On Wabma and various conjugations


Wabma                           to see someone

Wabmasi                         refers to seeing someone/must be preceded by

                                      proper prefixes.

Wabmak                         to see them

Wabmasik                       refers to seeing someone/must be preceded by

                                      proper prefixes.

Nwabma                         I see him/her

Nwabmak                       I see them

Gwabma                         you see him/her

Gwabmak                       you see them

Wabman                         he/she sees him/her

Nwabmasi                      reference to seeing him/her/needs prefix cho

                                      in front of it

Nwabmasik                    I don’t see them

Gwabmasi                      you don’t see him/her

Gwabmasik                    you don’t see them

Wabmasin                       he/she doesn’t see him/her/them

Wabmasimen                  we didn’t or are not going to see h/h or them

                                      needs prefix cho                                

Wabmek                         see (singular) Joe ngi bye wabmek

Wabmegok                     see (they)

Nwabmek                       he/she sees me

Nwabmegok                   they see me

Gwabmek                       he/she sees you

Gwabmegok                   they see you

Gwabmegwnan              he/she sees us

Gwabmegwnanek           they see us

Gwabmegomen              we are seen

Gwabmegwak                he/she sees you people             

Wabma                           to see someone (animate)

Gerald nwi o wabma            I’m going to go see Gerald.

Waboso wnago ngi wabma  I saw a rabbit yesterday

Ann ne ggi wabma                did you see Ann?

Weye ne na ggi bme wabma did you see anyone at all?

Wabmasi                         can’t see him/her (prefix jo)

Jo she na weye ngi wabmasi I didn’t see anybody

Jo ngi wabmasi                      I didn’t see him/her

Jo ne gwabmasi                     don’t you see him/her?

Jo nwabmasi                          I don’t/can’t see him/her

Sentences: (translate and fill in the blanks)

Jo ngi ______________ o kwe.

I didn’t see the woman.

Nwi  ____________ o nene.

I’m going to see the man.

Jo ne ggi  ______________ o negdosha?

You didn’t go see the horse.

Ggi o _____________ne o gdanses.

Did you go see your little daughter?

Ngi __________o ndanes.

I went to see my daughter.

Wabek ne gwi ______________o negdosha.

Are you going to see the horse tomorrow?

Gwi wabma ne o nemosh? ________________________________________________

I saw the dog yesterday. ____________________________________________________

I’m going to see the horse tomorrow.


I don’t see him.___________________________________________________________

Nmeshomes nwi o wabma.


Ggi o wabma ne__________________________________________________________

Did you go see your grandfather?

No, I didn’t go see my grandfather.


Wnago ___________ggi_______________o__________________________________?

Did you see your grandfather yesterday?

Jo ne John ggi wabmasi?_________________________________________________

Did you see John?______________________________________________________

Multiple choice:


            A. 2 people plus 1

            B. plural including

            C. singular excluding


            A. horse

            B. a man

            C. cup


            A. moody

            B. dirty butt

            C. bottle


            A. mail it

            B. an eastern city

            C. load it

Wabmak               to see more than one. (animate)

David and Terry nwi o wabmak

I’m going to go see David and Terry.

Ggi wabmak ne gi wabozoyek

Did you see those rabbits?

Nwi o wabmak gi dabyanek

I’m going to go look at those cars.

Gbye wabmak ne gi negdoshayek

Are you here to look at the horses?

Wabmasik             didn’t see them (prefix of Jo)

Jo ngi o wabmasik gi negdoshayek

I didn’t go look at the horses.

Jo ne gwi wabmasik gi dabyanek

You’re not going to go look at the cars?

Jo kwshe nwi wabmasik

No, I don’t want to see them.

Jo ngi de wabmasik gi negdoshayek

I didn’t get a chance to see the horses.


Nwi o ____________gi ___________________mkok.

I’m going to go see the three bears.

Jo ngi ____________________gi mkok.

I didn’t see the bears.

Wnago ngi ____________________ gi _______________

I went to see the cars yesterday.

Jo shna ngi ___________________  _______________________

I didn’t see any Indians.

Bodewadmik ______________Wjibwek____________________

I saw Potawatomies and Chippewas.

_________ngi ______________________ Bodewadmik

I didn’t see any Potawatomies.

Moshek she Neshnabek _____________ _____________

I saw mostly Indians.

Ngi kche ___________________ wabozoyek

I saw a lot of rabbits.

Bob mine Tom nwi o _________________

I’m going to go see Bob and Tom.

Shke ______________ nwi o _________________

I’m going to go see new cars.

I didn’t see the cars________________________________________________________

Jo ngi wabmasik gi nswe mkok______________________________________________

I saw two bears__________________________________________________________

I didn’t see the bears______________________________________________________

I looked at two cars_______________________________________________________

Multiple choice:


            A. stump

            B. turtle

            C. snake


            A. don’t

            B. frog

            C. log


            A. our home

            B. I am going

            C. your house


            A. leave

            B. fish

            C. lady


            A. go inside

            B. louse

            C. hen

Ewabdemok Edebwetmok

Ehe, ______________I____________

Yes, I see the spoon.

______________ne i ________________

Do you see the spoon?

_________________ne i _____________________

Do they see the lake?

Gwi o _______________ne i ________________

Are you going to go see the lake?

______ o ____________ne i _________________

We are going to go look at the road.

___________________ ni mkesnen

He sees the shoes.

___________________i azyan

I see the breech cloth.

____________________ne i _______________

Do you people see the lake?

Mbes ngi o _______________________

I went to see the lake.

Ggi o ___________________ne i ____________

Did you go see the lake?

Ngi o wabdamen i mbes. ___________________________________________________

Ni je pi ga ___________________ i mbes

When did you see the lake?

Ni je pi wa wabdemen i mbes _______________________________________________

Wnago ne ggi wabdan i mbes


__________________ i _________________

Quit looking at the water.


Quit looking at her!

______________________ne ni wmeksenen?

Does he see his shoes?


When are you going to see it?

E’he_______________ni jimanen.

Yes, we see the _________________.

Ewabdemok Edebwetmok

Nwabma                                 I see him/her

Nwabmak                              I see them-those-etc.

Gwabma                                you see him/her

Gwabmak                              you see them-those-etc.

Wabman                                he/she sees her/him/them

Nwabmasi                              I don’t see her/him

                                                needs prefix cho in front of it

Nwabmasik                            I don’t see them

Gwabmasi                              you don’t see him/her

                                                needs cho in front of it

Gwabmasik                            you don’t see them-those-etc.

Wabmasin                              he/she doesn’t see him/her or them

E’he, nwabma                                   yes, I see her/him

Nwabma o wabozo                I see the rabbit

E’he, nwabmak                     yes, I see them

Nwabmak gi wabozoyek      I see the rabbits

Gwabma ne o dabyan                       do you see the car?

Gwabmak ne gi dabyanek   do you see the cars?

