sachem

[ sey-chuhm ]
/ ˈseɪ tʃəm /

noun

(among some North American Indians)
  1. the chief of a tribe.
  2. the chief of a confederation.
a member of the governing body of the League of the Iroquois.
one of the high officials in the Tammany Society.
Slang. a political party leader.

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Origin of sachem

First recorded in 1615–25, Americanism; from southeastern New England Algonquian (compare Narragansett (English spelling) sâchim, saunchum, Massachusett sontim ), from unattested Proto-Algonquian sa˙kima˙wa; cf. sagamore

OTHER WORDS FROM sachem

sa·chem·dom, nounsa·chem·ic [sey-chem-ik, sey-chuh-mik], /seɪˈtʃɛm ɪk, ˈseɪ tʃə mɪk/, adjectivesa·chem·ship, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

Example sentences from the Web for sachem

British Dictionary definitions for sachem

sachem
/ (ˈseɪtʃəm) /

noun

US a leader of a political party or organization, esp of Tammany Hall
another name for sagamore

Derived forms of sachem

sachemic (seɪˈtʃɛmɪk, ˈseɪtʃə-), adjective

Word Origin for sachem

C17: from Narraganset sǎchim chief
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012