“Hapi” in BC

First things first — go download the Chinuk Pipa font!


I used it to write the above word in BC Chinuk Wawa: hapi.

Meaning ‘happy’.

Most folks having any familiarity with Chinook Jargon will know that this isn’t the usual way to express ‘happy’.

Far more usual is the definition of hapi that’s given in the following passage:

st mash man

ST mash man kopa ukuk ilihi pus iaka chako hapi “patl tlus tomtom[”]
sáx̣ali-táyí másh mán kʰupa úkuk ílihi pus yaka chaku-hápi (páɬ ɬúsh tə́mtəm)
sky-chief send man to this earth so.that he become-happy (full good heart)
‘God put people on this earth so they’d become happy (full of good heart).’
— Kamloops Wawa #065, February 12, 1893, page 28

‘Good heart’ is the normal CJ expression.

But it’s interesting to realize that BC Jargon speakers, having relatively greater exposure to English than the earlier southern speakers had had, were somewhat familiar with the word hapi.

A recurring expression in the Kamloops Wawa newspaper was:

hapi nyu iir abc

Hapi Nyu Iiir ‘Happy New Year’, from 1893 to 1904.

kata maika tomtom?
What do you think?