Wabman ne i dabyan                       does he see the car?

Wabman ne ni dabyanen     does he see the cars?

Nwabma o____________________.

I see that Indian.

Cho________________o dabyan.

I don’t see the car.

Gwabma ne o negdosha?_____________________________________________

Cho nwabmasi o negdosha.


Nan godgen shna___________________.

I see them once in awhile.

Gwabmak _________________?

Do you see them?     

Gwabma ne?



I don’t see them.

____________________ne ni dabyanen?

Does he see the cars?


He doesn’t see it.


I can’t see them.

Gwabmak ne gi dabyanek?_______________________________________________?

Bama nge_____________________________.

I’ll see them later.

Weye ne gi bye___________________ni dabyanen?

Did someone come to see the cars?

Cho ngi________________________.

I didn’t see her.


Gwabdan ne i gwabegas?________________________________________________?

Ggi_____________ne i_________________?

Did you see the dish?

Nwi o_____________o________________>

I’m going to go see the horse.

Ggi ____________________ne o mshkekiwnene?

Did you see the doctor?

Ni je pi wa _________________i mbes?

When are you going to see the lake?

Ngi o _____________o nos.

I went to see my father.

Ggi ________________ne o dbek gises?

Did you see the _______________________?

Bya wabdan ode gwabegas.___________________________________________.

Ngi wabma o gises. _________________________________________________.

Ngi o _________________________i mbes.

We went to see the lake.

Ggi ______________________ne ngoji i _______________?

Did you see the breech cloth anywhere?

Ggi _____________________ne ngoji ni emkwanen?

Did you see the _________________anywhere?

Wde o _________________ni mkeznen.

He went to look at the shoes.

Nwi o _______________i mbes.

We are going to look at the lake.

Nwi o wabma o negdosha. _____________________________________________.

Gwi o wabma ne o mshkekiwnene?


Cho ngi ________________________o dabyan. ________________________________________.

______________________ne i jiman?

Do you see the canoe?

____________________o negdosha.

Quit looking at the horse.

E’he _________________________ni jimanen.



Wabden                                              see it (singular)

Wabden ode                                       see this–look at this

                                                            used only in the present tense

Wabdemok                                        plural

Wabdemok ode                                 you people look at this

Wabdan                                             someone sees it

Nwi wabdan i mbes                           I’m going to go see the lake

Wgi o wabdan i mbes                        he/she went to go look at the lake

Wabdanen                                         he/she sees something  (plural)

Nwi o wabdanen ni myewesen         I’m going to go look at the trails.

Wabdanawa                                      they see it

Wabdanawa i mbes                           they see the lake

Wabdanawa ni mbesen                    they see the lakes

Nwabdan                                           I see it

Nwabdanen                                       I see them

Gwabdan                                           you see it

Gwabdanen                                       you see them

Wabdan                                             he/she sees it

Wabdanen                                         he/she sees them

Nwabdamen                                      we see it   (excl.)

Gwabdamen                                      we see it   (incl.)

Wabden                                              see it     (inanimate)

Wabdan                                             he/she sees  (n or g) nwabdan or gwabdan

Wabdanawa                                      they see it    (inanimate)

Wabdamen                                        we see it      (inanimate)   excl.

Nwabdan                                           I see     (inanimate)

Gwabdan                                           you see     (inanimate)

Wabdan                                             he/she sees    (inanimate)

Wabem                                               see him/her    (animate) (sing.) to see someone

Wabma                                               see him/her     (animate)   (n or g) nwabma or                                                                   gwabma

Wabmawan                                       they see    (animate)  wabmawan ni negdosha

Wabmamen                                       we see   (animate)  ginan gwi o wabmamen

                                                                                           ginan ggi o wabmamen

Nwabma                                             I see   (animate)

Gwabma                                            you see (animate) gwabma ne o negdosha

Wabman                                            he/she sees   (animate) wabman ni negdoshanan

                                                            3rd person singular


Ndowabma                                        look for someone   (animate)

I’m going to look for my car                        nwi ndowabma o ndodabyan

I’m going go look for John               John nwi o ndowabma

I’m going to go look for a car                      dabyan nwi o ndowabma

Ndowabmak                                      look for someone    (plural animate)

I’m going to go look for the cars     dabyanek nwi o ndowabmak

I’m looking for Indians                    neshnabek mbeba ndowabmak


Nmechkawen nwi ndowabma. __________________________________________.

Nmechkawnek nwi___________________. ___________________________________.

I’m going to look for a car.                          Dabyan nwi_______________________________.

I looked for a car yesterday.

Wnago _________________ngi ___________________________.

I’m going to look for beans.                         Kojesek nwi ______________________________.

I’m going to go look for gloves.

Mjekawnek nwi o _______________________________.

Did you look for your car?               Ggi _________________ne o ____________________?

I’m going to look for a car.              _______________nwi_____________________.

I’m going to go look for dad.                       Dede nwi o _____________________________.

Look for your dad.                            __________________o gdedeyem.


Nedwabdan                                       I look for it – or object

Nedwabdanen                                               I look for  (plual)

Gnedwabdan                                     you look for it – or object

Gnedwabdanen                                 you look for (plural)

Wnedwabdan                                    he/she looks for it – or object

Wnedwabdanen                                he/she looks for it   (plural)

Nedwabdan i mzenegen                    I’m looking for that paper or letter

Nedwabdanen ni mzenegnen                       I’m looking for those papers or letters

Gnedwabdan ne i zaskokwan                      are you looking for the frying pan?

Gnedwabdanen ne ni zaskokwanen            are you looking for the frying pans?

Wnedwabdan i wmeksen                 he/she is looking for her/his shoe

Wnedwabdanen ni wmeksenen       he/she is looking for his/her shoes

She is looking for the door               ______________i shkwadem

I’m looking for the spoon                 __________i _____________.                      

Are you looking for your shoe?       ___________ne i gmeksen?

I’m looking for the spoons               ______________ni emkwanen.

Are you looking for the blanket?    _____________ne i waboyan?

She is looking for the blankets.        ________________ne waboyanen.

Are you looking for the blankets?   Waboyanen ne _____________________?

Are you looking for something?      Gego ne _________________________?

I’m looking for something.               Gego ___________________________.

I’m looking for a letter and I’m also looking for my shoes.

Mzenegen ________________mine she nmeksenen ______________________.


Nwabdan                                           I see it

Nwabdanen                                       I see them    (inanimate)

Nwabdamen                                      we see it   (them)

Gwabdan                                           see it  (you)

Gwabdanawa                                    see it  (you people)

Wabden                                              see, look at it   (you)

Wabdemok                                        look at it   (you folks)

Wabdan                                             *someone sees it

Wabdamen                                        we see it

Wabdanawa                                      they see it

Wabdesin                                           I didn’t see it

                                                            needs cho and tense marker in front of it

Wabdesimen                                      we didn’t see it

“                                                                                  “

Wabdesinawa                                    they didn’t see it

“                                                                                     “

*used in the following ways

Bama wabek nge o wabdan—-wait until tomorrow I’ll go see it

Wabek gda bye wabdan—-you can come and see it tomorrow

Wnago wgi bye wabdan—-he/she came to look at it yesterday


Cho gwabmasi                                   you don’t see him/her

Cho ne gwabmasi                              don’t you see him/her?

