Grammatical Sketch of the Heve Language - Shea's Library Of American Linguistics. Volume III.
by Buckingham Smith
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Transcriber's Note: The symbol "ō" is used to represent an "o" with macron.










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This tongue was spoken in the middle of the last century over a region of country principally within Sonora, the northernmost of the seven Provinces then comprising the kingdom of New Galicia under the Viceroyalty of New Spain. The limit of Sonora on the east was continuous along the chain of mountains that divides it from Taraumara,—from Sateche, the farthest of the Indian settlements in that district, southwardly eighty leagues to Bacoa Sati the first of its towns. On the west the Province was washed by the sea of Cortez from the mouth of the Hiaqui to the Tomosatzi, or Colorado, the waters of the Hiaqui forming its limit to the south; and on the north by a course from the Mission of Baseraca westwardly through the Presidio de Fronteras to that of Pitic (Terrenate), a distance of seventy leagues. According to the opinion of a Jesuit Father, the author of an anonymous work in, manuscript on that country, written in the year 1762 at Alamo, it was thought also to be the most important among the many Provinces of Mexico, whether for fertility of soil, gold washings, or silver mines; and not less distinguishable for the docility and loyalty of those aboriginal inhabitants who had early given their adhesion to the government to secure religious instruction.

[Footnote 1: The title of the work, in manuscript, from which the grammatical notices have been elaborated is Arte y Vocabulario de la lingua Dohema, Heve Eudeva; the adjective termination of the last and first name being evidently Spanish, as is also the plural terminations used elsewhere in some of the modifications of those words. We have only the definition of Heve with certainty given as "people;" to the word "nation" in the vocabulary, there being attached the remark: "I find no generic term: each (nation) has its specific name; the Eudeves are called Dhme." Another like work, also unpublished, with the title Arte ce In lengua Pinea has the dictionary inscribed Vocabulario en lengua Nevome.

In the uncertain relationship of the tribes to each other, better marked and measured perhaps by the proximity of their idioms than by any other means with which we are acquainted, a thought has been taken from the indistinct manner in which these different people are spoken of by those who have been among them to advance in the present title, (since we may not be at liberty to reject,) the word Dhme for the family; and Pima generally for the common language, under which the Opata, Heve, Nevome, Sobahipurls and the rest may be placed, as they shall become known, each by its separate dialect.]

The Missions of Sonora included moreover a section to the south bounded by the River Chico within the Province of Ostimuri. To the north, within the religious precinct, was the Pimeria Alta through the Sobahipuris up to the junction of the river of that name, (otherwise the San Pedro,) with the Gila; thence for a distance of more than one hundred and thirty leagues, after passing among rancheras of Pima, Opa, and Cocomaricopa, and having received in its course the Asumpcion, or Compuesto—from its being formed by the united waters of two streams, the Salado and Verde—it enters the Tomosatzi, closing that Pimeria of innumerable tribes described by the missionaries as sealed in productive places, and in a genial climate. Other Indians of the same names, the Yuma also and Papapootam (Papago) lived beyond, as appears from the accounts given by the spiritual invaders of those remote regions, chiefly the Fathers Kino, Keller, and Sedelmayer.

The two principal nations of Sonora are spoken of as the Opata and Tima, since the Eudeve should be reckoned with the Opata, for the reason that its language differs as little from that of the other as the Portuguese from the Castilian, or the Provenal from the French; and likewise should also be added the Jove, who, having mingled with the Opata, no longer use their own tongue, except in some instances of the aged. It is one difficult to acquire, and different from any other in the Province.

The Opata are the best of the native Christians, having never turned upon their teachers, nor once risen against the royal authorities; nor do they, like other Indians, make the women bear the heavier share of the labor in the fields. They are industrious husbandmen; but they are not any the less wanting in valor on that account, having oftentimes shown their good conduct when bearing arms with the king's forces at the expense of the Missions. Individuals there were, and perhaps still are, who did the work of blacksmiths, carpenters, tailors, stone cutters, masons, learning any craft readily, and practicing it with skill. They and some of the Endeve, although in a less degree, are to the other Indians what the people who live in towns are to those in the country, still for all it was remarked, they were none the less Indians. Such was the general character of the Opata, which is the same that is given of them in our time by that curious and instructive observer, John R. Bartlett, in his narrative of an expedition into that country.

The Jove were a rural people, quite the greater number of them, unwilling to be brought together in communities, lived in chasms among the ridges where they were born, proof to the solicitations of kindness and conveniences of civilized life. The other portion of them dwelt in Ponida, Teopari and Mochoba. The good missionary at Bacadeque endeavored to bring into towns those who inhabited the ranchera of Sathechi and the margins of the Mulatos and Arcos, rivers to the south, without avail. They live among briars, owning a few animals, subsisting on wild fruits and vegetables, gathering an occasional stalk of maize or a pumpkin that nature suffers to grow in some crevice here and there made by torrents bursting from the mountains.

These nations, the Pima and the Opata, Eudeve, Jove, forming two people, occupy the greater portion of Sonora, seated far inward to the west from the Cordillera. The limit on the south is where stood the deserted town of Ivatora thence to Arivetze, Bacanora, Tonitzi, Soyopa, Nacori; on the west from Alamos, through parts of Ures and Nacomeri to Opedepe, and Cucurpe; on the north from Arispe, Chinapa, Bacoquetzi, Cuquiaratzi to Babispe, and from that Mission of Babispe on the east by mountains of low elevation returning to Natora.

The Pima occupy a still wider territory, extending on the south into Cinaloa, on the east in to the Province of Taraumara. The Upper Pima are found far to the north living by the Sobahipuris to its outlet, and on both banks of the Gila to the Tomosatzi, in vales of luxuriant beauty, and in wastes of sand and sterility between those rivers and the sea,—having still other tribes beyond them using the same language in different dialects. The Lower Pima are in the west of the Province, having many towns extending to the frontier of the indomitable Seri, who live some thirty leagues to the north of the mouth of the Hiaqui and have their farthest limit inland, some dozen leagues from the sea, finding shelter among the ridges, and in the neighboring island of Tiburon.[2] Those of the Pima who reside on the south, in the Province of Cinaloa, the history of their migration thither is of the earliest, and belongs to that which should relate the closing scene in the journey of Cabeza de Vaca, with the strange success that eventually, at the close of a century, attended his Christian purpose.

