Wampanoag/Of a Noun

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A NOUN is a Part of Speech which signifieth a thing; or it is the name of a thing. The variation of Nouns is not by Male and Female, as in other Learned Languages, and in European Nations they do. Nor are they varied by Cases, Cadencies, and Endings: herein they are more like to the Hebrew. Yet there seemeth to be one Cadency or Case of the first Declination of the form Animate, which endeth in |oh|, |uh|, or |ah|; viz. when an animate Noun followeth a Verb transitive whose object that he acteth upon is without himself. For Example: Gen. 1. 16. the last word is |anogqsog|, {stars}. It is an Erratum: it should be |anogqsoh|; because it followeth the Verb |ayim|, {He made}. Though it be an Erratum | [p. 9] in the Press, it is the fitter in some respects for an Example.

In nouns consider (1) the kind or genre of nouns and (2) the qualities or affections of nouns

The kinds of Nouns are two; according to which there be two Declensions of Nouns, for the variation of the number.

Numbers are two: Singular and Plural.

The first kind of nouns is, when the thing signified is a living Creature.

The second kind is, when the thing signified is not a living Creature.

Therefore I order them thus: There be two forms or declensions of Nouns: Animate, and Inanimate

The Animate form or declension is, when the thing signified is a living Creature; and such Nouns do alwayes make their Plural in (|og|); as,

  • |Wosketomp|, {Man}. |Wosketompaog|. (|a|) is but for Euphonie.
  • |Mittamwossis|, {A Woman}. |Mittamwossissog|.
  • |Nunkomp|, {A young Man}. |Nunkompaog|.
  • |Nunksqau|, {A Girl}. |Nunksqauog|.
  • |Manit|, {God}. |Manitioog|.
  • |Mattannit|, {The Devil}. |Mattannittoog|.

The Stars they put in this form.

  • |Anogqs|, {A Star}. |Anogqsog|.
  • |Muhhog|, {The Body}. |Muhhogk∞og|.
  • |Psukses|, {A little Bird}. |Psuksesog|.
  • |Ahtuk|, {A Deer}. |Ahtuhquog|.
  • |Mukquoshim|, {A Wolf}. |Mukquoshimwog|.
  • |Mosq|, {A Bear}. |Mosquog|.
  • |Tummunk|, {The Beaver}. |Tummunkquaog|.
  • |Puppinashim|, {A Beast}. |Puppinashimwog|.
  • |Ask∞k|, {A Snake} or {Worm}. |Ask∞kquog|.
  • |Namohs|, {A Fish}. |Namohsog|. etc..

Some few exceptions I know.

2. The Inanimate form or declension of Nouns, is when the thing signified is not a living Creature: and these make the Plural in |ash|; as

  • |Hussun|, { A Stone}. |Hussunash|.
  • |Qussuk|, { A Rock}. |Qussukquanash|.

Of this form are all vegetables:

  • |Mehtug|, {A Tree}. |Mehtugquash|.
  • |Moskeht|, {Grass}. |Mosketuash|.

And of this form are all the parts of the Body: as

  • |Muskesuk|, {The Eye} or {Face}. |Muskesukquash|.
  • |Mehtauog|, {An Ear}. |Mehtauogwash|.
  • |Meepit|, {A Tooth}. |Meepitash|.
  • |Meenan|, {The Tongue}. |Meenanash|.
  • |Mussissitt∞n|, {A Lip}. |Mussissitt∞nash|.
  • |Mutt∞n|, {A Mouth}. |Mutt∞nash|.
  • |Menutcheg|, {A Hand}. |Menutchegash|.
  • |Muhpit|, {An Arm}. |Muhpittenash|.
  • |Muhkont|, {A Leg}. |Muhkontash|.
  • |Musseet|, {The Foot}. |Musseetash|.

Of this form are all Virtues, and all Vices: as

  • |Waantamoonk|, {Wisdom}. |Waantam∞ongash|, or |onganash|.

All Verbals are of this form, which end in |onk|, and make their Plural in |ongash|, or in |onganash|.

All Virtues and Vices (so far as at present I discern) are Verbals, from their activity and readiness to turn into Verbs.

All Tools and Instruments of Labour, Hunting, Fishing, Fowling, are of this form. All Apparel, Housing: All Fruits, Rivers, Waters, etc.

So much for the kinds of Nouns.

The common Affections or Qualifications are two:

  • 1. The affixing of the Noun with the Pronoun.
  • 2. The ranging them into several Ranks.

1. The way of affixing of Nouns, is the putting or using of the Noun in all the three persons, Singular and Plural.

This manner of speech being a new thing to us that know the European or Western Languages, it must be demonstrated to us by Examples.

|Metah|, {the Heart}.

Sing.

