Chiogigua/1570s Mythical River

carljweber carljweber at MSN.COM
Tue Mar 5 17:23:56 UTC 2002

Topic name change. Three piece thread appended below.

(Re: European Origin of some North American Placenames east of Mississippi

In addition to de Jode's map (1593), here are two others showing the
mythical "Chiogigua" discharging into the North Sea, the Northwest Passage
to Marco Polo's fabulous China. I am assuming that, on the basis of
hierarchy of importance, that Chiogigua was considered a (mythical)
settlement that gave the name to the subprovince in the province of
Saguenay, also a mythical kingdom. I think that the name "Chiogigua" derives
from the mythical river -- the distinctive feature. (cf. Saguenay River,
Saguenay Province, and Saguenay Kingdom). The rivers give names to
provinces. Here the river is specifically "Obilo River."What could this be
in 16th century Iberian? Although some Algonquianists say that "Nouvelle
France" writ large on these maps suggests the French got the placenames from
the Indians. No. The busy spread of names going up the St. Laurence on the
maps is Portuguese originated, not Amerindian. In this reckoning, "Canada"
is something like "birds," plus, "full of," but don't quote me yet on that.

Thevet 1575
De Jode 1593
Background unknown 1600

These maps are evidence for my thesis that about a half dozen words, assumed
to have been Amerindian are in fact Portuguese/Iberian. The following  1534
Portuguese map,
supports my contention that "Hochelaga," and "Saguenay" are
Portuguese/Iberian. There are some Algonquianist Linguists who will object,
but many will concede that matching placenames in New France with Indian
words is in some areas understood, but in others it is extremely
hypothetical. Iberian "Saguar" seems like a good name to name a river. The
sense of "flow," "flow out," "empty," and "drain" seems perfectly logical
for the Portuguese to have, perhaps in 1494, spread the name "Saguenay," the
first great river one encounters navigating up the St. Laurence River
(earlier called the Canada and also Hochelaga River.) A report from
ethnolinguistic data supports my thesis of Iberian origin. Spanish,
"desaguar," is in Mexico and elsewhere in Spanish America "to urinate.
"Saguenay" is not Amerindian.

Carl Jeffrey Weber,

a few days ago:
I said
> > "Chiogigua," clearly the name of a mighty mythical
> > river in the late 1500s
> > emptying into the North Sea. For a great shot, see:
> > (Click year 1593)
> >

Mr. Smith said
> According to the map you cite, Chiogigua clearly is a
> city or town on the Obilo River, which empties into
> what one might suppose to be the Northwest Passage.

I say
What could these words mean -- they must be Latinate. Someone who can
conjugate verbs in 16th century Franco/Iberian languages I hope will make my
day soon. They are perhaps cognate with French "couler" or "choir."

BTW, What Mr. McCafferty has said is that "Chiogigua" was a Muskogean word
picked up by the Spanish on the northern Gulf of Mexico. He thinks the
Spanish then got the Portugues to use "Chiogigua" on their maps for a region
up by the mythical North Sea. More surprising things have happened.

Carl Jeffrey Weber

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