Author Archives: shichils

About shichils

Just sharing some fun on language

A Milluk name for Siuslaw River?

It’s common for a language group to have its own name for other people and rivers that’s different from what that other people call their own river or themselves. But in the case of the Siuslaw, the word I find … Continue reading

Posted in toponyms | Tagged , | Leave a comment

A pattern in plant terms?

Sometimes it is hard to tell if I am looking at an actual pattern in the language, or if it is just coincidence – an illusion. I recently puzzled out that –k’ acts as a diminutive in Hanis, and maybe … Continue reading

Posted in vocabulary words | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

Shared words between Siuslaw and the Coosan languages

Hanis, Miluk, Siuslaw and Alsea are all generally supposed to be related to one another, altho clearly Siuslaw and Alsea are someone more closely related to each other than to the Coosan languages. The relationship between Hanis and Miluk is … Continue reading

Posted in Vocabulary comparisons | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

There’s more than one way to build a number (Milluk)

Edited to add: I’ve only recently figured out that when Dorsey wrote a stand alone q, it stands for the sound most other linguists wrote as x (the ‘raspy h’ like sound). kq and k’q (which he used often) is … Continue reading

Posted in vocabulary words | Tagged , | 3 Comments

Sea Serpents

Sea Serpents appear in stories around the world – and not only in the ocean but in large lakes as well, perhaps most famously of contemporary ‘lake monster’ stories is “Nessie” of Loch Ness. All along the Pacific Northwest coast, … Continue reading

Posted in History, Myths | Tagged , , , , | 1 Comment


First posted Dec. 17, 2011 There are a few mentions of a mysterious people called “Sagandas” or “Sik’andas”. There are few mentions of them, and only two recorded stories. The oldest story was recorded by Henry Hull St. Clair in … Continue reading

Posted in Myths | Tagged | Leave a comment

The Hollering Monster

First posted 4/26/18 Nok’élehe: the-person-that-halloos, the hollerer, the thing that hollers. The word is the same in both Hanis and Milluk, based on the verb k’el-or k’al-; to holler, to yell. The story of the nok’élehemight be one of the most-told stories recorded … Continue reading

Posted in Myths | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

The Five Shadows

First published 9/27/17 Linguist Leo Frachtenberg came to Oregon just over a century ago, and worked with speakers of Hanis (Jim Buchanan, Frank Drew, Tom Hollis), Lower Umpqua/Siuslaw (Louisa and William Smith) and Alsea (William Smith). One of the stories … Continue reading

Posted in Myths | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Euchre Creek and The Octopus

First published 7/14/14 So usually I blog about CLUS stories but while poking around Harrington’s notes I found this curious story about Humbug Mountain and Euchre Creek.  The coast along Curry County is so beautiful, and I wanted to share … Continue reading

Posted in Myths | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

The Young Man Who Stepped on Snail’s Back

First published October 30, 2012.  Annie Miner Peterson told the story of ‘The young man who stepped on Snail’s back’ some time in 1933 or 1934 in Milluk, and Melville Jacobs published it on page 54-56 of “Coos Narrative & … Continue reading

Posted in Myths | Tagged , | 2 Comments