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Iroquois Confederacy

Introduction

Iroquois Confederacy or Iroquois Leagueĭr´əkwoi˝, –kwä˝ [key], North American confederation of indigenous peoples, initially comprising the Mohawk, Oneida, Onondaga, Cayuga, and Seneca. They gave their name to the Iroquoian branch of the Hokan-Siouan linguistic stock (see Native American languages), which included numerous other Native American groups of the E United States and E Canada. In the early 17th cent. this confederacy of Five Nations (later to become six when the Tuscarora, who also speak an Iroquoian language, joined) inhabited New York state from the Hudson River N to the St. Lawrence River and W to the Genesee River.

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The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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