Sunday, December 26, 2010


Powwow \POU-wou\ , verb;
1. To confer
1. A ceremony, especially one accompanied by magic, feasting, and dancing, performed for the cure of disease, success in a hunt, etc.
2. A council or conference of or with Native Americans

This word dates to the 1620's and came from Narragansett powwaw or pauwau meaning "shaman, medicine man, Native American priest." It is derived from a verb meaning "to use divination, to dream" which ultimately comes from Proto-Algonquian *pawe:wa ("he dreams, one who dreams"). The meaning "magical ceremony among North American Indians is recorded from the 1660's and the sense of "council, conference, meeting" is first recorded in 1812. The verb definition "to confer" is attested from 1780.

Today's word and the first definition were both taken from's 'Word of the Day' for Sunday, December 26
Etymologies come from the Oxford English Dictionary and/or 

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