Word of the Day


Lovage, Canby’s licoriceroot, Ligusticum canbyi. A sweathouse medicine and also a cold medicine. qawšqáwš ittáwax̣ɨnx̣a ana kʷná iwá yáƛ̓pit tiičám ‘lovage grows where the ground is wet’; níix̣ itíwaša qawšqáwš ‘lovage smells good’; qawšqáwš iwá aq̓uwitpamá płɨ́x̣ ‘lovage is a cough medicine’. Also called áyun. [NP /qawsqáws/.]


As spoken by a group of elders in the early 1980s when thinking about putting their language to writing.

The words and sentences in this dictionary are mostly the contribution of Twáway, otherwise known of as Inez Spino Reves. Twáway has never flinched from working with linguists, and her command of the “old language” with all its intricacies of grammar and vocabulary is second to none. Other Umatilla contributors are Charley McKay, Donald Joe, Emily Littlefish, Fred Hill, Joan Watlamet, Mildred Quaempts, and Thomas Morning Owl. Animal and plant identifications were much aided by botanist Dave Corliss (personal communication) and by Eugene Hunn (1979, 1990).

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