreže,
wičawąčįšseréčjega.
Čowérojijéhigi
Wažągų́zera
he placed him,
the cougar.
[As he placed it in front of him,]
the Creator
*the /c/ just before the /s/ was inserted above the line with a caret. The third syllable, čįš, seems to be an odd metathesis of šįč/, a presumed variant of sįč, "tail".

 


 

djágu
hirukóno
gigi[τ´]
hanáⁿtciⁿ
róhiku[ρ´]†
jágu
hirukóno
gigigíži,
haną́čį
róhikuánąga
what
in charge of
he put and*
all of it
he clothed himself with (and)‡
*"he put in charge of" is written above "he didn't have", which has been crossed out.
†/u/ is inserted above the line with a caret.
‡"every bit of it —- himself" has been crossed out.

 


 

waúⁿdjeje
rohíra
x’óx’e
hákikáraníje
[ε´]
waų́ježe.
Rohíra
x’óx’e
hákikáraníže.
Gáją
[he did thus.]*
His body
[frail from holiness]†
he held himself.‡
Now
*the interlinear has, "he had".
†the interlinear has, "holy event" (?).
‡this is written above "he carried himself" which has been crossed out.

 


 

siⁿdjerá
wariríchi[ε´]
waxop’íni
tcitcabiréra
hocicigera†
sįjerá
wariríšhigáją,
waxop’íni
čičabiréra
hošišigera
his tail
he wriggled it bent*
spirits
[their lodge]
the evil ones‡
*"wiggled" has been crossed out and "wriggled" written above it.
†this word is followed by "(djasgá[τ´])", that is, a parenthetical djasgágíji.
‡the interlinear has, "the bad".

 


 

hanáⁿtciⁿ[9]
howucgúninégi
hoisiⁿtc´
rehíje
wogúⁿzotcíra
haną́čįxjį
howušgúninégi
hoisįč´
rehíže.
Wogų́zočíra
everyone of them
[to the bad place]*
to sweep
he pushed away.
The Creation Lodge
*"bad" has been crossed out and "north" written above it.

 


 

sisíⁿtciⁿ*
rukirikíri
kíridjéhije
tciókisag honaⁿjíⁿna
sisį́čį
rukirikíri
kírijéhiže.
Čiókisag Honąžį́na
neat and clean
shimmering and glittering
[it became.]
He Who Stands in the Middle of the Lodge
*this is followed by, "([γ´]cana)", which is to say, a parenthetical háⁿpcana.

 


 

hodázóbera
rotcáⁿ
djidjehíje
herécgera
maⁿxí
hotázóbera
ročą́
jijehíže,
heréšgera.
Mąxí
blaze of fire*
straight
[it was made to become,]
he the very one even.
Clouds
*this was written above, "hole in sealing in roof of tent", which was crossed out.

 


 

cicígera
djasgákijí
hanaⁿtciⁿ[9]
yowucgúnina*
hoisiⁿtc´
šišígera
jasgákiží
hanąčįxjį
yowušgúnina*
hoisįč´
the evil ones
[how]
all of them
in the bad place
to sweep
*normally this would be howucgúnina, but the previous word ended in /iⁿ/ and was somewhat elided with its successor, forming an /iⁿo/ which by sandhi is normally transformed into /y/.

 


 

rehíje
[τ´]
haⁿberácana
karapiésge[9]
kiridjéhíje
rehíže
gíži.
Hąberášana
karapiésgexjį
kirijéhíže.
[pushed away]
[.]
Day only
perfect
[he made it.]

 


wakírihokéreúⁿna
djágu
rokaraíresge
naⁿjíⁿje*
tcekdjíⁿna
Wakírihokéreų́na
jágu
rokaraíresge
nąžį́že.
Čekjį́na
The web maker
[what]
they seemed to be suspended†
as it stood.
The very first
*immediately after this word, hoidje djobóhaⁿ ruhaídjegí siwaígizára has been crossed out.
†the interlinear has, "they seemed to be working for to make room".

 


 

p. 267 —
ruhaídje[ε´]
hikorókehiwira
híⁿtcaberá
ok’cuⁿkcuédja
hip’á
ruhaíjegáją,
hikorókehiwira
hį́čaberá
ok’šųkšuéja
hip’á
(after) he took a step,
Our Grandmother*
our
up to the elbow†
up to
*the interlinear has, "the earth".
†this is written above, "about the wrist" which has been crossed out.

 


 

gipógidjehije
asáⁿniⁿgédja
ruhaídjehí[ε]
hitcuⁿcge
gikarádjiréra
gipógijehiže.
Asą́nįgéja
ruhaíjehígają
"Hičųšge"
gikarájiréra
he penetrated.
The other arm
he placed it
"Nephew"
the one they call*
*below hitcuⁿcge gigipógidjehije, the word "Snow" is written in large letters.

 


 

sáⁿwaⁿxdjiⁿ.
Nuⁿ?sáⁿwaⁿxdjiⁿ
hidjehíje
ok’cuⁿc’uédjap’a
gidjehíje
są́wąxjį.
Nų?są́wąxjį
hijehíže.
Ok’šųš’uéjap’a
gijehíže.
[he sank.]
To penetrate*
[he extended.]
Up to his elbow
he took his step.
*before this expression, the word "foot" has been crossed out.

