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THE GREAT LAW (MOHAWK)

A WORD ABOUT PRONOUNCIATION

Key to Mohawk pronunciation in the white man's way: "I" is pronounced as "ee". The Mohawk "eh" is not heard in the English language. The last syllable of Kahnawake should be written "keh" so strangers can say the word right. Other words such as Onondageh is pronounced Onondaga because it is spelled that way. The "non" in Kanonsa (house) is pronounced "noon" with the second "n" only half pronounced. A half "n" so to speak. "Is that so?" in Mohawk would be written "Ken?" but a non-Mohawk reader would not say it right. The Roman alphabet cannot produce the right sound. It is half way between "Kehn" and "Kohn" with the "n" again only half pronounced.

There are three "c" sounds. Light "c", medium (k) and heavy (g). When the French missionaries wrote the Mohawk Bible, they used the three "c" sounds indiscriminately. They averaged the three "c" sounds and got a "k" for all "c" sounds without any regard for the proper light, medium or heavy "c" sounds. They failed to corrupt the Mohawk language if that was their purpose in ignoring the differences. In developing the proper symbols for the various Mohawk sounds, the differences can no longer be ignored. The French missionaries who wrote the Mohawk Bible had problems with the Mohawk "ya" and "yo" sounds. The French do not have the "y" sound, though they have words using the alphabet "y" such as the name "Yves" pronounced "eeves". So they couldn't use the "y" for the "ya" and "yo" sounds. They cleverly used "ia" for "ya" and "io" for "yo" but they only approximate the sounds for "io" is pronounced "eeo" and ia" is pronounced "eeah" or two syllables each when "yo" and "ya" are only one syllable each. The logical thing to do is to use the English "yo" and "ya" instead of the French "io" and "ia".

The Mohawk language cannot be learned by using the Roman alphabets. It has to be learned orally by the said word and not by the written word. However, in this translation, the closest sound is being attempted and the people who already know the language can make out the right sounds. It will have to do until the proper symbols for the Mohawk sounds are developed.

Louis Karoniaktajeh Hall
June 23, 1993

Sahonnitiokonni Ne Wisk Nihononwentsakeh

GAYANEREKOWA OF THE IROQUOIS CONFEDERACY

Kayoni 1: Deganawida Tahnon Ne Wisk Nihononwetsakeh Rotiyaner Wahatikwirayento Ne Skennenkowa
Kayoni 5: Ahsen Nahtenhatitsenhoten Ne Ganienkehaga
Kayoni 19: Ne Tensonwanakararako Ne Royaner, Ahsarekowa Ensakotatias Ne Kanistensera

Kayoni 20: Ne Royaner Onkatiok Ensakahonniaseh (Ensakosehteh)
Kayoni 25: Ne Royaner Enrehsake Oya Tahontahonton Ensonwarontiakeh

Kayoni 36: Royaner Entatkaweh Kayeri Nihkaseriyetakeh Onekorha Tsihnihotihsennotens Ne Ahsarekowatson
Kayoni 39: Nennen Ahsarekowa Enhawehnontih Ne Gayanerekowa

Kayoni 44: Ne Entehwanonton Tsinihyakotaroten Ne Ronwatihnistenha
Kayoni 46: Kanistensera Enkontawa Ne Kasennaonwe Tsinenwe

Kayoni 54: Kanistensera Ohkotitsenhayen Ne Oya Ensonwayatarako Royaner
Kayoni 58: Royaner Tokani Tihkawennio Onka Enhasere Tihononwentsateh Rotiyanerenserison Enhoyatontakone Kanonsonnikeh
Kayoni 59: Toka Sayata Tokani Akwekon Ne Rotiyaner Enkowawennonti Ne Gayanerekowa Toka Enhonwatihrontiake Tokani Tensakotinonwaretsiniyorkeh Enhonniheyeh

Kayoni 65: Wahahdiyatata Ne Ne Tontehriyostakwasonha
Kayoni 67: Ne Ensakotisennon Ne Tihotihtarateah Tohkani Tihotinakeraserateh

Kayoni 72: Tsini Kayanerenseroten Ne Howentsah Raohnawen
Kayoni 79: Ahteriyosera Tahnon Ahonatateweyehnentahon

Kayoni 84: Ne Wahonwatisenni Yenwatasonteren Tsinihotiyanereseroten

Kayoni 92: Toka Satekanakaraserihen Tokani Akwekon Enhatiryo Ne Skennenkowa Tahnon Tenhatiriteh Ne Kayanerenserasona, Ahsarekowa Tahnon Ne Rahiotiokwa Ensakonatekwate Ne Onkwehonweke
Kayoni 93: Nennen Ne Onkwe Entsionnonton
Kayoni 98: Tsinihotiyanerensehroten Ne Tihononkwe Tahnon Ne Konnonkwe

Kayoni 100: Satehyoseriken Tenhontehonweraton
Kayoni 108: Nennen Ronwayatatahne Ne Royaner
Kayoni 109: Nennen Ronwayatatahane Ne Ahsarekowa
Kayoni 110: Nennen Enhonwayatata Ne Ratehriyos
Kayoni 112: Nennen Enyontatiatata Ne Ahkoyaner
Kayoni 116: Nennen Ne Ahwenheyonda Yenhatiheweh Tsi Yokenrakaronteh
Kayoni 117: Tsinahoten Enhenron Tsiyokenrakwaronteh Tahnon Nennen Ohyeri Niwennihserake Ohyotehetston