Mayflower by Nathaniel Philbrick

Mayflower by Nathaniel Philbrick

Author:Nathaniel Philbrick
Language: eng
Format: epub
Publisher: Penguin Group USA, Inc.
Published: 2007-11-05T16:00:00+00:00

Three times Philip had avoided what seemed like certain capture, but he had been driven from his homeland. His original fighting force of approximately 250 warriors was down to 40, only 30 of whom had guns. The Pokanokets were, for all practical purposes, defeated. Yet by fighting his way out of Plymouth Colony, Philip was poised to transform a local squabble into a regionwide conflagration.

The Pokanokets were devastated, but the Nipmucks were ready to take up the fight. Just a few days before, they had laid waste to the frontier town of Brookfield, Massachusetts. On Friday, August 6, Philip was greeted by three of the Nipmucks’ most powerful sachems. Philip possessed a coat made of wampum, and he used it to good effect. Unstringing the valuable white and purple shell beads, he gave “about a peck” to each of the sachems, “which,” according to an eyewitness, “they accepted.”

Philip had been the beneficiary of his father’s foresight and planning. By moving to Nipmuck country in 1657, Massasoit had given his son both an exit strategy from Mount Hope and an army to take up his cause.

In the months ahead, Philip continued to cut “his coat to pieces” as he ritualistically secured the cooperation of sachems from Connecticut to modern Maine. “[B]y this means,” William Hubbard wrote, “Philip…kindl[ed] the flame of war…wherever he [went].”


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