Hočąk Text — The Seer


Two pagination systems are represented in the MS by the numeral "131" in the upper left hand corner within a box, and the numeral "1" in the upper right corner. Centered at the top of the first page is,

6.

The Seer

wažą́ja wórak

This is its title ("Story of the Seer"). Two lines below this the text begins with each sentence numbered and each paragraph indented about 40% of a line. The text is in single spaced Hočąk only. It is written in pen, probably in the hand of Paul Radin. The handwriting is clear and with very good definition.

The translation is very loose, so there are a great many words whose meanings had to be supplied from other sources. These are indicated by being placed inside brackets, "[ ]".


English Translation


 

p. 1 = 131 —
Wąk-hížą eja té-hížą-nąkgi hajági, hogizókjį
A man there [a lake having sat] [when he saw it,] very holy one

 


 

ténąka karahiésgexjį̀že. Xe niš hičgís
this lake [it appeared very much to be.] [Hills] shores [perpendicular]

 


 

žesgéja mínąkše,* níšnąka hihákra wazi
[in that way] [they lay,] [those shores] [the surface] pine trees
*the text has mínąkže. Generally, where -že follows a consonant, the text has been corrected to read -še.

 


 

hažúirera. Wą́kjega ténąka horuxúč nąži-ánąga,
they abounded. The man this lake watching he stood and

 


 

wéže, "Ténąke wogízokjį te wákąčąkiàre;*
he said, ["This (?) lake] must indeed lake [it is a sacred one;]
*Radin adds the following after this word, "[wakąčąk-hižą-here ?]".

 


 

waxopíni waráčire jaxjį́žą te e
spirits various who lake it

 


 

hirukonąkgi hiréže. Nįgíži*
preside over they did. Over this place
*Radin adds after this word, "-[nįge-ži ?]". I take it to be for nįge-giži.

 


 

hirukonąk-gìži, waxopíni waráčire xetéxjį
being in control, spirits various extremely powerful

 


 

wažą wa-ąkgúni. E náįxjįra waičekgéže;
thing [they must be]. I [wish that] I were young again;

 


 

tégi* hątáginąč-ànąga† yapéresną’į̀ną." Egi wéže,
right here I would fast and [I know I would try."] Then he said,
*Radin adds after this word, "[te-égi]".
†Radin inserts with an arrow after this word, "[hąte-haginąč-]".

 


 

"Jagú hiháji? Hinįk-hára egi hątáginąč
"What am I saying? My son here fast

 


 

hagigíkje," hiregíži. Žegų kerežé. Gi-giži
I shall make him," [he thought.] Then he went home. As soon as he arrived

 


 

wa’ųžé. Hižą́-hinįk-hìgi hątáginąč hočí-hižą gi’ų́že,
[he did it.] One for his son to stay to fast [a lodge] he constructed,

 


 

ténąka-èja. Égi hakaražíxjįže, anąga egi
[at this lake.] And [he strongly encouraged him,] and then

 


 

gúži. Mąni sérečį eja hątáginą́č.
[he, at least, went back home.] Winter long there he fasted.

 


 

p. 2 = 132 —
Hokaráišjahigàšge higų hąké wežą-hižą* hipéresnis’àže.
He would come to see him, but as yet not a single thing would he not know.
*Radin inserts after this word, "[hąké-wažą-]".

 


 

taníhą eja hątaginąčgi hočįčinįkjega
Year three there having fasted, the boy

 


 

núnige hąkagá wažąníži hąteníži. Mą-hijopóhǫra
but [never] not anything he did not dream. During the fourth year

 


 

žéjųga žigé hijá hątaginąčgi, hagoréžą,
[then] again there when he fasted, [finally,]

 


 

karáišja higi, ja nįgák naranišéže.
to see him he came, father the son [he remained with?].

 


 

Higéže, wéže, "Jáji, gájųga wažą́
He addressed him, he said, "Father, at last [something]

 


 

yahąténą. Waxopíni éži* nąpiruxáč jop-hįgitáną,
I have received. Spirit however offerings four he asked for,
*presumed to be for eši.

 


 

taníra, mąšų́ra, šų́kre, čahásgere, te,
tobacco, feathers, a dog, white buckskin, these,

 


 

žénųga hįgitáną egi néwini sačų́kjanéną,
and then he asked for and [it is I] the fifth will be,

 


 

nąpiruxač giži." Wąknúnįknąka wa’iną́pnįkra rókonaxjį̀že.
[offerings] (.)" That old man expressed his gratitude [profusely.]

 


 

Wenąkjanáre eja hą́pra mągiráčše. "Žéja
[When spring comes] then the day he named (when) it was to take place. "There

 


 

te wakąčą́kregi hížą-hirukònąkgi háčakjanèže, higéną.
lake this sacred one the one who is in control I shall behold, I was told.

