Hočąk Text — The Story of How Little Priest went out as a Soldier

narrated by John Harrison


Harrison Family History
Captain John Harrison

English Translation


Style
A highly unusual tendancy to put positional words postpositionally after the end of the sentence. Haikšḯ-inéną, hosgsíja. ("They surrounded him, on the open prairie.") ... t’e hereną, éja. ("... they killed him, there.")
This has a temporal analogue, with a dependent temporal clause placed postpositionally after the end of the sentence: mąna haǧákšaną, wat’ǫ́pga. ("the arrows were thick, when he rushed them.")
Generally, postpositional material is the rule despite the fact that the opposite is normal.
Frequent use of the epistemological sentence terminator, -ną, indicating first-hand knowledge, with very little use of the complementary -že, indicating lack of first-hand knowledge. The suffix -ną is also used at places in sentences where other narrators would not employ it.
Extensive external sandhi resulting in the frequent dropping of the initial /h/ of the second word.
An unusually high frequency in the use of the word aírégi, "as they say".
Use of the rare word gini, "to get back".
The word sik’ų́ for "ankle" is unattested elsewhere.
Occasional English words embedded in Hočąk: sitiéja = city-éja; many names are given in English, others in Hočąk; and whites are quoted in English.

Title

Hųk Xúnuga manąpe
Priest Little Soldier

kįhigi worágera teéreną.
He Went Out as the story this is it.

 


 

Page 224*
Čekjína 1865-regi ua’uąnáireną,
First in 1865 they started and they went,
*at the upper left of the page inside a box is written, "There is another copy of this 27/2 '45".

 


 

Omaha Sitiéja hahí wainína wakúrus
in Omaha City where clothes they got them

 


 

eréną, šųk-xeterášge égi éja sánįk
they did, and horses, and there side

 


 

wi-oiréra hapá hiréną. Čekjína nąwačížą
the west there they were. First a fort

 


 

hirahíregi, "Fort Carnie" higáiregi, aíreną. Eja
they came to, "Fort Kearny" which they called, it is said. There

 


 

ček nįxetéžą haručáiregi, Nįpárazera heréną.
first a large river they crossed, the Platte River it is.

 


 

tee haručera nų́wáwǫkisgèną, pązákera
[Water] this to cross it is dangerous, the sand

 


 

horusu’us’aže, airéną. Wi-oiréra hoíšip hapahírežę,
as it draws one in, it is said. The west straight towards,

 


 

Page 225
aíreną. Éja žigé nąwáčagížą čawaíregi,
it is said. There again a fort they went towards,

 


 

hoišíp waišjára ’ųhirániheže, aíreną. Fort Larmie*
all the time scouts they traveled, it is said. Fort Laramie
*sic.

 


 

aíregi, hinąbáhiną, nąwáčak žée hirahíreną.
they said, the second time, fort that they came to.

 


 

Hitaníhǫna čanišánañk, aíregi éja hiréną.
The third deer-river, they say there [they were.]

 


 

Hijobóhǫna Xéxete Xe aíregi, eja
The fourth time Big Hill they say, where

 


 

waíreže, aíreną hisgéja. Éja žige
[it is said of it,] they say a mighty one. There again

 


 

Page 226
hirahíreną Fort Reno aíregi, éreną, Ųxíni Nišónañk
they came to Fort Reno which it is said, it is, Powder Creek

 


 

aíregi, éja éreną. Éja žigé
[as they say], there it is. There again

 


 

haraíregi, wanioíčgera čék éja róhą
[as] they went forth, animals first there many

 


 

hajaíreną — mąčóra, šuñkčúñgere, huwą́na — hisgéja
they saw — grizzly bears, wolves, elk — truly

 


 

čúįžé, aíreną. Rézinišònañk aírégi, éja
many, it is said. Tongue River [as they say,] there

 


 

žige hahiréną. Éja Pájoke kizairéną.
again they went forth There Arapahos they fought.

 


 

Hųñk Xúnuga huwéja oiréną,* hañké hobóhabirenìną
Little Priest in the leg they shot, not it did not pierce through
*an initial /ho/ was crossed out.

 


 

Page 227
waxu rogáje ’ų́na, ásgi nąt’ísše,*
leather breeches [he had made,] so that it was merely swollen,
*corrected from nant’ísže.

