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.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Stepping through a course - Lesson 23

This lesson is all about hunting and fishing. In addition to the regular verb "giwose" (hunt), I've included more specific verbs and examples at the end of the lesson.

Dialog -

F: Ningii-waabamaa waawaashkeshi.
M: Ningii-waabamaag niswi waawaashkeshiwag.
M: Giwii-kiiwose na?
F: Gaawiin, niwii-kiiwosesii.
F: Henyaanh, niwii-kiiwose.
* * * * * * * * * * * *

And here's the line-by-line breakdown:

F: Ningii-waabamaa waawaashkeshi.
  • Two new words, "waabam" (see somebody/something animate) and "waawaashkeshi" (deer). She says "I was a deer."
M: Ningii-waabamaag niswi waawaashkeshiwag.
  • Here's a plural example: "I saw three deer." Notice that the verb "waabam" and  "waawaashkeshi" match in plural.
M: Giwii-kiiwose na?
  • Here, "giiwose" changes to "kiiwose" when the prefix "giwii-" is added to ease pronunciation. He says "Are you going to hunt?"  
F: Gaawiin, niwii-kiiwosesii.
  • "No, I am not going to hunt."
F: Henyaanh, niwii-kiiwose.
  • "Yes, I'm going to hunt."

New words this lesson:
  • waawaashkeshi - deer

Other vocabulary:
  • esiban - raccoon
  • waagosh - fox
    • Giwii-waabamaa esiban maagizhaa waagosh. - You'll see a raccoon or maybe a fox. (see the Animals page for other examples:)

In addition to the generic "giwose" (hunt) verb, there are more specific ways to say you're hunting for something. Here are some examples:

  • nandawaabam - look for, search for, track
  • maakinaw - wound
    • Onandawaabamaan iniw gaa-maakinawaad waawaashkeshiwan. - He's looking for the deer he wounded.

The following incorporate both verb and object into a single word (however, notice the use of "nand" and "nood"):

  • nandawenjige - hunt for fish for food
  • nandawishibe - hunt ducks
  • nandawaaboozwe - hunt rabbits
  • noodamikwe - hunt beaver
  • giniizhe - northern pike
  • agwadaashi - sunfish
  • nooji' - hunt for, go after (this verb is conjugated differently than others we've seen so far. See The Ojibwe People's Dictionary for conjugations.)
    • Mekiskanikewaad onooji'aawaan ginoozhen. - Anglers fish for northern pikes.** Notice that the verb and object (ginoozhe) match as plural.
    • Bijiinaago ingii-nooji'aag agwadaashiwag. - Yesterday I fished for sunfish (plural). ** Notice that the verb and object (agwadaashi) match as plural.


  1. With "waabam," this lesson introduces VTA verbs, which have an animate subject and an animate object, e.g. the boy saw the girl. These verbs have a huge number of forms, one for every combination of first/second/third-person (plus obviative which this course doesn't cover) as well as plural versions (with inclusive and exclusive we). You can find huge tables of all the forms elsewhere, but mercifully Pimsleur starts with some of the simplest
    Ningii-waabamaag I -> they
    Ningii-waabamaa I -> him/her


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