Rankin, Robert L rankin at ku.edu
Sun Aug 27 18:28:06 UTC 2006

If I said "from Siouan to Algon." it was a stupid mistake.  It should be the other way around, of course (and that was John's original conclusion in about 1986 when he did a Plains Conference paper on 'gourd/squash', 'bow' and a couple of other terms.)
The squash term can mean 'dipper' in at least some Dhegiha too, as it probably can in most of the languages.  So either way, the semantic correspondence is as good as the sound correspondences.  Dhegiha borrows the squash term from some more southerly source and shares its term with Choctaw and Chickasaw 'corn' (derived from the general cultivar term compounded with *aci 'to grow' in Muskogean), Biloxi 'grass' and Yuchi 'gourd'.  This is all discussed in the article.


>>From Siouan to Algonquian? Do you mean the other way around, or am I
misunderstanding you? This looks like a typical old loan from Algonquian to

A small thing to keep in mind is that this */e:mehkwa:na/ etymon means
'spoon' in every Algonquian language that has it except Miami. (And in
Menominee when used as a final.) I realize the obvious link is the use of
gourds as spoons, but if the borrowing was especially old, either Siouan
borrowed it from Miami, or Siouan changed its semantics when it borrowed the

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