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prophecy as obtaining amongst the Tahitians prior to the advent of
the white man.

The traditions of the Pakehakeha, or Turehu, have, like so many
others, in the process of time, become localised ; and hence we find
many hills in New Zealand assigned as their dwelling-place. The
Ure-wera tribe will tell you that their sleeping- places, edged with stone,

* Hoani Maraa, many years ago, explained that the original meaning of
Orakei-korako, the name of the hot springs on the Waikato river, was O-rakei (the
place of) adorning, korako (at the) whi^ sinter. At that plaoe is a beautifully
olear hot spring in the silioeous sinter, used formerly by chiefs to wash and adorn
themselves at, the margins of which are beautifully white, hence korako.

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are to be seen to this day on Te Kauna range. When we come to
enquire into the origin of this tradition of a^ white race, it is most
natural to ascribe it to contact with a light-colored race in very ancient
times ; it is difficult to conceive of a brown race inventing such a
distinguishing racial characteristic had they not actually seen it.
Prior to that time, all experiences would go to prove that mankind
was of the same tint as themselves. The numbers of uru-kehu or
light haired people amongst the Polynesian Race seems to support
this theory ; and the Urewera learned men say that this feature runs
in families and has done so for as far back as their traditions go. It
will be remembered that Maori history says, they learnt the art of
making fishing nets from the Turehu or light colored race, from which
we may be authorised in assuming that they were a seafaring people,
possibly visiting the shores of India when the Polynesians dwelt
there. Wyatt Gill says that in Mangaia, the god Tangaroa had sandy
hair.* Fair haired children are called <* Te anau km a Tangaroa.**
<< The fair haired ofiEspring of Tangaroa."

This raises the question : was not some one of this fair race in the
far distant past named Tangaroa, who was one of the early navigators,
and hence the position that Tangaroa holds in Maori tradition as
Neptune ? See on this point, the story of the introduction of the
knowledge of the Breadfruit tree to the Polynesian in this " Journal,"
vol. vii, p. 220.

Whatever the true origin of this tradition may be, it is dear that
by the middle of last century, the remembrance of it had become
extremely attenuated, and the light-coloured people had, to the Maoris,
lost their tangible forms, and become Fairies inhabiting the misty
cloudy mountains, but still having human forms and attributes.

When therefore the white man appeared on the scene in the
persons of Captain Cook and his companions (I exclude Tasman, for
various reasons) it was like the discovery of a new world to the Maoris,
— their ideas, at one bound, became enormously enlarged. They
learnt that all species of mankind were not of the same soft brown
colour as themselves — that there were mightier people, who held sway
over the thunder and lightning — who did not feast on their own kind
— ^who paid no respect to the great laws of tapu, for they even allowed
common men to walk on the decks above their sacred heads, a terrible
sacrilege to the mind of the old Maori. Looked upon as atua (gods) at
first, these gods soon proved that they had very human tastes — whilst
they were tangata (men) they were by no means tangata Maori (native
men). Innumerable objects of unknown uses now first came under

* Myths and Songs, p. 13.

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their notice, amongst which was a stone (iron) of great value — of
greater value even than their prized pounamu or greenstone, for the
making of axes, tools, &c. Lastly they became acquainted with
diseases that quickly left their mark, defying the potent karakias of the

The effect on the Maori mind of this enlargement of ideas must
have been very great ; but we are completely in the dark as to its
immediate effects, for there was no one to note it. But as the years
rolled on, and the end of the last century was approached, com-
munication with the Pakeha became more frequent, particularly in the
north, and many things became modified in consequence. In the
early years of the ninteenth century intercourse between the two races
became more feasable by the mutual acquisition of the other's language ;
and a further expansion of ideas took place when the natives began
to learn, somewhat dimly at first no doubt, of particulars of other
countries— of kings and queens, and mighty princes, with whose wars
their own tribal fueds could not compare in magnitude. To a martial
race like the Maori, war was a theme that always powerfully affected
them. I feel sure that the knowledge acquired by the Maoris in the
early years of the nineteenth century, of European wars, and the deeds
of great European heroes, had a very important effect upon some of
the great Maori leaders of that time, such as Hongi, Pomare, Te
Bauparaha, Te Waharoa, Muru-paenga, and many others. Emulation
of the deeds of Napolean Bonaparte certainly was a factor in the
actions of some of those mentioned, as it was in the case of Polynesian
leaders in other parts. This emulation, however, was only rendered
possibly by the possession of muskets, and towards this end Tery great
sacrifices were made. It is perhaps remarkable, that the possession by
the Maoris of a plant, native to New Zealand, should have wrought on
them such terrible disasters as we shall have to relate. But for the
flax {phormium tenax) the Maoris would not have obtained by barter
the number of muskets that enabled them to almost exterminate those
tribes that were not conveniently situated for traffic with the white
man. It was at a later date that pigs and potatoes became articles of
barter. As the Nga-Puhi tribes were the first to procure these
invaluable muskets, it was they who created the greatest havoc in
the early years of this century, and during that period they became
the dread of all the sea coast tribes.

