quiet Narragansetts could hardly remain at peace with
the less numerous Mohegans.
Anger and revenge brooded in the mind of Miantonomoh
He hated the Mohegans, for they were the allies of the English
, by whom he had been arraigned as a criminal.
He had suffered indignities at Boston
, alike wounding to his pride as a chieftain and his honor as a man. His savage wrath was kindled against Uncas
, his accuser, whom he detested as doubly his enemy,—once as the sachem of a hostile tribe, and again as a traitor to the whole Indian race, the cringing sycophant of the white men. Gathering his men suddenly together, in defiance of a treaty to which the English
were parties,1 Miantonomoh
, accompanied by a thousand warriors, fell upon the Mohegans.
But his movements were as rash as his spirit was impetuous: he was defeated and taken prisoner by those whom he had doomed as a certain prey to his vengeance.
By the laws of Indian warfare the fate of the captive was death.
and his friends, who held their lands by a grant from Miantonomoh
, Interceded for their benefactor.
The unhappy chief was conducted to Hartford
; and the wavering Uncas
, who had the strongest claims to the gratitude and protection of the English
asked the advice of the commissioners of the United Colonies.
Murder had ever been severely punished by the Puritans: they had, at Plymouth
, with the advice of Massachusetts
, executed three of their own men for taking the life of one Indian: and the elders, to whom the case of Miantonomoh
was referred, finding that he had, deliberately and in time of quiet, murdered a servant in the service of the Mohegan chief; that he had fomented