 


 

nunigé ép’a hirarúti honihéžą* hirakára
but from there a wagon train scouting
*literally, "one that pulls along a group".

 


 

haraíreną, Xé Xete Nióñka. ép’a wakížu hohiréną,
they went, Big Hill Creek. From there with they went,

 


 

Yellowstone Park, ánoñka. Éja éreną, éja
"Yellowstone Park," it is called. There it was, there

 


 

Fort Rainer, aíregi, é-owagirèną, Hotáži éja
Fort Rainer, it is said, they went by. Some there

 


 

homanínekjé, wigaíreną. "Bright Feather" higaíregi Hočañgížą
they will winter over, they told them. "Bright Feather" as they call him, a Hočąk

 


 

Page 228
wéną, "K’éni jobóhoni* hížą t’e
he said, "Before four [o'clock] one to kill
*an /i/ is written above an original terminal /a/. See next occurrence of this word on the next line.

 


 

wañgírekjonàwiną." Hisgé wéną, k’éni jobóhani
they are going to do to us." Truly he spoke, before four [o'clock],

 


 

Hočáñgižą Wak’ą́ Sgaga higaíregi, t’e hiréną,
a Hočąk "White Snake" named, to kill [they did,]

 


 

éja. Žégų haną́č hawénainèną. Wënánegi
there. Thus throughout they pursued them. In spring

 


 

hąbížą hagá Huñk Xúnuga Hočáñgera wawagéną,
a day once Little Priest Hočągara he told them,

 


 

"Hąp tée hąp séreč wakízakjanèną," ánoñga.
"This day the entire day I will fight," he said.

 


 

Hočáñgera táni hokížuánañga e hijóp
The Hočągara three with them he fourth

 


 

Page 229
jikeréną. Wakížurèga Henry Decora, John Bonaparte, Benjamin Chambers
he went. There he went with Henry Decora, John Bonaparte, Benjamin Chambers

 


 

heréreną. Huñk Xúnuga hižuksárahi xónuniñgìžą hani-ánañga
they were. Little Priest rifle a small one he took, and

 


 

inéki hahí hišgé niñge čawéną,
alone there also someplace* he went towards,
*"anything" was crossed out, and "someplace" written above it.

 


 

mąwigųs´ kereponaížaxjį hohíregàją wa’úną. Šuñkxéte
miles [about ten]* when they got he did it. Horse
*the translation has "about twenty".

 


 

sageréžą háminañk wa’úną. Éja hahí
a swift one to ride he did it. There on the way

 


 

Page 230
Uañkšígera kerepónenųp wa’úną, Huñk Xúnuga ruxaíreną.
Indians twenty [they did it], Little Priest they chased after.

 


 

Hočúñk táni wakížurega xe huñkšížą
Hočąks three he went with hill a high one

 


 

éja horužújenàñkšaną. Gijiréra rušákirèną, hagéšge,
there they were looking at him. To help him, they could not, besides,

 


 

"Rohañgáją t’e ’úinékjonawigàją," hiraíregi, ásge
"There are too many, to kill they will do it to us," they thought, so

 


 

hakjá nąwáčagèja wórak hakaraíreną. Hagírera
back to the fort to tell they went back. When they got there

 


 

waíreną, "Huñk Xúnuga t’e híreną, hagí,"
they said, "Little Priest to kill they did, there,"

 


 

aíreną. Huñk Xúnuga hišgé gają wa’ųjéną.
[they said]. Little Priest still out there he was it.

 


 

Page 231
Hoxarahu’ìrege, ásge hiwušánañga t’ą́pšaną, mówe
Whenever they came close, so he stopped, and he dismounted, on foot

 


 

wakizáną. Ho-’ų́jega* hogígiñx maínja mą́na
he fought them. Where he was around on the ground the arrows
*this word was written, corrected, then crossed out and written again in the succeeding space.