The Nga-Puhi tribes were essentially canoe-men, and hence we
find nearly all their expeditions, during which they created such
desolation, were undertaken by water. Their expeditions on the west
coast of the North Island were usually partly by water, partly by land,
for the boisterous character of the west coast often precluded the use

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of canoes for lengthy expeditions. Their greatest successes were, how-
ever, obtained on the east coast ; and here the Tai-hoengd-taniahine,
as they call it, or ** girls-paddling-sea,** in its calmer features and more
numerous harbours, presented opportunities of which they took full
advantage with their fleets. It cannot be said that the great success
of the Nga-Puhi wars was due to the greater bravery of the tribes
comprised under that name, for we have seen already,* that up to the
close of the eighteenth century, when native weapons alone were used,
that they were as often beaten as not. It was the possession of
muskets that gave them power and made their name dreaded all over
the North Island. They had also capable leaders, but with the excep-
tion perhaps of Hongi-Hika, not more so than other tribes.

Judging from the traditions that have been preserved, no Nga-Puhi
or other northern expedition ever penetrated further south than the
Hauraki Gulf until the early years of the nineteenth century. From
that time onward the northern tribes made frequent expeditions south-
wards, reaching even the extreme south part of the North Island, but
they never crossed to the Middle Island. So long as native arms
alone were used, all tribes were practically on the same footing — for
bravery was common to all, and thus the military expeditions of the
north were limited in extent. Possession of the musket, placed in
the hands of the northern tribes the means, and imbued them with the
ideas of more extended conquest.

It may be questioned if the introduction of fire-arms led to a
greater loss of life than when the old weapons were used — ^probably it
did not, for the old method of fighting was more often than not, hand
to hand, in which great numbers were slain when once a route com-
menced. The enormous numbers that were slain during the early
years of the nineteenth century, was due rather to the greater number
of wars. It may be said that the North Island was practically one
great camp of armed men in those days. So soon as the power of the
musket became known, together with the dread it inspired, it became
the one absorbing object of all the tribes to possess it. Guns and
ammunition must be purchased at any price, and as flax was the chief
article of barter, the Maoris neglected their cultivations for its manu-
facture. Slaves became more valuable, for the purposes of preparing
the flax, or as barter with those tribes who were lucky enough to
reside at ports frequented by trading vessels. I do not know what the
relative value of a musket was in flax, in those early times ; but I am
informed by the Ure-wera people, that they used to pay from three to
five slaves for a musket, and two to three slaves for a small keg of

* Peopling of the North.

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powder. Their market was the Thames and Waikato, to which places
they made long and perilous journeys to acquire these much desired

It is obvious then that the introduction of fire-arms led to a
decrease in the population, not alone through the numbers shot, but
by the withdrawal of many from the cultivation of the soil to prepare
flax, thus leading to an insufficiency of food. To these causes may be
added wars specially undertaken to procure slaves to be used in barter.

The Missionaries, who had means of judging, estimated that the
decrease in population during the first third of the nineteenth century,
due to war, famine and their accompanyments, was about 80,000 souls.
We may well believe this when we look on the vast number of old pas
still to be seen and known to have been inhabited during the nine-
teenth century.

