Definition of Oneida in US English:



  • 1A member of an Iroquoian people formerly inhabiting upper New York State, one of the five peoples comprising the original Iroquois confederacy.

    • ‘Participants in the pretest represented a variety of tribes, including Navajo, Arapaho, Oneida, Ojibway, Kickapoo, Cherokee, and Lakota.’
    • ‘Hofstra begins by recalling a violent skirmish in 1742 on the Virginia frontier between white settlers and a group of Oneidas and Onondagas traveling from their homelands in New York to the Carolinas.’
    • ‘The Tuscarora slowly emigrated into Iroquois territory and settled amongst the Oneida.’
    • ‘But whereas Hauptman, Horsman, and Campisi confine their analysis to the cessions and their political ramifications, the Oneidas refer to land cessions in terms of breaking up their families.’
    • ‘The Oneidas are members of the Iroquois Confederacy, also known as the League of the Haudenosaunee, or Six Nations.’
    • ‘In spite of America's debt to the Oneidas, centuries of failed Federal policies left the Nation with a 32-acre reservation and overwhelming poverty by 1980.’
    • ‘The Oneida fought on the side of the colonists, eventually earning official commendation from George Washington for their assistance.’
    • ‘The Oneidas subsequently joined, and later the Cayugas and Senecas.’
    • ‘That means the Onondaga, the Tioga, the Oneida, the Mohawk, all of those we left up in that Great Lakes region as well as in upstate New York.’
    • ‘Jordan was certainly not the only Frenchman later found living among the Oneida, which was the only Iroquois tribe to be strongly anti-British during the American Revolution.12’
    • ‘Directly after the battle at Lake George, the Mohawks and Oneidas left for home to console their families and did not return as promised.’
    • ‘Ironically, the most formidable of the upstate tribes, the Oneida, runs profitable tax-free casino and cigarette operations that have left it much more affluent than its homeowner antagonists.’
    • ‘An Iroquoian culture hero, he converted to the cause of Deganawida, another culture hero who had taken on as his mission no less than the cessation of feuding among Mohawk, Seneca, Oneida, and others.’
    • ‘The Oneidas ' enterprises include the prosperous Turning Stone Casino Resort in Verona, NY, which has 1,500 cashless slot machines and gets 3.5 million visitors a year.’
    • ‘‘We may not have ten seconds,’ Vale said, his mind replaying the destruction of the Oneida.’
  • 2The Iroquoian language of the Oneida.

    • ‘The Cherokee language belongs to the Iroquoian family of languages and is therefore related to Mohawk, Seneca, Onondaga, Oneida, Cayuga, and Tuscarora, among others.’
    • ‘An Iroquoian language, Oneida is most closely related to Mohawk.’
    • ‘The Mohawk and Oneida are quite similar, as are the Cayuga and Seneca; the Onondaga and Tuscarora are each different from the five others.’
    • ‘I taught them the names of the Six Nations, and the meaning of Onondaga, Mohawk, Seneca, Cayuga, Tuscarora and Oneida.’


  • Relating to the Oneida or their language.

    • ‘A prominent Akwesasne Mohawk journalist who now resides on Oneida Iroquois territory sent Windspeaker a whole article outlining his views.’
    • ‘Late in her life, Minnie focused on preservation of the Oneida language and the reacquisition of lost tribal lands.’
    • ‘After the death of his first wife, Margaret, daughter of the Oneida sachem Skenandoah, Brant married Catherine Croghan, the Mohawk daughter of a British agent.’
    • ‘Born in Oneida, Wisc., an indeterminate number of years ago, to an Oneida father and a Cree mother from Alberta, Hill is able to call both sides of the border his home.’
    • ‘He mentioned that he and a number of other Frenchmen had come into Oneida hands during the Seven Years' War.’
    • ‘His current research on the Civil War is on the Oneida Indians of Companies F and G of the 14th Wisconsin Infantry.’
    • ‘A national pastime, lacrosse was first played by the Oneida Iroquois more than 500 years ago.’
    • ‘Johnson's army, on the other hand, was composed primarily of New England militia men, Mohawk and Oneida Indians, and almost no British regulars.’
    • ‘The goal of the program is to help the Oneida tribe become self-sufficient in food.’
    • ‘But none of the area grocery chains were interested in filling the void on the Oneida reservation.’
    • ‘Tribal lore has it that Oneida runners were sent ahead to scout prospective relocation sites.’
    • ‘In addition to serving as a spiritual link to their past for the Oneida tribe, leaner buffalo meat is well-suited to the diet of Native Americans.’
    • ‘‘That experience was helpful, but the situation of the Oneida tribe is more rural in nature and the community definitely wanted regular groceries,’ Bau explains.’


From a local word meaning ‘erected stone’, the name of successive principal Oneida settlements, near which, by tradition, a large syenite boulder was erected.