Ojibwe Dictionary Online Project

Don Osborn dzo at BISHARAT.NET
Fri Sep 14 14:18:08 UTC 2007

Dear Joseph,


I can't speak to the issues of the Ojibwe language, but on the broader topic
of online "living" dictionaries will mention - in case it is of interest to
you and others on ILAT - that there is some interesting work ongoing and
being discussed for several African languages. 


* The ""Kamusi" online living Swahili dictionary has been evolving for
several years and, though currently at a moment of transition, is poised to
continue its development.

* Other dictionaries being developed by Kasahorow for Akan (Ghana) and Ewe

* A larger project proposal is under discssion to facilitate among other
things, pairing of various African languages


Most of the languages concerned in the current efforts and discussions have
millions of speakers and sometimes considerable, if difficult to access,
published resources. So the context is somewhat different than what I
understand one would be dealinng with for a Native American language like
Ojibwe. Nevertheless, perhaps there could be some useful sharing of tools
and experience.


I'll cc Dr. Martin Benjamin (Kamusi) and Paa Kwesi Imbeah (kasahorow) for
their info.


All the best.


Don Osborn






From: Indigenous Languages and Technology [mailto:ILAT at LISTSERV.ARIZONA.EDU]
On Behalf Of Joseph Lavalley
Sent: Thursday, September 13, 2007 11:20 PM
Subject: [ILAT] Ojibwe Dictionary Online Project


To all interested colleagues,

Currently engaged in a online Ojibwe dictionary project and have been going
it alone for the last year and a half. Seeking interested persons who are
currently working on the Ojibwe language (Anishnawbemowin) and those who
have dictionary building experience.

So far using a 1975 reprint of a 1874 Ojibwe language dictionary listed as a
grammarian in a Bibliography of Algonquian Language as primary source to
create this hand typed (keyboarded) digitized dictionary into a website. The
dictionary is the one compiled by Wilson. The reprint was done by the
Department of Indian Affairs and Northern Development Canada. The typeface
is approx. 6pt Times. I am currently work in Arial 12pt in Word. Would like
to do a cross comparison of other dictionaries extant from either English
and French texts past and present to do a complete analysis and
comprehensive re-working of Orthography, Phonetic soundings using voice
snippets from local oral speakers to establish universal Phonology and

To be honest and truthful to the fullest extent, I have no university
standing at this time, although I am currently applying to university to
become a Linguist. It is my hope that those that care about the educational
responsibilities to the children and people of the Anishnawbe will come
forth and help me in the vision of a unified Ojibwe oral, written and
symbolic system.

With a dream to fulfill in ones' lifetime, there is much to be done,


Joseph Brian Lavalley - Mishomis dezhnikaz, Nme dodem.

PS. Also, interested in making contact with John D. Nichols leading Algic
Family Language Specialist.



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