Mi'kmaq language/Basic vocabulary

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Basic vocabulary
Chapter 7
Lesson : Mi'kmaq language
Previous chapter:Counting
Next chapter :Greetings

This chapter introduces some Mi'kmaq vocabulary by themes: animals, body parts, elements of the calendar, colours, currency and food.

Note: All words in this chapter are in Francis-Smith orthography (see Chapter 3 for more details). The abbreviations "n.a" and "n.i." respectively mean "noun animate" and "noun inanimate".

Animals[edit]

Listen to the word sa'qitie'j (dragonfly) recorded by a Mi'kmaq elder
Lmu'j
Te'sipow
Tiya'm
Paqtɨsm
Lentuk
Kitpu
English Mi'kmaq Plural Mi'kmaq form Fourth person Mi'kmaq form
Bat Na'jipuktaq'nej (n.a.) Na'jipuktaq'nejk Na'jipuktaq'nejl
Beaver Kopit (n.a.) Kopitk Kopitl
Bear Mui'n (n.a.), muin (n.a.) Mui'naq, muinaq Mui'nal, muinal
Bear cub Mui'ne'j (n.a.) Mui'nejk Mui'ne'jl
Bee Amu (n.a.) Amu'k Amu'l
Bird Jipji'j (n.a.) Jipji'jk Jipji'jl, jipji'tl
Black duck Apji'jkmuj (n.a.), jikwij (n.a.) Apji'jkmujk, jikwijk Apji'jkmujl, jikwijl
Blackbird Putlieskij (n.a.) Putlieskijk Putlieskijl
Blue Jay Tities (n.a.) Titiesk Titiesl
Blue-winged Teal Tma'qni (n.a.) Tma'qni'k Tma'qni'l
Bull Matto'law (n.a.), latto'law (n.a.) Matto'lawk, latto'lawk Matto'lawl, latto'lawl
Butterfly Mimikes (n.a.), mimikej (n.a.) Mimikesk, mimikesjk Mimikesl, mimikejl
Calf Wenjitia'mu'j (n.a.) Wenjitia'mu'jk Wnejitia'mu'jl
Calf moose Tia'mu'j (n.a.) Tia'mu'jk Tia'mu'jl
Caribou Qalipu (n.a.) Qalipuk Qalipul
Cat Kajuewj (n.a.), mia'wj (n.a.) Kajuewjik, mia'wjk Kajuewjl, mia'wjl
Caterpillar Enkejit (n.a.) Enkejijik Enkejitl
Chicken Ko'qoli'kwej (n.a.), ki'kli'kwej (n.a.) Ko'qoli'kwejk, ki'kli'kwejk Ko'qoli'kwejl, ki'kli'kwejl
Chipmunk Apalqaqamej (n.a.) Apalqaqamejk Apalqaqamejl
Clam E's (n.a.) E'sik E'sl
Cod Peju (n.a.) Peju'k Peju'l
Cow Wenjti'am (n.a.) Wenjiti'amuk Wenjiti'amul
Crane Tmkwatiknej (n.a.) Tmkwatiknejk Tmkwatiknejl
Crow Ka'qaquj (n.a.), ka'qawej (n.a.) Ka'qaqujk, ka'qawejk Ka'qaqujl, ka'qawejl
Deer Lentuk (n.a.) Lentukk Lentukul
Dog Lmu'j (n.a.), nmu'j (n.a.) Lmu'jik, nmu'jik Lmu'jl, nmu'jl
Duck or geese (domestic) Takali'j (n.a.) Takali'jk Takali'jl
Dragonfly Sa'qitie'j (n.a.) Sa'qitie'jik Sa'qitie'jl
Eagle Kitpu (n.a.) Kitpu'k Kitpu'l
Eel Ka't (n.a.), katew Ka'taq, kataq Ka'tal, katewal
Female dog Skwesmuj (n.a.) Skwesmujk Skwesmujl
Female fowl Skwe'w (n.a.) Skwe'wuk Skwe'wul
Flying squirrel Saskatu (n.a.), sasqatu (n.a.) Saskatu'k, Sasqatu'k Saskatu'l, sasqatu'k
Foal Te'sipowji'j (n.a.) Te'sipowji'jk Te'sipowji'jl
Fox Wowkwis (n.a.) Wowkwisk Wowkwisl
Frog Sqolj (n.a.) Sqoljik Sqoljl
Goat Te'plj (n.a.), te'pulj (n.a.) Te'pljik, te'puljik Te'pljl, te'puljl
