Page:Life among the Apaches.djvu/247

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241
LIFE AMONG THE APACHES.

Kah is the word for an arrow, and also for a rabbit, but when the latter is intended, it is necessary to give a strongly aspirated sound to the k, rolling it from the throat with marked expression. The term ah-han-day means afar off, a long way; but if the speaker intends to convey the idea of great distance, he must emphasize and dwell upon the last syllable, and pronounce the word ah-han-d-a-y. The word schlanh means much, a good deal; but to represent a great deal, an unusually large quantity, we must say schlan-go, with the accent on the last syllable.

As it is not contemplated to insert the Apache vocabulary in this work, the foregoing illustrations must suffice to convince the reader that for a race so purely nomadic, their language is in advance of many others spoken by uncivilized races residing in villages and engaged in semi-pastoral and agricultural pursuits.

Apache warriors take their names from some marked trait of character, personal conformation, or noteworthy act. Until one of these features be developed to such extent as to be prominent, the youth is called ish-kay-nay, a boy. The women are named in like manner, but as they are deemed altogether inferior, many of them are without particular designation, but are addressed or spoken of as ish-tia-nay, or woman. The names of some of the more eminent warriors on the Fort Summer Reservation will convey the best idea of this subject. There were Gian-nah-tah, which means "Always Ready," and was admirably descriptive of the man's character. The name given him by the Mexicans was Cadete. Then came Nah-tanh, or the "Corn Flower," so called from having on one occasion, while on a raid in Sonora, completely hidden himself and party in a field of corn near the large town of Ures, and succeeded in running off