The Wabs on the Bordeb-lamd between Nga-Puhi


In the closing years of the eighteenth century the Ngati-Whatua
tribe were in possession of the whole of the west coast from Maunga-
. nui Bluff to Manukau Heads, and eastwards to the Tamaki River,
whilst the east coast of the northern peninsula was occupied by them
and their cognate tribes from Tamaki to near Whaugarei and thence
across the upper waters of the Wairoa River to Maunga-nui Blufif. On
their north was the series of tribes known generally under the name of
Nga-Puhi, but of which there were many divisions, each distinguished
by a tribal or kapu name, some of which will be found in the Appendix.
Inter-marriage had often taken place between these tribes, and in the
** Border-land " between them were hap us of whom it is difficult to say
to which division they properly belonged. Thus the Roroa hapu or
tribe, is nearly as much Nga-Puhi as Ngati-Whatua. Their territories
laid along the coast from Eaihu to near Hokianga River, and it is with
them that commences the series of events which we have to relate.
1798. In the following half-a-dozen events occuring in this Border-
land, the dates are somewhat uncertain, but they cannot be far out. Their
interest perhaps consists in showing the constant state of intertribal
warfare in which the people existed, and the peculiar results of
inter-marriages, through which individuals are often found fighting
against what may be called their own tribe. The following table
shows the connection of some of the people of this period, and one of
whom, Tu-whare, was a very famous toa (brave) of the Roroa tribe
whose exploits will be referred to later on.

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1 Mannmanu > Ngaingai

^ Bangi-whetu-ma ^ Matohi

^ I




1 Tiro • Te Hara


1756* » Te Waiata « Te Toko » Te Maia * Te Maunga

1780 1 Taoho * Tuwhare (kilUd at Whanganui 1820)

! ^ ^1

1810 1 Te Bore > Pnhi-hihi > Taoa


Somewhere about the year 1795, there was a dispute about lands
in the Kaihu Valley, then occupied by some of the Roroa tribe and
their relations, and Tara-mai-nuku was driven from Waipoua by a
war-party of other Eoroa people of Waipoua, under the leadership of
Te Waiata. Tara-mai-nuku settled down in the Kaihu Valley, but
not in peace, for shortly afterwards Te Waiata followed him up, and
defeated him in a battle fought at Wai-tata-nui. This was succeeded
by another defeat at Te Hau-o-te-raorao, which caused Tara-mai-nuku
and his people to flee to the Wairoa river, where they settled, whilst Te
Waiata, his brother Te Maunga, and the former's son Taoho, settled
at Eaihu. The soil of Kaihu valley which runs out to the Wairoa
river at the modern town of Dargaville, is very rich, and must always
have been a desirable place of residence for the Maoris on that account,
and this no doubt was the reason of these fights for its possession
amongst fellow tribesmen, who, however, were a few years later found
all in arms against the conmion enemy, Nga-Puhi.

For some of the events in this border warfare I am indebted to
Mr. John Webster, of Hokianga, and Mr. C. F. Maxwell, of Auckland,
both of whom took great trouble to enquire into points wherein my
own notes were deficient. Mr. Maxwell's authority is principally old
Te Bore-Taoho, now a very old man of Te Roroa tribe, and the son of
Taoho mentioned above. For some particulars I have to thank Paora-
Kawharu, his son the Rev. Hauraki Paora, and Hone Mohi Tawhai.

* Approximate dates of birth. Te Bore is still living (in 1897).

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1805. ^^ about the year 1804 or 1805 the Roroa tribe was living
principally in the Eaihu valley and Waipona. Their chiefs at that
time were Taoho, Hukeumu, Te Maunga, Tuohu, and Te Toko. On
one occasion these chiefs received a friendly visit from the great Nga-
Puhi chief Pokaia,* whose home was at that time at Kirioke, near
Eaikohe — that rich fertile district on the road from the Bay of Islands
to Hokianga. Whilst staying at Waipoua, the news came from
Otamatea, one of the inlets of mid-Kaipara, that the wife of Pinaki,
Te Toko's son, had been seduced by one of the Ngati-Whatua men at
Te Hekeua's settlement, where the home of the Uri-o-Hau tribe was,
Te Hekeua being the principal chief of that tribe, and father of Pikea-
te-Hekeua so well known to Europeans when the Otamatea district was

Naturally, Te Roroa tribe were very angry at this insult to them-
selves in the person of the son of one of their chiefs, and at once steps
were taken to avenge it. A taua or war party was immediately
organised, and Pokaia was invited to join in it, no doubt through
relationship to Te Roroa people. The Nga-Puhi chief would be
nothing loth to see a little fighting ; what Maori would ? But he
little foresaw the momentous results that were to flow from thus
joining in the quarrel of others. The taiia was under Te Toko, and it
would have to pass down the Wairoa river and up the Otamatea in
canoes. Now Te Roroa and Te Uri-o-Hau tribes are nearly related,
and probably that is the reason why, on the arrival of the taica at Te
Hekeua's pa, he waved a signal to Hekeumu, Taoho and Te Toko, to
enter the pa and leave Pokaia and his party so that he (Te Hekeua)
might attack him. A skirmish took place, in which Te Tao, Pokaia*s
son was killed by Te Hekeua ; but what satisfaction Te Toko got for the
insult offered to his daughter-in-law is not stated. It will be seen
from the above incident that the Nga-Puhi leader had a take, or cause,
against the Uri-o-Hau tribe, and incidentally one against Te Roroa
tribe also, for it was they who invited him to assist them, in doing
which he lost his son.

