|1.||a fighting axe, with a stone or later an iron head, used by the North American Indians|
|2.||chiefly (Austral) the usual word for hatchet|
|[C17: from Virginia Algonquian tamahaac]|
war hatchet of the North American Indians. "Tomahawk" was derived from the Algonquian word otomahuk ("to knock down"). Early versions were made by tying a stone head to a handle with animal sinew or by passing a double-pointed chipped stone through a hole bored in a handle. After the arrival of Europeans, tomahawk heads often were made of iron obtained in trade. Globe-headed clubs, often ornately incised and decorated with feathers, and used for ceremonies as well as war, have also been called tomahawks.
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