1. a chief of a North American tribe or confederation (especially an Algonquian chief)
  2. a political leader (especially of Tammany Hall)
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How To Use sachem In A Sentence

  • Mr. Morgan (in his "League of the Iroquois," page 68,) states that to the last-named chief, or "sachem," the duty of watching the door was assigned, and that "they gave him a sub-sachem, or assistant, to enable him to execute this trust. The Iroquois Book of Rites
  • The Hall of the Lost Tribes - a smoke-free gaming room - features the marks of sachems of thirteen extinct Connecticut Indian tribes culled from seventeenth- and eighteenth-century documents.
  • That Algonquin word "sachem," so seldom used, so difficult of pronunciation by the Iroquois, was never employed to designate a councilor in council; there they used the title, Roy-a-neh, and to that title had I answered the belt of the Iroquois, in the name of Kayanehenh-Kowa, the Great Peace. The Reckoning
  • He claimed that all the others in his group were burned at the stake, but that he was saved and married by a sachem's widowed daughter, whose dowry included European scalps.
  • Some sachem would sadly sketch the smiling scenes of health and happiness in the days before the pale-face came to wrest from the Indians their land, the gift of the Great Spirit. Tecumseh A Chronicle of the Last Great Leader of His People; Vol. 17 of Chronicles of Canada
  • In fact there are cases where Indians cheated other Indians by claiming the rights to sell land and transferring all the land of another sachem or tribe to the English.
  • The council of the tribe also had the power to depose both sachems and chiefs.
  • These issues came to a head in March 1675 when a Christian Indian informed authorities of the Plymouth Colony that the Wampanoag sachem, Metacom (‘King Philip’ to the English), was plotting all-out war.
  • Each appointed a sachem and deputy to the tribal council.
  • Finally, this celebrated sachem, Longboard, held a secret council among the captives, and instructed them all to take arms and advance with the British Indians, and use their influence to lead them to a place where they might be captured, and they with the rest, which they successfully effected, and were re-captured by the Americans. Legends, Traditions, and Laws of the Iroquois, or Six Nations, and History of the Tuscarora Indians
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