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Follow on, ye dead, the autumn moon :
There is that one, that distant laud.
The gods come only from above,
And pain engulfs us all.

The flood subsided; land— an island— then stood forth.
That island was Hawaiki then.
And resting on its mountain-peak
The bark of Para-whenua-mea.

Ancient lament clianted bij the collected tribes for illustrious dead.



MYTHOLOGY OF CREATION.

(Nga-i-tahu.)

Whex the truth (Christianity) came we forsook all those
things which had been taught by our ancestors. There are
many matters which cannot now he collected. We uphold
the truth of our history {korero) . Our priests do not agree
in all points. There are several versions of parts of our
mythology^ but our belief was treasnred in our hearts. Very
much truly has been lost through the death of our most
learned priests, and through our indifference to their
2



18 ANCIENT MAOKI IIISTOliY.

rehearsals of our history. Tlie new pursuits presented to
us caused us to look on these as {hara) matters of less im-
portance. ]\Iuch has therefore now hcen lost for ever.

This is the belief {karakia)- rehearsed by tlie people of
Te-wai-pounamu (South Island), which has only of late been
abandoned by us.

The Atua (god) began his chant of creation at Te Po
(darkness), and sang : Po begat Te-ao (light), who begat
Ao-niararaa (daylight), who begat Ao-tu-roa (long-standing
light), Avho begat Kore-te-whiwhia (did not possess), who
begat Kore-te-rawea (was not pleased with), who begat
Kore-te-tamaua (was not held), who begat Kore-te-matua
(without parent), who begat Maku (damp). Maku took to
wife Mahora-nui-a-tea (great spreading-out of light) (dj,
and begat E,aki (Rangi) [raki, dry; rangi, to dry by
evaporation, to hold before a fire to dry) . Raki took
Poko-harua-te-po as his wife fpoko, extinguished ; harua
or wharua, valley; te-po, the darkness), and begat
Ha-niii-o-raki [ha, breath ; nui, great ; o-raki, of Raki) .
He begat Tawhiri-ma-tea [taiohiri, wave to, beckon ;
ma-tea, to light), who begat Tin [t'lu, to swoop as a
bii'd in flight), who begat Hine-i-te-papa-uta [hine, young
woman ; i-te-papa, at the side ; uta, on dry land) , who
begat Hine-i-te-tu-whenua (young woman of the earth)
and Hakoua-te-pu [hakoua or hakua, to find fault, to
murmur ; te-jm, the root, the foundation) . Hakoua begat
Te-pua-i-taha [te-pua, the boisterous ; i-taha, eluded) , who
begat Tu-mai-roko(rongo) (/w-wzai, stand ; rongo, to hear),
who begat Te-ope-rua-riki [te-ope, the troop ; raa, pit ; riki,
diminutive), who begat Raro-toka (tonga) [raro, north,
below ; toka or tonga, south) , who begat Te-kohu (the fog) ,
who begat Kama (Ngarue) (tremble, dread) , who begat Te-
mau-po (caught in the night) , who begat Te Pu-nui-o-tonga
(the great origin of Tonga), who begat Raka(Ranga)-maomao
{ranga, shoal; maomao, a kind of fish — the mackerel), who
begat Awhiowhio (whirlwind), who begat Te-pu-mara-kai
fpu, the great, the climax ; mara-kai, plot of cultivated
kumaro), who begat Tc-oko-oko-rau [oko-oko, nursed ; rau,



ORIGIN OF V.iEIOUS GODS. 19

many — the many nursed with care) , who begat Te-wawahi-
whare (the housebreaker), who rushed out to Rara-tau-
karerc (crying or calling messenger), of Mati-te-raki [mati,
dry; raki, heaven), to the Uhi-a-kama {uhi, a covering; kama,
quick — the covering of Kama), and to Hukahuka-te-raki
{Jmkahuka, fringe — the shreds of Rangi), where Makaka-i-
waho {makaka or manganya, twisted, crooked ; i-ioalio, out-
side) Avas residing, Te-wawahi-whare took Makaka-i-waho
to wife, and begat Apa-ara-ki-ihi-ra [ajja, body of workmen ;
ara, rise, to commence ; ki-ihi-ra, with the sun's rays), who
begat Te-apa-raki-rarapa {te-apa, the body of workmen ;
raki-rarapa, glistening, or flashing, heaven), who begat
Tapu-tapu-atea [tcqm-tapu, feet; atea, unhindered), and
Ma-here-tu-ki-te-raki (propitiation standing in the heaven) .
Tapu-tapu-atea and Ma-here-tu-ki-te-raki are the offspring
of Raki's first wife Poko-harua-te-po, and they came into
this world, and are the lords of Raki's offspring.

