Native American Names

A friend of mine just got a male wolf pup and is looking for a name. I thought something in the Aleut or Inuit languages would be good. Anyone have any suggestions or know where I can find a native american dictionary on line? I have looked without success.

I’m not surprised you can’t find a dictionary, considering that most native languages (traditionally) have no written component. Those that do aren’t in Roman characters. Try searching linguistics sites or the government of Nunavut.

I have a good idea for a name but I don’t know how to say “Aah! He bit my finger off!” in Eskimo. My sister had a dog that was only 1/4 wolf and he was damn hard to handle. At one time or another, he bit almost every man he came in contact with. I wouldn’t want to have a full-blood pet wolf.

Here is an Eskimo-English dictionary:

I don’t know about on-line dictionaries, but if you have some free time during the day, you could probably find what you’re looking for at a college ethnology library, or perhaps in the ethnology section of a large city library. If you’re in the Boston area, the Tozzer library at Harvard is open to the public and has dictionaries for most Native American languages.


You could call him Skookum, which is Tlingit for “strong”. It is a fairly common dog name in the North…or Tutshi (pronounced TOO-shy) - I forget what that means, but it’s also common around here.

Tatshenshini and Aishihik (TATshenSHIni River and aaayZHEEEak Lake) are kinda long, but pretty IMHO.

How’s that? That’s all I have off the top of my head, but I can come up with more…

The Eskimo language (called Inunktitut in Canada and Greenlandish in Greenland) has its own official orthography. In fact, Canadian Inuktitut is written in two different scripts, the Roman alphabet and the Cree syllabary. For that matter, Cree has had its own writing since the 19th century. There are dictionaries and such published for these languages.

From here:

you can get an online Eskimo dictionary
but since Eskimo is a polysynthetic language, you would need a good grasp of the grammar to put a sentence together. Polysynthetic languages usually combine subject, verb, object, and adverb all in one word.