Sachem and Sagamore Names

Sachem and Sagamore Names

Following are the names of some of the sachems and sagamores mentioned in this book and suggestions for how to pronounce them phonetically in English. Note that the syllable breaks are only for the convenience of English speakers and do not accurately reflect the real prefix-root noun-suffix structures of Algonquian words. The names all represent French or English corruptions of the originals.  Note that Algonquian pronunciation is almost never on the first syllable as it is in English.

Assacumbuit = Ass uh kumb wit (Maliseet “Tarrantine” leader)

Canonicus = Kan on ih kus (Sachem of the Narraganset)

Escumbuit = Es kumb wit (Pequaket Abenaki leader)

Kancamagus = Kang ah mayg us (Pennacook leader, nephew of Passaconaway)

Masconomet = Mask uhnom et  (Masquenominet = Mask wenom i net, Sagamore of “Agawam”)

Madockawando = Muh dockoo and oh (Abenaki sachem of the Penobscot)

Membertou = Mem bear too (French: “Sagmaw” of the Mi’Kmaq)

Messamoet = Mes sah mo et (French: a Mi’Kmaq leader)

Metacomet = Meh tuhk om et (aka King Philip, Wampanoag sagamore, son of Massasoit)

Miantonomoh = Mee an toen om oh (also Mianonomi, leader of the Narraganset, nephew of Canonicus)

Nanepashemet = Na nah pash em et (Nipmuc leader of a Nipmuc-Massachuset Alliance)

Numphow = N umpf ow (Pennacook “sagamo” of Wamesit, uncle of Passaconaway)

Onamechin = O nah meech in (Abenaki sachem of the Sokoki-Saco Alliance)

Ousamequin = Oo sah meek win  (aka the honorific title Massasoit = Mas sah soy ut, sachem of the Wampanoag)

Quiouhamenek = Kwee oh hah men ek (“sagamo” of Wenesquawam [Cape Ann])

Passaconaway = Pas suh kohn nuh way (a corruption of Papisseconewa [Pa pis sa kon  ew a, “Child of the Bear”], grand sachem of the Pennacook Confederacy)

Sassacus = Sa sak kuss (a corruption, often mispronounced Sas a kuss, sachem of the Pequot)

Uncas = Un kuss (sachem of the Mohegan)

Wonalancet = Wah nah lahn set (Pennacook sachem, son of Passaconaway)