Opening & Closing a Conversation

Ojibwe

Aaniin / Boozhoo

...

Gigawabamin miinawaa

Français

Salut / Bon jour

...

Je vous reverrai

English

Hi / Hello

...

I will see you again

Commentary

Casual Greetings

Aaniin or aanii equates to salut (Fr) or hi (En).

Formal Greetings

A little more formal, Boozhoo equates to bon jour (Fr) or hello (En).

Traditional Greeting

Nanaboozhoo is said by some to be the traditional greeting contracted down to boozhoo in response to the French bon jour. Nanaboozhoo is also said to refer to the first Anishnaabe man and is a much loved character in many Anishnaabe stories.

Never Say Goodbye

There is no statement in Anishnaabemowin equivalent to good bye in English. Instead gigawabamin miinawaa is used to simply state that the speaker will see the listener again. Miinawaa translates as again.

Parsing gigawabamin:

  • gi (2nd person)
  • ga (future)
  • wabam (seeing)
  • min (1st person plural)

The min suffix with the gi prefix marks the inclusive we similar to the plural personal pronoun “us” (-min) but with the added specificity that “us” is inclusive of the person being spoken to (gi-).

Some sources for the inclusive we:

The French translation here, je vous reverrai, is a fairly literal translation, whereas one could more casually say à la prochaine fois (next time) or perhaps à bientôt (soon).