Definition of Iroquois in English:



  • 1A member of a former confederacy of six North American peoples (Mohawk, Oneida, Seneca, Onondaga, Cayuga, and Tuscarora) who lived mainly in southern Ontario and Quebec and northern New York State.

    • ‘Like Molly, she is an emphatic and convincing spokeswoman for the Iroquois.’
    • ‘The voluminous records we have for the constitutional debates of the late 1780s contain no significant references to the Iroquois.’
    • ‘In 1697, the New Englanders fought the Abenaki while New France fought the Iroquois.’
    • ‘The recurring raids prompted the French to help their Indian allies attack the Iroquois in 1609, opening a new technological era for the people of the Confederacy.’
    • ‘In the Treaty of Fort Stanwiz of 1784 and the Treaty of Fort McIntosh of 1785, the Iroquois and other Ohio Indians were forced to give a portion of their land to the United States.’
    • ‘Stylistically there are a few regional and tribal differences between mocotaugans made in the three regions of the Woodlands: the northeast maritime, the western Great Lakes, and the Iroquois.’
    • ‘But the truth remains that La Salle was one of the only explorers who ever established a mutual respect with the Iroquois.’
    • ‘New York State tried to forbid the acceptance of the refugee nation, but the Iroquois ignored them.’
    • ‘These debates and other factors helped polarize the Christian and ‘pagan’ parties among the Iroquois.’
    • ‘When I learned that my great-grandmother was an Onondaga Indian, I studied everything I could about the Iroquois.’
    • ‘The New Confederacy of the Iroquois was founded and organized by another eminent early American ethnographer, Lewis Henry Morgan, in 1842.’
    • ‘He even went to Boston and Plymouth to consolidate an alliance with the Sokoquis, the Pennacooks, and the Mahicans against the Iroquois.’
    • ‘I could never again accept what I was told about Iroquois or Indians.’
    • ‘When the Delawares protested that they had been cheated, Logan made a military alliance with the Iroquois, who drove the Delawares out.’
    • ‘Didn't the Cherokees and Iroquois play important roles in the American Revolution?’
    • ‘In 1684 the Iroquois captured Fort St. Louis in the Illinois country.’
    • ‘I saw some guys making to do the running around behind walls and the likes but I am not to be positive that they are Iroquois or Americans.’
    • ‘His explanation of Iroquois dominance rests on the thesis that the fur trade and its import of goods upon which the Iroquois had become dependent, united the Iroquois in their wars on surrounding tribes.’
    • ‘Instead, we are offered new civilizations in the forms of the Iroquois, the Americans, the Indians, the Persians, the Dutch, and the Lakota.’
    • ‘The whites whom the Iroquois knew best - the officers of the Crown's Indian Department - were loyalists almost to a man.’
  • 2Any of the Iroquoian languages spoken by the Iroquois.


  • Relating to the Iroquois or their languages.

    • ‘Before European colonization, Iroquois men and women exchanged tobacco, shoes, leggings, even domestic services in elaborate ‘sacred bowl’ games.’
    • ‘Does he avoid this period because it rests uneasily with his image of the Iroquois nation?’
    • ‘But among Iroquois people, who are agricultural, the healing power of the bear is important.’
    • ‘If the presence of Iroquois souvenir sellers and African-American tour guides added to the exoticism of the Falls, it also sometimes shocked the sensibilities of honeymooners and tourists.’
    • ‘Quaker women were quick to admire the status of Iroquois women and still spread the seeds of equality.’
    • ‘As ‘Te-Non-An-At-Che’ progresses, it tells of the creation of plants and animals on the back of the turtle, Tarachiawagon, upon which all life is said to exist in the Iroquois world view.’
    • ‘Aside from here, the Lakota and Iroquois nations are represented as Native American countries.’
    • ‘Individual bands were extremely autonomous, and supertribal entities like the Five Nations of the Iroquois exceptional.’
    • ‘Along the old lanes there is still the feeling of hearty chaps in beaver hats and birch-bark canoes who disappeared into the interior to hunt, to fish and to marry Iroquois brides.’
    • ‘After asking a number of elders their opinion about recording Iroquois social dance songs, I realized that my generation rarely spoke the language and the people who knew Iroquois songs were few.’
    • ‘Forced to spare Albany to preserve Iroquois neutrality, Canadian and Native war parties spread terror in New England.’
    • ‘Cusick evidently was motivated to deny the presence of cannibalism ever within the Iroquois nations by the horrific responses of Christians to any suggestions of it.’
    • ‘As the British and their allied Indian troops lost and withdrew, George Washington advanced and wreaked havoc on Iroquois settlements.’
    • ‘The Iroquois trail became the Great State Road connecting Lake Erie to the Hudson River, and the Great Trail, used by the Shawnees, Delawares, and others, became the first military road in the Ohio Valley.’
    • ‘Beadwork in Iroquois Life looks at the significance of beadwork in traditional and contemporary Iroquois culture from the artistic, cultural and political viewpoints.’
    • ‘This ‘light-life’ corresponds to the chi of eastern systems, the inana of the natives of the Polynesian islands and the orenda of the Iroquois Indians.’
    • ‘Are they the same Guardians who were here when the Iroquois nation ruled?’
    • ‘Historically, the Iroquois language was oral.’
    • ‘George Washington's attacks on Iroquois villages came during Pontiac's rebellion of 1763.’
    • ‘The council was coordinated with the Iroquois council at Six Nations Reserve in Canada.’


French, from an Algonquian language.