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
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

 


 

maniságe
niñgenàñkšaną.
Hinųbóhąna
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.