[Footnote 2: The Guaima speak nearly the same language as the Seri, are few in number, and live among the Hiaqui in Beln and elsewhere, having retreated before the sanguinary fury of their congeners


All these nations, save the last, and all others who inhabit the country excepting the Apaches—including a numerous people on the Gila and on the farther bank of the Colorado—speak the same language, with so slight differences, say the missionaries, that they who shall have attained the one of the Opata and Eudeve with little difficulty will master the rest. And for this we have that early authority referred to, of three centuries since: "They made known to us what they would say by means of a language they have among them through which we and they understood each other. Those to whom it properly belongs we call Primahaitu, which is equivalent to when we say Biscayans. We found it in use over more than four hundred leagues (miles?) of our travel, without another in the whole extent." The name thus given by the narrator of the Naufragios seemingly exists in these words, their definitions taken from a dictionary in MS. of the Pima language written by a missionary. No, pima: Nothing, pim' haitu. Ques. What, Ai? Ans. Pimahaitu (nihil).


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It has been thought proper to use nineteen characters in the language, among which are not included f, j, k, w, x, y, nor l, although the sound of l is somewhat heard in the soft enunciation given by the Indian to the letter r.

The k is sufficiently supplied in the syllabic sounds que and qui, where the u is silent, although gue and gui are each of two syllables. There has been a disposition to omit the g also, the sound of which, as in go, if the natives had not originally, they certainly possess at present, got from the Spaniards. This should excuse its appearance here. The sound of z is strong as heard in fits.

The vowels are sounded as in tar, bear, silk, doe, rue.

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Substantives in this language are declined without the use of articles.

2. Those which may be called verbal, from their origin in verbs, are much used: hisguadauh, painting, or writing, is the passive (is painted) of the present active hisguan, I paint. They have their times: hisguadauh is in the present, expressing the picture I form now of the passive preterite hisguacauh, the work I have executed, of which hisguatzidaugh, the picture I will make, is the future passive: and when to these verbal substantives is added the particle gua, it denotes place, as, No hisguadaubgua, the place where I paint, etc.


3. But words signifying kindred, have their termination usually in gua also, for which see section 16.


4, 5. Other verbal substantives, signifying instruments, are made from the future active: thus, the verb mtecan, I chop, having mtetze in the future, receives siven in lieu of the final syllable, and makes the substantive, mtesiven, axe or tool with which to chop. Many of these words likewise terminate in rina, as bcusirina, flute, from bcudan, I whistle, and bhirina, shovel, from bihn, I scrape.


6, 7. Many abstract nouns are formed by the addition of the particle ragua, as vde, joyously; vderagua, joy; dni, good; dniragua, goodness; dhme, man, or people; dhmeragua, humanity; and so disragua, divinity. Others, substantive nouns, applied to certain places end in sra, as, omsra, canebrake, from om, cane, and sra, in or among; hurigosra, reedfield; hparosra, mesquitscrub: and so a town is called Opsra, because it is among some trees called op, elm.

8. The verbs are substantives likewise, and as such are declined as much so as the same words are conjugated when verbs: thus, nemtzan, I bewitch, is also wizard, and hisguan, I write, is scrivener; but it is to be observed of these substantives, as well as of those which end in daugh, that they too have equally their times, as nemtzan, the wizard—that is now, in the present; nemtzari, the preterite that has; nemtzatze, the future that will, with the difference that these terminations are active, while those in daugh, etc., are passive.

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9, 10, 11, 12. The many adjective nouns ending in tri, and ei, signify quality, as, bavitri, elegant; aresumetri, different or distinct; tasquei, narrow; asquei, thick; stei, white; and so of the rest signifying color. Some ending in rve, denote plenitude; for example, sitorve, full of honey; composed of sitri, honey, and rve, full; seborrve, full of flies; aterve of at, louse, etc.; others, ending in e, i, o, u, signify possession, as, es, she that has petticoats; cne, she that has a husband; gusue, he that has land for planting; hvi, the married man, from hub, woman; nno, he that has a father, from nnogua, father, and sutu, he that has finger-nails, from sut: and they, moreover, have their times like verbs, since, from es is formed esei, preterite, she that had petticoats; cnetze, future, she that will marry, etc.; and afterwards they are declined as nouns, as, Nom., esi; Gen. esigue. (For other form of the possessive, see section 19.)


13, 14. It is usual for the want of many positive affirmatives in the language to express by the positive of the opposite signification, adding the negation ca, as, nucuatri, perishable; canucuatri, everlasting; cne, married, f.; cacne, not married; hbi, married, m.; cahbi, not married, etc. Those ending in sri, and scor, mark a bad, or vicious quality, as, dedensri, tobacco-smoker, from dinan, I suck; and hibesri, gluttonous, from hiban, I eat; nehrisri, talker, from nhren, I talk; capasri, old rags, from capt; banscor, weeper, from banan; cotzscor, sleeper, from cotzom; discor, vagabond, from dion, I walk, or vacosri, which has the same signification, from vcon. The termination, sguari, is used in this sense: dotzi, old man; dotzsguari, very old man; hit, female of middle age; hosguari, very old woman.


Substantives of the First Declension form their genitive in que, and usually are such as terminate in a vowel.

Nominative, Siib, hawk, Genitive, Siibque, of hawk, Dative, Siibt, to hawk, Accusative, Siibe, hawk, Vocative, Siib, hawk, Ablative, Sibtze, in Sibde, by > hawk. Sibquema, with /

The plural of substantives (requiring a special notice) will be treated of hereafter. Substantives of the Second Declension form their genitive in te and t.

N. Mavirot, Lion. G. Mavirote, D. and A. Mavrota, V. Mavrot, A. Mavrotze, in, Mavrode, by, Mavrotema, with lion.

The verb-noun hisguadauh, painting, is thus declined.

N. Hisgnadauh, G. Hisguadauhte, D. and A. Hisguadauhta, Ab. Hisguadautze, in, Hisguadauhde, by, Hisguadauhtema, with painting.

And so likewise decline the preterite passive hisguacauh, and the future passive hisguatzidauh.

