Anishinaabe Culture & Language

Welcome sign with text in Anishinaabemowin.
Visitors are greeted at the entrance by a large banner in Anishinaabemowin.

NPS Graphic / G.M. Spoto


Daga Anishinaabemodaa! - Let's Speak Anishinaabemowin!

About Pronunciation

Consonants have a similar pronunciation in Anishinaabemowin as English. Vowels have the following pronunciation:


Sounds Like


the “u” in sun


the “a” in father


the “ay” in day


the “i” in sit


the “ee” in teeth


the “o” in go


the “oo” in tooth

Words To Use Around Grand Portage

Gichi Onigaming - Grand Portage

Minong - Isle Royale

Gichigami - Lake Superior

boozhoo - hello

miigwech - thank you

noongom - today

indizhinaakaaz - I am called

gigawaabamin miinawaa - I'll see you again

baapii - he or she laughs

bimose - he or she walks along

bimaadagaa - he or she swims along

gwaashkwani - he or she jumps

nibi - water

noodin - wind

ishkode - fire

giizhig - sky

aanakwad - cloud
aanakwadoon - clouds

digow - wave
digowag - waves

jiimaan - boat/canoe
jiimaanan - boats/canoes

abwi - paddle
abwiin - paddles

wiigwaas - birchbark

asin - stone
asiniig - stones

miikana - trail
miikanan - trails

zagime - mosquito
zagimeg - mosquitos

mitig - tree
mitigoog - trees

giizhik - a cedar tree
giizhikag - cedar trees

aninaatig - a sugar maple
aninaatigoog - sugar maples

amik - beaver
amikwag - beavers

makwa - black bear
makwag - black bears

migizi - bald eagle
migiziwag - bald eagles

giigoonh - fish
giigoonyag - fish plural

gayaashk - seagull
gayaashkwag - seagulls

mooz - moose
moozoog - moose plural


Maajitaan agwajiing - Go Outside

Hear some spoken language:

These recordings are courtesy of Apostle Islands National Lakeshore.

The Ojibwemowin audios you are hearing were provided by Ranger Damon. Damon Gezhiibideg Panek is an enrolled member of the Mississippi Band of White Earth Ojibwe and was a Park Ranger at Apostle Islands National Lakeshore. Before Gezhiibideg’s family “relocated” to White Earth in the 1860’s, they lived on Madeline Island and in the surrounding area. He currently lives on the Red Cliff Reservation with his family.

Boozhoo - Hello
Indizhinaakaaz - I am called

Gigawaabamin miinawaa - I'll see you again
Miigwech - Thank you

Noongom - Today
Mewinzha - A long time ago

Aanakwad - Cloud
Aanakwadoon - Clouds

Migizi - Bald eagle
Migiziwag - Bald eagles

Gayaashk - Seagull
Gayaashkwag - Seagulls

Giizhig - Sky

Gichigami - Lake Superior

Nibi - Water

Miikana - Trail
Miikanan - Trails

Asin - Stone
Asiniig - Stones

Digow - Wave
Digowag - Waves

Aaniin enakamigad a'aw mikwam?
- What's Happening to the Ice?

Noodin - Wind
Minisan - Island

Ishkode - Fire
Miijim - Food

Mitig - Tree
Mitigoog - Trees

Zagime - Mosquito
Zagimeg - Mosquitos

Makwa - Black bear
Makwag - Black bears

Jiimaan - Boat
Jiimaanan - Boats

Bimaadagaa - He or she swims along
Bimose - He or she walks along

Gwaashkwani - He or she jumps
Baapii - He or she laughs

Last updated: June 1, 2023

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P.O. Box 426
Grand Portage, MN 55605


(218) 475-0123

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