What Is the Origin of Pocahontas Name?


Quick Answer

Powhatan, the leader of the Powhatan Indian confederacy, gave his daughter Mantoax the name Pocahontas, meaning "Little Wanton" in her tribe's language. Scholars think Powhatan possibly gave more than one of his daughters the name Pocahontas as a nickname or term of endearment.

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What Is the Origin of Pocahontas Name?
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Full Answer

History first took note of Pocahontas when, in 1607, Captain John Smith and a small group of settlers came across a hunting party from her tribe while exploring. The hunting party attacked the settlers and killed everyone except Smith, whom they took back to Chief Powhatan. As she grew older, Pocahontas learned English and interacted with European settlers at the Jamestown settlement. Later in life, Pocahontas met John Rolfe, the man famous for introducing the tobacco crop in the colonies. Pocahontas converted to Christianity, changed her name to Rebecca and married Rolfe.

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