Other offspring of Raki are his kahui-tahu {kahui, as-
sembly ; tahu, helper) — namely, Ka-tu {ka, will ; tu, stand),
Werohia (pierce), Whakairia (suspend, hang up), Tao-
kai-maiki {tao, cook; kai, food; maiki, migrate), Taoitia-
pae-kohu [taoitia, to cover with mist ; pae, range of hills ;
kohu, fog), Tahua-tu [tahua, heap of food or jjroperty),
Tahua-roa, To Karanga-tu-hea {te karanga, the call; iuhea,
scrub), Te-aka-rimu {te aka, the roots; rimu, moss or sea-
weed) , Te-whakatu-koroua {te ivhakatu, make to stand up ;
koroua, old man), Tahu (set on fire), Kokiri (dart out),Te-
kopu-nui {te-kopu, stomach) . These are the only children of
Raki, who dragged mankind down to death, and are the
first of the offspring of Raki who persisted in evil. They
brought confusion into the world of Hine-a-te-uira {Jiine^
maiden ; a-te-uira, of the lightning) .

By another wife, called Hekehcke-i-papa {hekeheke,
descend; i-papa, at the world), Raki had Tama-i-waho (the
son outside) , Tama-rau-tu {tama, son ; rau, girdle of the
apron of a female; tu, to stand, be substantial) ^ Tama-i-a-
raki (son who was with heaven), Tama-nui-a-raki (great
son of heaven) , Tama-he-raki (mistaken son of heaven) , Te-



20 ANCIENT MAOlil IIISTOItV.

rangi-wliaka-ipuipii (the sky of pools and hollows), Raki-
whangaka(wananga) (sky of the holy altar). These of the
issue of Raki and Hekchcke-i-papa remained up above.
There are other five lines of Raki's offspring ; hut of those
Tama-i-waho and his younger brothers were spirits, and
remained up in the fourteen heavens, and the descendants
of Tama-nui-a-raki came into this world, in this wise :
Tama-nui-a-raki begat Haumia (the god of the fern-
root), Manu-ika [manu, bird; ika, fish), Manu-nui-a-ka-
(nga)-hoe (power or shelter of the rowers), Hua-waiwai
(pulpy fruit), Tahito-kuru (ancient blow), Kohu-rere
(flying mist), Te-ao-hiawe (gloom-day), Haere (go, proceed),
Ue-nuku-pokaia [ue, trembling ; nuku, earth ; pokma, go all
round, to encircle) , Ue-nuku-horea (?;e, trembling ; iinku,
earth ; horea, bald) , Raki-whitikina (the heaven encircled
with a belt), Te Pu-ki-tonga (the fountain or origin at the
south), and so on to the generation of men now living.

By another wife, called Hotu-papa [hotu, to sob ; papa,
earth), Raki had Tu (to stand, the god of war), Roko
(or Rongo) (to hear, god of kumara), Kanapu (glare, flash),
Haere-mai-tua (come from the back or behind) , Haere-mai-
whano (come from a distance), Haere-aroaro-uri (go with
a youthful face), Haere-i-te-ao-pouri (go in the dark
world), Haere-i-te-ao-potako (potango) (go in the very dark
world), Te Kitea (not seen), Te Whaia (not followed), Te
Ao-mataki (the world gazed at) , Turu-meha (waning moon),
Kai-hi (the fisherman) , Te U-ki-mate-hoata (arrived at the
spear woimd), Rei (dash forward), Pou (post), Pou-
a-takataka (shaking post), Pou-raka(ranga)-hua (post \o
act as lever), Tu-huku-tira (allow the company of travellers
to pass), Taraa-taku-ariki (son to follow slowly his lord),
"\Vai-tu-raki (rangi) (water standing in the heavens), Tu-
kau-moana (Tu swimming the ocean), Kiri-rua (two skins),
Hotu-ma-moc (sob in slecj)), Tu-mai-o-nuku (standing on
the earth), Tn-mai-o-raki (rangi) (standing on the heavens),
Hika-ara-roa (long in making a fire) , Ue-nuku-pokai-whenua
(Ue-nuku who travelled all around the land), Ue-nuku-
horea (Ue-nuku the bald head). These are the children ol'



OEIGIN OF TANE. 21

Haki, and are the progenitors of the race now living on
the earth.