Cho gwabmasik                                 you don’t see them

Cho ne gwabmasik                            don’t you see them?

The following indicates the third person form—-in the third person form,

all animate nouns revert to inanimate usage.

Wabmasin:  in the following examples, the inanimate form is underlined.

Cho wabmasin ni dabyan(en)                      he/she doesn’t see the car(s)

Cho wabmasin ni neshnaben(en)     he/she doesn’t see the Indian (s)

Also notice that the inanimate form of an animate noun is either plural or singular:

For comparison, the first and second forms appear below:

1st person form: cho nwabmasi o dabyan—-I don’t see the car

2nd person form: cho ne gwabmasi o dabyan?—-don’t you see the car?

Wabmasimen: the parties to this word are determined by the tense markers and the singular and plural prefixes.

Cho ngi wabmasimen o dabyan                  we didn’t see the car

Cho ngi wabmasimen gi dabyanek             we didn’t see the cars

Cho ne gwi wabmasimen o dabyan             aren’t we going to look at the car?


Wabmek o neshnabe                                     see (look at) that Indian

Wabmek gi neshnabek                                 see (look at) those Indians

Ngi bye wabmek o mshkekiwnene              the doctor came to see me

Ggi wabmek ne o mshkekiwnene                did the doctor see you?

Wnago ngi bye wabmek o ndanes               my daughter came to see me yesterday.

Gwabmegwak: the singular and plural prefixes determine how many people see you.           

Ngwabmegwak                                              I/we see you people

Wgwabmegwak                                             they see you people

An exercise to solve

Bidi kaden nwi zaskokwadanen

Zawjisesen nwi gisnen

Penyek nge gbashmak

Mdamnabo nde gisamen

Wiyas ngi gzezan

Pkweshgen nda wzheton

Demenek nwi mwak

Menomen nwi mijen

Ni pi je o gigo

Nedwendan ne mbish

Nenmoshen I ziwtagen

Gego ziwtagnekeken i!

Ni pi je o kek

Yowen i zdayabogen    

Cho nmnekwesi nonagnabo

Nisho bidiyek ngi bidapkowebnak

Mnejimnabo ngi gish gisen

Bzhekiwiyasen ne gwi zaskokwadanen?

Gokosh pekwasen ngi kekshebwe gbegishek

Neshdesen ngi pabweyan ode

Mkedemen bashkmen ngi wzheton

Mshimen bashkmen nde gbaton

Shegagoshik nde zaskokwanamen

Nisho wawnon nwi zaskokwadamen

Ni je etse wawnon nda zaskokwadanen

Kojesek ngi gzezwak

Gego wasgekéken ode

Ahau, nge wjanda                                    

Ni je gebatoyen                             

Ni je wa gbatoyen             

Ni je ga gbatoyen              

Bodakwen o bidi

Bodakwen gi bidiyek

Bodakwen i weyas

Bodakwen ni pegegnen

Ngi zaskokwadan i wiyas

Ngi zaskokwadanen ni pekwasnen

Ngi bidakowebnan i wiyas

Ngi bidapkowebnanen ni pekwasnen

Ngi gbaton i wiyas

Ngi gbatonen ni pekwasnen

Ngi zaskokwana o gigo

Ngi zaskokwanak gi gigosek

Ngi bidapkowebna o bidi

Ngi bidapkowebnak gi bidiyek

Ngi gbashma o bidi

Ni je wa je mijygo?

Ni je wa je shemgoyak? 

Peki ne gde giswawa?

Ode gigo nwi giswa ngom

Nsweo gigoyek gwi giswawak wabek

Ni je wa gisyék pkonyak?

Kojesek mine menomen nwi wjandamen

Medagwendan bmede

Cho medagwendasi ziwtagen

Negesh ne gwi zaskokwadan

Zaskokwatek pkweshgen ngi gish wzheton

Negesh bitopkweshgnen ngi wzhetomen

Peniwabo ngi gbashma

Bidek o kek etemget i sekski mbop

Bzhekikakés ngi bidapkowebdan

Pkwénégigo nde mwa

Zaskokwanégigo nde mwa

Wabek nwi gigenomen gbegishek

Nasena! Bné nde zaskokwana

Gwi wjanda ne?

Weni je éwjandat ézhi?

Medagwendan éwjandayan

Some simple conversations

Ni je ga zhechkéyen dbekok?

          Tadiwgemek égi zhyayan

Oh? Gi pkenagé ne?

          Cho, ngi ngeto ndo biskewagen.

Ni pi je gdo dabyan?

          Bokshkan.  Abdek mbémsé ngom.

Oh? Nedwéndan ne émbosyen?

          Wéte she géte, égikijzedéyan!

Ni je wa shemgoyak pkonyak?

          Wiyasen mine penyék égisyan

Cho wiyas nwisnesi. 

          Ho wa, mamkaj wa je bektéyen. 

Ni je éwzhetoyen?

          Ode mjegodé nde wzheton éwi nim’ediyan

Ni je pi wa nim’ediyen?

          Nemetsena, iw pi émawjeshnowat éjingtemowat ngoji.

Ahau, byédweshen bimskwé’egen

          Ode ne?

Cho, bgejgasen yawen.  Byédweshen i bimskwé’gen, ibe taswenek

          Oh, ode bimskwé’egen.  Ahau, i yé ode.

Ni pi je wa majiyen?

          Dawéwgemek nwi zhya égishpnedoyan gokmedasnen

Oh, ni je énadek ni gokmedasnen éwi gishpnedoyen?

          Mkedéwak gnebej, anaké zawak.  Wégwéndek wa je mkanayan.

Odanek ne gwi zhya?

          Gnebej, gishpen ébon gméyamget.  Gwi wijéwshen ne?

Ehe, abdek zhonyawgemek nwi zhya.

Gi bonimget ne ibe édayen?

          Éhe, gi kche boni wnago

Gbégishek ne?

          Hé gbégishek mine gbédbek shote

Nin:  Byénkwéshkew nidgeko Sarah

Bob:            Aha bozho Sarah, Bob ndeshnekas

Sarah:                  Bozho Bob, édayen ne ngoji shote?

Bob:  Cho, shkwengenek nde da.

Nin:            Sarah, Mshkekiwnene yawe Bob

Sarah:                  Oh wenet shna. 

Njon: Gkénma ne o ngwes, Njoe?

Bob:            Cho, ngkénmasi Njoe.

