Sqwélqwel means ‘story’, ‘message’, or ‘news’.
Note: to talk about traditional legends such as stories from the Transformer period, you would use a different word: sx̲wōx̲wiyám.
Sqwélqwel sounds like SKWULL-kwull, except that instead of a k you say the Halq’eméylem q. To make the q sound, you touch your tongue further back in your mouth, against your uvula.
Audio: Elizabeth Herrling, Elizabeth Phillips
Sqwélqwel has a special plural form, like this: sqwélqwelwel – stories, messages (audio here).
Elders make this type of plural by doubling (‘reduplicating’) the first part of the word.
Sqwélqwel comes from the word qwà:l – to speak, to talk. Other words based on qwà:l include:
- sqwà:l – word
- qwélqwel – to tell news, information