But verbs in the present time, when they serve as substantives, are thus declined

N. Nemtzan, wizard. G. Nemtzante, D. and A. Nemtzanta, V. Nemtzan, A. Nemtzantze, in, Nemtzade, by, Nemtzantema, with wizard.

Some ending in t while they form the genitive in te, part with a vowel, as follows:

N. Arit, Ant. G. Arte, D. and A. Arta, V. Arit; A. Artze, in, Arde, by, Artema, with ant.

Nnoguat, father, belongs to this declension, and forms the genitive nnauhte; but when preceded by a possessive pronoun, it loses the final guat, as has been stated, and the termination is left in o, to form the genitive in the first declension, as, no, my, no nnoque, of my father, which rule applies equally to other names of kindred.

Sometimes an ablative is formed in u, as tepatu, in the church, from tepa, hectu, in the shade, from hect.

Substantives of the Third Declension end in s, r, z, and form the genitive by the addition of e, and the accusative by i.

N. Utzvor, Pitahaya. G. Utzvōre, D. and A. Utzvori, V. Utzvor, A. Utzvortze, in, Utzvorde, by, Utzvorema, with pitahaya.

In this way decline tatas, crabapple,—gen. tatse, dat. and acc. tatsi, &c., also, portz, wildcat, gen. portze, dat. and acc. portzi, &c.

To Adjective Nouns there has been an inclination to assign a separate place, but they terminate in a vowel, and there appears to be no reason why they should not go with substantives of the first declension.

N. Svei, obscure. G. Sveique, D. and A. Svec, V. Svei, A. Svetze in, Sveide, by, Sveiquema, with obscure.


15. Substantives, especially those animate of rational beings, usually form the plural by doubling the first syllable, as, dor, man, or male; ddor, men; hoit, woman, pl. hhoit; dni, good, pl. dedni.

Some other words form their plural irregularly, as, doritzi, boy, pl. vus, applied to both sexes, though when intended only for males ddorus is used; hoquis, large girls, pl. hrquir; temtzi, big boy, pl. tetemtzi; to which when the particle te is added it marks the absence of any of the other sex, as dodrte, men only; hohite, women only; hrquirte, girls only. The declension of these plurals is according to the rules before given.


16. The language is remarkable for another peculiarity, which is, that the females in many instances employ different words from the males: the father says to his son, Nognt, to his daughter, Mrqua; the mother to either says, Ntzgua; the son to the father says, Nongua, and the daughter says, Msgua. The elder brother likewise is called Vtzgua, pl. Vaptz, the younger Vngua, pl. Vopon, the elder sister Cotzgua, pl. Coctz, the younger Vngua, pl. Vipim, to which adding the possessive pronouns no, amo, and the like, the gua is omitted to such as have that termination. There is much to be learned about the names of the kindred, but the subject is one too wide for present explanation.


17. The Personal Pronoun nee, I, followed by another word becomes ne; nap, thou or you, becomes na, tamide becomes ta; emet or emde becomes em, veride and iride become ver and ir; meride becomes mer.


Nom. Nee, I, Tamide, we, Gen. No, of me, Tamo, of us, Dat. and Acc. Netz, to me, Tame, to us, Voc. (if there be any,) Nee, O, Tamide, O we, Abl. Noma, with me, Tamma, with us, Node, by me; Tamde, by us. the ma in this case being that of cause, manner and instrument.

N. Nap, thou, Emet, or Emde, ye, G. Amo, of thee, Emo, of you, D. and A. Eme, to thee, Em, to you, V. Nap, O thou, Emt, O ye, Ab. Amma, with thee, Emma, with you, Amde, by thee, Emde, by you.

N. Veride, or Iride, this, Meride, these, G. Vre, of this, Mere, of these, D. and A. Vra, to this, Mera, to these, Ab. Verma, with this, Merma, with these, Verde, by this, Merede, by these.

N. Vte, that, G. Vte, of that. No more appear to exist N. Id, At, or Ar, that, (he, she), Amt, or Met, these, G. Ide, or Are, of that, Ame, or Mere, of those, D. and A. Ia, to that, Ame, to those, Ab. Arema, or Idema, with that, Amma or Merma, with those, Arde or Idde, by that Amede, or Herede, by those.

No arcade, by my will, is more used than Nvide, by my will, Amvide, by your will, Tamvide, by our will, Vervide, by the will of this, Emvide, by your will. Arevide, by the will of that, Merevide, by the will of these, Amvide, by the will of those, Nosa, Nsava, I myself, Tomsa, Temsava, we ourselves. Amsa, Amsava, then thyself, Emsa, Emsava, ye yourselves. Arsa, Arsava, he himself, Amtva, they themselves.

These are all without inflections save this last, which has its genitive amva, being declined like amet. Nee vasu, likewise means I myself.

Nee senva is, I alone; the plural, tamide amve, we alone; but neither senva nor amve are declined, only the pronouns that accompany them.


18, 19. Possessive Pronouns are the genitives of the primitive; thus, no vnama, means, my hat, no being the genitive of nee, and the same with the rest. But in order to say, this is mine, guagua is used applied to inanimate things, as, veride quit no guagua, this is my house; or vut applied to animate, as, veride cavadu no vut, this horse is mine; and with the change of person those genitives of the primitive must be added, as, no guagua, mine; amo guagua, thine, are guagua, his, &c., no vut, mine, &c. (Another manner of expressing the possessive has been given in section 12.)

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Here opens a very broad field whereon may be observed the excellence of this language that is considered barbarous.

Conjugation of the verb hisguan, I write, or paint.


Singular. ACTIVE VOICE. PASSIVE VOICE. Nee hisgnan, I write, Nee hisguadauh, I am written, Nap hiosguan, You write, Np hisguadauh, You are written, Id, or At, hiosguan, He writes, Id, or At, hisguadauh, He is written.

Plural. Tamide hisguame, We write, Tamide Emt hisguame, Ye write, Emt > hisguadagua, Amet [3]hisguame, They write, Amet / We are written, &c.

[Footnote 3: In all moods and tenses when the person is put afterward, which it is very common to do, the form is this:

ACTIVE. PASSIVE. Singular, hisguamne, hisguadauhne, hisguanna, hisguadauhna, hisguanar, hisguadauhar, Plural, hisguameta, hisguadaguata, hisguametem, hisguadaguatem, hisguametam, hisguadaguatam, and so on, according to their condition.]


