Etymology
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sachem (n.)

chief of a Native American tribe, 1620s, from Narragansett (Algonquian) sachim "chief, ruler," cognate with Abenaki sangman, Delaware sakima, Micmac sakumow, Penobscot sagumo. Applied in jocular use to a prominent member of any society from 1680s; specific political use in U.S. is by 1890, from its use in New York City as the title of the 12 high officials of the Tammany Society.

updated on December 21, 2021

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Definitions of sachem from WordNet

sachem (n.)
a political leader (especially of Tammany Hall);
sachem (n.)
a chief of a North American tribe or confederation (especially an Algonquian chief);
Synonyms: sagamore
From wordnet.princeton.edu, not affiliated with etymonline.