 


 

Éja nąpiruxáč wašini rajikjéną," higegi.
There offerings yours you are to bring," [he said to him.]

 


 

Gipį́ra rokonaxjį́že, egi kerežé. Homanáčga
Happy very much, and he went home. The appointed day ("a marked day")

 


 

here-gíži. Nąpiruxáč hijá wanijíže. Égi
it was. Offerings [there] they were taken. [Then]

 


 

here-gíži, ténąka horapíni-jirèže. Égi čiwį́ra
[having done it,] [this lake] began to be in a turmoil. And the noise

 


 

rokonoxjį́že. Égi wažą́-hižą hiwahájįpga. "Nąkiréži
it was tremendous. [Then] [a thing] it would emerge. ["There it is,]

 


 

heregúni," hiregášge, "te hąké žesge-hánis’àže."
[it is, perhaps,"] he thought, ["this] [not] [that way it would not be."]

 


 

p. 3 = 133 —
Hahí rokonoxjį́že. Waixgíra janągáki haną́čįxjį
[They reached there] very many things. [The attendant beings] [as many as there were] every one of them ("everything imaginable")

 


 

čą́t’įkirèže. Hahíšge ną’ų́stera hixíxi haǧép
they appeared. Finally, burning log smoking there rose

 


 

jįjįpiréže. Egi harušją́ jikéregają egi
they suddenly appeared. And it had subsided when it completely and

 


 

žejų́ga hajáireže. Hųgé sgaxjį́-hižą herežé.
and then they two saw it. [Chief] a very white one it was.

 


 

Égi Wakjexínąka hąké mąhí himąžéže
And this Waterspirit not knife ordinary

 


 

pįranis’áže. Esge wakšúč mąhí-hižą kiku-ánąga
it cannot be butchered. So red cedar a knife he made himself and

 


 

žée Wakjexíhike kik’ų́gi hikara’ų-ánąga Wakjexi-áka
this [Waterspirit - difficult (?)] [he caused it to be done] [by means of it he did his own, and] the Waterspirit

 


 

mąžéžeže. Egi wirok’ų kik’ų jireže.
he cut up. And weapons [he made himself] he began.

 


 

Ró-eja nįgé mąči-ánąga, "Tée
From its body piece [he cut off (?) - saying,] "This

 


 

warčgą́ ha’ų́ną." Egi žigé
drink I am going to make." And again

 


 

nįgé mąči-ánąga, "Tée wónąǧire-èja
piece he cut off (?) - saying, "This in war

 


 

hi’ų mąką́ tusšáną." Égi žigé
to use medicine [I am taking."] And again

 


 

wa’íra hisgé rus-ánąga wasé ha’úną.
the blood [some] [he took and] paint he made.

 


 

Wą́kšik čí-horokgèja wažą́-hironą̀’į. Égi wąkšíkra
[Man] in the midst of his lodge [anything he wants (he may do ?).] And [the people]

 


 

woxéte hírekje egi hąké wažą́-hižą
love they would and not a thing

 


 

hiruš’áknikje žésge hik’ų́že. Égi žigé
they would not fail to accomplish this [to use.] Then again,

 


 

wiką́wąxra hąké wąkšikéja
he made bad medicine (poison) not person

 


 

nąčgé-tek hįpįníkje. Wąkšikną́kre že’e
heart-ache they will not make fun of him. [The man] [that]

 


 

higiš’ák-hirekje. Wąkšíkra-hižą t’ékjegirèga
[he could abuse.] One of the people he could cause him to die

 


 

hąp hačínja mąkiráčga éja t’ékje;
day when [drinking the medicine] there he would die;

 


 

žigé-hižą hawexjį́kje higiréšge s’íxjį howažą́-anąga
indeed he would suffer [to think of him also] [very long (time)] [he is sick, and]

 


 

p. 4 = 134 —
hawexjįnóną; hižą wowáįkje higiréšge wowąknóną,
to suffer very much; one he could [to think of him also] make him crazy,

 


 

žéžesge mąką́ kirusé. Égi hižą́
this kind medicine [he takes away.] Then one

 


 

žige wánąxi-howągìkje, higiréšge žesge hánoną.
again soul he would deprive, [to think of him also] [that kind] [he could do.]

 


 

Egi-hížą žigé mąharíxjį ’únąk-hìšge rašra
Then one again very far away [he did also] the name

 


 

ráč-anąga "T’ekjéra,"* éšge t’anóną. Žéžesge
to utter "Let him die," [then] he would die. These
*after this word, two words are completely crossed out by a series of mainly vertical lines.

 


 

mąką́ eja gųsšáną. Wąknúnįkjega hąké
medicines there he made. [The old man] not

 


 

wažą pį́ra rusníže, wiką́wąxràšanaxjį rusšé.
[anything] good ones he did not take, just bad medicines (poisons) alone [he took.]