The taua now returned to Opanake in the Eaihu valley, where the
body of Te Tao was buried, whilst Pokaia returned to his home.
Before doing so he enjoined on Taoho the necessity of seeking revenge
for ** our son " (ta taua tamaiti). It was no doubt due to this un-
successful expedition that Pokaia invented the saying applied to a taua
that returns without accomplishing its object : —
Hokinga taua, te rae i Pakau-rangi.
(A returning war-party from Pakau-rangi point).

Pakau-rangi is a point on the Otamatea where this taua went to.

* Father of Hone Heke, who oonduoted the war against the British GK)vern •
ment in 1844.

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1806. A year elapsed and Pokaia returned to Kaihu, to carry oat
the hahunga or exhumation of his 8on*s bones, in order that they might
be conveyed to his own home, when the usual tangi would be held
over them by the relations. Pokaia now learnt that Taoho had taken
no steps to avenge Te Tao's death, and consequently his take against
Te Boroa tribe assumed such proportions that he was bound in Maori
honour to take notice of it. Soon after his return home, events
occurred which brought this feeling to a head. It was probably at this
time that Pokaia made up his mind to attack Te Boroa tribe, and
therefore took back with him to Wai-mutu the wife and children of
Tore-tumua-te-Awha, to whom he was related. This would be done in
order to save their lives.

Paikea = Eawa
Tara-nuu-nuka = Te Taia

Tore-ttunua-te-Awhs = Pehirangi

In the meantime matters had come to a head between Nga-Puhi
and Te Boroa in another direction. A woman belonging to the former
tribe had been killed at Waituna, a place inland of the Wai-mamaku
river. This was said to have been done at the instigation of, or with
the knowledge of, Hekeumu and Te Toko. This appears to have led
to a skirmish, in which Nga-Puhi (probably the Uokianga people)
suffered a severe defeat at the hands of Te Boroa. This fight took
place at Waituna. Eruera Patuonef was present with the Nga-Puhi
and barely escaped with his life, after slaying the Boroa chief Tataka-

This event, though Pokaia was not engaged in it, was a further
inducement for him to attack Te Boroa tribe ; but there were other
causes as well, for Mr. Carleton, in his " Life of Archdeacon Williams,"
tells us that, <* Pokaia, ancestor of the famous Hone Heke, was deeply
in love with Eararu, sister of Hongi-Hika, and persecuted her so to
become his wife, that she, to be rid of him, became the wife of Tahere,
a much older chief. Pokaia, in order to vent his rage and vexation,
made a wanton attack on Taoho, chief of Eaihu, a brave of the Ngati-
Whatua tribe."

* Parore-te-Awha was a very fine specimen of the old Maori chief — a fine
stalwart man, beaatifully tatooed, whose mana over his people was very great. He
died at Kaihu in 1894, between 90 and 100 years old. His mother, Pehi, was of
the Ngati-Bangi tribe of Eaikohe, and a descendant of Bahiii (see p. 11.)

t Eraera Maihi Patnone, brother of Tamati Waka Nene, the great friend of
the Pakeha, died 14th September, 1872, at the probable age of 108. He was of the
Ngati-hao tribe of Hokianga.

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These causes combining, induced Pokaia to raise a taua and proceed
to Eaihu, where he suddenly fell upon a small pa of Taoho's called
Whakatau, near Maropiu, which he took by surprise, killing, and then
eating all the inhabitants.

** This,** says Mr. Maxwell, *' was the first overt act of war between
Nga-Puhi and Te Boroa,'* but the Nga-Puhi losses at Waituna may also
be included as an additional take. From subsequent events, these
fights may probably be fixed as occuring in the year 1806. We do not
learn who the people were that were killed, but it is clear that they —
being Te Boroa tribe — were nearly related to Ngati-Whatua of South-
ern Eaipara, for it was that tribe that rose in arms to avenge them.