ACTIVE. PASSIVE. Singular. Nee I wrote, Nee Nap > hiosguamru, You wrote, Nap > hisguadauhru Id, or At,/ He wrote, Id, or At,/ I was written, &c.

Plural. Tamid We wrote, Tamide Emt > hisguameru Ye wrote, Emt, > hisguadauaru, Ame / They wrote. Amet / We were written, &c.


Singular. Nee I have written, Nee Nap > hisguari, Thou hast written, Nap > hisguacauh, Id, or At,/ He has written, Id, or At,/ I have been written, &c.

Plural. Tamide, We have written, Tamide, Emt, > hisguarim, Ye have written, Emt, > hisguacagua, Amet, / They have written, Amet, / We have been written, etc.


Nee, hisguarit, &c., I have been written, etc. Tamide, hisguarit, &c., We have been written, etc.


Singular. Nee I had written. Nee, Nap > hisgnariru, Thou hadst written, Nap, > hisguacuahrutu Id, or At,/ He had written, Id or At,/ I had been written, etc.

Plural. Tamide We had written, Tamide Emt > hisguarimru, Ye had written, Emt > hisguacaguaru, met / They had written. Amet / We had been written, etc.


Singular. Nee I will write, Nee Nap > hisguatze, You will write. Nap > hisguatzidauh, Id, or At,/ He will write, Id, or At,/ I will be written, &c.

Plural. Tamide We will write, Tamide Emt > hisguatze, Ye will write, Emt > hisguatzidagua, Amet / They will write. Amt / We will be written, etc.


Singular. Hisgua, write thou. Wanting.

Plural. Hisguavu, write ye.

Another form of the IMPERATIVE made with sma, to see.

Singular. Asmane Asmane Asmana > hisguatze, Asmana > hisguatzidauh, Asmair/ I will see that I write, &c., Asmair/ I shall see that I be written, &c.,


Vensmana hisguam, Even though you write. Venesmatze em hisguame, Even though ye write.


Singular. Nee eme hisguaco naqum, Nee eme hisguarico naqum. I will that you write. I will that thou be written.

Plural. Nee em hisguaco noquim, Nee ame hisguarico naqum, I will that they write. I will that they be written.


This mood appears to have been anciently used with cne, would that it might be! but now in general it is not so understood. The phrase may be deemed to be in the Optative, although it does not express that entirely, being formed by the union of the Imperative above with venesma, even though.

Vensmane hisguam, Vensmane hisguadauh, I would that it might be, or, I would that it might be, or, Even though I may write. Even though I may be written.


This mode of speech, If I should write, I should have written, &c., the natives express by adding the particle ru to the future.

Singular. Nee Nee Nap > ghisuatzeru, Nap > hisquatzidauhru Id / If I should write, &c. Id / If I should be written, &c.

Plural. Tamide Tamide Emt > hisguatzeru, Emt > hisguatzidauru, Amet / If we should write, &c. Amet / If we should be written, &c.[4]

[Footnote 4: Conjunctions, corresponding to aunque, paraque, cuando, and the like which it is common to make use of with the subjunctive in Spanish do not exist in the language.]


Although this mode does not exist in the language, still the natives have ways to express the thought, some of which are these:

One mode is by the verb erm, I wish or think; so that to say, I wish to write, Nee hisguavaerm may be used, which is the future hisguatze, with the final syllable omitted for the particle va, and followed by the erm. In the same manner, other verbs may be proceeded with, they remaining stable through all the mutations that erm undergoes, as in the following:



Present, Erm, I wish. Pluperfect, Ehritu, I had wished. Imperfect, Eramtu, I wished. Future, Ertze, I shall wish. Perfect, Ehri, I have wished. SUBJUNCTIVE, (Impt?) Ertzern, I might wish, etc.

In the passive erm is not used, but naqum, which also means, I wish, and with the preterite particle, in the manner that is stated in the fourth form of the imperative, the infinitive mood in this voice is expressed, as, Nee no hisguarico naqum, I desire to be written.

Another mode that serves for the Infinitive, is that after a verb of motion, the future of the verb is used, as to express, I come to you to say, Nee eme queitudetze gerem: here, Nee is I; eme, to you; gerem, or erem, I come, and queitudetze the future of the verb queituden, I say, or make known.


The gerund in di is found in the expression: Already arrived the time of labor; for which, taking the preterite pnauhri, the verb pnauan signifying labor, add dagua, time, and for arrived use hassde, the preterite of hssem, followed by the de, particle, signifying already, and the phrase is formed pnauhridagua hasside.

The gerund in do is found in the phrase Vus hquedo panavame, the boys playing, work, in which vus is boys, hquedo or hqueco, the gerund of hoquen, play, and panavame, the plural of pnavan, work. The passive voice has likewise the gerund, as for example: Nap scriuhdo cotzm, Whilst thou art shorn, sleepest; here nap cotzm is, you sleep, scriuhdo is the gerund in do passive of the verb sicn, and toasquilo, hair.

The gerund in dum, and supine joined to a verb of motion is equivalent to the future as before stated in the second mode of the infinitive; but should there be no verb of movement with the gerund in dum, the particle betzuai, for, is used, as this suffices for payment, (hoc ad solvendum sufficit,) Veride hasem ovde betzguai; veride meaning this, hasem, suffices; ovide betzvai, for payment; ovden signifying pay.

Thus much it has been found necessary to say of the verb in its active and passive voice, of its modes and times, which will serve as a paradigm for the conjugation of any verb observant of the form of its preterite and future (the roots whence rise the other tenses) to be discovered in the vocabulary.


21. This verb signifies the frequent repetition of the same action, and is formed by adding the adverb ttze, peace-meal, as, I write often, ttze ne hisgan.


22. It is thus called because it signifies to cause or compel to do any thing, and is formed by taking away the last syllable of any verb and replacing it with tudem or tuden, which alone is conjugated, and has the perfect tudari, and future tudetze, as varuhtden, I cause to sin; verhtze being the future of varuen.


