Newspaper Page Text
llteJSl rmm 172 The Indian Advocate. '"" '" t ( la tl it ! ! ! t t j I Indian Lore' j 1 .! t. HERE are at present fifty-two Indian Nations in the United States, each of which has a dialect of its own. These fifty-two dialects are reducible to eight distinct families of languages, each of which differs from the others as the Latin, Slavonic, Germanic and Celtic languages of Europe differ radically from each other. As the Latin nation alities (the Italian, French, Spanish and Portu guese) speak cognate tongues, so also do the many Algonquin nations of the St. Lawrence Valley and the Lake Superior country. To the great Algon quin family belong the Algonquins, properly called, the Mon tagnais, the Abemakis of Maine, the Pequods and Narragan sets, the Delawares, the Ottawas, the Chippewas, the Illinois, the Sacs and Foxes (or Ontagamies), the Pottawatomies,-the Menominees, and, to some extent, the Crees also, of British America, in whose language many Algonquin words are to be found. These nations wrongly called tribes once inhabited a tract of country which extended from the Atlantic on the east to the Mississippi on the west, and from the confines of the Eskimos on the north to the Middle States on the south, a vast territory, almost as large as Europe. The inhabitants of this immense territory spoke radically the same language, each nation having a dialect of its own, more or less different from the others, but radically the same as to the roots of words and the grammatical structure of the verbs. How ever, as in Europe, the German, Dutch, Danish and Swedish are radically German, yet are now classified as so many dis tinct languages, so one can justly call the above-named Indian tongues so many distinct languages, though radically they belong to the one family.