page banner

By Chief D. L. Utsidihi Hicks

Page 3

fancy divider

Vowel Sounds Consonant Sounds
a, as a in father, or short as in rival.
e, as a in hate, or short as in pat.
i, as i in qique, or short as in pit.
o, as o in note, approaching aw in law.
u, as oo in food, or short as u in pull.
v, as u in but, nasalized and leaning to un sound.
g as in English, but sometimes approaching k.
d as in English, but sometimes approaching t.
h, k, l, m, n, q, s, t, w, y, as in English.
Syllables following g, except for ga, sometimes sound like k.
Go, du, and dv, sometimes sound as to, tu, tv.
Qu approaching kw, as kwa for qua, kwoo for quo, kwee for qui, and so on.
Ts approaches js or j.
Syllables following tl, sometimes vary to dl.

fancy divider

The following is arranged with the Tsalagi "Cherokee" word or phrase first
Phonetic pronunciation second
English translation third


Long Hair Society, Woman Warrior Society, & Long Hair Clan.
Gilahi is short for an ancient Gitlvgvnahita, "something that grows from the back of the neck".

Eladi Gadugi
(ea-la-dee ga-doo-gee)

Lower Towns.


Main house.

Itsv Vlasgita
(ee-jv v-la-s-gee-ta)

Meal dance.


New Corn Time.


New Fire.

Ayastaluyi Gadugi
(a-ya-s-ta-loo-yee ga-doo-gee)

Northern Towns.

Eti Vlasgita
(a-tee v-la-s-gee-ta)

Old Dance.  An easy slow dance that was played for the elders, and to remember old times.


Old Fire.

Tsanatisti Vlasgita
(ja-na-tee-s-tee v-la-s-gee-ta)

One foot dance.


"Over the hill" or "Overhills" dialect.




Comes from the word Tsalegi.  It is a way of saying; "People from the mountain ridge country."  It also refers to an individual.


Peace chief.

Tlutisti Vlasgita
(dloo-tee-s-tee oo-la-s-gee-ta)

Pheasant Dance.
Accompanied by a drum, the dancers beat the ground with their feet in imitation of the drumming sound made by the pheasant beating his wings on fallen log, or a woman beating corn.


Planting Time.


Principal People.  Used in formal talks with other people.




Religious leader of a high order.


Religious order that had its own secret language in which they prayed and held ceremonies; a man had to be of mature years and accepted by the order to be an adawehi.  The whites and Tsalagi Christians tried to discredit the religious order by refering to the anidawehi as wizards, magicians, and shamans.






Round winter house.

fancy divider

[Greetings] [Page 1] [Page 2] [Page 4]

Tsalagiyi Nvdagi home @ AOL

fancy divider

Bar graphic created by Sam Silverhawk.

Native American Graphics by Sam Silverhawk