Indigenous signs for cities in Canada (Canada), listed by province

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Explanation of glossing system used
(to understand how I describe the signs in this dictionary)

The Province of Alberta
(1) DH [A] brushes wrist against wrist of [S], PO down, but DH twists back and forth.1 (2) DH [A], PO down, brushes against [S], PO down 3x.2 (3) DH [A], PO > signer, touches chin and rocks side to side.2 (4) "A".2 (5) A-L-T-A.2

(1)"C".2 (2) (2h)[L], POs ><, alt. swing like robot arms. 2 [< gunslinger(?)]

(1) E-D.2 (2) [E], PO > signer, touches nose.2 (3) [E], PO away from signer, circles CCW.1

L-E-T-H + BRIDGE, that is [V] touches the wrist and then the elbow of NDH [B].2

The Province of British Columbia
(1) B-C.2 (2) [B], PO away, makes a circle CCW as seen from viewer, and then repeats with a [C].2


Dawson Creek

Fort St. John

[V:], PO > signer, taps at mouth.2

[N], PO down, taps at [S], PO > signer.2

New Westminster
NEW WEST, that is (2h)[B^], POs up, DH scoops up the imaginary contents of NDH + [W], PO away, moves > NDS.2

North Vancouver
NORTH "V". NORTH is [N], PO away, moves upwards.2

Port Moody

Prince George
[P], then [G], PO down tap at chest.2 (< initial position for royalty: KING, QUEEN, PRINCESS.).

Prince Rupert
[P], then [R], PO down tap at chest.2 (< initial position for royalty: KING, QUEEN, PRINCESS.)

(1) V-C.1 (2) "V".2 (3) [V], PO away, swings from side to side in wide arc.2 (4) V-A-N.2

Vancouver Island
"V" ISLAND. ISLAND = FT of [I] describes circle on the pack of the NDH [S], PO down.2

(1) [V], PO down, touches NDS shoulder, then DS waist.2 [< movement like QUEEN (Victoria).](2) "V".2 (3) [V], PO away, moves > DS then descends.2

The Province of Manitoba
(1) M-A-N.2 (2) "M".2 (3) [M] draws cross on heart.2

(1) [W], PO > signer, circles CCW as seen by signer.2 (2) [W], PO up, is shaken from side to side. (3) (2h)[W], arms crossed at wrists, wg simultaneously.2

The Province of Newbrunswick


St. John
(1) S-T-J.2 (2) [S] touches shoulder of NDH [S], PO down, then changes to a [J] and touches the back of the NDH.2

The Province of Newfoundland
(1) N-F-L-D.1 (2) Put thumbs of (2h)[B] on hips and bend the fingers in unison several times.2

St. Johns

The Province of Northwest Territories

Yellow Knife
YELLOW, that is [Y], PO towards, pronates several times, and then KNIFE, that is, (2h)[H], POs ><, DH rubs its edge along the length of the NDH fingers and flicks off them several times.2

The Province of Nova Scotia

[B], PO towards, moves from side to side in front of mouth.2

(1) The palm side of the FTs from [H], FO > NDS, brush against the chin several times while moving towards the DS.2 (2) Partly closed [C], FO > NDS, brushes against the chin several times while moving towards the DS and closing into [O^].2 (3) [5:], PO > signer, brushes down chin several times.2

The Province of Ontario
(1) "O".1 (2) [O], PO > signer, circles vertically.2 (3) [O], PO away, circles vertically.2 (4) [O], PO > signer, circles horizontally.2

(2h)[B], NDHPO > signer, DHPO away from signer, are held side by side. DH traces a "7".2

[G], PO > NDS, moves > DS while closing.2

[K] touches index finger to chin and then side of chest.

[L] touches thumb to chin and then chest.2

North Bay
(1) N-B.2 (2) NORTH, that is [N], PO away, moves upwards, then spell B-A-Y.2 (3) NORTH, then "B".2

(1) [O], PO away, circles horizontally.2 (2) [O], PO away from signer, traces a "7".1 (3) O-O.2

(1) [S], PO > signer, circles vertically.2 (2) [S], PO > signer, circles vertically by side of head.2

Thunder Bay
(1) T-B.2 (2) (2h)[X], POs ><, DH above NDH. DH moves upwards while shaking, then spell B-A-Y.2

(1) [T], thumbside touches NDS shoulder, then DS shoulder.1 (2) [B^], FT touch NDS shoulderblade, then DS shoulderblade. For a QuickTime movie of this sign, see Woordenboek Nederlands - Vlaamse Gebarentaal: Toronto.


The Province of Prince Edward Island

The Province of Quebec
(1) [Q] circles horizontally.2 (2) "Q".1

(1) [M], PO down, circles over [B], PO up, and lands with FT touching center of palm.1 (< Canada's center.) (2) [M] touches FTs to forehead and then center of [B], PO up.2

Quebec City
[Q] circles horizontally, then CITY, that is (2h)[B], FOs up, tap FTs together, move > DS, then tap again.

The Province of Saskatchewan
(1) S-A-K.1 (2) S-K at temple.1

Prince Albert

(1) [R], PO away from signer, moves > DS, then down.1 (2) DH [R] touches, [S], FO > DS, then moves to DS and down.2

The Province of Yukon Territory

White Horse
WHITE, that is [5] touches chest and closes to [O^] while moving away, then HORSE, that is [H dot] touches thumb to temple and fingers wiggle together.2

List of sources cited

1. Signs around the world: Cities [Videotape]. Burtonsville, MD: Sign Media.
2. Kelly-Jones, N. and Hamilton, H. (1981). Signs everywhere. Los Alamitos, CA: Modern Signs Press, Inc.