Culture - Who we are


The Seminole Indians have two languages still in use today, neither of which is traditionally written. Muscogee (Creek) and Miccosukee are related but not mutually intelligible. Both languages contain sentence structures and sounds that do not exist in English and are difficult to pronounce using the English language.

With some words the two languages seem to mirror each other; and sometimes the two lingos are uncomparable. For example, the English word bread would be pronounced "tak-la-eek-i" in the Muscogee dialect and "pa-les-tee" in Miccosukee. "Dog" is "ef-fa" in Creek, "ee-fe" in Miccosukee. "Cow" is "wa-ka" in Creek "waa-ke" in Miccosukee.

Many Seminoles are fluent in both languages; some only speak one or the other.

The names of many Florida cities, counties, places, rivers and lakes are taken from Seminole words, both Creek and Miccosukee.

Miccosukee English
Apalachicola place of the ruling people
Chattahoochee marked stones
Hialeah prairie
Immokalee my camp
Miami that place
Ocala spring
Palatka ferry crossing
Yeehaw wolf
Pahokee grassy water
Apopka potato eating place
Okeechobee big water
Homosassa pepper place
Thonotosassa flint place

Learn a Few Seminole Words

Miccosukee English
ee-cho deer
ya-laahe orange
o-pa owl
hen-le squirrel
sho-ke pig
laa-le fish
yok-che turtle
chen-te snake
ke-hay-ke hawk
nak-ne man
coo-wah-chobee big cat
wannke-cha-be dragon fly
coo-wah-chobee big cat
Ee-te Yo-ga-hé Fire
hah-yo-ke chickee roof
cha-cee pumpkin
kowechobe panther
Numpagalaale laknalon Flowers are yellow
Ko-wah-yah- lot to chené pahén empom Three horses are eating hay