Standish, Miles

Standish, Miles or Myles,

c.1584–1656, American colonist, b. England. After serving as a soldier for a number of years, Standish accompanied the PilgrimsPilgrims,
in American history, the group of separatists and other individuals who were the founders of Plymouth Colony. The name Pilgrim Fathers is given to those members who made the first crossing on the Mayflower.
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 to America on the Mayflower (1620) and was recognized at once as the military leader of Plymouth ColonyPlymouth Colony,
settlement made by the Pilgrims on the coast of Massachusetts in 1620. Founding

Previous attempts at colonization in America (1606, 1607–8) by the Plymouth Company, chartered in 1606 along with the London Company (see Virginia Company), were
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. He was probably not a Puritan. He saved the colony from the Native Americans several times, most notably in 1623 when he defeated Native Americans threatening an attack on the settlement at Weymouth. In 1625 he was sent to England as a colonial agent particularly concerned with the colony's debt to its merchant backers in London. Standish was treasurer of the colony (1644–49), held other posts, and was a founder of Duxbury, Mass. Henry W. Longfellow's The Courtship of Miles Standish and James R. Lowell's Interview with Miles Standish are wholly fictional.


See biographies by J. S. C. Abbott (1872) and T. C. Porteus (1920).

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Standish, Miles

(c. 1584–1656) declared love for Priscilla; received no response. [Am. Lit.: “The Courtship of Miles Standish” in Magill I, 165–166]
Allusions—Cultural, Literary, Biblical, and Historical: A Thematic Dictionary. Copyright 2008 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.

Standish, Miles

(?1584–1656) soldier, colonist; born in Lancashire, England. He was the military leader of the Plymouth Colony. He learned Indian languages and through skillful negotiations he managed to prevent any serious Indian wars during his tenure in Plymouth.
The Cambridge Dictionary of American Biography, by John S. Bowman. Copyright © Cambridge University Press 1995. Reproduced with permission.
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