This Milluk word translates as both ‘teeth’ and as ‘tooth’ in the Milluk texts. 


easily typed as:    gatsʼgai   

for AMP: 


Lolly Metcalf’s South Slough Milluk

Annie Miner Peterson’s Milluk

Am. Phonetic


Exactly Jacobs’ Transcription

Americanist Phonetic & IPA

[ gátsʼgai ],


[ gátsʼgai ]

[ ˈɡɑtsʼɡɑi ],


[ ˈɡɑtsʼɡɑi

g̣ɛ ́tʼsg̣ɛi


g̣ɛ ́tʼsg̣ɛⁱ,



[ ɢǽtsʼɢ̣æi ]  &

[ ˈɢætsʼɢæi ]

[ ɢǽtsʼɢ̣æⁱ ]  &

[ ˈɢætsʼɢæⁱ ],  

Instant Phonetic Englishization:  gahts!_gai, where gai sounds like English word ‘guy’, but only for Lolly’s version of the word.  


Light Ejective Pronunciations:  Lolly Metcalf’s two pronunciations of [ gátsʼgai]   both have what we call ‘light pronunciations’ of the ejective consonant [ ts’ ].  One cannot detect that it is supposed to be an ejective.  It happens though that the ejective affricate [ ts’ ], by its nature, is the hardest ejective consonant for hearing the difference between an ejective consonant and its non-ejective counterpart.  In the interview segment “Suckle”, Lolly has a more robust ejective [ tsʼ ], at the end of her second pronunciation of that word, but it is still hard to tell the difference, between that and [ ts ]. 


Where the Glottalization Mark Goes:  In the Americanist tradition of phonetic writing, the glottalization mark that indicates that a consonant is an ejective goes right over the letter, rather than following it, as in the IPA tradition of phonetic writing.  In our typing, we have to follow the IPA practice.  


The correspondence of [a] to [æ]:  Lolly Metcalf’s Coos Bay Milluk has the vowel [ a ] in this word where Annie Miner Peterson’s Milluk has [ æ ].  The Milluk word meaning ‘tongue’ has this same difference. 


Putting a dot under a g:  In our modern Americanist phonetic writing, we write the ‘back g’ consonant that Mrs. Peterson has in this word as [ ɢ̣ ], using the IPA symbol, but then we redundantly putting a dot under it, to match Jacobs’ old-fashioned Americanist writing, where there is a dot under the g and also to match the fact that back x is [ x̣ ], with a dot under it, in both Jacobs’ old-fashioned Americanist transcriptions and our own modernized Americanist phonetic transcriptions. 


The Correspondence of ‘mid g’ with ‘back g’:  Mrs. Metcalf’ Coos Bay Milluk pronunciation of the Milluk word meaning ‘teeth, tooth’ has a ‘mid g’ (a velar consonant) where Mrs. Peterson has a ‘back g’ (a uvular consonant).  This is a systematic difference, with other examples, including the Milluk word meaning ‘belly button’, where Lolly has k (a velar consonant) and Annie has q (a uvular consonant).

The sound correspondence of Lolly Metcalf’s South Slough Milluk having a velar consonant where Annie Miner Peterson’s Milluk has a uvular consonant is not to be explained as having anything to do with the influence of English.  That is because Annie Miner Peterson’s Hanis shows the same general sound correspondence.  In some Hanis words, Mrs. Peterson’s velar consonant in the Hanis word corresponds to a uvular consonants her own pronunciation of a similar Milluk word.  Coos Bay was a close neighbor of Hanis along the shores of Coos Bay.  This tells us that Annie Miner Peterson’s Milluk (with its uvular consonants in these words) reflected Milluk as it was spoken away from the shores of Coos Bay.  Mrs. Peterson initially learned Milluk from her maternal grandmother who was originally from the Lower Coquille River.