noun plant_part


Proto-Siouan *(wa-)hó•h-rąh-ka

Proto-Mississipi-Valley *hó•


Dakota potkáŋka ~ potpáŋka SRR:425a

Stoney pom tonka ‘cranberry (low bush only)’ Laurie:41


Chiwere hothą́ŋe ‘cranberry’ [informant uncertain] JDH

Hoocąk hoočą́ke , hoocąke


Kanza/Kaw ožį́ga ‘cranberries’



Tutelo hohnùñk , †hohnąk ‘cranberries’ H:38

General comment

Cf. ‘hawthorn, black’. This set is too poorly attested to insure a secure reconstruction, although the berry is fairly widespread and native to North America. The Dakota form, if cognate, should begin with ph and would be the syncope product of earlier *w-hó- < *wa-hó. Numerous of these fossilized absolutive prefixes are preserved elsewhere in Dakota (cf. ‘bison’, ‘onion’, ‘wild rice’, etc.). Hoocąk preserves the bare root with a modifier which at first glance appears to be ‘big’, but which cannot be that because of the final vowel and aspirated k. The Tutelo forms clarify this somewhat and yields other valuable phonological information. Cf. also Tutelostrawberryhas-pa-hínųk. Assuming cognacy of the Hoocąk and Tutelo forms we can see that the full form of the basic stem was *hó•-he and that the oldest recoverable form of the modifying element was probably *rąh-ka. We already know that the cluster h-k gives kh, spelled “k” in Hoocąk, and final -a > -e after velars in that language. The cluster h-r or h-n remains hn in Tutelo but becomes *ht in MVS. This regularly becomes *th in Dakota, Chiwere and Hoocąk, later affricating everywhere in Hoocąk, where aspirated čh is regularly spelled “č”.

So a poorly attested set can nonetheless provide interesting new information. Proto-Siouan *(wa-)hó•h-rąh-ka is made up of *wa- + hó•he + rąhe + -ka. *rąhe remains an unidentified modifier.

Other languages

  • PUA #38 *poko ‘berry’, CM poko-pi; SP poko-ⁿ Miller, 1967
  • Shawnee: hotehimi ‘strawberry’ Voegelin
Language Cognate Phonetic Siouan Meaning Comment Sources