AMIOT (Amyot), JEAN, interpreter and indentured employee of the Jesuits among the Hurons; son of Philippe Amiot and of Anne Convent, who came from the neighbourhood of Soissons around 1635, and brother of Mathieu and Charles Amiot, who were also associated with the Jesuit missionaries; b. probably in France about 1625; d. 1648.
Jean Amiot spent several years in the Huron country, and seems to have lived at Trois-Rivières from 1645 on. The Indians called him “Antaïok.” In 1647 he outran and captured an Iroquois who had taken part in the martyrdom of Father Isaac Jogues. He was a remarkable athlete; in a tournament at Quebec he beat all the young Indians who tried to race against him, either on foot or on snowshoes. On 23 May 1648, when he was about to get married, Jean Amiot was drowned off Trois-Rivières with a companion, François Marguerie. His body was carried down by the current and recovered on 10 June opposite the Saint-Joseph de Sillery mission, where the burial took place. His possessions at Trois-Rivières were sold to Jacques Leneuf de La Poterie on 18 Oct. 1649.
The 1648 Relation states that Amiot and Marguerie “were much regretted in that region, both for their virtue and for their knowledge of the languages. . . . They were both of them brave and skilful, and, what is more estimable still, they lived a most blameless life, according to everybody’s opinion.”
AJQ, Greffe de Guillaume Audouart, 18 oct. 1649. JR (Thwaites). JJ (Laverdière et Casgrain).
BRH, XI (1905), 217; XXIII (1917), 161. Godbout, “Nos ancêtres,” APQ Rapport, 1951–53, 488.