Njon:  Njoe, byan shote, byénkwéshkew nnikan Bob.

                    Bob, ode se ngwes, Njoe.

Bob:           Ahau, Bozho Njoe, gkendan ne éje yawyan?

Njoe:                    Cho ngekendasi éje yawyen…nzheshé gnebej?

Bob:           Cho gzheshé ndawsi.  Gnitawes ndaw

Njoe:                    Oh, wenet shna.

Bama pi mine, nin ashtek éje chikaswat ibe.

Some Winter thoughts.

Éjajibtebyan éwabdeman i gon ébgeshnon i ngom

As I sit today watching the snow fall

Égi yajmowat gi kékyambnek mégwe pi

This is what the elders told us a long time ago

Gi widmowat wa je zhewébek shote pi

They told us this would happen hereabouts

Ode se she éwidmoyak gode wpenojéyek

This is what we tell our children

I ye ode énendemyan éjajibtebyan odo pi

This is what I think about as I sit here at this time

Ékiwadziyan énendemyan ode

I feel lonely thinking about this

Nangodgen ébaknegazoyan ébidnendemyan

Sometimes I am a prisoner of my thoughts

I gon ébgeshét éwabdeman égme pon

I watch the snow fall every year

Éngezot éwabdeman i gon éngweshkat

And I watch it melt away

Éwabdeman ni waskonédok ébaknegazowat 

I watch the flowers open themselves

Éwabdeman émbowat iw pi epij zhatémget

I watch them die when it becomes hot

Éwabdeman Ojigenang éwidmoshet iw pi wa zhewébek

I watch the Fisher Star and he tells me when this will happen

Igwan gi kékyajek gi widmoashek ngotek

The elders told us these things at one time

Megwa ngom éjibtebyan éwabdeman ébgeshet i gon

So I sit today and watch the snow fall

Let’s get artsy and do some crafts too

Arts and Crafts

                   Below is a list of things in simple and Plural forms

Singular                                                               Plural

Shabnegen – Needle                                    Shabnegnen – Needles

Sebabis – Thread                                        Sebabisen – Threads

Moshwagen – Scissors                                Mosh wagnen – Scissors

Bishagen – Leather                                     Bishagnen – Leathers

Pegoyan – Cloth Material                           Pegoyanen – Cloth Materials

Zenba – Ribbon                                          Zenabayek – Ribbons

Mdo mnes – Bead                                       Mdo mne sek – Beads

Siy – Raw Hide                                           Siyek – Hides

Megos – Awl                                                         Megosen – Awls

Weza wegzot (Brain Tanned hide)

                   Singular                                         Plural

     Biskowagen – Shirt                                Biskowagnen – Shirts

     Mjegode – Dress                                     Mje godeyen – Dresses

     Mkesen – Moccasin                                Mkesnen – Moccasins

     Asyan – Apron                             Asyanen – Aprons

     Napshe bsowen – Earring                      Napshe bsonen – Earrings




Gokbenagen                   basket

Gokbenagnen                           baskets

Bapagnegawesh                       black ash tree

                                                while you are pounding it

Wisgak                                     black ash tree

Mtek                                         tree

Mtegok                                     trees

Mtegwakik                               forest

Koman                                     knife

Ndo kman                                my knife

Gdo kman                                your knife

Komanen                                 knives

Negek                             bark

Mozhwagen                             scissors (sing.)

Mozhwagnen                           scissors (pl.)

Gemsagen                                axe

Gemsagnen                              axes

Gemsagas                                hatchet

Kishkpojgen                   saw

Kishkpojgnen                           saws

Megos                                      awl

Zhabnegen                               needle

Zhabnegnen                   needles

Bnegjigen                                spud knife for peeling logs

Gwenbejigen                            cant hook

                                                describes turning over logs

Sebab                             rope

Sebabis                                    thread

Zgegen                                     nail

Zgegas                                     small nail

Zgegasen                                 small nails

Jikwegen                                  shovel

Bgejegen                                  hammer

Sebojgen                                  file

Gon                                         snow

Mkwem                                    ice

Gishknekto                     stump

Bapagnege                               pounding black ash

Bapagaktegwen                        splints

Bapagaktegkiwen           wefts

Bapagaktegshpemki                 upright splints

Biskea                                      splitting the splint

Biskean                                    I splint the splint

Wishpemishkos                         sweetgrass

Gashkean                                 scraping

Wzhobyegewen                        dyes

Wzhobyegewnen                       paints

Enazwen                                  color

Enazwenen                              colors

Mskwejibek                     blood root

Bapagakobjege                        binding, outer layer of bark

Sema                                        tobacco

Gemwen                                   song

Gemwenen                               songs

Engedewen                              pricing

Madmowen                              prayer

Najdowen                                prayer request

Dodaskewen                   more concerted prayer

Nwi gokbenage                        I will make a basket

Nwi bapagaknege           I will pound black ash

Nwi ndewebna i bapagnegawesh

I will look for a black ash tree

Nwi gishktea i mteg

I will cut down that tree

Some New Words:

Wenpenet                                 easy/cheap

Wenpengede                             it’s cheap (referring to price)

Wenpesh                                  free

Wenpenzet                                someone who is cheap/easy

                                                usually is reference to someone in a

                                                derogatory manner…

Ni je engedek                            how much is it? (price)

Ni je engezwat                          how much are they?

Ni je engedmagoyen                 how much are they charging you?

Ni je engedmagoyek                 what are they charging you folks?

Ni je ode engedmen                  how much do you charge for this?

Ni je ode engedmet          how much do you charge for this? (anim.)

Ni je node engedmen                how much do you charge for these? (pl.)

Ni je gode engemdwa               how much do you charge for these? 


NEGDE                                             COST

Wenpengede                             it’s cheap (price)

Wenpengeze                             it’s cheap  (anim.)

Wenpengedenon                       they’re cheap  (price)

Wenpengezwek                         they’re cheap  (anim.)

Mesgede                                   it’s expensive/overpriced

Mesgezo                                   h/s is expensive/overpriced  (anim.)

Mesgedenon                             they’re expensive/pricey

Mesgeswek                               they’r expensive/pricey  (anim.)

Ni je ode da negde moyen

How much would you charge me for this?

The only time it would change to specifically anim. or inanim.

would be when you use plurals.

Ni je node danegde moyen  (inanim.)

How much would you charge me for this?

Ni je gode danegde mowyen  (anim.)

How much would you charge me for this?

Da                                           could/should

E                                              present tense

Ga                                           past tense

Wa                                           future tense

Ni pi je                                     where

Zhya/shya                                to go some place/somewhere

Ni pi je eshyayen                      where are you going?

Ni pi je eshyat                          where is h/s going?

Ni pi je eshyawat                      where are they going?

Ni pi je eshyayek                       where are you folks going?

Ni pi je eshyaygo                      where are we going?

Ni pi je ga shayen           where did you go?

