Powhatan, proper name was Wahunsenacawh, also spelled Wahunsonacock

Powhatan, proper name was Wahunsenacawh, also spelled Wahunsonacock
c. 1545
1618

Chief of Powhatan Indian Tribe in Virginia, united the Tribes to form the Powhatan Confederacy, called Algonquian

Author Quotes

I have seen two generations of my people die ... I know the difference between peace and war better than any man in my country. I am now grown old and must die soon; my authority must descend to my brothers, Opitchapan, Opechancanough and Catatough - then to my two sisters, and then my two daughters. I wish them to know as much as I do, and that your love to them may be like mine to you. Why will you take by force what you may have quietly by love? Why will you destroy us who supply you with food? What can you get by war? We can hide our provisions and run into the woods; then you will starve for wronging your friends. Why are you jealous of us? We are unarmed, and willing to give you what you ask, if you come in a friendly manner, and not so simple as to not to know that it is much better to eat good meat, sleep comfortably, live quietly with my wives and children, laugh and be merry with the English, and trade for their copper and hatchets, than to run away from them, and to lie cold in the woods, feed on acorns, roots and such trash, and be so hunted that I can neither eat nor sleep. In these wars, my men must sit up watching, and if a twig break, they all cry out "Here comes Captain Smith!" So, I must end my miserable life. Take away your guns and swords, the cause of all our jealousy, or you may all die in the same manner.

Do you believe me such a fool as not to prefer eating good meat, sleeping quietly with my wives and children, laughing and making merry with you, having copper and hatchets and anything else—as your friend—to flying from you as your enemy, lying cold in the woods, eating acorns and roots, and being so hunted by you meanwhile, that if but a twig break, my men will cry out, "here comes Captain Smith!" Le us be friend, then. Do not invade us thus with such an armed force. Lay aside these arms.

Life is not what you see, but what you've projected. It's not what you've felt, but what you've decided. It's not what you've experienced, but how you've remembered it. It's not what you've forged, but what you've allowed. And it's not who's appeared, but who you've summoned. And this should serve you well, beloved, until you find, what you already have.

Why will you take by force what you may obtain by love? Why will you destroy us who supply you with food? What can you get by war?... We are unarmed, and willing to give you what you ask, if you come in friendly manner... I am not so simple as not to know it is better to eat good meat, sleep comfortably, live quietly with my women and children, laugh and be merry with the English, and being their friend, trade for their copper and hatchets, than to run away from them... Take away your guns and swords, the cause of all our jealousy, or you may die in the same manner.

Author Picture
First Name
Powhatan, proper name was Wahunsenacawh, also spelled Wahunsonacock
Birth Date
c. 1545
Death Date
1618
Bio

Chief of Powhatan Indian Tribe in Virginia, united the Tribes to form the Powhatan Confederacy, called Algonquian