Animals


For general pronounciation please refer to the "bezhig" section.

Animals have a very important place in all Native American cultures. They are consided with respect and understood to have certain powers. They are used as symbols for various family totems (dodems) and are referred to as he/she rather than "it". Here are a few names of animals in the Ojibwe language.

The prefix "waa" refers to the up and down "bounce"or flickering of an animal or it's tail .

animal              plural         english

waaboz              oog            rabbit
waawaabiginoojii    yag            mouse
waawaashkeshi       wag            deer
waagosh             ag             fox
waawaatesi                         lightning bug
some animal names sound like the sound the animal makes

gookooko'oo         g              owl
some have evidence of beliefs in the name

manidoons           g              insect
(manidoo means spirit)
some are nicknames for people/races according to characteristics

agongos             ag             chipmunk  (Norwigan)


Nancy Vogt,
nancyv@citilink.com, last updated Novemberr 1995.