Ni pi je ga shyayek          where did you folks go?

Ni pi je ga shyat                       where did h/s go?

Ni pi je ga shyawat                   where did they go?

Ni pi je ga shyaygo                   where did we go?

Ni pi je wa shyayen                   where are you going?

Ni pi je wa shyayek                   where are you folks going?

Ni pi je wa shyat                       where is h/s going?

Ni pi je wa shyawat                  where are they going?

Ni pi je wa shyaygo                  where are we going?

E                                              present tense

Ga                                           past tense

Wa                                           future tense

Ni pi je                                     where

Ni pi je eshayen                        where are you going?

Ni pi je wa shyayen                   where are you going?

Ni pi je ga shyayen          where did you go?

Ni pi je eshyawat                      where are they going?

Ni je pi                                     when

Ni je pi wa shyayen                   when are you going?

Ni je pi ga shayen           when did you go?

Ni je pi ga shyawat                   when did they go?

Ni je pi wa shyawat                  when are they going?

BYE/BYA                                 coming

Ni je pi                                     when

Ni je pi wa byayen          when are you coming?

Ni je pi wa byawat          when are they coming?

Ni je pi wa byat                        when is h/s coming?

Ni je pi wa bme byayen             when are you going to get here?

Ni je pi wa bme byawat            when will they get here?

Ni je pi wa bme byat                 when will h/s get here?

Ni pi je wech byayen                 where did you come from?

Ni pi je wech byawat                where are they coming from?

Ni pi je wech byet            where did h/s come from?

                                                where is h/s coming from?

Ni je pi ga byayen           when did you get here?

Ni je pi ga byawat           when did they get here?

Ni je pi ga byat                         when did h/s get here?

Ni je pi ga byayek           when did you folks get here?

_____ wi byewak                      _______ is going to come.

_____ wi byek                          _______ and them are coming.

Ni je pi wa ne byayen ibe

When will you get there?

Ni je pi wa ne byawat ibe

When will they get there?

Ni je pi wa ne byat ibe

When will h/s get there?

Wegwni je wa byaygo

When will we get there?

Ni je weje byayen

Why are you here?

Ni je weje byat

Why is h/s here?

Ni je weje byawat

Why are they here?

Ni je shote weje byaygo

Why did we come here?

Gda                                         you can/could

Da                                           h/s could

Nda                                         I could/we could

Nin nda bya

I could come over.

Gin gda bya

You could come over.

Win da bye

H/S sould come over.

Ninan nda byamen

We could come over.

Ginwa gda byam

You folks could come over.

Winwa da byek

They could come over.

Gi byewak ne

Did h/s gete here?

Gi byek ne

Did they get here?

Gwi bya ne

Are you coming over?

Wi byek ne

Are they coming over?

Wi byewak ne

Is h/s coming over?

Ni pi je                                     where

Ni je pi                                     when

Ode pi                                      now

Wa/wegni                                 what

Nokshe                                     look at s.t/or someone

Wegwni je                                why

Gin                                          you

Nin                                          I

Win                                          him/her/he/she

Ginan                                      us  (incl.)

Ninan                                      us  (excl.)

Winwa                                               them  (excl.)

Ginwa                                               you folks  (excl.)

Winwa                                               them   (excl.)

Some further miscellaneous notes:

Ni me en                                   pry it up/to pry up…

This Land Is My Land…

Ode ke nin nde kim

Ode ke gin gde kim

Shote se California

Nash zhe shi New York mnestik

Shote se ni mskwa mtegwakik

Nash zhe shi mbik ekwabisek

Ode ke wech shechgadek

Ginan se ewiyawek

Gin mine ni ewiyawek

Ewiyawek gin mine nin

Some Further Words:

Nabjishk’genen                                  slippers

Apte’wen                                            cane

Gwi kwi ya                                         Old Potawatomi settlement

                                                          near Green Bay

Zenba odan                               Ribbon town

                                                          South Bend

Ndewabjaye’k                                    they are all searching for s.t.


Jibdeben                                            sit down

O jibdeben                                         go sit down

Jibdebek                                            sit down (pl.)

O jibdebek                                         go sit down

_________ gego                                _________ don’t!

Egach                                                keep quiet/settle down!

Egachyen                                          keep quiet!

Egachyek                                           Keep quiet  (pl.)

Shkena jibdeben                                 Geez sit down!

Shkena o jibdeben                              Geez go sit down!

Ahau                                                 Okay/all right/oh!

Ibe ngi ton                                         I put it over there.

Eshi ngi sa                                         I put h/h/it over there.

Ibe temget                                          it’s over there.

Eshi bewak                                        it’s over there.

Wawando ketgo gbenen                     what h/s was trying to see.

Ketwegbenen                                               plural of the above.

Shede’a                                              what I think?

The Jingle Dress

The Jingle Dress Dance – which originated with the Ojibwe tribe in the early part of the 20th century and is widely seen in pow wows throughout the United States today – is celebrated with a June 15, 2019 Google Doodle.

Fittingly, the Google Doodle was created by an Ojibwe guest artist named Joshua Mangeship Pawis-Steckley. According to Google, the dance was first prevalent in the 1920s in Wisconsin, Minnesota, and Ontario. Today, it’s one of several forms of dancing commonly seen in competitive pow wows. It is a style of dance performed by female dancers in First Nations communities.r!
The dance also serves to affirm the power of Native American women,” Google noted with the Doodle.

Here’s what you need to know:
1. The Jingle Dress Dance Involves Metal Cones That Are Sewn Into Outfits

The Jingle Dress dancers are a beautiful sight to watch and to hear. Unlike other forms of pow wow dancing, the dresses make a very distinctive sound that is evocative to listen to, especially when it’s happening in unison.

According to Indian Country Today, the Jingle Dress Dance is a pow wow dance in which “rows of metal cones” – which are called “ziibaaska’iganan” – are attached to female dancers’ dresses.

According to powwows.com, which adds that they are hung with ribbon that is then sewn to the dress. The can lids are purposely placed close enough together so that they will clank when the dancers move, producing the melodic clanking sound.
2. There Is an Ojibwe Origin Story About the Jingle Dress Dance

An Ojibwe origin story explains how the jingle dress came to be. According to Google, the story holds that an Ojibwe girl had fallen ill. Her father saw the jingle dress in a vision. In another slightly different version of the story, it’s the girl’s grandfather who has the vision.

According to the story, the father felt that if the girl danced this dance in the jingle dress and “always keep one foot on the ground,” she would be healed. She did in fact recover, and she then created a Jingle Dress Dance Society with friends, Google reports. Another version of the story holds that four women made their jingle dresses seen in the vision and danced for the sick child, at which point she healed.
3. The Ojibwe Artist Who Made the Google Doodle Says It Represents the Strength of Indigenous Women

The Soaring Eagle Sentinel vividly describes how the dancers carry themselves during the Jingle Dress Dance: “With one hand that usually stays on the dancer’s hip, holding onto her purse the whole time while the other hand holds the eagle tail feather fan as she slowly lifts and spins her fan throughout her dance routine.”
4. The Dress Has Spread From the Ojibwe People to Other Tribes

According to Catherine 
Tynjala explained that, although the Jingle Dress Dance has its origins in Ojibwe culture, and “almost every Ojibwe or Dakota powwow includes the jingle dress dance,” today it has spread to other tribes and become “pan-Indian.”

