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Tennessee Native Animal Words

Here are the American Indian names of six native animals of Tennessee. We have given their names in three different Indian languages: Cherokee, Chickasaw, and Shawnee. As you can see, the languages of these three tribes were very different. They needed interpreters to talk to each other.

Tennessee Native Animal Names


Cherokee: yonv (pronounced yoh-nuh)
Chickasaw: nita' (pronounced nee-tah)
Shawnee: mkwa (pronounced muh-kwah)

Cherokee: wahya (pronounced wa-hyah)
Chickasaw: nashoba (pronounced nah-show-buh)
Shawnee: mhweewa (pronounced muh-way-wa)

Cherokee: ahawi (pronounced ah-wee)
Chickasaw: issi' (pronounced iss-sih)
Shawnee: petakine'θi (pronounced pay-tah-kee-nay-thee)

Cherokee: tsisdu (pronounced jeese-doo)
Chickasaw: chokfi (pronounced chok-fih)
Shawnee: pšekθi (pronounced puh-sheck-thee)

Cherokee: saloli (pronounced sah-lo-lee)
Chickasaw: nani' (pronounced nah-nee)
Shawnee: nameeθa (pronounced nah-may-tha)

Cherokee: wadulisi (pronounced wah-doo-lee-see)
Chickasaw: fohi' (pronounced foh-hee)
Shawnee: hamo (pronounced hah-mo)

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