Delaware Prophet


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Delaware Prophet

(dĕl`əwâr, –wər), fl. 18th cent., Native American leader. His real name is not known. He began preaching (c.1762) among the Delaware of the Muskingum valley in Ohio. He spoke against intertribal war, drunkenness, polygamy, and the use of magic, and he promised his hearers that if they would but heed his words the Native Americans would be strong again and able to resist the whites. He prepared symbolic charts of his message on deerskin and left them in various villages to help his converts teach others. The religious fervor spread rapidly and is said to have been an inspiration to Pontiac. After the collapse of Pontiac's Rebellion (1763–66) the cult of the Delaware Prophet waned and was largely superseded by that of the Munsee Prophet, who was in turn succeeded by the Shawnee Prophet.
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For instance, he argues that Pontiac's War, inspired by the Delaware prophet Neolin, was more than just a united Indian movement to stop white settlement in the west.
In 1763, the Delaware prophet, Neolin, provided the inspiration for Pontiac's rebellion, and some fifty years later the Shawnee prophet, Tenskwatawa, provided the inspiration for Tecumseh's revolution.
a missing component will be suggested, namely Pontiac's embodiment of "sacred power"--that he did not simply manipulate the teachings of Delaware Prophet, Neolin, but was himself a "true believer.

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