Hočąk Text — The Osage Massacre

narrated by John Hazen Hill (Xetenišaraga)

Near the upper left of this document is a large handwritten "15". In the upper right corner, written vertically from bottom to top, is "Story no 5.". The title is centered about 3 inches from the top in two typewritten lines as indicated below. The document is a typescript, and therefore has excellent legibility. However, there are virtually no diacritical marks whatever. Those found in the text presented here have been supplied where the lexical material justified it. The orthography is strikingly similar to that of the 1903 Bible, which suggests that the material was among the earliest that Radin processed, since he quickly abandoned this form of orthography. Some of its unusual features are tabulated below:

g gk j jh ph sh sr xh
g or k uncertain j or č č p š or ž s’a ǧ

That /sr/ = /s’a/ is very unusual and is found elsewhere only in the 1903 Bible. Missing altogether is the stop (’). In repairing these deficiencies, I have adopted the late Radin orthography. The English lines are handwritten in pencil by an unidentified translator. As interlinear translations, they are more sentence by sentence than word for word.

Whether due to dialect or to inaccurate phonetic interpretation, there is a systematic shift from the standard /š/ in many words to an /s/: Waraš > Waras, šge > sge, mąšją > mąsją, hąkerešge > hąkeresge; on the other hand, we have wakišara for wakisara. Also hąké, hąkaga, hąkeresge, hąkaga’ų, are de-aspirated: ąké, ąkaga, ąkeresge, ąkaga’ų. We also have the common use of the extremely rare, ariea-, "to say".

English Translation


Title —
Worak . . . . Te . . . . E . . . .
[Story] [this] [it]


Xeteiš[a]ragka . . . . E . . . . Horakš[a]na
[Wren] [he] [he told it]



p. 1 —
Égi Seseke Nišnągeja Hočągra mįnąk hireregi,
[And] on the Turkey River the Hočągara they lived when they did,



hotá hiromą́hąja hisgé nąkíkara hararegiže.
some up the river also to hunt when they were living there.



Éja hahí činąk’ų, hagorežą wąkra
There they went [while from the village,] one day the men



wažóni harahiregają, egixjį hotojahižą wawirajiže.
on a hunt when they were, when a warparty they came upon them.



Warasra wa’ųhahireže. Janąga wąkšik xetenigra
Osages they were. All people the old ones



hijakiže, égi hinukrasge haną́č t’ewahireže.
that were there, and the women also all of them they killed.



Égi hijihakarahieže. Wąkwažonira ’ųnąk’ų haga
Then they went away. The hunters [finally] [in time]



hakiri hiregają, tee mahojawahireže.
they returned home when they did, [these] they were all killed.



Ésge wąknąka wa’ųhireže. Janąga t’ehirega
So [these men] [they did it.] [As many as] their dead



haną́č rokíkewé wagigihiranąga égi pįhiwakžu
all to paint their faces [they did and] then to lay them away



hireže. Égi žejąga waruxé hara[i]reže.
[they did.] And then to take up the trail they went.



Ûhanihahireže. Égi ’ųnąk’ų hagorežą tee
They kept on. [And] finally [in time] them



éja hakarahahireže. Hočįnčįn hižą hijahorok
[there] they were going on.* Young man a with them
*the translation has, "they sighted them going on in front of them".



ųgiže. Joweja honųwąkše. Wąkra higusagre
[he was.] Ahead he ran. The men they were fleet of foot



hiranagųnį. Žegų wawirušarač maníže. Žegųhijahahi,
[he must have done.] But he ran right away from them [as they went.] [As he went,]



xawaniže. Tee hijahahiregają, wąkra wakišara.†
he disappeared.* They when they got there, the man he was fighting them.
*the translation adds, "into the distance".
†more commonly, wakisara, or wakizara.



’Ûxjįže. Že žegųhahi, wawoǧaranąga t’ewahiježe.
[He did much.] [This one] [as he went along,] he would catch up to them and he would kill one.



Mąsją* wąkra rokanaže, ųke† higisge pinįže.
[Mighty] [the man] he was great, not not to be equalled.
*more commonly, mąšją.
†for hąke.



Nuwąknaįna gáske, hahiwoǧaranąga nasurawamajes’aže.
They (tried to) run when, he would catch up to them and he would scalp them.*
*since maje is used in the Gospel of Luke to mean "circumcise," a more literal translation of nasurawamajes’aže would seem to be, "he would circumcise their heads," which might also mean that he decapitated them, although the imagery is consistent with scalping as well.



Ûkeresge* wąkwawirana įježe. Rohaxjį t’ehiregi,
[Never] he did not consider them to be men. Many of them when they had been killed,
*for hąkerešge.



wagirusją hireže, arieagają, ešana žegųtowe
to stop [they did,] they decided, but [he alone] he kept right on



ųraheže. Ésge rokaragiǧiregają, mąsjąwogitekše.
[he did.] So they told him to stop but he got [mighty] angry.



Wawagéže, "Hojišáną jaguwašąnik? Hiwahíwira
He said to them, "[Just] [how can you say that?] Our relatives



t’ewahirege jeniege, haną́č t’ehiwahiwije, hišawihare
they killed, so all of them we must kill, you said.



