Hočąk Syllabic Text — The Elk's Skull

Told by an elder of the tribe in 1912

Transcribed by Sam Blowsnake

Translation based on the interlinear of Oliver LaMère


Version 1

For a description of this manuscript, its source, style, transcription, and interlinear translation, see the syllabic text to Trickster's Warpath.
English Translation

 

A Ai. e tt. Ao rKy d. A xele deAe. Ao rK
Hahi
éja
hosgaižą
haxebše.
Hosga
On the way
[there]
a valley*
he came.
Valley

*the translation originally had "in the valley", but crossed out "the" and wrote "a" above it.

 


 

p. 318 —
a K Ki nK se Ki. se x so loAo so Ki d. Ki ttK Ai se K tt.
akakinąkregi,
rexruporokižą
gijak
hiregają
across,
a (round) drum
to beat
they did and

 


 

A K s xe Ai se Ki di. wo Ki roKo. w xe de.
hakaraxehiregiži,
wogizok
waxeže.
they were whooping [and]
very much
they made noise.

 


 

de Ko w K tt A Ai xoKo deAe. Ko s tt xitti
Žegųwagają
hahixukše.
"Korá,
jaxjį
So much so
it reached up to the sky.
"Well,*
what

*the translation inserts after this word, "I wonder".

 


 

p. 319 —
o Ai Ko so Ao w n Ki di. Ai tt w w te Kette.
’ų
hikorohowaną,
giži.
Hija
wawatekje.
to do
they are about to
[.]
There
I will go over.

 


 

rii xitti Ai K K. w d. wo d w A ttA ni.
S’ixjį
hįkaga
wažą
wožáwa
hačanį.
For a long while
not
any
fun
I have not seen.

 


 

Ai Ko tt Ko* o Ai se Ktt n Ae w o n Ki di
Higųjagu
’ųhirekjanahe,
wa’ųnąkiži
Whatever
they are about to do,
[doing it]

*the last /K/ is written over an /o/.

 


 

Ai tto so K o Kette e de w diAi Ko so Ao Ai se deKe.
hijoroga’ųkje,"
éže.
"Waši
korohohireške,
I will join them,"
he said.
"To dance
they are going (about to), also*

*the translation has, "if they are going to". Just before the word "going" the word "about" has been crossed out with a single horizontal line.

 


 

p. 320 —
Ai deKe leAe diAi doAo no K tt* aK deAe. Ao rK s.
hišgé
pešišųnųgają,"
akše.
Hosgara
also
I used to dance,"
he was saying.
The valley

*there is a period after /leAe/. Normally the word for "I dance" would be paši or p’aši.

 


 

A so ttA se K tt di Ke oy se de. di Ke.
haručaregają,
žigé
’ųįreže.
Žigé
when he was going across,
again
they did it.
Again

 


 

ttiAi wi tti Ke se de. A K s Ke se Ki di. so K n xitti de.
čiwįjikereže.
Hakarakeregiži,
rokanaxjįže.
there was a noise.
They all shouted, and
it was great.

 


 

p. 321 —
w d. w KidiKi Ae Kitti Kette Ki di. A sK dAe.
Wažą
wąkšik
hekjįkjegiži,
harakše.
[Something]
people
a very great many will be there,
he was thinking.

 


 

Ai Ko di Ke. oyi se de. ttiAi w tti Ke se Ki di.
Higų
žigé
’ųįreže.
Čiwajigeregiži,
[Yet]
again
they did it.
When the drum was hit,

 


 

de Ko. m xiAi s. Ao lA s ds tti Ke se de. A K s xe Ai se Ki di.
žegų
mąxira
hoparašrajikereže.
Hakaraxehiregiži,
[then]
the heavens
they seemed to burst.
[When] they shouted at it,

 


 

p. 322 —
K tt K. de Ko A Ao Ao s so K n Ki di.
gająga
žegų
hahuhura*
rokanagiži,
now
[then]
anxious
so [much] that

*Marino gives the form of this word as, hohuhura.

 


 

n Ki nK deAe. a deKe niKi w nK no ni Ke
nąginąkše.
Aškenįk
wanąk,
nųnįgé
he began to run.
Very close
they were saying it,*
but

*after the word "it" there are two vertical lines separating it from the succeeding word "but".