According to Tynjala, there are different versions of the dance and jingle dress. “Light footwork” is also an important characteristic of the dance, she writes, noting that the dresses resembled the flapper dresses common in the era from which they originated.
5. Indigenous People Transcended Discrimination to Continue the Jingle Dress Dance

According to Minnesota Good Age, in 1921, shortly after the dress was created, the U.S. government “issued a new order banning traditional dancing among American Indian communities.”

Despite this order, the dance persists to this day as the competitive pow wow circuit has bloomed throughout the United States. Minneapolis Public Schools explains in a handout on Jingle Dress Dancing that “dancing is considered a medicinal connection to the earth and every living relative.”

Lesson on odan and such

Nwi odanké                                                        I will go to town

Nwi odankémen                                              We (not you) will go to town

Cho nwi odankési                                            I won’t go to town

Cho nwi odankésimen                                   We (not you) will go to town

Chomshe ngi odankési                                   I didn’t go to town yet

Chomshe ngi odankésimen                         We (not you) didn’t go to town yet

Cho weye gi odankésiwat                             No one went to town

Cho wika éodankésiyan                                 I never go to town

Jo mamda nwi odankési ngom                    Not possible for me to go to town today

Mégwa odan éyéyan                                      I’m still in town

Mojma nde odanké                                         I’m going to town anyway

Mojma nde odankémen                                We (not you) are going to town anyway

Mamkaj nwi odanké                                       I must go to town

Mamkaj nwi odankémen                              We (not you) must go to town

Mamkaj gwi odankémen                              We (and you) must go to town

Abdeg nwi odanké                                           I have to go to town

Abdek nwi odankémen                                 We (not you) have to go to town

Abdek gwi odankémen                                  We (and you) have to go to town

Abdeg ngi odanké                                            I had to go to town

Nanbén égi odankéyan                                  I finally went to town (too late)

Hau gégpi égi odankéyan                             Oh, I finally went to town

Gégpi ne égi odankéyen?                             Did you finally go to town?

Gégpi nwi odanké wabek                             I will finally go to town tomorrow

Neko ngi odankében                                      I used to go to town

Néyap nwi odankéyan                                   I will go back to town

Gnebej nwi odanké                                         Perhaps I will go to town/Maybe I will go to town

Ngi gish odanké                                                I went to town already

Wnago égi odankét o, nasap égi zhechkéyan       He went to town yesterday, and I did the same thing

Nekmek ma she na anwe égi pamséyan ibe odan               I walked around everywhere in town

Mano bgedno éwi odankét o.                     Allow him/her to go to town

Nangodgen éodankéyan                               Sometimes I go to town

Kyénep odankén                                              Hurry and go to town

Kyénep odankék                                              Hurry and go to town (pl.)

Iw yédek égi odankéwat                                               Must be they went to town

Shkwaj nemégishek ngi odanké                 I went to town last week

Égme nemégishek éodankéyan                 I go to town every week

Aizhok shote se ibe odanek égi pamsét o               He/she walked back and forth to town

Azhodakik égi pamsét o égi odankét        H/she walked over the hill to town

Gin ashtek éwi odankéyen                           It’s your turn to go to town

Géte she égi odankéwat                                Of a surety they went to town

Neshna égi pamséwat éodankéwat         They walk to town any old way

Débnak égi wénkwéngéwat éodankéwat               They drove carelessly to town

Nsheké égi odankéyan                                  I went to town alone

Hau, byébidgén éwisneyen.                         Oh, come in and eat.

Wnago égi byéwisnet o shkenwé.             Yesterday that young man came and ate.

Nemé’wgemgok égi byé ngemowat gi négmojek.  The singers came and sang at the church.

Ébyé mokit o gises.                                          The sun is coming up.

Hau byéjibteben émbwach’ewéshen.      Oh, come sit down and visit with me.

Égi byé jibtebet o kwé égi mbwach’ewéshet wnago.  That woman came and sat and visited me yesterday.

Byénkwéshkew o nnikan Yabwambish.  Come and meet my friend, Luke Warmwater.

Byédon I mbop dopwenek.                          Bring the soup to the table.

Byéna o gdekwéyom gishpen ébyayen.  Bring your wife if you come. 

Ébyé bgemboset o nmeshomes.                My grandfather is arriving by riding. 

Épandewébnayan ndo shkemot.               I’m searching about for my purse.

Weswabek nwi pabmades kiwédnon.      I will travel north day after tomorrow.

Odanek gwi zhyamen éwi pa bmoséygo ngoji.     We will go to town to walk around somewhere.

Dawéwgemgwén éwi pa zgabyéngéyak ode gizhnawkwék.  We will drive around to the stores this afternoon. 

Zibik épa bmadgéwat gi gigabéyek. Those boys are swimming around in the river. 

Mbishkik épa giwséyan ngom.  I will go about hunting at the marsh. 

Shpemek épa bmiséwat gi kejkanéshiyek.  The chickadees are flying about in the air.

Shpemsegok épa bmashiwat gi gnoyek.  The eagles are soaring about somewhere above.

Mtegwakik épa zhyayak éwi pandewébneyak I mshkekiwen.  We will go about in the forest searching around for medicine.

Jigbyék épazhyayan égwdemojgéyan.  I will go around on the shore fishing. 

O gigyago épa bmenashkot ni gigabéyen – That girl is going about chasing that boy.

Nwi madmo ébon yaknogéyen.  I will pray that you will stop being sick.

Gégo bon madmoken.  Don’t stop praying.

Ndépseni ma shna ébon wisneyan.  I’m full so I will stop eating.

Gégpi ébon gméyamget.  It has finally stopped raining.

Gaga she wi kchegmowen ébonzhiwtayak ézagjeséyak.  It will soon rain hard so we will stop getting ready to go outside.

Nwi madmo éwi mishkwesyan ébon wdeméyan.  I will pray for the strength to stop smoking.

Bégesh na ébon wdeméyan.  I wish I could stop smoking.

Neshkamak gi penojék ébon nodagzewat.  Get after those kids to stop making noise.

Gi bonimget wnago.  It snowed yesterday.  (Don’t confuse the preverb “bon” with “snowing!”)

Wigéyzen ébwa jagzayen.  Be careful so you don’t get burned.

Ngi bokkadéshen ébwa byé nimediyan.  I broke my leg so I can’t come dance.

