MEDICINE (meaning: mysterious and unknown). Hold right 2 hand close to forehead, palm outwards; index and second fingers separated and pointing upwards,others and thumb closed; move hand, upwards while turning from right to left in a spiral.
MEDICINE MAN. Make the sign for MAN and for MEDICINE.
MAKING BAD MEDICINE, or MAKING GOOD MEDICINE. Many Indians use this idiom which is somewhat typical. To express either of the above, make signs accordingly.MEET (to). Hold I hands opposite each other, pointing upwards; bring the hands towards each other until tips of index fingers touch.
MELANCHOLY. Make the signs for HEART and SICK.
MEMORY. Make the signs for HEART and KNOW.
METAL. There is no general sign for this except that for HARD. Anything made of metal must be pointed to or touched.
METEOR. Make sign for STAR, and with hand in that position make sign for FIRE; and then let it drop in a wavy, tremulous motion.
MID-DAY. Indicate that the sun is exactly overhead, or make the signs for DAY and MIDDLE.
MIDDLE. Hold left I hand well in front of left breast, with back to left; hold right 1 hand in front of right breast, raise it slightly up and over in small semi-circle until tip of right index rests on middle joint of left index.
MIDNIGHT. Make the signs for NIGHT and MIDDLE.
MIDWINTER. Make the sign for WINTER and for MIDDLE.
MIGRATE (meaning: of birds). Make sign for BIRD, MANY and FLYING to south or north.
MILKY-WAY (meaning: ghosts, or dead men's road). Make sign for DIE, for TRAIL; then with right flat hand fully extended sweep in a segment of circle that part of the sky.
MIND. Touch the two first fingers of right hand to forehead.
MINGLE. Hold slightly compressed hands out in front of body, opposite neck, hands pointing upward, close together, move them one about the other in circles, surfaces touching.
MIRROR. Hold up flat right hand with palm twelve inches from face, fingers pointing upwards. This represents a hand mirror.
MISLEAD. Make sign for TRAIL; then show deception by pushing right index out at a different angle.
MISS (to). Make the sign for AVOID.
MISTAKE. Make the signs for WORK and HIDE.
MIX. To mix by stirring imitate the motion. To mix otherwise, make the sign for MINGLE.
MOCCASIN. Pass spread thumbs and indexes up from toes, over feet to ankles; right over right, left over left, palms close to feet.
MONEY. Hold right hand, back to right, well out in front of right breast, index and thumb curved, forming an incomplete circle, space half inch between tips, other fingers closed.
MONKEY (meaning: half white man, half dog). Pass the spread thumb and index finger of each hand, other fingers closed, over and near the surface of body from waist upwards, palms towards body; then make sign for WHITES; then pass the hand similarly from waist down, and make sign for DOG. The upper portion like white man, lower like dog.
MONTHS or MOONS. See pages 58 and 79.
MOON (meaning: night sun). Make the sign for NIGHT; then with curved thumb and index of right hand form a segment or quarter moon, and hold it in line of vision to where moon should be on high.
MORNING. Make the signs for DAY and SUNRISE.
MOTHER. With partially curved compressed right hand give two or three gentle taps or pluckings at left breast.
MOTHER-IN-LAW. Make the sign for HUSBAND or WIFE, and then for MOTHER.
MOTION PICTURES. This is a strictly recent proposition, and must be so regarded. The modern Indian, however, knows all about the pictures, and thousands act in them. Have seen different descriptive signs made, the most common being to extend both flat hands, upright, and vibrate them rapidly, to show flicker of the picture, and sign LOOK. One Indian who had been to Hollywood made sign similar to OWL, as though looking into opera glass, and then sign for turning crank.
MOTOR CAR. Make the sign for automobile.
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Last modified: October 15, 2016.