For the first time in the history of Ngati-Whatua we learn for
certain of the doings of their great leader Muru-paenga, who belonged
to the branch named Ngati-Bongo. His home was on the eastern
shores of the Eaipara river in the neighbourhood of Maka-rau, where
he was visited by Msrsden in 1820. At this time (1806) he would be
about 85 to 40 years of age, and an accomplished warrior, who after-
wards became celebrated for his prowess. It was Muru-paenga who
now raised a tatia of his own people to avenge the deaths of the Roroa
people at Whakatau. He was joined by 100 men under Te Warn and
Te Wana-a-riri of the Ngati-Whatua proper tribe, whose residence was
at Otakanini, on the opposite side of the harbour to Muru-paenga's
home. The taua proceeded northward by canoes up the Wairoa river
to Kaihu, and thence crossing the Waoku plateau, fell suddenly on the
Nga-Puhi settlements at Mata-raua, taking the pa Te Tuhuna, and
killing a number of people. Mata-raua is situated on the upper
Punaki-tere river, a branch of the Hokianga, and not far from
Pokaia's home. Subsequently the taua attacked Tai-a-mai, near the
present home of the Williams family, and were equally successful
there. This slaughter was called ** Te-patu-turoro.** According to
Ngati-Whatua accounts, a peace was then concluded with Nga-Puhi,
but this truce did not affect Te Boroa tribe, who had not apparently
joined in the Ngati-Whatua expedition.

Nga-Puhi were now the sufferers, and were in honour bound to
obtain utu for their losses. Pokaia again took tbe field and attacked
and took Te Eawau pa near Eaihu, killing several people. He then
attacked another of Te Boroa pas named Tirotiro, which was situated
close to where Taoho was living. Hitherto Taoho had taken no notice
of the killing of his people; he had said, ** Let Pokaia take payment
for the death of his son.** But finding that Pokaia seemed determined
to push matters to extremities, he came to the conclusion that he
would be the next victim, so abandoned his settlement at Opanake in
the Eaihu valley, and removed to Te Puka on the Wairoa Biver.
Nga-Puhi finding that Taoho had gone, followed him up and attacked

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him at Te Puka, but suffered a repulse and IcNst one of their (diieb,
Taura-whero, of the Ngati-Manu hapu, who was killed by Taoho.
Taoho again moved down the Wairoa to Arapohue, where Nga-Puhi
followed him and were again repulsed. After this Nga-Puhi appear
to have retired, for a sufficient time elapsed to allow of Te Boroa
constructing pas at Tiki-nui (the bluff about four miles below Toka-
toka) and at Tokatoka itself. In these fights we first hear of the
celebrated Hongi-Hika/*^ who took part in them under Pokaia*s leader-
ship. The Hokianga tribes of Ngati-Eorokoro, Ngati«-Manu, and Te
Hikutu, formed part of the tatia, no doubt anxious to avenge their
losses at Waipuna. The result of this series of fights seems to have
been not very decisive for either side, for both claimed the victory.

Whether Nga-Puhi now left the district or not is uncertain, but it
is clear they withdrew for a time, for in the next event we find Taoho
and his people sufficiently assured of safety to proceed to the west
coast on a fishing expedition, leaving the woman and children at
Tikinui. During his absence Nga-Puhi attacked and took that/^a,
killing most of the women and children, and then retired towards
Maunga-nui Bluff.

Taoho now dwelt in his pa at Tokatoka, the graceful mount on the
Wairoa river. From here, on one occasion he again went to the west
coast to preserve tohe-roa, the giant cockle-shell of those parts. He
was overtaken there by a small taua under Te Pona, of Ngati-Eawa, a
sub-tribe of Te Uri-o-Hau, who stated that they were on their way to
attack Nga-Puhi. They proceeded northwards along the coast to a
place called Pa-hakehake, where they met Nga-Puhi under the leader-

* The following table shows Hongi Hika*s oonneotion with the great Nga-Pahi
ancestor Hahiri, who was their *' Tino-arikiy" and ** Taumata-okiokingay^' supreme
chief and head of all Nga-Pahi : —

P ohi-moana-ariki
Te Waima

lAuha ^Maru b Te Muranga « Te Whakaa

Te Hotete Kawhi Kahuru ^ Mara > Wai-o-haa

Hongi-Hika Tamaha Te Maai Pehirangi (/) TeKoaa

Hare-Hongi Mohi-Tawhai Rewa Parore-te-Awha Hone-Heke

Toetoe-Hongi Hone-Mohi Kerei-Mango-nai Te-Ahu-Parore

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