Dkobjegén o nemosh ébwa wébiwét o.  Tie up that dog so he doesn’t run away.

Cho she zhonya ndetosin ma shna ébwa tadiyan.  I don’t have any money so I can’t gamble.

Épich ngashknabagwé ébwa kigdoyan.  I’m so thirsty I can’t talk.

Cho she bapkoyan ndetosin ébwa wzhetoyan gégo.  I don’t have any material so I can’t make anything.

Ngi ngeto i ndéwé’genatek ébwa déwé’géyan pkonyak.  I lost my drumstick so I can’t drum tonight.

Bégishek ngi mba ébwa wzhitayan wa je zhechkéyak pkonyak.  I slept all day so I didn’t get ready for what we are going to do tonight.

Éshkadzet o nene ébwa nabanjigazot éniganit gi bémadsejek.  That man is angry because he wasn’t chosen to lead the people.

Gishokwenéyen ébwa bigéjyen.  Dress in warm clothes so you don’t get cold.

Cho she msén ndetosimen ébwa wjandaygo.  We don’t have any wood so we can’t cook. 

Gi gimo pa bamadgéwat gi gigoyek ébwa gdemojgéyan weye.  Those fish were sneakily swimming about so I didn’t catch any of them. 

Égi byé kewabnojét o wéshgetkwé dbekok égi pa odankéyan.  The young woman came and babysat last night so I could go about town.

Abdek ébon wdeméyék ébwa pené’éyék.  It is necessary for you all to quit smoking to keep from getting a disease (cancer, emphysema, etc.). 

Where did you come from this morning?Ni pi je ga byayen ode waben?
Where did you come from?Ni pi je wéch byayen?
Where did you come from yesterday?Ni pi je wéch byayen wnago?
Where did you (pl.) come from?Ni pi je ga je byayek?
Where did he/she come from?Ni pi je ga je byat?
Where did we come from? (incl.)Ni pi je ga je byayak?
Where did they come from?Ni pi je ga je byéwat?
I came from town this morning.Odanek ngi byayan ode waben.
Where did you (pl.) come from this morning?Ni pi je ga je byayek ode waben?
We came from church this morning. (excl.)Nemé’wgemgok ngi byamen ode waben.
Where did we come from this morning? (incl.)Ni pi je ga byayak ode waben.
We came from the hospital this morning. (incl.)Mshkekiwgemgok gi bya men ode waben.
Where did this person come from?Ni pi je ga je byat ode bemadzet?
He/she came from far away.Mégwé pi ga je byat ago.
Where did they come from?Ni pi je ga je byéwat?
They came from the river.Zibik gi byéwak/zibe gi byéwak.
Where did you come from?Ni pi je ga zhe bya yen?
I came from outside.Zagech ngi bya yan.
I came from the river.Ziben ngi bya yan.
I came from the beach.Kejigbeg ngi bya yan.
I came from the forest/woods.Wemtegwaki ngi bya yan.
I came from the garden.Gteganek ngi bya yan.
I came from the boat.Jimanek ngi bya yan.
I came from the train.Shkodédabyanek ngi bya yan.
I came from the/my bed.Nbagnek ngi bya yan.
I came from the roof.Pakwanek ngi bya yan.
I came from the hospital.Mshkekiwgemgok ngi bya yan.
Where did you (pl.) come from?Ni pi je gazhe bya yék?
We came from outside. (excl.)Zagech ngi bya men.
We came from the river. (excl.)Ziben ngi bya men.
We came from the beach. (excl.)Kejigbeg ngi bya men.
We came from the forest/woods. (excl.)Wemtegwaki ngi bya men
We came from the garden. (excl.)Gteganek ngi bya men.
We came from the boat. (excl.)Jimanek ngi bya men.
We came from the car. (excl.)Dabyanek ngi bya men.
We came from the train. (excl.)Shkodédabyanek ngi bya men.
We came from the roof. (excl.)Pakwanek ngi bya men.
Where did we come from? (incl.)Ni pi je ga zhe byayak?
Where did we come from yesterday? (incl.)Ni pi je ga zhe byayak nago?
We came from the hospital. (incl.)Mshkekiwgemgok gi bya men.
We came from the hotel/bar. (incl.)Mnekwéwgemgok gi bya men.
We came from the restaurant. (incl.)Wjandéwgemgok gi bya men.
We came from the enrollment office. (incl.)Debéndawgemgok gi bya men.
We came from the police station/jail. (incl.)Tbaknegéwgemgok gi bya men.
We came from the police station. (incl.)Mshenkiwgemgok gi bya men.

On possession in the Potawatomi construct

Inalienable Possession

Understanding possession requires knowledge of the personal pronouns and their corresponding prefixes and suffixes.  In Bodewadmimwen, body parts and relatives fall into a special class of nouns that are considered “inalienably” possessed.  This means that to be grammatically correct, you cannot just have a Foot or a Mother; you have to specify whose foot or whose mother it is.  Body parts and relatives are considered “Dependent” nouns.

Nkat               My leg                                   Ngyé              My mother

Gkat               Your leg                                 Ggyé              Your mother

Wkaten         His/her leg                            Wgyéyen      His/her mother

Nkatmenan  Our leg (not yours)            Ngyénan       Our mother (not yours)

Gkatmenan Our leg (+you)                     Ggyénan       Our mother (+you)

Gkatmewa   Your leg (pl.)                        Ggyéwa         Your mother (pl.)

Wkatmewa  Their leg                                Wgyéwan     Their mother

The pattern looks slightly different when the noun is plural.  Remember, body parts are inanimate, while relatives are animate:

Ntogen                      My ears                     Nmeshomsek          My grandfathers

Gtogen                      Your ears                  Gmeshomsek          Your grandfathers

Wtognen                  His/her ears             Wmeshomsen         H/h grandfathers

Ntogmenanen        Our ears (-you)       Nmeshomsenanek Our grandfathers-

Gtogmenanen        Our ears (+you)      Gmeshomsenanek Our grandfathers+

Gtogmewan            Your ears (pl.)         Gmeshomsewak    Your grandfathers

Wtogmewan           Their ears                 Wmeshomsewan   Their grandfathers

Here are some commonly used terms for relatives and friends.  Note that some terms are only used by men, while some terms are only used by women.

My maternal aunt  Noshé                        My nephew             Negwenes

My paternal aunt   Nshegwes                 My niece                   Nzhemes

My cousin                 Nitawes                     My parents              Ngetsimek

My daughter           Ndanes                      My younger sibling   Nshimé

My son                      Ngwes                       My brother (men)  Nnikan[1]

My grandmother   N’okmes                   My daughter in law  Ne’agnekwé

My child                    Nijanes                      My sister (women) Nidgeko

My grandchild         Nosés                         My sister (men)      Ndekwem

My uncle                   Nzheshé                    My son in law          Ne’angesh

My elder brother of male            Nsezé

My elder brother of female         Ndewéma

My brother in law of female       Nita

My brother in law of male           Niji

My elder sister of male                 Nmesé

My sister in law of male               Ninem

Family ties were of utmost importance to the old time Bodéwadmik, and relationships were very specific.  Many relationships had special places of honor in society.  For example, it was customary for a son-in-law to avoid speaking directly to his mother-in-law out of absolute respect for her. 