 


 

Ai Ke w KidiKi ni Ke w d A tt ni de.
hįké
wąkšik
nįgé
wažą
hajanįže.
not
people
anywhere
any
he could not see.

 


 

p. 323 —
di Ke oy se de. so K n de. A K w d. de Ko
Žigé
’ųįreže.
Rokanaže.
Hagáwažą
žegų
Again
they did it.
It was very great.
Ah, such a [thing]!
[then]

 


 

m xiAi s Ao lA s ds tti Ke se Ai se de. K tt.
mąxira
hoparašrajikerehireže,
gają.
the sky
it seemed to burst*
[.]

*the translation adds, "with joy".

 


 

Ai Ko K tt K. Ao so Kse Ki deKe owK
Higų
gająga
horokregi
ške
’uwąk
Even
now
in their midst
[also]
he was walking*

*after "he", the following is crossed out: "seemed to be".

 


 

w ow Ko ni Ai se w Ai no ni Ke Ai Ke
wa’ųwąkųnį
hiréwahi,
nųnįgé
hįké
[he was maybe]
it seemed,
but
not

 


 

p. 324 —
w d tt ni de. e Ki. w d Ao deAe se Ki d
wažąjanįže.*
Égi
wažą
hušerekižą
he did not see anything.
Here
some
a bone†

*< wažą-haja-nį-že.
†the translation adds, "of some animal".

 


 

nK deAe. e Ki w d Ai s n i ni rKe de. Ao w.
nąkše.
Égi
wažą
hiranąįnįskeže.
Hųwą́
it was lying.
Here
something
he seemed to notice.
Elk

 


 

lAyi d. w o nK deAe. Ae s. so K n xitti de.
paižą
wa’ųnąkše.
Héra
rokanaxjįže.
a head
it was.
Horns
it had many.

 


 

p. 325 —
Ae s. x x ttiAi de de tt K. liAi Ai* we riAi wi de.
Héra
xaxačiže.
Žejąga
pįhí
wesįwįže.
The horns
they branched in every direction.
Now again
carefully
he watched it.

*the second /Ai/ is written over an erased /w/.

 


 

di Ke oy se de. wo Ki roKo wo d w de.
Žigé
’ųįreže.
wogizok
wožáwaže.
Again
they did it.
Very much
it was fun.

 


 

tt Ao w lA n Kese e Ki w oyi se de.†
Ja*
hųwą́
panąkere
égi
wa’ųįreže.
And
elk
the head
[here]
it happened.‡

*this word and its translation are highly suspect. It is probably the word éja (e tt) whose /e/ has been assimilated through external sandhi by the last syllable of the last word of the prior sentence. If this is correct, the word should be translated as "there".
†the /o/ is written over a highly smudged erasure, but is clearly visible nonetheless.
‡after the word "it", the word "was" has been crossed out and the /ed/ of "happened" has been written over two other letters (/in/?).

 


 

p. 326 —
w Ki si diAili ttAo s. so K n xitti de. so Ks.
Wakirišipčora
rokanaxjįže,
rogra
Flies
there were very many,
inside

 


 

p. 326 —
Aoyi xitti xitti w o nK deAe. so Ke tt Ao K wy s n K.
hoixjįxjį
wa’ųnąkše.
Rogeja
hokawairanąga
(completely) filled
it was.
Inside
they would go and

 


 

Ai Ai nl n Ki se K w o nK deAe. w xe n xoKo tte K.
hihinąpnąkirega,
wa’ųnąkše,
waxe
nąxgųjega.
when they would rush out,
[they did]
shouting
he heard.

 


 

wo so xotto deAe. wo Ki roKo wo d w Ai w o n Kede.
Woruxúčše.
wogizok
wožawahi
wa’ųnągeže.
He looked at them.
Very much
fun
they were having.

 


 

p. 327 —
w Ki liAi tte de. tt Ko Ai Ko tt Ko o w o n Ki di.
Wagipiježe.
"Jagú
higųjagu
uwa’ųnąkiži,
He coveted (envied) them.
"Well,
whatever
they were doing,

 


 

Ao so K o Ktt ne de Ai A o Ae d s. tt rKe
horok’ųkjaneže.
Hiha’ųhežara,
'Jasgé
I would join them.
I was saying as I came,
'What

 


 

A Ki di Ao so K o n Ko ni Ai Ai s tte de.
hagiži
horok’ųnąkųnį'?"
hihiraježe.
I could do
to join them'?"
he was thinking.

