Frequently Asked Questions (Website)


How do I use this website?

The menu at the top of the page is the main way to navigate the site. Some of the menu items may have submenu items under them.


What do I need to browse this site?

This website should work in any major browser that is up to date (Internet Explorer, Google Chrome, Firefox, etc.). There are certain aspects of this site that require extra programs such as our Flash content (mostly games and videos) and PDF files (documents).  You can get these programs free at The chances are very good that you already have a means to view the content on this site.


How often will this site be updated?

We do not have a set schedule for updating the site and adding new content but we plan to update and/or add content 2-3 times a month.


What can I expect on the site in the future?

The short answer is a lot. We have plans for many features and a lot more content so be sure and check back!


How does the dictionary on this site work?

The dictionary is the main portion of this site. It will be a constant work-in-progress for the forseeable future as new content is added, corrections made, features tweaked, etc. We are striving to show as much language information as possible in a way that is easy to learn from.

The dictionary is set up in an English — Otoe-Missouria format. You can browse the dictionary alphabetically or you can perform a search. You can click on the Otoe-Missouria term to be taken to a page that goes more indepth with the language information.


Why are some entries incomplete?

This is why the dictionary is a constant work-in-progress. There is a LOT of information to add and sometimes we may add a term without a pronunciation or other bits of information. It may be a time issue or it may simply be a case of we don’t know (and we can’t add what we don’t know). But it is very possible that we do have the information but just haven’t add it yet so be sure and check back.


Why are adjectives (such as “good”) listed as verbs?

Though an analysis of every possible adjective in Otoe-Missouria would be necessary to confirm this, it appears that technically there are no adjectives in Otoe-Missouria (at least in the English sense) but rather there are verbs that serve in the capacity of how adjectives would in English. Remember that this is a different language that follows different rules. That said, these verbs are sometimes referred to as “adjective-verbs” to help English speakers understand them easier.


Some entries list a source as well as “source derived from.” What does that mean?

What that means is that a particular source may have a term but did not specifically give it the sense that we gave it. For example, Reverend James Owen Dorsey recorded a lot of the Otoe-Missouria language in the late 1800s. When he recorded a verb, he would often conjugate it (I jump, you jump, we jump, etc.). However those conjugations might not always specify which one it is. So if he listed a term like “rumi” as “to buy, purchase,” he also lists srumi, hadumi, etc. What he doesn’t do is specify which conjugation it is. However if you know how the language works, you know that “srumi” means “you buy.” So while Dorsey did not technically say that “srumi” means “you buy,” we can derive the translation from it.