By another wife, called ]\Ia-uku-uku (white clay). Raid
had Taku-u-nuku (ceremony performed over the earth),
who begat Te-mata-i (the beggar).

By another Avife, called Tan-hare (whare) -kiokio (leaning
over in the shade), Raki hr.d Taku-aka(waka)-hara (cere-
mony to avert evil), who begat Taku-raki (ceremony to
heaven) , who begat Kahika (the ancient) .

These also are the offspring of Raki by another of
his wives, named Papa-tu-a-nuku {papa, flat ; tu, stand ;
a, of ; nuku, earth) : Rehua and his sister Ha-kina.
Rehua begat Tama-i-te-oko-tahi [tama, son ; i-te, of the ;
olio-tahi,, being carried in the arms — or, oko bowl,
tahi one), who begat Te-whai-tu-tahi-a-iwa {te-ivhai, the
following, or a game ; tu-tahi, standing together ; a iwa, of
iwa — nine), who begat Te-tihika(tihinga) (the pinnacle),
who begat Te Rakeka (Rakenga) (the bald), who begat
Raki-ma-kawe-kawe (heaven of the locks of hair), who begat
Raki-whaka-upoko (heaven the supreme head). These
offspring of Raki were spirits, and stayed in all the
heavens. This is what our ancestors stated, and what we
believe.

Raki and Papa-tu-a-nuku begat Tane (male), who was
born next after Rehua; and next after Tane were Paia
(closed up), Wehi-nui-a-mamao {ivehi-nui, great fear; a-
mamao, of the distant), Tu-taka-hinahina (Tu of the grey
hairs), Te-aki (to dash), "\Yhati-ua (run from the rain),
Tu (stand), Roko (Rongo) (to hear), Ru (earthquake),
U-ako [u, steadfast; ako, teach), Hua (fniit). Puna
(fountain-head) , Whe-rei {ivhe, dwarf ; rei, flee) , Uru
(red, or west), Kakana (Ngangana) (glow of red),
Wai-o-nuku (water of earth), Wai-o-raki (water of
heaven), Ai (Wai) -o-hou-takctake {ai (ivai), water; o,
of ; hou, go down ; taketukc, foundation) , Ka-mau-ki-
waho (be taken outside), Ka-mau-ki-taliito(tawhito)-
o-te-raki {ka, will ; mau, hold ; ki, to ; tah'ito or
tawhito, ancient; o, of; te, the; raki or rangi, heaven).



22 ANCIENT MAOEI HISTORY.

Kai (Ngai) (menace), Kai-roa (Ngaii'oa) (long menace),
Kai-pehu {kai, luenace ; pe hu, hluatcr, arrogant), Kai-aki-
alvina (menace and dash, or slap again and again),
Tapatapa-i-waho [tapatapa, call a name as a curse ; i-waho,
outside), Manu-aero (waero) -rua {manu, bird ; aero,
dwindle, become less and less; or, bird with two tails),
Toi (summit, peak, pinnacle), Rauru (hair of the
head, god of the head), Kitenga (seen), Wha-tonga
{wha, revealed, disclosed ; tonga, south ; whatonga,
cherish revenge, but not show it), Apa (body of work-
men), Roko(Ilongo)-mai {rongo, to hear; mat, towards,
this way; god of the whale), Taha-titi [taha, side; titi, to
whisper, to make a noise like a rat or young birds),
Rua-tapu {rua, pit; tajm, sacred), Pipi (to ooze, to bathe
with liquid), Te-ara-tu-ma-heni(hengi) (the road or path of
the gentle breeze) , Raki-roa (long heaven) , Roko (Rongo) -mai
(god of whales; rongo, to hear; mai, towards), Pou-pa {j^oit,
a stake, a post ; ^j«, to obstruct), Te-ra-ki-whakamaru (the
sun of the calm), Hou-nuku {hou, to dig down, to descend
as a worm in the earth, a plume, a feather ; nuku, the
earth, the world) , Hou-raki (descend in the heavens, plume
of the sky) , Hou-a-tea (the j)lume of Tea, or the plume not
reserved), Tu-nuku (trembling earth), Ka-hutia-te-raki (the
heaven pulled up), Rua-tapu {rua, pit; tajm, sacred),
Pa-ikea (god of sea-monsters ; />a, to obstruct ; ikea,
a blow, to strike) ; and from Pa-ikea only came those of us
(2^1aori people) now here (in New Zealand) ; but there are
other and great ancestors (putake) (d) , from whom came
those now in other parts of the world.