Goose Sulumkw (n.a.), sinumkw (n.a.) Sulumkwaq, sinumkwaq Sulumkwal, sinumkwal
Groundhog Mulumkwej (n.a.) Mulumkwejk Mulumkwejl
Halibut Sanuk (n.a.) Sanukk Sanukl
Herring Alanj (n.a.) Alanjk Alanjl
Horned owl Titiklie (n.a.) Titiklie'k Titiklie'l
Horned serpent Jipijka'm (n.a.) Jipijka'muk Jipijka'mul
Horse Te'sipow (n.a.) Te'sipowk Te'sipowl
Kingfisher Jikitli'kej (n.a.) Jikitli'kejk Jikitli'kejl
Kitten Kajuewji'j (n.a.) Kajuewji'jk Kajuewji'jl
Lamb Jijkluewji'j (n.a.) Jijkluewji'jk Jijkluewji'jl
Lobster Jakej (n.a.) Jakejk Jakejl
Mackerel Amalamek (n.a.) Amalamekk Amalamekl
Marten Apistanewj (n.a.) Apistanewjik Apistanewjl
Mink Jiakewj (n.a.), mujpej (n.a.) Jiakewjik, mujpejk Jiakewjl, mujpejl
Moose Tia'm (n.a.) Tia'muk Tia'mul
Mouse Apikji'j (n.a.), apukji'j (n.a.) Apikji'jk, apukji'jk Apikji'jl, apukji'jl
Muskrat Ki'kwesu (n.a.) Ki'kwesu'k Ki'kwesu'l
Otter Kiwnik (n.a.) Kiwnikaq Kiwnikal
Owl Ku'ku'kwes (n.a.) Ku'ku'kwesk Ku'ku'kwesl
Partridge Plawej (n.a.) Plawejk Plawejl
Pig Kulkwi's (n.a.) Kulkwi'sk Kulkwi'sl
Piglet Kulkwi'ji'j (n.a.) Kulkwi'ji'jk Kulkwi'ji'jl
Porcupine Matues (n.a.) Matuesk Matuesl
Puppy Lmu'ji'j (n.a.) Lmu'ji'jk Lmu'ji'jl
Rabbit Apli'kmuj (n.a.), wapus (n.a.) Apli'kmujk, wapusk Apli'kmujl, wapusl
Raccoon Amaljukwej (n.a.), amaljikwej (n.a.) Amaljukwejk, amaljikwejk Amaljukwejl, amaljikwejl
Robin Jipjawej (n.a.), kapjakwej (n.a.) Jipjawejk, kapjakwejk Jipjawejl, kapjakwejl
Rooster Lape'w (n.a.), nape'w (n.a.), jikijo'n (n.a.) Lape'wk, nape'wk, jikijo'nk Lape'wl, nape'wl, jikijo'nl
Salamander Taqtaloq (n.a.) Taqtaloqq Taqtaloql
Salmon Plamu (n.a.) Plamu'k Plamu'l
Seagull Kloqntiej (n.a.) Kloqntiejk Klowntiejl
Sheep Jijkluewj (n.a.) Jijkluewjik Jijkluewjl
Skunk Apikjilu (n.a.) Apikjilu'k Apikjilu'l
Smelt Kaqpesaw (n.a.) Kaqpesaq Kaqpesawul
Snake Mteskm, mte'skm (n.a.) Mteskmuk, mte'skmuk Mteskml, mte'skml
Squirrel Atu'tuej (n.a.) Atu'tuejk Atu'tuejl
Sucker Komkwej (n.a.) Komkwejk Komkwejl
Sugar ant Sismo'qone'j (n.a.) Sismo'qone'jk Sismo'qone'jl
Swallow Pukwales (n.a.) Pukwalesk Pukwalesl
Trout Atoqwa'su (n.a.) Atoqwa'su'k Atoqwa'su'l
Turtle Mikjikj (n.a.) Mikjikjik Mikjikjl
Waterfowl Sisip (n.a.) Sisipaq Sisipal
Wolf Paqtɨsm (n.a.), paqtesm (n.a.) Paqtɨsmuk, paqtesmuk Paqtɨsmul, paqtesmul
Woodpecker Apo'qatej (n.a.) Apo'qatejk Apo'qatejl
Young goat Te'plji'j (n.a.) Te'plji'jk Te'plji'jl

Body parts[edit]

English Mi'kmaq
Arm Npitnokom
Belly button Nili
Chest Npsewikn
Ear Nsituaqn
Elbow Ntluskinikn
Eye Npukik
Finger Ntlewikn
Foot Nkat
Knee Njikun
Hand Npitn
Head Nunji
Mouth Ntun
Neck Njitaqn
Nose Nsiskun
Shoulder Ntlmaqn
Stomach Nmusti
Testicle Nulsu
Thigh Nkajikn
Thumb Ntijin
Toe Npsisqunan