 


 

haǧákšaną, wat’ǫ́pga. Éja žigé s’iníñk
they were thick, when he rushed them. There again long time

 


 

howáres’àži, ’ų́ja’ų šuñkxétera t’egigiránañga, haikšé-inèną,
he would go, finally his horse they killed, and they surrounded him

 


 

hosgaíja. Žesgánunigi, íni xetéžą éja
on the open prairie. But even then, stone a large one there

 


 

nañkíži, éja ginberą́i-àñkšaną, nunigé k’éni
it was, there he tried to get it, but before

 


 

éja gíni, jobóhą oíreną, máñgoišarèja
there he got, four times they shot him, in the right breast

 


 

Page 232
hižériną. Žigégų máñgera haručé bopáraš
it went. Again then the breast crosswise, a flesh wound

 


 

hiréną, híneč oišáro nañkéja. Žigížą
it made, shoulder right behind. Again one

 


 

oiréną, égi rečáwašų kųhaį́ja žigižéreną,
they shot, and navel below again it was one,

 


 

k’éni íni žíja* gíni. Hišgé
before stone at he got. Also
* > ži-eja ?

 


 

hížą t’ehiánañga p’ára mąšižánañga égi
one he killed, and his head he cut off, and and

 


 

šuñkxetéžą hamináñgenañk’uéregi, p’a mąšížiràgera žégų
a horse now he was riding, head it was cut off so

 


 

sik’ų́* e ianiéja hirogišgéže. E
ankle he his he tied it. He
*this form for the word for ankle is unattested anywhere else.

 


 

Page 233
añke giázenikjegèjeni žeguánañga hišgé hat’ǫ́berašge.
not he did not run away and then also he came forward.

 


 

Nañkáwairèną, hišgížą t’ehíkjane, hiraírege, ásgé hinejéja
They were afraid also one of them to be killed, they thought, so in the shoulder

 


 

oírega égi maínja kinebšáną. Ásge
they shot him and to the ground he fell. So

 


 

t’ǫbiránañga mówe hat’ǫ́birèną, p’ára mąšížirèkjege.
they rushed towards him on foot, they jumped for it, his head to cut it off.

 


 

Ásge hijaxją́ hiregáją, kikáwa ánañge
So to get to him when they did, he rose up and

 


 

Page 234
hižúgera kurusáną. Šuñkxetéja ’únañk’ų žigé
his gun he took. To the horse, finally again

 


 

hagíreną, ásge iniéja gíną, égišge,
they got to, so to the rock he got to, besides,

 


 

hijowáred[ž]a nañkáwairèną. Éja minogánañga hagaíra
to go there they were afraid There he sat and sometimes

 


 

wagučs’áže, aíreną. Gájuñga, Huñk Xúnuga uañkšík
he would take a shot at them, it is said. And then Little Priest's people

 


 

wakížura maną́pera táni hakížu hajíreną,
with them soldiers three with they came,

 


 

núnige hají aǧébirerèja Pajók anañgere
but he came within sight, Arapahos there

 


 

wajairéną, ásge giázireną. Huñk Xúnuga t’ák’ų
they saw them, so they ran away. Little Priest he was dead

 


 

Page 235
hahírekjone, hiránañk’ų tée. Niąbóñkšaną nunigé
they would come, they were thinking this. He was alive, but

 


 

t’erušjáñxjį wawáñkšaną. Ásge t’ekjonéže, hiraíneną,
about dead he was it. So he was about to die, they thought,

 


 

ásge Hočúñgera. Wa-i-ót’ǫbirànañga nąwačágera haníčawaìreną.
so Hočągara they put him in a blanket, and the fort they took him towards.

 


 

Wa-i-ópasèra waruháp’irànañgá hižúgera éja howažą́
The corners of the blanket they punched holes, and their guns there they ran through

 


 

wirókikinañgirèną, mąwigós nų́pji. Hágiregàją éja
they carried him, miles about two. [When they returned,] there

 


 

Page 236
hokáwazirèną, čékjį. Hahírega. Éja Huñk Xúnuga
it was dark, the first time. They got there. There Little Priest

 


 

šuñgáminañk húkarohòną, heréną. Uañkšígera hahírera.
on a horse ready to come, he was. The people they got there.

 


 

Žégų wanąį́na xawaníną égi xúra
So his consciousness it left him and his skin

 


 

sgaxjíną žesga núnige hoišíp hit’et’éną,
turned white even but always he spoke,

 


 

"Hó! Huwínani, huwínani," amiñkšáną. Haįséreč
"Hó! Come on, come on," he said. All night

 


 

hañké wanąį ču-iníną, hąpjįgają, gájuñga,
not consciousness he did not have, then about daylight, then,

 


 

hipérezšàną, égi gájuñga wanáñǧi hirarút’ira
he came to, and then the ghost wagon (hearse)

 


 

Page 237
hániąjìreną, éja hot’ǫ́birànañga, nąwačágera howániañkaraìreną.
they brought, there they put him, and the fort they took him.