Now, Raki had no right to Papa-tu-a-nuku — she was
the wife of Taka (Tanga) -roa. She went to live with Raki
when Taka-roa had gone away with the placenta of his
child. On his return, he found she had been living
with Raki for some time, and had given birth to Reliua,
and Tane, and the other children we have mentioned.
Raki and Taka-roa proceeded to the sea- beach, where
they fought with spears. Raki was pierced by Taka-roa
with a hiiata (a barbed spear) through both thighs,



GODS OF THE WINDS. 23

but he was not killed. The offspring he had by Papa-
tu-a-nuku after this were a weak or sickly family. The
names of these were Whanau-tu-oi (born lean), Wha-
nau-takoto (born lying down), Tane-kupapa-eo (Taue who
lies flat on the flat rocks), Tane-tutari (Tane who kneels),
Tane-pepeke (Tane who draws his legs np), Te-oi (the
shaker, or trembler), Upoko-nui (big head), Upoko-roa
(long head), Upoko-whaka-ahu (the large head), Tane-i-te-
wai-ora (Tane at the living water, or water of life) .

Another Reading — Rangi, Papa, and Tanga-roa.

(Nga-ti-hau.)

Taka-roa took Papa-tu-a-nuku to wife, and then he took
a journey far out to the distant Kahui-pu-aki-aki (the flock
of the sea-gull), to obtain some of the property of Whaki-
tau (abundant year). On his return from that journey
his wife had become the wife of Rangi. Taka-roa went
for his barbed spear; Rangi also went for his barbed
spear, and Rangi thrust his spear at Taka-roa, but did
not pierce him. Taka-roa thrust his spear at his
nephew Rangi, and pierced him through both thighs.
Having wounded him, he allowed him to keep Papa-tu-
a-nuku as his wife.

Another Reading of Tanga-roa. (Nga-ti-hau.)

Taka-roa had come from a distance, even from Kara
(flint-stone) ; but he gave his wife to Raki, and left his
home, and went far away. The name of his son was Tini-
rau (many hundreds) ; and the sisters of Tini-rau Avere
called Rua-te-pupuke (cave on the hill), Rua-tc-hihiko
(cave of random strides), Rua-te-mahara (cave of medita-
tion), Rua-te(ta)-mahina (cave of the dim light), Rua-te-
korero (cave of the council), and Rua-te-waihanga(whai-
hanga) (cave of the builders). Tini-rau had nine sisters
in all.

Taka-roa was of the Kahui (tribe) of Ihu-poro (chub-
nose), and of Iliu-ku (nipped in nose), and of Ihu-takc
(substantial nose), and of Ure-kohatu (stone axe).



24 ANCIENT MAOKI HISTORY.

Taka-roa was also of the following triljes^ whose names
he added to liis : namely, Taka-roa-tc-ihu-iou (Taka-roa of
the exact nose), Taka-roa-o-te-ilm-toka (Taka-roa of the
perfect nose), Taka-roa-te-ihn-mouta (Taka-roa of the non-
snoring nose), and Taka-roa-hau-papa (Taka-roa the cold).
He was also progenitor of Tama-nui-a-raki (great son of
heaven) ; and Tama-nui-a-raki was descended from all
these tribes. From Taka-roa-te-ihu-pu came the Maori
people, and from Taka-roa-hau-papa came the Europeans.
This is what our ancient men said when they saw the first
Europeans.

Tanga-roa (Taka-roa). (Another Reading —
Nga-ti-hau.)

