Tuesday, October 1, 2019

Pocahontas Essay -- essays papers

Pocahontas For more than two centuries since the death of the Indian princess Pocahontas, legends and stories of romance have been imbedded into our minds, but her dramatic life was more important to the creation of a segment of American history than legend. Around the year of 1595, Pocahontas was born to chief Powhatan, the powerful chief of a federation of Algonquian Indian tribes who lived in the tidewater region of Virginia (Sahlman). She was but one of the many children of Powhatan, who ruled more than 25 tribes. Her real name was Matoaka, a name used only within the tribe (Sahlman). Her tribe, the Powhatans, believed that harm would come to them if outsiders learned of their tribal name (Jamestown). Therefore, she went by Pocahontas, a nickname given to her meaning â€Å"little wanton† for she was a playful, frolicsome little girl (Sahlman). The settlers believed it to mean â€Å"bright stream between two hills.† The Powhatans were not savages, as John Smith would later claim in his The General History of Virginia. Instead, they were a ceremonious people who greeted important visitors in a formal manner with a large feast and festive dancing (Sahlman). Although they did occasionally put prisoners to death in a public ceremony, it was no more savage than the English customs of public disembowelment of thieves and the burning of women accused of being witches (Sahlman). In May of 1607, English colonists arrived on the Virginia shoreline with hopes of great ric...

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