23. When the action is for, by, or through, ("para por,") this verb is used, having its termination in dem or den, perfect, deri, and future, detze; as pnauan, work; whence is formed pnauiden, which is the applicative, so that to say, I work for you, the phrase is Nee eme pnauiden; and the mother to express, My son has failed me, (died), says, No ntzi mquideri; although in the place of this applicative the preposition betzguai, for, is used likewise, or de, by; as, Christ died for us, Cristo tamo betzguai, or tamde mqui.


24. This verb serves to continue the action, and is made from the future, omitting the tze and substituting sem or sen, as nenrsem, I am continually talking, from nehren, I speak; the future, nenrtze; biquesen, I am thus singing, from biquen, I sing; future, bequetze, for which there appearing to be no perfect, the imperfect, bquesenru may be used, and the same is the case with the words that end in hon, as merihon, go running; nenerhon, be speaking; biquehon, be singing, of which the future termination is sintze, as nenrsintze.


25. This gives completeness to the signification of the word out of which it is made so full that nothing remains further, and is formed of the future taking away the final tze, and placing suam instead, as, ban, I eat; btze, I will eat; besuam, I eat until I have finished it all; todam, I leave; todetz, I will leave; todesuam, I leave forever,—at once. The penitent may say, Oquine hana no cananacemca todesuatze, Now, forevermore, I will leave my sins; the perfect being formed in coari, and the future in uatze.


26. This denotes the judgment that one forms of anything, as, dnitzem, I judge it good; dni meaning good; hana Diosi denitzem, perhaps you esteem God? nee eme deosaritzem, I judge you happy; deosari meaning happy; nee eme nventzem, I consider you poor—pity you; nven meaning poor: and they form the perfect, tziui, and future tzihtze.


27. When a thing changes so as to pass from one to another form or quality, this verb is used. Earth, tevat; genitive, teuhte; accusative, teuhta, whence comes the verb tehtuun, I make me earth,—as do the sticks become, and bodies that rot. So dhmetum, make man, explains the mystery of the incarnation, as, God the Son made himself man for us, Dios noqut tamde, or tamo, betzeguai dhmetui. So batuum, is made water, bat, water; nasrtaan, I throw away; nasrtuun, is thrown away, to become corruption; of which the perfect is tui, the future, tutze.

28. There are some Compound Verbs which end in donon, signifying to go to do something, which appear to be formed from the future, omitting the last syllable tze, and substituting donon, as amdonon, I go to hunt; amn being, I hunt; the future amtze; cumndonon, I go to gather wood, from cumnan, I gather wood, future cumantze; baudnon, I go to bring water, formed of bat, water; vun, the future of vtze, bring, and donon, which has the perfect doni, and future dontze.

29. The termination guan, is usually a sign of the Active Verb, as in mtzguan, I begin: mguan, or mhuan, I plough, and is added by the natives to some Spanish words they use, such are perdonroguan, I pardon; ayunroguan, I fast; velroguan, I watch. Some form the perfect in guari, and future in guatze; others the perfect in uhri, and future in htze, itze, or in guatze.

30. To form Compound Neuter Verbs, the verb dan, I go, is frequently used, as bahtunan, I melt (active); bahtudaan, I melt, or am melting, the neuter, barnan, I soften; baricdaan, I go on to soften; zicnan, I break; ziccdaan, I break (neuter); the perfect being dai, the future, dtze.

31. Other Neuters are formed of active verbs ending in an by changing it into en, as sebn, I freeze; seben, freeze; basn, I ripen; basen, ripen; sepn, cool; sepen, cool; nacuan, hurt; nacuen, hurt. To form the perfect, the en is changed into i; but the future, although it always ends in tze, differs, as will appear by the vocabulary.

32. In the same manner as of Active Verbs in an, Neuter Verbs in en are made, so from other actives in an, neuters are made in un, as, busn, I awake another; busn, I awake me; tutzan, I quench; tucn, I quench me, in the perfect changing the un to i, and the future to tze.


33. This language has the notable peculiarity of the verbs oftentimes differing greatly in the plural from the singular, as, vaqun, enter one; mume, enter many; von, one to lay down; medguame, lay down many; mran, one to run; vome, many to run; batmucun, to drown oneself; betcoome, many to drown themselves; batemean, drown one; batecdan, drown many.

34. There are many Compound Active Verbs ending in puguan or puuan, which signify to pluck, as begut, skin, genitive; behte, accusative; behta, whence beuhpuuan, tear off the skin is formed, and from mo, hair of the human head comes mpuuan, pluck the hair, etc.; sequt, flower, genitive, sehte; accusative, sehta gives sehpuuan, to pluck flowers; ngua; root, genitive, nahte; accusative, nahta, when nahpuuan, eradicate, is formed, their perfect being in uhri, their future in natze.


35. Estimative Verbs it has already been said end in tzem, but there are other verbs of that termination that signify certain passion, failing, or quality, as, hisumtzem, I am hungry; verctzem, I am thirsty; vrtzen, I am hot; vttzen, I am cold, which form their perfects in tziui, the futures in tzuhtze.


36. The Particle taan compounded with a substantive, signifies to do, as, sibrtaan, to make girdles composed of sibra, band; zntaan, to make arrows, zamt signifying arrow; vacotaan, to make bow, from vcotzi, that instrument; but when it is component of the verb it signifies, I say that I wish, thus from nsquen, I return, nsquitaan is made, signifying, I say that I wish to return, and from pnauan, labor, is pnauataan, I say that I wish to labor.


Being the English substantive verb AM.

37. Such is the condition of this part of speech: yonder is a man, ant sei dor eni, and if he live there, or is there standing, ant catz, etc., which catz is used only for persons. Yonder is water, ant, or agut bat man, yonder is grass, ant dsa hab, and also may be said, bat eni, dosa eni, but bat hab, dosa mani would not be correct. Further than this the substantive verb am appears not to show itself clearly: thus that utterance of God, I am that I am, has no corresponding words in the tongue: it could seemingly be made somewhat intelligible in this wise: Nee uehva nee, which word for word means, I greatly I, and am is not expressed though understood. So in asking, Who is it, the answer is, Nee, and not I with the verb. This method of speaking should be regarded: to say the house of Pedro was my house, it should be, Pevroque qui no quiru, of which qui means house, and Pevroque qui, house of Pedro. The verb was, does not now exist in it apart, but in expression it appears, or nearly so, in the substantive qui, which is put in the imperfect by the termination of that tense, ru being added, as, quiru, was house; no quiru, was my house. The same is otherwise said: Pevroque qui no guaguaru, the house of Pedro was mine; the guagua, if alone, signifies, is mine.


