Exploring & Sharing the Wabanaki History of Interior New England
A Maine Nonprofit Corporation - 501(c)3 Public Charity
This section is included for fun. It is not intended to be a language tutorial or comprehensive language resource.
The Abenaki language is very beautiful. Tragically, only a very few people are fluent enough to teach it. We are not among those few and it is not our place to teach you the Abenaki language. On the bright side, Abenaki language teachers, dictionaries, and grammars do exist for those who want to search them out.
The words in these lists have been collected from many sources, some are Western Abenaki and some are Eastern Abenaki. Also, many of the words where originally recorded by French priests and sometimes suffer in translation (Abenaki to French to English). As you will see, spelling is not standardized among the various sources. We have recorded word spellings exactly as we found them, with one exception. We have substituted "ou" for the character "8" used by the French.
Our latest additions to this list (Dec-99) come from "Wobanaki Kimzowzi Awighigan" published about 1830 in Boston. We are grateful to our Friend, Clayton Emery, for finding and transcribing this source for us.
There are several storytelling tapes available from wonderful artists such as Wolfsong, Tsonakwa, and Joseph Bruchac that allow us to hear some of these beautiful words spoken. You will find these listed on the Audio & Video Tapes page of our Resource List.
These web pages will only provide you with scattered bits and pieces of the language as it was spoken by our Abenaki Ancestors and carried on the winds throughout Interior New England.
It is our prayer that these words will help our brothers and sisters by providing additional pieces, that these pieces will assist in understanding our family histories, that understanding our history will heal our wounds, and by this process the spirits of our Abenaki ancestors will find peace and assume their rightful place in the history of this land. -Aho