Color Terms

Color terms, even though they are thought of as basic vocabulary, were not recorded very often in Coos. The most complete set were recorded by Jacobs working with Annie Miner Peterson in 1933. He got some terms no one else did. And it is interesting to note that Coos color terms don’t line up exactly with English categories (check ‘About’ for the orthography):

blue, green k’silis k’si’lis
black             hendlos q’le’es
red                 hlqwol hlkwilt
white             xqas xqas
yellow           k’isawos k’isawos
deep yellow-orange waqadii waqadii
smoke tanned color qwole’elayau gwon’nawasayau

There were some color and descriptive terms used just for glass beads when they were introduced, like q’ani (Hanis & MIlluk) for blue beads, and also means blueberry. The term ‘shiny, glistening’, Hanis p’layam and Milluk p’liyam, referred to black beads.

For Siuslaw color terms, Frachtenberg noted that they and a few other adjectives consist of reduplicated syllables:

white qutlqutl
yellow pxuuiipxuuii (Lower Umpqua), tqwunhlis (Sius.)
red tlqut
green qtsinqtsin, skuuqhlnis
black hwunhwun


About shichils

Just sharing some fun on language
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One Response to Color Terms

  1. Pingback: Colors | Shichils's Blog

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