 


 

p. 328 —
K tt K we de. Ko te Ai roAo Ki tti wi s. A K w d
Gająga
wéže,
"Koté
hisųkijiwira,
hagáwažą
Then
he said,
"Say
my younger brothers,
what (a) great

 


 

wo d w s wi d. A K w d. w d liAi doo wi d.
wožáwa
rawiša,
hagáwažą
wažą
š’uwiša.
fun
you are making,
what a great
thing
good
you are doing.

 


 

Ao so K o deyi di y se n. tt rKe s wiy n K w doo
Horok’ų
žeižiyareną.
Jasgé
rawianąga
waš’ų
To be one of you
I wish very much.
How
[you do and]
to do this

 


 

p. 329 —
A s tte Ki di. Ai s Ki Koro wi Ki di.* Ai deKe
harajegiži,
hiragigųswigiži,
hišgé
if you are able,
if you show me how,
also

*/Ai/ is written over an erasure (/Ae/?).

 


 

Ao so K o n n. w wi Ke de. Ko te Ao soKo o
horok’ųnaną,"
wawigéže.
"Koté,
horok’ų
I would join you,"
he said to them.
"Say,
[to join together]*

*the translation has, "to do it".

 


 

wo tteAe xiAi de. ttA K s. dolo leKe tt w K w wiy n K
wočexiže.
Čakara
žopekeja
wągawawianąga
trouble it is.
The neck
[at the hollow]
we enter it and

 


 

p. 330 —
w o A tt wi n tt Ko Ai dtt s tt wi K tt
wa’ųhajawiną,
jagú
hišjarajawigają,"
it is how we do it,
as
you have already seen,"

 


 

Ai Ky se de. ay se Ki di. Ai tto Ke we n i K deKe.
higaireže.
Airegiži,
hijokewe
naįgašge
they said to him.
Thus they said
to enter
so he would try, but

 


 

so dak ra de. w so Ko xitti no ni Ke.
ruš’aks’aže.
Warokoxjį,
nųnįgé
he would fail.
He liked very much to do it,*
but

*after the word "liked", the word "it" has been crossed out.

 


 

p. 331 —
Ai Ke w d de rK ni de. tt rKe
hįké
wažą
žesganįže.
"Jasgé
not
[anything]
he was not able.
"How

 


 

s wiy n K Ai tt Ao s K w s tt wi de.
rawianąga
hija
horakawarajwiže,
you do [and]
[there]
you manage to enter,

 


 

Ai rAo Ki tti wi s. e de. w Ks. A so Kere deAe.
hisųkijiwira?"
éže.
Wąkra
harugesše.
my younger brothers?"
he asked.
The man
he lacked,*

*"lacked" is written over an erasure. In the translation, the sentence reads, "Thus, man as he was, he lacked."

 


 

w so Ko no ni Ke. e Ki w Ky se de. Ko te
warokonunige.
égi
wagaíreže.
"Koté,
although he longed to.
Then
they said to him,
"Say,

 


 

p. 332 —
Ai Ki Ao s Ke we Kette Ki di. w deAe Kette n.
higihoragewekjegiži
wašekjeną,
if you wish to come in
just say,

 


 

ttA K s dolo leKe s xeAe te se. Ai deAe Ki di.
'Čakara
žopekra
xetere.'
hišegíži,
'Neck
[the hollow of]
become big.'
If you say it,

 


 

ttA K s dolo leKe s.* xeAe te tti tte Ktt ne n. de Ko Ki di
čakara
žopekra
xetejijekjaneną.
Žegųgiži
the neck
[the hollow]
it will become big.
This way

*/lo leK/ is written over an erasure (KiK ?).

 


 

p. 333 —
Ai Ki Ao s K w n n. de rKe Ai A wiy n K w o A tt wi n
higihoragawananą.
Žesge
hihawiyanąga
wa’ųhajawiną,"
you can come in.
That way
[we say and]
the way we do it,"

 


 

Ai Ky se de.* de tt K. Ai tt tti n K n K. tt K s
higaireže.
Žejąga
hijajinąkanąga,
"Čakara
they said to him.
So now
he sat down to it and,
"Neck

*the letter /A/ is partially written over an /a/ which has not been erased.

