Your Grandmother's Cherokee

Preserving the Cherokee language, one word at a time.

Eastern wild turkey from the National Wild Turkey Federation

Thanksgiving--Words for Eating

Some Cherokee words specify whether the action is happening to a solid, liquid, flexible thing, long thing, or living thing.  This is another way that Cherokee language differs from English.  Talking about eating is very specific. 

I’m eating the round/solid thing = tsigi’a. 
Svgata tsigi’a = I’m eating an apple.


I’m eating the flexible thing = tsiyaye’a.

Atse tuya detsiyaye’a   =  I’m eating green beans

Gvna hawiya tsiyaye’a   = I’m eating turkey meat (a flexible piece)



I’m eating the long, rigid thing = tsiyasdigi’a

Selu tsiyasdigi’a = I’m eating corn (a long thing, implying corn on the cob.)



For soup and liquids, you can also say I’m drinking it.

Tsitaga ugama tsiditasga = I’m drinking chicken soup. 



Let’s (you all and I) always be thankful for food! = Nigohila alsdaydi idalihelitsisi!


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