 


 

Jobóhąnegi Mąčó nañgiwaínekjanèną, Uañkšík. Manąpéžą
For four days Grizzly Bear [Songs] they sang for him, Indians. A soldier

 


 

hočisági Huñk Píñga higaíregi éja haniąhíreną,
he used to live "Good Chief," whom they called there they took him,

 


 

wa-í-ot’ǫp ru-aínanañga mąčó xop kiñkjége,
in a blanket they carried him, and grizzly bear power he could make it for himself,

 


 

ásge nañgíwairèną. Čegéja hixgą́na rušokšáną.
so they sang for him. At first to move he could not.

 


 

Page 238
Kunu xétega Southwind e nañgiwáną, Hočáñgera
First-born the large one Southwind him they sang for him, Hočąks

 


 

kéreponaižañxjį waši-ákižùną, nąnóka wa-u-inéną, taniwóruhinjràšaną
about ten they danced with him, naked they did it, save for their breechcloths

 


 

’u-inéną. Huñk Xónuga čoníneją mąčóžą heréže,
[they did.] Little Priest before this a grizzly bear he was,

 


 

wigéną, ásge rúšjankiñkjège wa-ú-įñkarohoìreną. Nąwą́na
he told him, so so that he could cure himself they were doing this. The song

 


 

jirehíregi, Huñk Xónuga ną́bisawanìñgera hixgáñxgą wohíjirèną.
when they started, Little Priest his finger tips to move he started to do it.

 


 

Page 239
’Úwañk’ų, ára haną́č hixgáñxgą híną.
Finally, his arm whole he moved he did.

 


 

’Únañk’ų mináñkšaną. Ronóñgere wašígigìjirèną.* ’Únañk’ų,
At last he sat up. His body they made it dance. Finally,
*the second /gì/ is inserted above the line with a caret.

 


 

nąžíną, nunige hačuñgére ročą́ kikéreną.
he stood up, but with great effort straight he could stand himself up.

 


 

Čegéja p’įhíniñk maníjikerèną, číra hogígiñx
At first easy he started to walk, the house around

 


 

hijanénañka ho’únañka é-ogiweną. Čiokiságeja mąwárupuru
the others going he went that way. In the middle of the room mound

 


 

niñgenàñkšaną. Hinųbóhąna maniságe hogigíñxšaną.
there was. The second time he walked faster he went around it.

 


 

Page 240
Hitaníhǫna čówexjį waší hogigíñxšaną. Hijobóhǫna,
The third time a little he danced as he went around. The fourth time,

 


 

gájuñga, mąšją́ waší hogigíñxšaną. Čiókisàgeja
now then, hard he danced as he went around. To the middle of the room,

 


 

kirináñkšaną mąwárupùrurèja ną́bera wakére-anañga égi
he came back on the mound his hand he put, and [then]

 


 

ho-orá wikáwažàną, haną́č. Éja rušją́
wound he rubbed it, all of them. There to be healed

 


 

wahí, nunigé nañkéjajegàšaną hañké rušjáñxjį
he did it, but it was only on the back not quite well

 


 

harágenìną, hačuñgére hikijúñge. Ásge haíninegi
[to make it well,] with great effort so he reached it So in the morning

 


 

Page 241
Uañkšígera Wakjé waširéną. Huñk Xúnuga híną, ásge
The Indians Victory Dance they danced. Little Priest he went, so

 


 

Mąnhí Xetéra waíreną, "Little Priest, you must be a devil," higairéną.
the white people they said, "Little Priest, you must be a devil," they said.

 


Source:

John Harrison, "The Story of Little Priest," Paul Radin, Winnebago Notebooks, Winnebago III, #11a, Freeman #3892 (Philadelphia: American Philosophical Society) 224-241 (= 269-286). Told in June, 1908. The end of this was translated and published in Paul Radin, The Winnebago Tribe (Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, 1990 [1923]) 300-301.