Here are some commonly used body parts.

My ear                       Ntog                           My ears                     Ntogen

My nose                    Njash

My eye                      Nshkishek                 My eyes                    Nshkishgwen

My throat                 Ngotaken                 

My mouth                Ndon

My chin                     Ndamken

My arm                     Nnek                          My arms                   Nnekén

My hand                   Nej/Nenji                  My hands                 Nenjin

My leg                       Nkat                           My legs                      Nkatén

My foot                     Nzet                           My feet                     Nzetén

My finger                  Nenjis                        My fingers                Nenjisen

My toe                       Nzetés                       My toes                     Nzetésen

My shoulder            Ndenmagen             My shoulders          Ndenmagnen

My head                   Nshtegwan              

Top of my head       Ndep

My hair                     Nwinsesén

My forehead           Ngeték

My back                    Npegwen

My tooth                  Nibet                          My teeth                   Nibden         

Alienable Possession

Objects that can be removed from a possessor are considered “Alienable.”  This means that the noun in question can be given away.  Nouns that fall into this category are considered “Independent” nouns.  Possession of this sort is shown as follows:

Inanimate Objects:

Nkomanem             My knife                               Nkomanen               My knives

Gkomanem              Your knife                             Gkomanen               Your knives

Wkomanem            His/her knife                        Wkomanen              His/her knives

Nkomanmenan      Our knife (not yours)        Nkomanmenanen  Our knives

Gkomanmenan      Our knife (yours too)        Gkomanmenanen  Our knives

Gkomanmewa        Your knife (pl.)                    Gkomanmewan      Your knives

Wkomanmewa       Their knife                            Wkomanmewan    Their knives

Animate Objects:

Ngazhoyem             My cat                                   Ngazhomek             My cats

Ggazhoyem             Your cat                                 Ggazhomek             Your cats

Wgazhomen            His/her cat                           Wgazhomen            His/her cats

Ngazhomenan        Our cat (not yours)            Ngazhomenanek    Our cats

Ggazhomenan        Our cat (yours too)            Ggazhomenanek    Our cats

Ggazhomewa          Your cat (pl.)                        Ggazhomewak        Your cats

Wgazhomewan      Their cat                                Wgazhomewan      Their cats

There are other ways to show possession of this type:

            Ndo komanem                                My knife

            Nin ma ode koman                        This is my knife (emphatic)

            Nin ndebendan ode koman        I own this knife

            Nin ma o nemosh                           That is my dog (emphatic)

            Nin ndebenma o nemosh            I own that dog

Gdo koman                                      Your knife

            Gin ma ode koman                        This is your knife (emphatic)

            Gin gdebendan ode koman         You own this knife

            Ndo komanmenan                         Our knife

            Ndo komanmenanen                    Our knives

            Ninan ndebendamen ode koman          We own this knife

            Gdo komanmenan                         Our knife

            Gdo komanmenanen                    Our knives

            Ginan ndebendamen node komanen   We own these knives       

Some special Possessive words:

Nda’i                          My pet dog

            Ndokyan                   My pet cat (can be used for other small animals)

            Ndéygwam              My pet horse

                                                Proximate                             Obviative


Nemosh        O Nemosh                            Ni Nemoshen

Bnéshi                        O Bnéshi                               Ni Bnéshiyen


Nemosh                    Gi Nemoshek                       Ni Nemoshen

Bnéshi                        Gi Bnéshiyek                        Ni Bnéshiyen

This does NOT mean the dog and the bird have become inanimate.  What they have become is 4th Person.

Nin/Ninan/Ginan = 1st Person

Gin/Ginwa = 2nd Person

Win/Winwa = 3rd Person

Nemosh wabman ni bnéshiyen

            The dog sees the bird (s)

                        Nemosh – 3rd Person        

                                    ni bnéshiyen – 4th person

He, pegdoshen i n(do)pkwakwetem

Ni pi je étémget i n(do)shkemotem?

Dopwenek éték i g(do)shkemotem

I yé i n(do)waboyanmenan!

I yé ni n(do)waboyanmenanen!

Hau, mnéschegén ni gchikaswenen!

Ni pi je étoyék ni gdabyanmewan?

Gégo toyék ni gdabyanmewan ibe!

Gishpen étoyék ni gdabyanmewan ibe égwan o mshenkiwnene wa je pamsét éwabdet ni gdabyanmewan ibe éwi mbyégét ni msenegasnen!

Wabek nwi shema o n(de)nemoyem.

Wabek nwi shemamen o n(de)nemomenan.

Wabek nwi shema o n’okmes wnemomen.

Wabek nwi shemak gi n(de)nemomek.

Wabek nwi shemamen gi n(de)nemomenanek.

Wabek nwi shema o ngétsimnek wnemomewan.

Ni pi je ék’kezot o gmeshomsewa wgazhomen?

Nemetsena éyéyet ni wgazhomen.  Cho nde wabmasi o!

[1] Nikan is also used for “My friend.”

Gaga she dgwagek

Anet Bodéwadmimwen Dgwagek kedwenen

Some Potawatomi sentences for Fall.

Édgwagek Datbegnon watébgyanon.

The leaves are changing color since it is becoming fall.

Tkéya mget zagech gnebéch da biskemen gazhoyak.

It’s cool outside maybe you should put on some warm clothes.

Gda-mawdoshk’anen ne ni datbegon nekmek shena zhi ténon.

Could you rake the leaves they are all over the place?

Babwichgen! Abdek nwi-askonye bgéji ksenya mget.

Wait! I have to change it’s a little cold.

Biskowagen ne ggi-byédon iw pi gishkepkonyak wa je ksenyamgek.

Did you bring a jacket its gonna be cold when it gets dark.

Oswen ne ggi-majibdon kyetnam ewi ksenyamgek dbekek.

Did you turn on the heater its really gonna be cold tonight.

Penik ne ggi -bnegwenak?

Did you peel the potatoes?

Msezé wiyas mine Shekowew penik nwi-gebatonen.

I am cooking turkey and mashed potatoes.

Mdamnek ne ggi-mshishknak?

Did you shuck the corn?

Netem ne sikdekiwen ezhewébek shode.

Has the first frost happened here?

Nish Kche yabek ngi-wabmak ezhi jigakwak.

I saw two big buck over there by the edge of the woods.

Ngi-bashksewa ngot nijan mine bshkonwek o yabe.

I shot one doe and I missed a buck.

Gda-Bitoshkan eko ksenyamget wéyabek.

You should dress in layers since its going to be cold tomorrow morning.