 


 

dolo leKe s. xeAe te se. e K tt ttA K s.
[the hollow]
xetere,"
egają
čakara
the hole (for the neck)
become big,"
he said, and
the neck

 


 

p. 334 —
dolo leKe Ao loAo xs xeAe te tti tte de. n roAo s.
žopek
hopoxra
xetejiježe.
Nąsúra
[hollow]
the hole
it became big.
His head

 


 

Ao Ki liAi Ki di Ai tto K w. Aili deAe. n roAo s.
hokipįgiži
hijokawa
hįpše,
nąsúra
it fit in so
he entered
[he reached and remained,]
his head

 


 

ttA deAe tt Ai liA. K tt A ntt Ai Ai nl n Ki se de.
čašeją
hipi.
Gają
haną́č
hihinąpnąkireže,
his neck
up to.
Just then
all
they ran out,

 


 

p. 335 —
w Ki si n Kse. e Ki Ao w tti Ao s. xoAo no niKi Ki si tte de.
wakirinąkre.
Égi
howajihura
xununįkiriježe.
[the insects.]*
Then
where he entered
it became small again.

*translated as "flies"; but this term is really more general, in fact, more general than "insects".

 


 

e tt Ao Ki s ttAK Ki de. o xitti no ni Ke
Éja
hogiračagiže.
’ųxjį,
nųnįgé
There
he was held fast.
Very much he [did,]*
but

*rather than "did", the translation has "tried".

 


 

tt Ko Kette. de Ko so daK deAe. n roAo s
jagukje.
Žegų
ruš’akše.
nąsúra
it was of no avail.
[Thus]
he failed.*
His head

*the translation has, "he absolutely failed".

 


 

p. 336 —
Ko so rs. so daK Ki di. de Ko Ao K nK K n K.
kurusra
ruš’akiži,
žegų
hokąnakanąga
to free
when he failed,
thus
he wore it, and*

*the translation has, "he continued to wear it and".

 


 

ni ttAe tts ttA we de. Ae s A x sK deAe.
nįčejara
čawéže.
Héra
haxarakše.
the river [edge]
he went towards.
Horns
he had long, branchy ones.

 


 

Ao w lAy d Ao K n K n K. ni s Ao ta liKi di.
Hųwą́
paižą
hokąnakanąga
nįra
hot’ąpgiži,
Elk
a head
he wore and
the river
when he came to it,

 


 

p. 337 —
ni tteAe tts Ao w se de. A Ko se d s. o ni A o.
nįčejara
howareže.
Hagorežąra,
’ųniha’ų,
along the [river's] edge
he went.
Finally,
as thus he went on,

 


 

te we s Ki. w KidiKi e tt Ao m ttiAi d Ai s Ai de.
tewéraki
wąkšik
éja
homąčižą
hirahiže.
unexpectedly
people
there
habitations*
he came.

*the translation has "inhabitations". Just before this word, "there" has been crossed out, since it occurs in the translation just before the word "unexpectedly".

 


 

de Ko e tt. A A Ae Ke de. e Ki Ay ni Ki di.
Žegų
éja
hahąhegeže.
Égi
hainigiži,
[Then]
there
he waited for night.
Then
in the morning,

 


 

p. 338 —
w o de. ni w Ko ni Ke Ao o n Ki di. e tt miKi deAe.
wa’ųže.
Niwagunige
ho’ųnąkiži,
éja
mįkše.
he did thus.
To dip water
where they came,
there
he lay.

 


 

w Ke A w i s K s iy n K. A tt s. n Ke we rKe de.
Wakeha
wa’įra
kara’iyanąga
hajara
nąkewesgeže.
Coon skin
the blanket
wearing, [and]
to look at him
he was frightening.*

*the translation has, "he was fearful".

 


 

so s. A ntt. w Ke A w i A ni Ki di
Rora
haną́č
wakeha
wa’į
hanįgiži,
The body
whole
coon skin
blanket
[that he had],

 


 

Ai s so K n K e Ki. Ae s x x ttiAi Ki di. e Ki.
hirarúkąnąga
égi
héra
xaxačigiži,
égi
it was covered, and
then
horns
having long, branching ones,
and

 


 

p. 339 —
Ay ni xitti Ai no Ki d. niy Ko tti K tt A tt de.
hainixjį
hinųkižą
niagujigają
hajaže.
early in the morning
a woman
she came after water, and
she saw him.