 


 

waizidanína
ruhaídje[ε´]
hikórokehiwíra
híⁿtcaberá
Waizitanína
ruhaíjegáją,
Hikórokehiwíra
hį́čaberá
The third limb
[when he placed it,]
Our Grandmother
our

 


 

hax’ixdjiⁿ
ok’cuⁿk’cuédjip’a
gipókgidjehíje
waízairuágera
hax’ixjį
ok’šųk’šuéjip’a
gipókgijehíže.
Waízairuágera
quite ripened*
up to his elbow
he penetrated.
His raised limb
*this is written over "same distance as the other" which has been crossed out.

 


 

ruhaídjehígadjaⁿ
hitcúⁿcge
gikáradjiréra
hohótciⁿ
ruhaíjehígają,
"Hičų́šge"
gikárajiréra
hohóčį
when he put it down,
"Nephew"
the one they call
fine and powdered*
*the interlinear has, "fine dry" written over, "loose powdered" which has been crossed out. The Road of Life and Death has "fine and powdered".

 


 

ok’cuⁿk’cuédja
híp’á
gipokgidjehíje
tciróbikérera
hinug
ok’šųk’šuéja
híp’á
gipokgijehíže.
Čiróbikérera
hinug
to the elbow
up to
he penetrated.
[Coming to the entrance,]*
female†
*the interlinear has "door", after which "piece" has been crossed out and "flap" written above it, but that too was crossed out.
†"he was" has been crossed out. Above it is written "woman" and below it is written "female".

 


 

hirakírus
wak’aⁿ
tcorá
wáⁿgera
hoicórorá
hirakírus
wak’ą
čorá
wą́gera
hoišórorá
[with them himself]*
snake
green
male†
the right
*the interlinear has only "with".
†"men" is crossed out, and "male" written below it, but it too has been crossed out only to have "male" rewritten below it.

 


 

hokéreje
wak’áⁿna
waⁿk’djegá
hoicororokéreje
hinukdjega
hokéreže.
Wak’ą́na
wąk’jegá
hoišororokéreže.
Hinukjega
he placed it.
The snake
the male
[he placed it to the right.]
The female

 


 

hoirátcgera
hokéreje*
wak’áⁿnaⁿka
akíwaké
wánidjinóg[ρ´]
hoiráčgera
hokéreže.
Wak’ą́nąka
akíwaké
wánijinógánąga
the left
he placed.
The snakes
both
he grabbed and
*after this word, tciróbera hakdjá has been crossed out.

 


 

wáruksuⁿksuⁿtcce
[τ´]
hikórokehiwíra
djadjaiⁿxdjiaⁿki
jedjaíⁿxdjiⁿ
wáruksųksųčše,
gíži.
Hikórokehiwíra
jajaįxjiąki,
žejaį́xjį
he shook them
[.]
Our Grandmother
how far it is*
that far
*below djadjaiⁿxdjiaⁿki jedjaíⁿxdjiⁿ, Radin has written, "as deep as the earth".

 


 

p. 268 —
wowadjas
hidjehíje
[ϕ]
kiuⁿnépini
hidjewahíje
wowajas
hijehíže.
Hąké
kiųnépini
hijewahíže.
he pushed them in*
[to go there.]
Not
they couldn't be loose
he placed them.
*"he tightened them" has been crossed out, and above the Hočąk line, "push in" has also been crossed out. Above this is written, "he pushed them in".

 


 

tciróbera
hakdjá
hoidú
kíriníⁿki
[γ]
Čiróbera
hakjá
hoitú
kírinį́ki.
Hą́bera
The door
back
he threw it*
he did.
The light*
*the translation in the interlinear has "the day".

 


 

hokiwásik
tciókiságedja
rugigís
kírinaⁿk híje
[γ]
hokiwásik
čiókiságeja
rugigís
kírinąk híže.
Hą́bera
half of it
within the center of the lodge
[full]*
he made it appear.
Light
*"round-like" was crossed out.

 


 

hokíwasik
haníhinóp
gikérejé
níⁿgecána
háⁿbamanína
hokíwasik
haníhinóp
gikérežé.
Nį́gešána
Hą́bamanína
half of it
he took out
he did.
Here and there
the Light Walkers

 


 

warawá
t’aⁿhihíⁿpce
niⁿgecána
warawá
warawá
t’ąhihį́pše.
Nįgešána
warawá
with something in their mouths
they were flying.
Here and there
with something in their mouths

 


 

hihíⁿpce
maⁿnégeréra.
hihį́pše,
mąnégeréra.
[they were moving on,]
the earthly ones.

 


Source:

Untitled, in Paul Radin, Winnebago Notebooks, Freeman #3876 (Philadelphia: American Philosophical Library, n.d.) Winnebago II, #7: 265-268; an English translation exists in Paul Radin, The Road of Life and Death: A Ritual Drama of the American Indians. Bollingen Series V (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1973 [1945]) 333-334.