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Samuel Lieberkuhn's History of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, a harmony of the four Gospels, as translated into Lenape (Southern Unami), is now available online:
Delaware text, only--and in the orthography of the Baptist Mission Press. A great old source! Have fun!
Wanishi Sschkaak!! Good stuff!
I don't see any conversion chart in this text, so, here is the key to the Delaware alphabet used in this work, for those interested:
r = a in fate
a = a in far
e = e in me
c = e in met
y = i in pine
i = i in pin
o = o in note
w = o in move
b = u in tube
u = u in tub or a in sofa (schwa vowel)
f = ng in linger
h = ch in check
j = sh in she
k = k in key
l = l in led
m = m in me
n = n in net
p = p in pen
q = qu in quest
s = s in set
t = t in ten
v = h in he
x = ch in German Bach or Scottish loch
Last edited by sschkaak (Sep-04-2010 12:08:pm)
Wanishi Sschkaak!! Good stuff!
You and Norwood are going to have a blast with this!
Has anyone ever taken the time to transliterate this into the modern spelling system? It would be a lot easier to read
If they have, I've never seen it. Some words and phrases from it have been transliterated and translated in Goddard's Delaware Verbal Morphology--a highly technical grammatical work--but, no full verses, or anything close to that. I transliterated and translated the two nativity stories for this forum, just to show what they looked like in this dialect. They're both in this Language section, here: http://woodlandindians.org/forums/viewtopic.php?id=5287
Thank you for that translation!
I have looked at many languages around the world and seen nothing like this alphabet here. Were the missionaries purposely trying to confuse the Lenape so they wouldn't learn the alphabet to start to pick up on the missionaries language? I'm sorry but this system is non-sensical and I keep trying to rationalize how someone would take our own alphabet and completely start over with its meanings of the letters. Your translation is great totally makes sense of that section; I can recognize that
This should definitely become project to transliterate the whole book, sometime somewhere. I think it would be lots of fun
That spelling system was first devised for Shawnee. Their goal was to represent each sound in the language with one letter, apiece. It probably wasn't the best plan, but that was their aim. It was later adapted to Delaware.
My own area of study is really Mission Delaware (Northern Unami); while this book (and a few smaller ones by Blanchard) are in Southern Unami--the dialect spoken in Oklahoma in recent times, and in southern New Jersey, southeastern Pennsylvania and northern Delaware during the 17th-century and before that.
Little Bear: You know, it wouldn't take a linguist to transliterate these texts into the modern alphabet used in the Lenape Talking Dictionary. There is a way to change the keyboard on your computer so that when you hit the letters shown in the Shawnee Baptist Mission alphabet the modern letters would be printed on the screen. That way, you could just type the letters, as they appear, and a modern text would result from it. Of course, you'd still have to translate the words, but, you have the English text of the Bible to help, along with the language materials put out by the Delaware Tribe of Indians, headquartered in Bartlesville. As you say, "it would be lots of fun." Why not try to do it?
Oooo! you just made me very very excited! I had some archaic method of transliterating in my head and never thought of adapting the keys on the computer like that. wow! i have never done that... do you just go in and can make a customized keyboard? i'm totally all over this project! learn something new every day. i personally feel like this has to be done. as far as i personally have found, it would be the most complete and complex work in the language. it would be wonderful to see what more complex uses were used beyond "seksu na chulens", "alemi sukelan".
Also thank you for clearing up the thinking behind that archaic alphabet system. It still boggles my mind how anyone would come up with that system. It's completely breaking something that already works, then reinventing the wheel. The moravian method makes much more sense. Yes, I clearly disapprove of the inventor Time to fix it!
Evidently, it's called "keyboard mapping," or "keyboard re-mapping." If you enter that in your search engine, lots of sights will come up to explain it and offer programs for it. You may already have such a program on your computer and not know it. Some have it, some don't.
hmmm, I see those topics but i also don't want to mess up my english keyboard, if you know what i mean. i haven't seen a clear solution but i totally see what you are saying and there has to be one. i will figure this out! thanks! i will also share what i find.
Very interesting, sschkaak
"There is a way to change the keyboard on your computer so that when you hit the letters shown in the Shawnee Baptist Mission alphabet the modern letters would be printed on the screen. That way, you could just type the letters, as they appear, and a modern text would result from it. Of course, you'd still have to translate the words, but, you have the English text of the Bible to help, along with the language materials put out by the Delaware Tribe of Indians, headquartered in Bartlesville. As you say, "it would be lots of fun." Why not try to do it?"
On a cold winter day when I haven't anything to do, I may have to fiddle with this. A person could just write the Shawnee Baptist Mission alphabet letters on pieces of paper and tape them to their keyboard.
Thank you so much for everything you post.
That is a wonderful idea! I guess it would take a while to get used to where the letters are on the keyboard, but, one could use the "hunt-and-peck" method of typing, which shouldn't take too long. Very clever idea!
Thank you, sir!
That is a cool idea! If you know someone with an extra keyboard (they're very cheap now) you could make a project of putting the letters on the keys lol
It would take a little tweeking. For instance, each vowel on the keyboard would have to be used for two letters from the Baptist Mission system, since there is a long vowel and short vowel for each vowel. You might put the long vowel on the top and the short vowel on the bottom; then, strike the key twice to indicate the long vowel. Also, there are some Baptist Mission consonants which are represented by two English letters--for example, j = sh. You could put j1 on the s, and j2 on the h. Something like this, anyway. It'll take a bit of figuring, but, I think a system could be worked out.
Last edited by sschkaak (Sep-05-2013 08:50:pm)
Hm sounds like a winter project for someone smarter than me.
Greetings! So A LOT OF LIFE has happened to me since last time I posted on this and now I am finally in a calmer period to work on this, if no one has done so already. I am so sorry for the big delay but it was a lot of life lol!
I have already started chunking the work up to chug along in a reasonable amount of time that i can handle along with all my other projects. Cool things is I actually did this very task as a job back in college. I have explored many software options in transliteration but there always seems to be 1 glitch holding things up and i cannot stand having this info inaccessible and unintelligible for the community to have. And so I just sucked it up and memorized the old alphabet and using my head 100%. The only wild card seems to be the transliteration for 'w' which is more often not like in 'tube'. It seems to be a filler for frustrated priests. It depends if it is next to a vowel or a consonant and also because i know many of the words hidden in code, i can do the additional judgement call on a case by case basis. And even still there are many cases for w that will be best determined after most of the transliteration is done to really understand exactly what the priests were thinking.
I am already finding this quite interesting as I watch the jibberish of the old system transform to the modern system and all of a sudden words I know pop right out at me. like vokif and xqc turn into hokink and xkwe respectively! It is fascinating how many words pretty much translate dead on. Many more are pretty close. Yet there are some words that just look too strange to be real; like they are just almost just a long string of different vowels which makes me wonder if the missionaries lost sense of their own system. They must be but they dont look like the rest of unami. Also i'm seeing particles being used in various cool ways that look much more like a native speaker rather than someone who knows english and might have possibly made some adjustments that make more sense to a bilingual or native english speaker trying to formulate in another language.
I guess I am curious if I am only doing this for myself or if there are others interested or invested in the final results. Right now I am transliterating. Any translating would be the next stage where I know many words but I would need help to complete a full translation.
Anyway I am excited to work on this. It has been on my list and gnawing at me for the past few years. I hope is useful and helpful.
I wish I had known you were doing this, before now. Haven't heard from you in a long time. Ives Goddard has now completed a transliteration and translation of this work and it will be published when he completes some introductory remarks. I found this out only two weeks ago.