razlem - Chahta/Homa

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razlem - Chahta/Homa

Postby razlem » 2013-05-27, 16:06

This is going to be my personal reference thread for learning Choctaw and Houma. Feel free to correct me or give me advice :mrgreen:

Chahta/Choctaw

Right now I'm using http://www.choctawschool.com/
It's not the most linguistically descriptive, but I think I can figure out the gist of how the language functions.

Double Consonant = gemination
SOV
subject + determiner + adj + number

katos yvmmvt lusa tuklo
/katos yəm:ət losa toklo/(?)
cat distal-subject black two
those two black cats

issi yvt iti nuta ittonla tuk
/ɪs:ɪ jət ɪtɪ nota ɪt:õ:la/(?)
deer subject tree under lie past
the deer lay under the tree

Homa/Houma

Houma is a distinct language of the Western-Mukogean branch and not, as previously believed, a dialect of Choctaw or Mobilian Jargon. The evidence of this comes from the irregular sound changes when comparing the three. It it currently hypothesized that Houma contributed to the development of Mobilian Jargon, given the great extent of variation among Mobilian vocabulary.

Extrapolating and applying the phonetic changes, the sentences in Choctaw above may have been rendered in Houma:
katus yama lusa toklu
ese ya nasape nata asa tok
Last edited by razlem on 2013-08-10, 3:53, edited 11 times in total.
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Re: razlem - Chahta/Homa

Postby księżycowy » 2013-05-27, 18:55

I certainly can't offer corrections and I'm not sure what advice I can give, BUT I sure will be following your progress!

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Re: razlem - Chahta/Homa

Postby księżycowy » 2013-05-27, 20:29

Which reminds me, there was a grammar I remember seeing for a Muskogean language or two on Amazon. I'll see if I can drum up a title and author.

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Re: razlem - Chahta/Homa

Postby razlem » 2013-05-27, 23:18

Ooh yes, any bit helps!
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Re: razlem - Chahta/Homa

Postby księżycowy » 2013-05-28, 0:45

A Choctaw Reference Grammar by George Aaron Broadwell

Link.

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Re: razlem - Chahta/Homa

Postby razlem » 2013-05-29, 22:06

Awesome, thanks :)

It's kind of an inconvenience that there are different writing systems. The site I'm using uses the original transcription orthography from the 1800s, but Wikipedia and some others use the Modern script. This causes some discrepancy among vowel pronunciation, because the older script used English as a vowel base. :x If/when we reconstruct Houma, I'm going to suggest a more precise orthographic model :P

And so far I can't tell if this language is agglutinating or not. My site shows it's not, with "pisa li", but other sites have "pisa-li", and some have "pisali"... :hmm:

EDIT: I'm convinced there's just a lack of standardization among the different groups of Choctaw-speaking communities. Each one seems to have different phonetic conventions...
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Re: razlem - Chahta/Homa

Postby Alluns » 2013-06-09, 12:09

I am very interested in Choctaw and will be following your posts. I know some older publications for Choctaw are available on Google books. I wonder how close their writing systems are to more modern resources.
Last edited by Alluns on 2013-06-22, 20:21, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: razlem - Chahta/Homa

Postby razlem » 2013-06-10, 18:33

I'm actually trying to find Houma resources at the moment. So I'm scouring the local libraries and the dark parts of the interwebs to try and find stuff. :silly:
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Re: razlem - Chahta/Homa

Postby Alluns » 2013-06-20, 10:59

How similar was Houma to Choctaw? Also didn't they speak/use the Mobilian Trade Language as well. I am interested in it and have been trying to locate resources pertaining to it. Not much out there but very interesting.

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Re: razlem - Chahta/Homa

Postby razlem » 2013-06-22, 18:54

A lot of the words are identical (halito, chinchuba) the others we've found are very close, so it's likely that Houma was a dialect or group of dialects from Choctaw. I don't know much about Houma culture or society, so I can't say whether or not they used a trade language.
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Re: razlem - Chahta/Homa

Postby Alluns » 2013-06-22, 20:23

What are the plans for revitalizing Houma? Are they going to make sources available to those who are interested in it?

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Re: razlem - Chahta/Homa

Postby razlem » 2013-06-22, 20:30

Ideally. Once the language is fully documented, they'll likely put it online. It may also be published physically as a grammar, with the reconstruction process outlined within.
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Re: razlem - Chahta/Homa

Postby razlem » 2013-06-22, 20:34

But it's still speculative at the moment. It could be that there just isn't enough left of the language to build from.
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Re: razlem - Chahta/Homa

Postby razlem » 2013-07-23, 1:31

Found a short list of Houma vocab from an ethnographic manuscript, here are a few comparisons to Choctaw:

Choctaw : Houma
issi : ese (deer)
hattak : atak (man)
okfochush : fatconse (duck)
nan : nani (fish)
ofi : afe (dog)
fakit : pakit (turkey)
onush : unish (rice)
hattak na hollo : atak naholo (white man)
nusapi (oak tree) : nasape (tree)
sinti : sante (snake)
hashi : aise/ase (sun)
hashi ninak : ase ninak (moon)
chukfi : tcukfe (rabbit)
peni : pena (pirogue)
isuba : suba (horse)

The transcribed Houma words likely do not account for consonant/vowel length, or there could have been a change in the language itself, but it's unknown at the moment.
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