in the translation of the MAALAN AARUM

3.1 Mound Land
When the waves were calm
in the land they left,
the decent people
lived together there
in strong hollow houses
with thick roofs
3.2 Freezing

They lived where it snowed.
They lived where it stormed.
They lived where it was always winter.

3.3 Dream

While still in their cold land
They remembered longingly
the mild weather,
the many deer,
and also foxes

3.4 Split

The poor, lonely, but tough men
became hunters and
left those living
in strong houses.

3.5 Mighty Hunters

Separated from home
like breasts on the same body
the hunters became tougher
extremely good and
they reached for the sky.

Maalan Aarum Algonquin Old Norse

del sinewo

ei-ow tschitennessin
ei-ow tokchooaesit
ei-ow chekee
poh (dulheu) shinau

eiga standadha
eiga taa-skyya sit
(eiga) allr fraegi sit
eiga sterkr
dair (sin aa)

Arrow   Arrow
the stongest
the most united
the purest
were the hunters
? no recorded words?
left pointing arrow
original English
right pointing arrow
of Old Norse
he hardened
he (reached) to the sky
(he was) extremely good
he had (violent) strength
breast (separate like)

(All references are to Sherwin’s eight volumes of the Viking and the Red Man)

Original English the strongest  
Recorded sounds eluwi-    chitanesit 1*
Algonquin words ei-ow   tschitennessin v. 1 p. 45 & v. 6 p. 135
Old Norse eiga    standadha 2*
Norse/English he has hardened  
Original English the most united  
Recorded sounds Eluwi tak   auwe   sit 1*
Algonquin words ei-ow tok   chooae   sit v. 1 p. 45 & v. 1 p. 203
Old Norse eiga  taa-skyya    sit 3*
Norse/English he (reaches) to the sky  
Original English the purest  
Recorded sounds Elowi   chik   sit 1*
Algonquin words eluwi   wulik sit v. 1 p. 45 & v. 6 p. 27
Old Norse (eiga) allr fraegi sit 4*
Norse/English (he became) extremely good  
Original English Were the hunters  
Recorded sounds elowi chick 1*
Algonquin words ei-ow chekee v. 1 p. 45 & v. 5 p. 25
Old Norse eiga sterkr  
Norse/English he had (violent) strength 5*
Original English ? no recorded words?  
Recorded sounds del    sinewo  
Algonquin words (poh) dulheu (shinau) v. 6, p. 102 & v. 7 p. 18
Old Norse dair sin aa?) 6*
Norse/English breast (separate like)  
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1* Howe, a translator, wrote: “Eiow (possessive), He has it.” Sherwin wrote, “Old Norse ‘eiga’ is pronounced very much like the English ‘aya.’”
2* See Chintanes-sin in Walam Olum Chap. 3 verse 4.

3* “Sit” is the Old Norse reflexive pronoun used to indicate the person who receives the benefits. The correct use of the reflexive pronouns “sin,” “sit,” and “sik” through out the Maalan Aarum is very strong evidence the original creators were speaking Old Norse.

4* The Old Norse owrd “allr”, compared to the surrounding “eluwi” words and the syllables “eluwi” in the Algonquin phrase implies that the Old Norse phrase “eiga fraegi sit” may have started as “He was good” and then became an idiom meaning he was “extremely good.” The latter meaning may have been in use when the Maalan Aarumwas created.

Even today in some Indian communities of Oklahoma the highest praise, in English, rarely given to a white face is “You done good.”

Sherwin, who may have not have known the idiom, may have attempted to choose literal Old Norse words to fit the meaning of idiom and selected “allr.”

5* The original English and the Old Norse English differ on this verse. Maybe the Historian knew the correct concept of violent strength but had difficulty explaining it to the Recorder. Perhaps both knew the word as an idiom for hunters. Hunters are often violently strong.

6* This Maalan Aarum word seems out of place with the description of the hunters in the rest of the verse. An early Memorizer or the Historian may have added this word as an afterthought because he may have been concerned that the concept of separating had not stressed enough in translation of the previous verse.

“Dair.” an Icelandic word, meant, “breast.” “Dulheu,” came from the Lenape tribes who may have migrated from Greenland. “Pohsinau,” an east coast Algonquin word, meant “breast” and also “divided like breasts.”

Sherwin proposed that “pohsinau” morphed from Old Norse “bresta,” but the transition is difficult to believe in this case. “Poh” more likely morphed from the original Icelandic “dair,” which may have also morphed into the modern Norwegian “parre,” which may be an earlier word for the English “pair.”

“Dair sin aa,” which might have been an idiom meaning, “divided like my breasts they went away.” The idiom may be closer to the original meaning of the Walam Olum word. The Historian is likely to have known the idiom, but the Recorder may have learned only the literal meaning (“breasts”) for “Dair” and could not understand the Historian’s hand gestures for “separate like breasts.”

Either way, if the Recorder wrote down “breasts” or “separate like breasts,” the Editor probably scratched the English translation out because the word(s) looked out of context.

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3.6 Explored All

The hunters camped
in the north, east,
south and west.

3.7 Mound Man

The man, who ruled
in that old, northern land
that they all left,
was baptized to be pure.

3.8 Soccers
The discouraged people
were worried about
worn out land
they had to abandon.
The priest said,
"We decent people
should go somewhere else."

3.9 Akomen
The common people
in the east stole away
the brothers
abandoned all
with great discouragement
and again discouragement

3.10 Driven

In a short while
the weeping, weak, dirty.
needy (people from)
the burnt land
saved themselves and
rested on the other side
3.11 Free Men
After moving down
from the snowy land
and discreetly leaving
the cousins separated
through out all the land
3.12 Open Water

Where there was little
pack ice in heaped ice
with a lot of snow drifts,
the white geese ruled
and the white bear ruled

3.13 Rich Father
Floating up the streams
in their canoes,
our fathers were rich.
They were in the light
when they were at these Islands.

"Head Beaver and Big Bird
said 'Let us go to Akomen'"

3.15 All Will Go

All say they will go along,
All who are free to go.

3.16North East

Those of the north agreed.
Those of the east agreed.
Over the waters
Over the frozen sea
They went to enjoy it

3.17 Stone hard

On the wonderful slippery water,
On the stone hard water, all went
On the great tidal sea,
Over the [puckered pack ice]

3.18 Big Mob

[I tell you it was a big mob]
In the darkness,
all in one darkness
To Akomen, to the [west],
In the darkness
They walk and walk,
all of them

3.19 men

The men from the north,
the east, the south,
The eagle clan, the beaver clan
the wolf clan,
The best men, the rich men,
the head men
Those with wives,
Those with daughters,
Those with dogs

3.20 They All Come

They all come.
They tarry at the land
Of the spruce pines,
Those from the east
Some with hesitation.
Esteeming highly their
Old home at the mound land