“A Dictionary of Skiri Pawnee” is the first dictionary ever published of a Caddoan language. Formerly an independent tribe living along the North Fork of the Loup River in central Nebraska| the Skiris united with South Band Pawnee groups in the late eighteenth century| and in 1874-76 they were forced to abandon their reservation in central Nebraska for a new reservation that became Pawnee County in north-central Oklahoma| where most Skiris live today.
The volume comprises approximately 4|500 entries that represent the basic vocabulary of the Skiri language. To assist users| the introduction features a description of the Skiri sound system and an alphabet| as well as a short description of Skiri grammar that outlines the categories and constituent morphemes composing Skiri words. The first section of the dictionary presents entries arranged alphabetically by English glosses; the second section is arranged alphabetically by Skiri words and stems. Separate appendixes provide representative conjugations of Skiri verbs| a list of irregular verb roots| and charts of kinship terms.
The dictionary is the culmination of a fifteen-year collaboration between Douglas R. Parks and Lula Nora Pratt| a native Skiri speaker. Primary sources of Skiri vocabulary and English translations include Pratt herself| recordings of traditional narratives made by Harry Mad Bear and Sam Allen in the 1960s| and historical texts by Roaming Scout. Supplementary sources of data come from other Skiri speakers who collaborated for shorter periods in the late 1960s.