38. There are several Compound Verbs that end in maguan, which signify, to throw something to another, as, ermaguan, to throw blood (ert) on him; dsmaguan, to throw grass (dost) on him; tehmaguan, to throw dirt (tevt) on him; sitrimaguan, to throw honey (sitri) on him, which form the perfect in guari, the future in guatze.


39 The Particle tden, the terminal of several verbs, expresses the like or dislike the good or evil appearance of anything according to the name or adverb to which it is joined, as, neve sodta nanactden, or hidenatden, I do not like this bower; tamide naven tamo tademe, we find ourselves poor; nee deosri no taden, I find myself fortunate, the perfect being found in taderi, the future in tadetze.


40. Of the Verb Mucn, I die, compounds such as these are made: vrumucn, I die of heat; vrcome, they die of heat; his-mucn, I die of hunger; hismcome, they die of hunger; vartmucn, I die of thirst; var-come, they die of thirst; cmemucn, I die of envy; cumecome, they die of envy. Vrtzen is, I have heat; hismtzen, I have hunger; verctzen, I have thirst; cmen, I have envy. The reason of changing mucn to form the plural may be seen in section 36.


41. Nequen, means I command, and observe this method as respects its use: Nee unequen, and I command to bring; nee nerta nequen, and I command, to pray; nee ouit nequen, and I command to call. Vtze is the future of vun, I bring; nerttze, I pray, the future of nrtaan: ouictze the future of ouican, I call; so that the tze is taken from the future, and nequen is placed in its stead. Notice, likewise, this method: Nap ca istutndauh, It is commanded not to lie.

So far of the verbs, which as well other parts of speech all the Indians use with nicety and elegance. For their conjugation, a single exemplar has been given; but their perfects and futures being differently formed, which are the roots whence the other tenses spring, they have been placed in the vocabulary added to the verbs, a knowledge of which will suffice to form all the other times.

* * * * *


42. The verbs become participles without undergoing change of form, as, hisguam, I write, or he that writes, is the present participle; hisguari, I have written, or he that has written; hisguatze, I will write, or he that will, is the preterite (future?) participle. The same in its proportion is to be understood of the passive voice.

The Present Participle is of the second declension, forming the genitive in te, thus Nominative, hisguan; Genitive, hisgnante, etc. The imperfect participle is of the same declension, with the difference that the mark of the imperfect, ru, is the final, as, Nom. hisguamru, Gen. hisguamteru, etc.

The Perfect Participle is of the first declension, having its genitive in que, as, Nom. hisguari, Gen. hisguarique.

Pluperfect Participle is declined like the perfect, observing what has been said of the imperfect, as, Nom. hisguariru, Gen. hisguariqueru, etc.

The Future Participle belongs to the second declension, the genitive ending in te, preceded by n or m, as, Nom. hisguatze, Gen. hisguatzente.

The plural, it appears, should be declined in the same manner as the singular in respect of its termination in te or que.

* * * * *


43. The prepositions that govern the genitive might with reason be called postpositions, since they follow the case; for Pedro Pedroque betzgnai, with you am ma.

* * * * *


The adverbs are very many, and by them more especially is expressed the manner of walking, of sitting, of sounding, etc., and oftentimes the enunciation copies after the sense, as, cusan, I sound; catzcatze cusan, clattering sound.

* * * * *


45. Some of the interjections are these: Ari! and when repeated ari, ari! are those of one feeling pain; Asioma is of one that menaces, like, You will see! and Asma is like, I desire to see! Hbesa matzi, Well, then! Ahne is exclaimed by one who recollects himself; Navehtzemne, Alas! Woe to me!

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46. The conjunctions to the extent they can, will be treated of separately; for although the language of Indians is exact, there are difficulties to be encountered, and from those not brought up in their use, requiring special study.

47. The word And is represented by aui, as, Nee aui nap, I and you, and also by vai placed afterward used in this way, Nee nap vai.

48. Whether the sentence consist of one or of two parts, this conjunction If is nowhere found, but the gerund in do or co is used; and in this manner should it be of a single part or an individual: If I do it well, I shall be content, hidnane ndo, or nco, nanacertze; when of two, thus: If I did it well, you will be content, hidna netzendo, or emco, nap nanacertze: whence it may be seen that in the first passage is put the nominative nee, having but one part, and in the second the dative or accusative netz, since another member comes in which is nap, you. These are other examples: If I should be well, I will go to see you, Nee hidna crdo, ost eme teuhdontze, which is an expression of one proposition, for though two persons enter there the action is single: If I shall have worked well you will pay me, Nee hidna pananhriuhco, nap netz ovidetze, which is of two positions, the action being of two.

49. In the examples about to be given, it will be observed that That is never used, whether it correspond to the quod or the ut of the Latin. Nee eme vitzn, nap hibe, I see that you are lax; Nee aguteran, Domincotze amo misa ea vitzaca, I know that you have not heard mass Sunday; where vitzaca or vitzcauh is passive perfect, and the literal rendering is, I know, on Sunday your mass was not heard. I desire that you may live here, Nee eme iuide cteo naqum, in which cteo is an active perfect participle, and the verb naqum, I desire, ever requires this construction. The verb queem, I command, is peculiar likewise in one respect: in order to say I command you that you work, Nee eme panaaoqueem is said; panaaoqueem being composed of two words, of which panauatze, I will work, is from panaan, work, the tze final being taken away and substituted by queem.

50. The equivalent of Because, nanvari, can be thus shown. I become angry because you are lax, Nee znauan, ne nuari nap hbeen: with the particle arde, which means because, it may be elegantly expressed, Nap hbeen, aredene zinauan, which, word for word, is, You are lax, for that I become angry. Here are other instances: Because I am sick I do not work, Nee ca panauan, nanuarine cocotzem; in another manner, Nee cocotzem, ardene ca panauan, or Nee no ccotzihdade ca panauan, which corresponds to this, I, because of my infirmity, do not work. I come, because you called me, Nee eue hasi, naneuari nap netz ouqui. Eue, signifying hither, is used because to the Indian ear, I came hither, is more euphonious than only I came. Nap netzoiqui, ardene hsi, I am glad, because you come to see me, Nee nnaceran, nanuari nap netzeue tehdniueren, or otherwise, Nap netz eue tehdniueren ardene nanaceran.

