Hunted by the English backward and forward, Philip was at last driven to his old home upon Mount Hope. Here Captain Church, one of the most practised of Indian fighters, surprised him on the morning of August 12, 1676, encamped upon a little upland, which it is believed has been exactly identified near a swamp at the foot of the mountain. By residents in the neighborhood it is known as Little Guinea. At the first firing Philip, but partially dressed, seized gun and powder-horn and made for the swamp, Captain Church's ambush was directly in his front.
An Englishman's piece missed fire, but an Indian sent a bullet through the Great Sachem's heart.
In this fearful war at least six hundred of the English inhabitants either fell in battle or were murdered by the enemy, A dozen or more towns were utterly destroyed, others greatly damaged, Some six hundred buildings, chiefly dwelling-houses, were consumed by fire, and over a hundred thousand pounds of colonial money expended, to say nothing of the immense losses in goods and cattle.
Not without propriety has the Pokanoket chief been denominated a king.
If not a Charlemagne or a Louis XIV., he yet possessed elements of true greatness. While he lived his mind evidently guided, as his will dominated and prolonged, the war. This is saying much, for the Indian's disinclination to all strenuous or continuous exertion was pronounced and proverbial. Philip's treatment of Mrs. Rowlandson must be declared magnanimous, especially as, of course, he was but a savage king, who might reasonably request us not to measure him by our rules. The other party to the war we have a right to judge more rigidly, and just sentence in their case must be severe. Philip's sorrowing, innocent wife and son were brought prisoners to Plymouth, and their lot referred to the ministers. After long deliberation and prayer it was decided that they should be sold into slavery, and this was their fate.