 


 

A Ktt Ao Ki n K tt w Ke de. w Kd ne.
Hakjá
hokinąkają,
wageže,
"Wakšąne.
Back
she started to run, but
he said to her,
"Turn back.

 


 

n tto ni tt n. Ai Ke de. w Kd di. Ai tt tti Ki di.
nąjonijáną,"
higeže.
Wakšąši,
hija
jigiži,
I bless you,"
he said to her.
She turned back,
there
when she came,

 


 

p. 340 —
w Ke de. K s n K. m rs. Ai d A diAi ni s tti Kette n.
wagéną,
"Karanąga
mąsra
hižą
hašinirajikjeną.
he said to her,
"Go home and
ax
an
bring with you.

 


 

e Ki. n li so xtt tts. tt n K Ai doo Kette Ki di.
Égi
nąpiruxáčra
jánąga
hiš’ųkjegiži,
Then
the offerings
as many as
you should use,

 


 

w KidiKi w s Ki do s. e ayi se Ktt ne n. e de.
wąkšik
warakižura
e
airekjaneną,"
éže.
people
your [companion]
they
they will tell you,"
he said.

 


 

e Ki. n roAo. A ni s. ttA lo ni A se Ki.
"Égi
nąsu
hanira
čaboniharegi
"Then
head
my
on top of it

 


 

p. 341 —
Ao s tti Ktt wi n. e Ki. n roAo Ao deAe se K ni s. tt Ko
horajįkjawiną.
Égi
nąsuhušerekanira
jagú
you will strike.
Then
my skull
whatever

 


Ai so s Ko wi Ki d[i] Ai rKe Ktt ne n. Ao w.
hirorakųwigiž[i],
hisgekjaneną.
Hųwą́
you use it for,
it will become true.
Elk

 


 

w Kette xiAi A ni n. ttAi n Kn Kese A te n.
Wakjexi
haniną.
Činąknąkre
hateną,"
[Water] Spirit
I am.
This village
it is blessed,"*

*literally, "it has dreamt".

 


 

p. 342 —
Ai Ke de. ni se xAe te s Ai d wi ne n
higeže.
"Nire
xetera
hižą
winéną,"
he said to her.
"In the waters
the great ones
one of
I am,"

 


 

Ai Ke de. e Ki. Ai noKo tte K Ke se de. Ki Ki di.
higeže.
Égi
hinųkjega
kereže.
Gigiži,
he said to her.
Then
the woman
went home.
When she got home,

 


 

Ao sK deAe. ni w Ko se Ki. w Ktte xiAi dK dA n.
horákše.
"Niwaguregi
Wakjexi
šakšaną.
she told it.
"At the water dipping place,
Waterspirit
[an ancient one] there is.

 


 

n tto tt de e n. m Ko do s. Ko Ki d. deKe
Nąjoją́že,
éną.
Mąkošura
kokižą
ške
He blessed me,
he said.
Medicine*
a box
[also]

*the translation adds, "chest".

 


 

p. 343 —
A ni w owK dA n e de. e Ki. m rs. e Ki.
haniwa’ųwąkšaną,"
éže.
"Égi
mąsra
égi
he has with him,"
she said.
"Then
an ax
and

 


 

tt n K. n li so xtt tts. Ai tti do wi Ki di e Ki.
jánąga
nąpiruxáčra
hijižuwigiži,
égi
all
the offerings
when we place there,
then

 


 

ttA lo ni Ay tt. Ao tti Ktt wi e n. n roAo s.
čabonihaija
hojikjawi,
éną.
Nąsúra
on top of his head
we would hit,
he said.
His skull*

*this is actually "his head".

 


 

p. 344 —
Ai Ki xoAoxo wi Ki di. de e e w d so Ko Ktt wi
higixoxwigiži
žee
e
wažą
rokųkjawi,
we would crack and
that
[it]
for things*
we could use it,

*the translation has "for different things".