Te-more-tu (erect bald head) was father of Taka-roa, the
elder brother of Poko-harua-te-po, who was first wife of
Raid. Then Te-more-tu took Wawau-nuku-hua-tahi
(stupid from a distance; hua taJii, only child) to wife, and
begat Te-po, Te-ao, Te-ao-tu-roa, Te-ao-marama, Ha-nui-o-
raki, Tawhiri-ma-tea, Tiu, and Ma-uru (the west), who were
males ; also Hine-i-tapapa-uta and Hine-i-tu-whenua, who
were females. All these offspring of More-tu and Wawau-
nuku-hua-tahi were gods who controlled the winds and
the sea — that is, lulled the winds and calmed the sea ;
but Tawhiri-ma-tea and Tiu governed Te-pua-i-taha —
that is, the violent south-west gales — and the Ha-koua-tipu-
(tupu) (the breath which has groAvn into a gale), so that
they should sweep with fury or be lulled to silence.

The first family begotten by Raki, by his first wife, were
all winds.

Another Reading of Creation. (Nga-i-taiiu.)
Papa was the wife of Taka-roa (Tanga-roa) . When he

was absent, occiipied in his work, she went to live with

Raki (Rangi). Raki Avas attacked by Taka-roa with a

spear, wounded, and laid prostrate.

Tane and his friends came to see Raki. They made an

attempt to lift him up, but they did not know how to



GODS OF THE UPPEK WOELD. 25

elevate him ; but by the power and knowledge of Tane
Raki was lifted up as high as the mountains. At the same
time Tane and his companions continued their ascent with
Raki^ carrying the trees and other things by which Papa
had been covered : thus she was left naked. Tane then
descended with Paia, and went to the east, where the trees
had been, and again covered Papa over with trees. Tane
then saw that his father Eaki was naked. He took kiira
(red) and spread it to cover him_, but it did not suit. He
then went to Te Wehi-nui-a-mamau (the fear of wrestling)
for the stars, to make Raki look beautiful. Te Wehi-nui-
a-mamau said, " Let the stars which you take be the
largest : the lesser stars can be placed on the less sacred
parts of Raki." Tane now swept the kura off Raki that
he might place the stars there ; but he kept the kura and
the clouds to cover him with afterwards. When Tane had
placed the stars he was delighted with the grand appear-
ance of Raki,

Though Raki and Papa had been separated they still
loved each other. The mist and dew are the tears of
Papa for Raki, and are the messengers, in the form of
clouds, to carry the damp air and steam up to Raki ;
and when the west wind blows it is Raki tickling the
ears of Papa.

Another Reading of Creation. (Nga-i-taiiu.)

Tane-nui-a-raki (great procreation of Raki) was of the
senior family, but younger bi'other of Rehua, They Avere
the offspring of Raki and his wife Whatu-papa ; but Raki
went and took Papa-tu-a-ndku to be his wife. She was the
wife of Taka-roa, but because she lived with Raki her
husband fought with Raki, speared him, and so severely
wounded him that he lay flat. Then Tane-ko-peru (Tane
of the swollen eyes), and Tane-mini-whare (Tane wet in
the house) , and Tanc-tuturi (the kneeling Tane) , and Tane-
tuoi (lean Tane), and Tahu-kumea (the company who drag
away), and Paia (the closed-up) said, "Our father Raki should



26 ANCIENT MAORI HISTORY.

be lifted up." Having taken him up as far as the lower
clouds, they thoughtlessly rested him on the pinnaeles of
the mountains. Tane joined them, and, by his authority,
power, and knowledge, Raki was lifted still higher. It
was Paia and his eompanions who separated Raki and Papa,
and when they took him up also carried the trees, herbage,
and edible roots with them, leaving Papa to lie naked. On
looking down and seeing how bare Papa was, Tane and
Paia descended, and Tane went out towards the sun (east-
ward), to other settlements, to bring herbage and trees and
other vegetation. He obtained some of each and every
variety that grows, and from every district on the earth,
and distributed them over every part of Papa, even to Ao-
tea-roa (long light day), and Ta-ranga (repeating incanta-
tion) , and Wai-roa-maire-he (long cadence of the e\il song) .
He classified the trees : some he ordained for the maipi (a
wooden weapon, synonymous with haiii or tai-aha — see plate
1), some for the pa-neke-neke (a stone axe with a handle — see
plate 2), and some for the />G0z-f«7^/



Online LibraryJohn WhiteThe ancient history of the Maori, his mythology and traditions .. (Volume 1) → online text (page 3 of 27)