Paw·​nee pȯ-ˈnē How to pronounce Pawnee (audio)
plural Pawnee or Pawnees
: a member of an Indigenous people living in east-central Nebraska during the first half of the 19th century

Note: Current members of the Pawnee live as part of the federally recognized Pawnee Nation of Oklahoma.

Examples of Pawnee in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The Parks and Recreation actor, 62, exclusively shared the cover of his new book, Welcome to Pawnee: Stories of Friendship, Waffles and Parks and Recreation, with PEOPLE. Carly Tagen-Dye, Peoplemag, 10 Apr. 2024 On Pawnee Place, Fremont, in July 2022, a 1,776-square-foot home was sold for $2,800,000, a price per square foot of $1,577. Bay Area Home Report, The Mercury News, 4 Apr. 2024 In July 2022, a 1,776-square-foot home on Pawnee Place in Fremont sold for $2,800,000, a price per square foot of $1,577. Bay Area Home Report, The Mercury News, 27 Mar. 2024 The Saint Regis Mohawk Tribe, for example, requires twenty-five per cent Akwesasne Mohawk blood; the Pawnee Nation of Oklahoma mandates that an ancestor be on its 1937 roll and have an eighth Pawnee blood. Jay Caspian Kang, The New Yorker, 26 Feb. 2024 Accession Year: 1902 Description: This drum, made by a Pawnee man named George Beaver and collected by a Field Museum curator, was used in an important ceremony called Ghost Dance, said Matt Reed, the tribal historic preservation officer for the Pawnee Nation. Julia Jacobs, New York Times, 21 Feb. 2024 The comedy show, highlighting characters like Leslie Knope, is set in the fictional Pawnee, Indiana. The Indianapolis Star, 13 Feb. 2024 Are there dragons in Pawnee? Aubrey Plaza and Nick Offerman staged a fantastical Parks and Recreation reunion for a Super Bowl ad that aired during the big game between the San Francisco 49ers and Kansas City Chiefs on Sunday., 11 Feb. 2024 In March 2017, Pawnee Nation filed a lawsuit suing some Oklahoma oil companies in tribal court, alleging that the companies had injected wastewater underground, which led to the earthquake. Mary Kekatos, ABC News, 13 Jan. 2024

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'Pawnee.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


of Siouan origin; akin to Osage ppáį Pawnee, Omaha ppáðį

First Known Use

1698, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of Pawnee was in 1698

Dictionary Entries Near Pawnee

Cite this Entry

“Pawnee.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 19 Apr. 2024.

Kids Definition


Paw·​nee pȯ-ˈnē How to pronounce Pawnee (audio)
: a member of an American Indian people originally of Nebraska and Kansas

More from Merriam-Webster on Pawnee

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