(among North American Indians) a ceremony, especially one accompanied by magic, feasting, and dancing, performed for the cure of disease, success in a hunt, etc.
a council or conference of or with Indians.
(among North American Indians) a priest or shaman.
Informal. any conference or meeting.
verb (used without object)
to hold a powwow.
Informal. to confer.

1615–25, Americanism; < Narragansett (E spelling) powwaw Indian priest (and the identical word in Massachusett) < Proto-Algonquian *pawe·wa he dreams (used as a derived agent noun meaning “he who dreams”, i.e., one who derives his power from visions)

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World English Dictionary
powwow (ˈpaʊˌwaʊ)
1.  a talk, conference, or meeting
2.  a magical ceremony of certain North American Indians, usually accompanied by feasting and dancing
3.  (among certain North American Indians) a medicine man
4.  a meeting of or negotiation with North American Indians
5.  (intr) to hold a powwow
[C17: from Algonquian; related to Natick pauwau one who practises magic, Narraganset powwaw]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Word Origin & History

1624, "priest, sorcerer," from a southern New England Algonquian language (probably Narragansett) powwow "shaman, medicine man, Indian priest," from a verb meaning "to use divination, to dream," from Proto-Algonquian *pawe:wa "he dreams, one who dreams." Meaning "magical ceremony among N.Amer. Indians"
is recorded from 1663. Sense of "council, conference, meeting" is first recorded 1812. Verb sense of "to confer, discuss" is attested from 1780.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences
The connection between powwow and patron wasn't immediately obvious.
Going to a powwow is one way to get up close to these arts and meet the artists
  who carry on their group's traditions.
If you do attend a powwow, don't applaud or ask insensitive questions.
In a nearby room, another dozen family members were sewing powwow outfits.
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