 


 

e n. e de. w Kidi Ks. n li so xtt A K s ni s n K.
éną,"
éže.
Wąkšíkra
nąpiruxač
hakaraniranąga
he said,"
she said.
The people
offerings
they took with them and

 


 

Ko A s. ttA wy se de. Ao w se s. teyK dAe.
kohara
čawaireže.
Howarera,
teikše.
[below]*
they went.
Sure enough,
there he was.

*the translation has "to the water".

 


 

n Ke we rKe de. n li so xtt s. t ni s. m dAo
Nąkewesgeže.
Nąpiruxajara,
tanira,
mąšu
Very fearful [frightening] he was.
The offerings,
tobacco,
feathers

 


 

p. 345 —
doAo tts. ttA A rK s. tteAe Ai doAo tts. so K n.
šujra,
čahaskra,
čehį
šujra,
rokana
red,
white deerskin,
yarn belts
red,
very much

 


 

w Ki oyi se de. de Ko Ai se Ki di e Ki. Ai d
wagi’ųįreže.
Žegų
hiregiži,
égi
hižą
they brought.
Thus
when they did,
then
one

 


 

A s tti se Ki di. m r K. Ai ow n K. ttA lo ni Ay tt Ao tti de.
harajiregiži,
mąska
hi’ųwanąga
čabonihaija
hojiže.
they appointed,
the ax
he used and
the top of his head
he struck him.

 


 

n roAo s. Ki so ttAe tti Ke se de. K tt
Nąsúra
kiruče
jikereže.
Gają
His head
it split in two
[it did suddenly.]
And there

 


 

p. 346 —
te we s Ki. w Ktt K K Ai Kd n K e tt Ki K w a de.
tewéraki
Wakjąkaga
hikšánąga
éja
gigawa’aže.
unexpectedly
Trickster
laughing, [and]
there
he arose.

 


 

wo x nK liAi ni Ki d. w x n Ks. woyi niKi Ai s Ki Ki wi n
"Woxanąk
pinigižą
woxanąkra.
Woinįk hiragigiwiną,"
"Headdress
a nice one
I was wearing.*
You spoiled it for me,"†

*before the word "was", the word "has" was crossed out.
†the translation precedes this phrase with the word "but".

 


 

a n K. e tt Ai Kd s so K n w n K Ki K w a de.
ánąga.
Éja
hikšára
rokanawanąga
gigawa’aže.
he said.
There
he laughed
very much, and then*
he got up.

*before "and then", the translation has "he said"; however, in this context it would seem that -ánąga is more likely just a conjunction.

 


 

p. 347 —
w Ktt K K. w owK dA n* ay se de. e Ki. w w Ke de.
"Wakjąkaga
wa’ųwąkšaną,"
aíreže.
Égi
wawageže,
"Trickster
it is,"
they said.
Then
he said to them,

*what appears to be /onK/ has been erased and /owK/ written over it.

 


 

w d s. so A. n li so xtt tts. doo wi n.
"Wažąra
roha
nąpiruxáčra
š’ųwiną.
"Things
many
offering
you let go.

 


 

Ai Ke Aoyi ni Ke xitti ni Ki xA w ni wi ni n.
Hįké
hoinįgexjįnigi
xawaniwinįną.
Not
for naught
it will not go for (amount to)

 


 

p. 348 —
lA n Kse. w di so s Ko wi Ki di Ai rKe Ktt ne n.
Panąkre
wažį́
roragúwigiži,
hisgekjaneną,"
This head
whatever
you use it for,
it will be so,"

 


 

wi Ke de. e rKe e tt. wi so Ko Ki Koo Ai se de.
wigeže.
Ésge
éja
wirókų
kik’ųhireže.
he said to them.
So
there
instruments*
they made themselves.

*in the translation, this word is preceded by "many".

 


 

Ao w se s. Ai rKe Ai se de. e Ki. de Ko
Howarera,
hisge
hireže.
Égi
žegų
Sure enough,
good*
they were.
[And]
then

*the word hisge means "true".

 


 

e tt ni Ke Ao w Ke se de.
éja
nįgé
howagereže.
there
[someplace]
he went away.

 


English Translation

Source:

Oliver LaMère (trs.), "Wakjąkaga," in Paul Radin, Winnebago Notebooks (Philadelphia: American Philosophical Society, 1912) Winnebago V, # 7: 317-349.