Greetings – Part 1

April 22, 2015


The following phrase is used to introduce yourself.


aya your name weenswiaani (click here for audio)


aya     +     weenswiaani

(hello)     (I am called)

MC Crane - Hi Resolution-comp

Icon of the Myaamia Center at Miami University

cecaahkwa kiilhswa is the third lunar month of the Myaamia lunar calendar.  Like the other months named for birds, cecaahkwa kiilhswa is associated with the process of transition from pipoonwi (winter) into niipinwi (summer).  The month is named for cecaahkwa (Sandhill Crane – grus canadensis).


cecaahkwa (Sandhill Crane) performing a mating dance

Around this time of year, Sandhill Cranes return from their winter nesting grounds in what is today the state of Florida.  Historically, some cranes nested in our traditional homelands along the Wabash River Valley and some traveled to other nesting grounds throughout the midwest. This moon marks an important moment of return, rebirth, and renewal for an animal, cecaahkwa, that is closely associated with Myaamia people.  Delaware and Iroqouis speaking peoples, who originally lived to our east and south, referred to the Myaamia as the “Twigh Twee” after the call of the Sandhill Crane.

Peace 3

Signature of Myaamia leader on Great Peace of 1701

In the past, Myaamia people would mark the edges of our lands by blazing the head of cecaahkwa into trees along major trails.  In 1701, a Myaamia leader signed a treaty with this very symbol.  Cecaahkwa remains a powerful symbol of Myaamia people and can still be found on the tribal seal of the Miami Tribe of Oklahoma.

Seal of the Miami Tribe of Oklahoma

Seal of the Miami Tribe of Oklahoma

click here to return to Myaamia Ecology page

noonki kaahkiihkwe tikawi ceeliteeki (64), tikawi aalahkwahki neehi eelamhsenki, peehki-kiišikahki (ahsenisiipionki).


noonki peehkonteeki kiinte saakiwa cecaakwa kiilhswa (keešaakosita).


taaniši kiišikatwi niiyaaha apiyani?

neemani-nko kati aakalaahšimaataweenki? toohkinanto mihtahkiši.
(For English, click below)

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weehki-kaloosioni (new word) – weekapatenki (Ice Cream)

We have been asked by many in the community over the years to come up with a term for ice cream. Thanks to the most recent request by Dante Fumagalli, a student of Dr. Wesley Leonard at Southern Oregon University, and to the coming of springtime and warm weather, we have created a word for ice cream:

weehkapatenki (click here for audio) 


The literal translation is along the lines of “it is sweet ice”, which is the essence of what ice cream is.

For those who are interested in the linguistics breakdown of the word, it is as follows:

wiihkapan       +    aten    +       ki
(it is sweet tasting)  (cold, ice)    (“descriptive it” verb marking)

 Click here to return to Language page

Over time, Myaamia people have lived in a wide variety dwelling types. The traditional home of the Myaamia is called wiikiaami (click to hear pronuncation).  A wiikiaami a domed structure that could be covered in cattail reed mats or bark depending on the season. Often these were also lined with bulrush mats, which were decorated. The layers of mats created an insulated space, which kept these dwellings warm and dry. Wiikiaami is often called a wigwam in English, but today is also a word that Myaamia people sometimes use for any house or dwelling.

kiikapwa wiikiaami

This Kickapoo wiikiaami is like those still built by Myaamia people. The image shows the layers of cattail mats used to keep homes warm and dry.

wiikiaami 2011

This wiikiaami was built by Myaamia people as a part of the Eewansaapita youth program in 2011. The cattail mats were provided by Dani Tippman. The group did not have enough to cover the roof, so a canvas tarp was used instead.

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