Jagú’ų égi wanihekwiže?" wawigéže,
[How] [then] you relent?" He said to them,



"Teeži ųke* wagitusjąnįjeneną,"* anąga žigé
["But] not I will not stop," he said, and again
*for hąké. This word is run together with its successor.



wat’ųbgają, žigé rogiǧireže. Ésge, éja
he rushed for them, but again they pleaded with him. Therefore, [there]



wąknįkra* xakanąga exjį t’ekįže. Hočįnčįn†
[the young man] he wept and himself he killed himself. The young man
*this word is followed by three dots, which is normally a sign of a diaeresis, but in this case may simply be a typographical error.
†this word is conjoined with the previous one (by mistake).



tee wąk rokana* hižą h[irenu]nige†
this man great a he was, but
*the text reads, te ewangrokana.
†the bracket letters reflect an area of the typescript that is obliterated from running ink due, apparently, to water damage.



p. 2 —
wa[k]ik’ųže.* Ček wonaǧire’ųgają, éja wakik’ųže.†
he did thus. First he did this in battle, and there [he did thus.]
*the ink has run in the typescript, obliterating the letter in brackets; wa[k]i and k’ųže are separated by a space as if they were two words.
†again written as waki k’ųže, as if it were two words.



Wąkra woinįkižą* hočįnčįn tee, égi
The man a great loss young man [this,] and
*written as woinigkiže.



Sinįhogiwega higahireže. Wąknunįk hižą Wakąjaxetega*
Goes Where It is Cold it was his name. Old man a Big Thunder
*written as Wakanžaxe tega.



higahiregiži, e hinik hižą,* Sinįhogiwega,
he is called, he son [a,] Goes Where It is Cold,
*this and the previous word are conjoined as hiniǧishe.



e Čapósgaga higahiregi, e hiąč
he Čapósgaga* [is called,] he father
*this name is never translated, but it means "White Breast".



hižą arieašųnųną. Ésge Wakąjaxetejega exjį
[a] they say. [So] Big Thunder himself



Čapósgaga nąč hojaže.* Ésge, wakąjąkše,† arieną.
Čapósgaga he had blessed. Therefore, he was holy, it is said.
*these words were written as, žaposgaganaž hožashe.
†this was written as, waka n žakshe.



Wąkšik te točąhahirare, žee hižą
People these the one who led them on the warpath, [that one] one



wačožuhigižą wąkwašošehižą herenagųnį. Égi wosgana
leader [they had] a brave man he was. But the rituals
*the typescript ends this word in /e/.



ųké* égi pįhinige. Ésge éja
not [here] he did not do well. Therefore there
*for hąké.



t’ehireže. Huhikere hogiži, weže, "Égi
he was killed. To come (toward) when he was ready, he had said, ["And]



nįkjąknįkwanira hižą higi t’era,* ésge wa’ųtejeneną,"
my children one [for me] they have killed, that is why I am going,"
*the last three words are run together as hishahigitera.



éže. Žee wažąhižą gušigixjį howaji
he said. That a thing [over there] [to come]



wąkšik xetenįkra roǧixjį hireną. Te Waras
the old people to forbid very much they did. [This] Osage



wąkwašošenąka wéže, "Nįkjąknįk hanira Hočąk
the brave (warrior) he said, "Child my* Winnebago
*the translation has, "my child's grave".



nasura hižą hija wawagikereje hihéra.
[head]* a [there] it would be put I said.
*translated as "scalp".



Ésge wa’ųteną," éže.* Ésge, že
That is why I am going," he said. [Therefore,] that
*run together with the last word thus: wautenaeshe.



hawa’ų́ t’ehirega* wa’ųhireže, arieašųnųną.
that is why they killed him† [they did it,] it is said.
*run together with the previous word, thus: hawautehirega.
†the translation has, "that is what killed him".



Žee wažąhižą Hočągra ųkaga’ų* hiranįže,
That a thing the Hočągara they never did they did not,
*for hąkaga’ų.



arieną. Wąkšik wowąkhiranunige hagahira wažąra
it is said. [People] they were bad, but sometimes some things



hižąži nąkewe hires’aže. Égi wonąǧire
[at least one] afraid they would be. [And] to war



’ųra gipihiregejeni.* Wonąǧireja wanąǧi haehira
to do they liked. At war the dead to speak of
*these two words are rendered as uragiphi hiregeženi.



roǧireną. Žee wažąhižą tee égi
it was forbidden. That [a thing] this [here]



Waras wąkwašoše hižą exjį wokigaweže.
Osage brave [a] himself he might as well have given himself over.



Ésge t’ešišik ’ųže. Žee nįkjąknįk
That was why he died a bad death [he did.] [That one] children



hižą git’eki ųké* žežesge epinigają,
one (because) he died not [that way] [it was not better, and]
*for hąké.



wéže. Hosge Wonąǧire Hirukanara žeže[s]ge higirege,
he said it. [Truly] the One in Charge of Wars thus so he thought,



žeže[s]ge howegają hirewahigają teže[s]ge howahires’agi.
thus he fared and [so it seems and] thus [it should have fared.]



Ésge, wąkra hižą točą wačožujega
Therefore, man a warpath [the leader]



kewesiwixjį hiranąga égi jagu marač*
taking notice of all these things [he does and] then [how] he plans
*run together with the previous word, thus: žagumaraž.



hirejega ’ųhires’aže. Wąkšik xetenįkra ariašųnųną. Hižą
[he does] it is usually (done). The old people so they say. One



wowewira pįga, hoišib hopi howes’aže.
to have thinking qualities if it is good, always well he always fares.



Aireną (?)* Wąkšigra hokíkų hajirare. Égi
Thus they said, the Indians in their advise to one another [who came.] [And]
*this is written aržirena.



ženąga kira nąxgųna* worak tee.
the end about all [I know] story this.
*this is run together with the previous word thus, kiranaxguna.



John Hazen Hill (Xetenicaraga), Untitled, in Paul Radin, Winnebago Notebooks (Philadelphia: American Philosophical Society, ca. 1908) Notebook 66, Story 5, 1-2.