 


 

Égi žegų híregi nąpiruxáčra Wakjexi-áka
And then after he made the offerings the Waterspirit

 


 

ną́piruxàčirà-anąga žégų hiréže gíži. Wąknúnįkjega
the offerings and [then] [he did it] (.) The old man

 


 

wéže, "Hinįkáxjį, nąpiruxáčra néhižą winékjane."
said, "My dear son, the offerings I one let me be."

 


 

"Hišéra,* 'Jajónagi herekjéže'." "Jáji, higų́-hagoréžą†
["You said,] ['Whenever] [it will be'."] "Father now in time ("when")
*Radin has this word conclude the previous sentence, where it seems not to make sense.
†immediately after this expression, Radin inserts the word as it was actually spoken: "[higuą́gorežą]".

 


 

niš’akji-ánąga hot’éra hinįgíregi,* egi Wakjexi-ákre
you grow old and [the time is near for death,] [it has come for you,] then the Waterspirit
*after this word Radin inserts the following: "[hinįgiregi?]".

 


 

[egi] hanįkíčikje," éną. ''Horakíxapìkje," wagéže
[here] you and he shall be companions," he said. "[I shall comply]," [speaking to him]

 


 

éną. Wąknúnįkwaka wéną, "Hinįkáxjį, higų́-higuóna
[he said.] The old man said, "My dear son, [still now]

 


 

waragéšge haipį́xjį, gajeréną."* "Jáji, hagoréžą
[as you said, also] indeed I should be satisfied, [and so I am.] "Father, [in time]
*Radin inserts after this word, "[gają-hereną]".

 


 

šjégi te* wakąčą́kregi račíranišèkjanèną; maįkíją
when you die lake this sacred one you shall live; the whole earth
*the original order, šjégi te hagoréžą, was altered by the appropriate proof reading marks.

 


 

mąną́kre jajáįxjį pa minąk-gíži žejáįxjį pa
it lasts as long as [that far] [as you lay] [thus far] [that far]

 


 

eja ranišekjanèną." Égi žéžegų híreže giži.
there you shall remain. [And] [that way] [it was] (.)

 


 

p. 5 = 135 —
Wąkšik-éja éja hagíregi wąknúnįkjega wákąwąxkèra
To the people there [when they went back to,] the old man [the witch]

 


 

rókonoxjį̀že. Jánąga nįkjǫk´ hikarašìšik
[he was very much.] Wherever children especially beloved

 


 

hirèra, mąhujá hiže; jánąga
they were, he destroyed he had; wherever

 


 

wąkšikra žáiragi, mąhúja hiže,
the people if they were popular, he destroyed them [he had,]

 


 

wąknúnįkjega. Égi hagoréžą hočį́čį wažąjájega
the old man. And soon young boy [the seer]

 


 

Wakjexi-ák eja gigú-hajireže, "Hi-ą́čráwiga težesge
the Waterspirit there [he beckoned him to come,] "Your father [thus]

 

hijéną?" a-ánąga, "hagiją́mįki ruǧą́jinehìže. Wąkšíkra
is he doing?" he said, ["curtain] [they pulled.] The men

 


 

nįkjǫ́kra, jánąga káwąxga haną́čįxjį ejaną́kše."
the children, [all] [the poisoning] [everyone of them] [there they were."]

 


 

Wakjexi-áka wéže, "Tée hąké piníną.
The Waterspirit said, "This not it is not good.

 


 

Hi-ąčraga rokáragiǧire. Hąké rušją́iregi, ini
[Father] tell him to stop. Not if he refuses, stone

 


 

’įkjanéną," higežé. "Wažągų́sra žesge hįgusníną,
he will be," he told him. "The Creator [in this way] he did not create me,

 


 

Wažągų́sra huš’į́kjane-gàją," éže. Ésge
the Creator if this continues, he would be displeased," he said. So

 


 

hinįk-hírajega gi-gíži, hi-ą́čra rogígiže. Nunige
[the one he had for a son] [when he got back,] the father he begged him to stop. But

 


 

wéže, "Nįgák, higų́ hakini-ą́ipira ke
he said, "Son, now [they took - the wrist] not

 


 

rušją́ tuxurukníną," éže giži. Haini-gáją
to stop I cannot do it," he said (.) The next morning

 


 

wąknúwąkga hąké xgį́-nįge,
the old man not to move about - anywhere,

 


 

horuxúčire-gàją ínixjį-ą̀kše.
when they looked at him [he was solid rock.]

 


Source:

"The Seer," in Paul Radin, Winnebago Notebooks, Freeman #3899 [1254] (Philadelphia: American Philosophical Society, n.d.) Winnebago III, #19e: 1-5. An English translation is found in, Paul Radin, Primitive Man as Philosopher (New York: D. Appleton Co., 1927) 196-199.