51. The equivalent of Before is caque, the translation of which is not yet. Before you could come I was already here, Nap caque hasdo nee vnu iuide nitude, of which hasdo is the gerund of hsem, that part of speech being thus used with caque, when it signifies before, and is literally, You not arrived yet, already was I here. Another instance: Before you can go, you will pay me: Caquena dado, netz ovidetze; also, Before the wheat could be planted, it rained: Perilon caque tzih dauh, duqui.

52. After is rendered likewise by the gerunds with the adverb vaar, after. After he had sinned, he was converted to God: Varhruco var, Diosse ven are viranari, that is, having sinned afterward, etc.; and also it may be without var, as, After it had rained much, the river carried away the earth: Muic duco, bata guasta dari. Again: After the wheat had been cut, it got wet, and was lost: Pericon are tepnaricoua snhruco nasrtui.

53. When may be rendered by hco, as, When you had come to see me, I had gone for wood: Hcona netz eue teuhdni, nee cumandniru. Another: When Christ had died, so much as was man died, and had not died so much as was God: Hco mcruco Cristo, are dremcade muqui, are Disemeade ca muqui; where also mucruco is gerund, and likewise may be said, hco muqui Cristo etc. If the question be asked, When? the accent is placed upon the last letter.


54, 55, 57. The native having counted to ten, says ten and one on it, etc., and at twenty says one man, sei dhme, for the reason of that being his full number of fingers and toes: for forty he says, two men, got dhme, and so on to a hundred, marqui dhme. After twenty the count is the same as with the ten, twenty and one on it, etc. These numerals have also their inflections:

1, sei, once, ses, 6, vusani, six times, vusanis, 2, godum, twice, gos, 7, seniovusni, seven times, seniovusnis, 3, veidum, thrice, veis, 8, gos nvoi, eight times, gos nvos, 4, nauoi, four times, nvos, 9, vesmcoi, nine times, vesmcois, 5, marqui, five times, marquis, 10, macoi, ten times, mcois.

The word Already, de, is thus added:

Gsade, Mrquisade, Gosnavosade, Veisade, Vusnisade, Vesmcoisade, Navsade, Seniovusnisade, Mcoisade.


56. To form these the numerals are put in the ablative with in, tze, which is placed afterward as the prepositions ever are. Stze, first; gctze, second; victze, third; nvoctze, fourth; mrquitze, fifth; vusnitze, sixth; seniovsanitze, seventh; gosnvoctze, eighth; vesmcoitze, ninth; mcoitze, tenth. First is also called vatzut nerntze.

58. On the third day, is expressed, Veie queco; on the fourth day, Navoe queco, etc.

* * * * *



Nuestro Padre, que ests en el cielo. Tu nombre sea grandemente creido. A nosotros venga tu reino. Tu voluntad aqui en la tierra se haga, come se hace en el cielo. Nuestra comida cotidiana danosla hoy. Ten nos lstima limpiandonos nuestros pecados, asi como tenemos lstima nuestros enemigos. No dexaras al Diablo, que nos hace caer en el pecado; mas gurdanos del mal. Amen.

Tamo Nno, tevetze catzi, cann tegua uhva vitzua terdauh. Tomo canne ven hasm amo Quidagua. Amo canne hindocauh iuhtpatz ndaugh, tenctze endahtevn. Qucovi tamo bdagua qui tame mie. Tame nventziuh tame piuidcdo tamo cande mea; ein tamide tamo. Ovi tamo pven tziuhdahteven. Cana ttzi Dablo tatacritze tame hutudenta; nassa tame hipur eadnitzenai Amen.


Our Father, who art in heaven. Thy name be greatly believed in. To us come thy kingdom. Thy will here on earth be done, as it is done in heaven. Our daily bread give us this day. Have pity on us, cleansing us of our sins, as we have pity on our enemies. Leave us not to the Devil, that he cause us to fall into sin, but keep us from evil. Amen.

* * * * *


Acorn, tohtacat. Adobe, saam; to make saamtaan. Air, vaheia. Amoli, soap-plant, bart, Gen. barte, Ac. barta. Arm, nocat. Arrow, zamt, to make zntaan, to poison with vegetable hithutzaguan. Arrowhead of stone, tavit. Autumn, mahukis. Axe, mtesiuen.

Bad, cadni. To bark, vden. Basket, huarit. Bear, mavr. Beard, hinsi. Bee, mumhuo. Belly, sguat. Bird, viguits. Bitter, chipen. Black, svei. Blanket, estri. Blue, tadei. Blood, ert. To boil, tonri. Bone, hgua. Bow, vcotzi. Boy, doritizi. Brother, the elder, vtzgua the younger, rngua. Brown, temosei, vamei mai. Buzzard, tec. But, nass.

Cane, om. Canoe, vvasguasiuen. To cheat, istuden. Chameleon, itzcamr. Clay, taart. Cloud, mosit. Coal, ovi. Cobweb, vitoroca. Cold, vteri, vteragua; it is cold, vten, to feel cold vtetzen. To come, vern. Cotton, chin. Coyote, voi. Crane, coro. Cricket, vaui sortz. Crow, cratz.

Dance, dhdauh, to duen. Daughter, the father says, mrgua; the mother, ntzgua. Day, taui, to-day, oqui tuitze. Deaf, nacp. Deer, mast, suputz. Difficult, omtziteri. Distant, mecu. Ditch, vavat. Dog, chchi. Dove, ococi. Drizzle, veiguat, bah ragua. Drown, see Water. Drunkard, tutzan. Dry, or thin, huqui. Duck, bavitz, a large black variety, humuviri. Dumb, nip. Dust, bta.

Eagle, pue. Ear, nact. Earth, tvat. East, sivn, from the east hither sivitz-cue, for the east sivitzuai, to the east nearly sivicon. To eat, hiban. Egg, aiavora. Elm, vast. Enemy, ovigua. Eye, vusit.

