Definition of manitou in English:


Syllabification: man·i·tou
Pronunciation: /ˈmaniˌto͞o


  • (Among certain Algonquian Indians) a good or evil spirit as an object of reverence.
    More example sentences
    • Illinois men and women interacted with the supreme deity by way of personal spirits called manitous.
    • During this time the manitou or spirits were considered a strong spiritual presence in her life.
    • Bear representations are evident, and several fragments appear to represent Mishipishu, the principal manitou of the Algonquian underworld.


late 17th century: via French from an Algonquian language.

More definitions of manitou

Definition of manitou in:

Get more from Oxford Dictionaries

Subscribe to remove adverts and access premium resources

Word of the day astrogation
Pronunciation: ˌastrə(ʊ)ˈgeɪʃ(ə)n
(in science fiction) navigation in outer space