French missionary Émile Petitot (1838-1916) was based in Canada's Northwest Territories for twelve years, from 1862. He visited the Inuit people five times and became so well accepted that they called him 'Mr Petitot, son of the Sun'. Petitot believed that understanding Inuit languages was crucial to the religious conversion of the natives. During his mission, he collected more linguistic material than ever before and prepared dictionaries of the various Dene dialects. In this book, published in 1876, he describes the Inuit's traditions and sets about the monumental task of compiling the first grammar and vocabulary of the extremely complex Tchiglit dialect. Petitot also made substantial contributions to the geology, palaeontology, zoology and botany of the Northwest region. His efforts were rewarded with a Silver Medal from the French Société de Géographie and the Back Award from the Royal Geographical Society of London.