Calendar[edit]

Seasons[edit]

English Mi'kmaq
Autumn Toqwa'q
Spring Siwkw
Summer Nipk
Winter Kesik

Months[edit]

English Mi'kmaq Literal meaning
January Penamujuiku's Frost fish runs
February Apuknajit Snow blinding month
March Siewkesiku's Forerunner of Spring
April Penatmuiku's Egg hatching time
May Etquljuiku's Frog croaking time
June Nipniku's Leaves are budding time
July Peskewiku's Animal fur thickens time
August Kisikwekewiku's Ripening time
September Wikumkewiku's Mate calling time
October Wikewiku's Animal fattening time
November Keptekewiku's Frost month
December Kesikewiku's Winter month

Days of the week[edit]

English Mi'kmaq
Monday Amskwesewey
Tuesday Ta'puewey
Wednesday Si'stewey
Thursday Ne'wewey
Friday Kweltamultimk
Saturday Kespitekɨtek
Sunday Ekntie'wimk

Colours[edit]

Since there is no adjectives per say in Mi'kmaq, the words in the table below are verbs meaning "He/she/it is black" (or another colour). All verbs shown are for the third person and are singular.

English Mi'kmaq
Black Maqtawe'k, maqtewe'k
Blue Ewne'k
Brown Tupkwanamu'k, jijijuwaqitewamu'k
Dark green Stoqonamuksit
Deep blue Musqunamu'k
Gold Wisawisuliewey
Green Stoqonamu'k
Grey Sulieweyamu'k
Light blue Musik'ewamuk'
Orange Nikjawiknejewamu'k, wisawsulieweyamu'k
Pink Nijinjewamu'k
Purple Nisqunamu'k
Red Mekwe'k
Yellow Wisawe'k, wataptek
White Wape'k

Currency[edit]

Since the vast majority of Mi'kmaq speakers are in Canada, this page lists the Mi'kmaq words for the different denominations for Canadian money.

Value Mi'kmaq word
Smalkiewey
Kopitewey
10¢ Salpo'lkewey
25¢ Kaltie
$1 Newtayik
$2 Tapuayikl
$5 Nanayikl
$10 Metla'sayikl
$20 Tapuiskekayikl
$50 Naniskekayikl
$100 Kaskimtlnaqnayikl

Food[edit]

Enmapejit
Ejkujk
Tmato's
Moqopa'q
English Mi'kmaq
Bannock Lusknikn (n.i.)
Bread Pipnaqan (n.i.)
Butter Mlakeju'mi (n.i.)
Buttermilk Sikupaqte'kn (n.a.)
Carrot Enmapejit (n.a.)
Cheese Te'plmasewei (n.i.), tepplma'sigewei (n.i.)
Cinnamon Pkwejijk (n.)
Coffee Kaffi (n.i.)
Cookie Kalkunawei (n.i.)
Food Mijipjewei (n.i.)
Food for breakfast Eksitpu'kwatalmgewei (n.i.)
Hazelnut Malipqwanj (n.i.)
Jam Paskoqsikn (n.i.), passoqsikn (n.i.)
Meal Mijjuaqan (n.i.)
Meat Wius (n.i.)
Milk Mlakejk (n.a.)
Moose fat Tia'mu'mi (n.i.)
Moose meat Tia'muei (n.i.)
Mushroom Lketu (n.a.), sqoljui'kan (n.i.)
Pancake Sisla'kwa'taqan (n.i.)
Pea soup Wenjua'p'tew (n.i.)
Pepper Te'pisewei (n.i.)
Porcupine meat Matuesuei (n.i.)
Pork Kulkwi'suei (n.i.)
Pork fat, lard Kulkwi'su'mi (n.i.)
Potato Tapatat (n.a.), tap'tan (n.a.)
Rhubarb Sewlugowei (n.a.)
Salt Salawei (n.i.)
Squash Ejkujk (n.i.)
Soup Lasup (n.i.)
Sugar Sismoqn (n.i.), sismo'qon (n.i.)
Tea P'tewei (n.i.)
Tomato Tmato's (n.a.)
Turnips Wenj'u'sɨpekn (n.a.), wenju'suqapun (n.a.), tanaps (n.a.)
Water Samuqwan (n.i.)
Wild potato S'kepn (n.a.)
Wine Moqopa'q (n.i.)

Additional resources[edit]