Indoojibwem!

Indoojibwem!

When I set out to look for learning materials on the web, I was initially excited to find so many search results for the language. This excitement quickly faded with the number of 404 - Not Found messages I kept getting on each click of a link. So I've created this space as a repository of resources for learning Anishinaabemowin, or more specifically, Ojibwemowin. With time, I hope it can be of use not just to me, but to others.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Stepping through a course - Lesson 3

Here is the dialog for Lesson Three. As with all these lessons new vocabulary is introduced.

Dialog -

M: Aaniish ezhi-ayaayan?
F: Miigwech. Nimaazhi-ayaa.
M: Nimaanzhi-ayaa.
* * * * * * * * * * * *
M: Anishinaabekwe na gidaaw?
F: Henyanh. Anishinaabekwe indaaw.
* * * * * * * * * * * *
F: Anishinaabe-inini na gidaaw?
M: Henh. Anishinaabe-inini indaaw.
* * * * * * * * * * * *
F: Gaawiin. Ninisidotanziin.
* * * * * * * * * * * *
F: Anishinaabe na aawi?
M: Anishinaabe indaaw.
F: Giga-waabamin miinawaa.

And now the line by line breakdown:

M: Aaniish ezhi-ayaayan?
  • Remember from lesson two we learned that this means "How are you?"
F: Miigwech. Nimaazhi-ayaa.
  • Again, from lesson two we know that "miigwech" means "Thank you." "Maazhi" means "not well" or "ill". So she is telling him "Thank you. I'm not feeling well." The "Ni" preceding "maazhi" is the pronoun "I" and "-ayaa" as well learned in lesson two is a verb form for "to be".
M: Nimaanzhi-ayaa.
  • Notice the difference in spelling of "nimaanzhi-ayaa". This is simply a dialectal variation of "nimaazhi-ayaa".
* * * * * * * * * * * *
M: Anishinaabekwe na gidaaw?

  • Notice a difference from "Anishinaabe na gidaaw" learned in lesson one? The difference is subtle, but significant. the "kwe" (ikwe) tacked on the end of "Anishinaabe" means that we are adressing a woman.
  • So we're literally asking "Are you an Anishinaabe woman?"
F: Henyanh. Anishinaabekwe indaaw.
  • We learned in lesson two that "henyanh" is "yes" spoken by a female. And she is also specifying that she is an Anishinaabe woman.
  • So she's saying "Yes, I'm an Anishinaabe woman."
* * * * * * * * * * * *
F: Anishinaabe-inini na gidaaw?
  • Here we see she is asking if he is an Anishinaabe man, by tacking "inini" onto Anishinaabe. Note that this can either be attached with a hyphen "-" or without.
M: Henh. Anishinaabe-inini indaaw.
  • And as we learned in lesson one, "henh" is how a male says "yes".
  • So his answer is "Yes, I am an Anishinaabe man."
* * * * * * * * * * * *
F: Gaawiin. Ninisidotanziin.
  • We learned that "Gaawiin" means "no". Let's take a closer look at the next word, "Ninisidotanziin". If we drop the first "ni" (pronoun "I") and the ending "ziin" (more in a moment on that), we have "nisidotam", which means "understand". When we tack on "siin" to ending, we are changing it to negative. Because "nisidotam" ends in a "m", "siin" will become "ziin". We need to add the beginning "ni" to make sure we know that it is "I' doing the speaking.
  • So the complete phrase is "No, I don't understand."
* * * * * * * * * * * *
F: Anishinaabe na aawi?
  • The new word here is "aawi" and is the pronoun for "he", "she" or "it".
  • So she is asking "Is s/he Anishinaabe?". She keeps Anishinaabe without the endings because we don't know if she is asking about a man or a woman.
M: Anishinaabe indaaw.
  • And here he is answering "S/he is Anishinaabe." Again, no male or female notation.
F: Giga-waabamin miinawaa.
  • And we also learned in lesson one that this is "I'll see you again."

Little by little, new vocabulary and concepts are being introduced. These are reinforced at the beginning of each new lesson.

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