  • |Nuttah|, {my heart}.
  • |Kuttah|, {thy heart}.
  • |Wuttah|, {his heart}.

Pl.

  • |Nuttahhun|, {our heart}.
  • |Kuttahhou|, {your heart}.
  • |Wuttahhou|, {their heart}.


|Menutcheg|, {A Hand}.

Sing.

  • |Nunnutcheg|, {my hand}.
  • |Kenutcheg, {thy hand}.
  • |Wunnutcheg|, {his hand}.

Pl.

  • |Nunnutcheganun|, {our hand}.
  • |Kenutchegan∞|, {your hand}.
  • |Wunnutchegan∞|, {their hand}.

Sing.

  • |Nunnutcheganash|, {my hands}.
  • |Kenutchegash|, or |kenutcheganash|, {thy hands}.
  • |Wunnutchegash|, or |wunnutcheganash|, {his hands}.

Pl.

  • |Nunnutcheganunnonut|, {our hands}.
  • |Kenutchegan∞wout|, {your hands}.
  • |Wunnutchegan∞wout|, {their hands}.


|Wétu|, {A House}.

Sing.

  • |Neek| {my house},
  • |Keek|, {thy house}.
  • |Week|, {his house}.

Pl.

  • |Neekun|, {our house}.
  • |Keekou|, {your house}.
  • |Weekou|, {their house}.


|ut|, {in}.

Sing.

  • |Neekit|, {in my house}.
  • |Keekit|, {in thy house}.
  • |Weekit|, {in his house}.

Pl.

  • |Neekunonut|, {in our house},
  • |Keekuwout|, {in your house}.
  • |Weekuwout|, or |wekuwomut|, {in his house}.

Hence we corrupt this word {Wigwam}.

So much may at present suffice for the affixing of Nouns.

Now for the ranging them into ranks.

There be three Ranks of Nouns; The Primitive, The Diminutive. The Possessive.

The same Noun may be used in all these Ranks.

The primitive Rank expresses the thing as it is; as |Nunkomp|, {a Youth}. |Nunksqua|, {a Girl}. |Hassun|, {a stone}. |Mehtug|, {a tree}. |Moskeht|, {grass} or {herb}.

2. The diminutive Rank of Nouns doth lessen the thing, and expresses it to be a little one; and it is formed by adding, with a due Euphonie (|es|) or (|emes|) unto the primitive Noun. For example, I shall use the same Nouns named in the first Rank, here in the second Rank: as |Nunkompaes| or |emes|. |Nunksquaes|, or |emes|. |Hassunemes|. |Mehtugques|, or |Mehtugquemes|. |Moskehtuemes|.

And so far as I perceive, these two endings (|es| and (|emes|) are degrees of diminution: (|emes|) is the least.

3. The possessive Rank of Nouns, is when the person doth challenge an interest in the thing. Hence, as the other Ranks may be affixed, this must be affixed with the Pronoun.

And it is made by adding the Syllable (|eum| or |∞m|, or |um|) according to Euphonie, unto the affixed Noun. For Example: |Num-Manitt∞m|, {my God}. |Nuttineneum|, {my man}. |Nunnunkomp∞m|. |Nunnunksquaeum|. |Nutoxineum|. |Nusheepseum|. |Nuthorsesum|. |Nuppigsum|. |Nuthassunneum|. |Nummehtugk∞m|. |Nummoskehteum|. |Nummoskehteumash|.

Both the primitive Noun, and the diminutive Noun, may be used in the form possessive; as |Nutsheepsemeseum|, and the like.

Nouns may be turned into Verbs two ways:

1. By turning the Noun into the Verb-substantive form: as |Wosketompo∞| {He became a man}. Of this see more in the Verb Substantive.

2. All Nouns that end in |onk|, as they come | [p.13] from Verbs by adding (|onk|), so they will turn back again into Verbs, by taking away (|onk|) and forming the word according to the Rule of Verbs; as |Waantamoonk| is {Wisdome}: take away |onk|, and then it may be formed |N∞waantam|, {I am wise}. |K∞waantam|, {Thou wise}, &c. |Waantam|, {He wise}, &c.

From Experience Mayhew:

That the variations of Noun is not by Genders or Cases as in some other Languages ; but, on other accounts as the Numbers, Singular and Plural : Their Nature whether animate or inanimate ; Their Magnitude great or small ; Their being in present existence or being past and gone; Also when a Noun follows a Verb Transitive as He made; it is differently formed from what the thing is other wise called, and always ends in ah or oh. Likewise when a noun whether singular or plural has any of these signs accompanying of it, viz. In, with, to, from, above, below, on this side, on that side, it hath its ending in ut, or at, as my hand is, nun-nitckek, but into my hand is nunnitckekanut, and from me is wutch nokkokot,