Thompson River Salish & hymns
An apparently older version of the 1pl form [of ‘independent pronoun’] survives in a religious song: /nmimeł.
[Otherwise /nmimł] — Thompson, Laurence C. and M. Terry Thompson. 1992. The Thompson language. Missoula, MT: University of Montana. (UMOPL #8.) page 59 [the i is stressed and the ł is voiceless]
True, I bet. ‘Religious song’ probably means a Christian hymn. It would likely have been composed, or at least set to music, by a non-Native missionary circa 1865 to 1895, perhaps 1925 at the latest. In my experience with various Pacific Northwest languages, this genre of songs abhors non-European-type consonant clusters and even treats many a schwa as unsingable 🙂 (Schwa, otherwise, might unremarkably be added before the voiceless L.) Full vowels are inserted frequently, under pressure from Western metrical demands.
This was done with hymns in Chinook Jargon, too. /msáyka/ ‘you folks’ (2pl) was often scanned as ma-say-ka or mi-say-ka.
I haven’t observed songs composed by Salish people inserting etymologically nonexistent vowels like this. Have you?
*nłeʔképmxcín or Thompson River Salish is traditionally spoken in southern interior British Columbia, Canada.