Face, vsva. To fall, huetzn. Father, nonogua; the woman says msgua. Feather, hunsa. To fear, scuitzen. Female, if a child, hoquitz; if large, hoquis; if grown, hoit; if aged, hoisguari. Finger, mamt. Fire, te. To finish, bihu. To fight, ncodan, nahdan. First, batzt; first time, viguat. Fish-hook, seiuiquirina; fish, cucht. Flesh, sba. Flower, sequt. To fly, men. Flea, tepu. Food, hib, badagua. Foot, tart. Fox, caos. Frog, temat; small sivor. Fruit, tacat, basgua; of the field, tdaugh, tudahua.

Girl, hoquitzi. To go, daau. Good, dni. Goodness, denirava, dnihibraua. Grass, dsa. Gratis, nassahitua. Great, tavi. Green, sidei.

Half, nataio. Hand, mamt, right, hibe puuai, left, zicpeuai. Happy, decsari. Hail, teht. Hard, zeen, zeitera. Hawk, tohuo, the large, sbi, the red, hisntocotz, the little chinupar, the little spotted oris. Head, zonit. Heart, hibs. Heat, ruri. Heron, white batsa, with dark wings, bahes. Hole, hibhi. Honey, vatzia. House, quit, of stick cquit, of adobe saamiquit, of grass dosquit, of mud batquit, of mat hipequit. Hunger, hisumagua. Husband, cngua.

Ice, sutuhoi. Idol, hsit. Infant, vrtz. To irrigate, vanuun.

Knee, tont.

Language, nerit. Lagune, bhri. Lead, temsti. Leaf, sagua; of maize, sont, to leaf or bud, ziradaan; to fall, sauhdirion. Leg, morica. Liar, istuneri. To lie, istun. Lie, isturagua. Lizard, behr. Lime, azot. Lip, tnpira. Little, chpi. Love, hinadodauh. To love, naqun, hindocon.

Maiden, nhua hoquis. Maize, sunt. Maizefield, etzt. Mesquit, hupuro, the fruit zona. Metal, sati. Moon, metzat. Mother, degua. Mouse, zicr. Mouth, tent.

Night, chgoi. North, batn, from the North hither bahitz-ue, to bahitzuai, to the north nearly btecon. The Indian ever has the points of the compass present to his mind and expresses himself accordingly in words, although it shall be of matters in his house. No, quta, ca. Nose, dact. Now, qui.

Oak, toh, the red vadsor. Old man, dotz. Orphan, topini. Owl, haropeutz.

Parched, saqut. Paroquet, zra. Peak, cauitze mgua. People, dhme. Petticoat, est. Phesant, purva. Pigeon, macgua; the wild cucr. Pine, vocot, sivr. Pine grove, voceura. Plant, zivadai, vehri. Plume-crest, cumisa. Poison, zarua. Purple, hcagua.

Quail, cue. To quarrel, nevden, nepden.

Rabbit, tvu. Rain, dqui, to dcun. Rainbow, vainra. Rat, voiset. Red, siquei. River, haquit. Rivulet, bavtzque. Road, vouet. Rock, evt, sibt.

Salt, ont. Sand, sa. To say, ten. Scorpion, tomor. Season of rain, bads; of heat, cuus, cuuesragua; of cold, tomragua, tomodagua. Seed, suvtzi. Squirrel, heretz. Stomach, voquima. Stone, tet. Straw, moqut. String, tegmi, fibre. To seek, hiamun. Shade, heias, heiagua. Shower, dqui. Silver, teoquita. Sister, the elder, ctzgua; the younger, vngua. Skin, peguat. Sky, teguica, teuica. Sleep, cotzt, cotziragua. Smoke, morgua. Snow, suthri. Son, the father says nguat; the mother, notzgua. Sour, zocen. South tenn, to the south nearly, tenacon, tenauai, tnai, from the south hither tnauai ue. Speech, nerit. Spring, time of drought, tsar, cuuesragua. Star, sibora; Venus, zarin; the three Marias, vaurra tcsoi. To steal, etzbaan. Stick, cut. To sting, hhan. Stream, haquit. Summer, time of rain, bads. Sun, tui. Swallow, vaidarus. Sweet, quegaen, queguateri.

Tail, basit. Tear, opet. That, at, ar. Thicket, churi. Thief, etzbaan, etzibaras. Thigh, morca. This, verido, vet, with this verema, by this vrede. Thrush, chanate, zaia. Thorn, vetzt, of nopal, nacuetzat. Tiger, tutz. Toad, cohar. Tobacco, vivt. To-morrow, queco. Tongue, nent. Tooth, tanus. Town, hoirgua. Track, dart, druh. Tree, cut. Turkey, zii. Turtle, mri.

Valley, haqit. Viper, sameior, the coral mapurvcotz. Virgin, naha hoquis. Virmillion, or yellow, basca.

War, _nahdadauh_. To wash, _vacoran_. Wasp, _huiquituntz_. Water, _bat_, G. _bate_, Ac. _bta_; hot, _basuera_, warm, _camrabasucrari_, cold _batuteu_. To drown one _btemean_, Per. _batemari_, Fut. _batematze_, from _mean_ to kill one: to drown many _batcodan_, Per. _batcoi_, Fut. _batcoitze_, from _codan_ to kill many: many to become drowned _batecome_, Per. _batcoi_, Fut. _batecotze_, from _coome_ many to die: one to become drowned, _batmucun_, Per. _batmuqui_, Fut. _batmuctze_, from _mcun_ one to die. (See section 33.) Watermelon, _himus_. To weep, _banan_. Well, _batcori_, to make, _batcoran_, from _tecori_, bowl. West, _huritzei_; to the west, _hurn, hurucon, huritzuai_; from the west hither _huritzcue. To whistle, _bicudaguan_. White, _stei_. Wide, _huena_. Wife, _hhgua_. Wild-cat, _portz_. Wind, _vahca_. Winter, _tom, utdo_ time of cold. Wolf, _hrue_. Word, _nerit_. Wood, _ct_. Woman, _hoquis_. Wood, _cquit_. Wound, _vcat_, to _nacan_.

Year, _betragua_. Yellow, _svei_. Yes, _hue_, (more emphatically) _hai eco_; woman says, he_. Yesterday, _tuut_.


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