Comprising Data pertaining to Procreation, Baptism, and Infant Betrothal, etc; contributed by Members of the Ngati-Kahungunu Tribe of the North Island of New Zealand.



"He puta taua ki te tane, he whanau tama ki te wahine"

Dominion Museum.

Dominion Museum Bulletin No.13


The Whare Kohanga . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . page 5

High-class baptismal rite performed over infants of superior families only. Lack of domestic comfort. Origin of data. Three ceremonial performances pertaining to birth. Rite to cause conception. Absolutory rite. Supreme Being invoked. Inanimate objects possess fertilizing-powers. Conception brings congratulations and gifts. The whakapa rite causes barrenness. The whare kohanga, or “nest house.” Tapu of birth. Tapuhi, or female attendants. The ahi tupopoto, a self-burning stove. Parturition. Tutelary beings presiding over birth. Hina. Sex of infant foretold. Period of labour, origin of. Charms to facilitate birth. Treatment of umbilical cord. Caesarean operation. Hori moralizes on the clash of cultures. The maioha ceremony. Infant welcomed into world. Gifts made to infant. The tohi, or baptismal rite. Origin of baptismal function. The paparoa and baptismal font. The oho rangi, or thunder-causing ceremony. Immersion practised. Iho buried as a birth-certificate. Uenuku-titi. The pure ceremonial. Ceremonial feast. Tapu. Infant dedicated to Supreme Being. Three qualities of mankind. Divinatory performances. Reciter of tapu formulae stood in water. Three grades of baptismal rite. Taumau, or betrothal. Weaning. Massage of infants. Cradles. Oriori tamariki.

Miscellaneous Notes . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . page 43

Ceremonial ear-piercing. Female children occasionally baptized. Period of labour. Moe-te-ao and her twins. The Po periods. Infant baptism a pre-Christian institution. Ceremonial release of bird in tohi rite. The whare kahu. Training of youths. Mating problem at Irihia and Mangaia.

Addenda: Brief Notes and Formulae in Original Maori . . . . . . . . . . . . . page 49

Index . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . page 67


The following narrative describes the Maori procedure in cases of births in families of high standing. What may be viewed as the conduct among families of a lower class in such cases has been described in the Journal of the Polynesian Society, vols. 14, 15, and 16. As in other matters, there was much more ceremonial connected with birth among the leading families of a tribe than pertained to it among the ordinary people. The functions were more numerous, and marked by more punctilious observances; above all, the various karakia (charms, invocations, &c.) employed in the two cases differed widely. This was owing to the fact that among the ordinary folk such effusions pertained and were directed to no higher beings than the departmental gods, whereas in the case of the superior families at least some of them were addressed to Io, the Supreme Being, and the child was dedicated to him. Ever the Maori was a true aristocrat in his tendencies, and ready to defer to superior rank if worthily upheld, nor did he appear to grudge such privileges as pertained to members of that class. A perusal of the two modes of procedure mentioned will acquaint the reader with the differences alluded to.

Among the ordinary folk lying-in women and sick persons seem to have lacked anything like comfort in their surroundings, a fact largely due to the demands of the institution of tapu. The treatment to which they were subjected called for Spartan-like courage and powers of endurance. Inasmuch as these folk were unaccustomed to warm, closely fitting garments, and were generally hardy, doubtless the chill winds were at least partially tempered to the shorn lamb.

The main narrative obtained, as seen in the Maori text, was originally given by Te Matorohanga, of Wai-rarapa, a noted pu wananga, or repository of learning, who was born in the early years of last century. The English version of the narrative does not merely represent a translation of the original, however, owing to the inclusion therein of many explanatory notes obtained subsequently. The main narrative consists of descriptions of three different ceremonial functions, known as the koroingo or maioha, the tohi, and the pure. The first of these was held to greet the child, to welcome it into the world of life; also, presents of fine garments, food-supplies, &c., were made to the infant - albeit such supplies were consumed by the parents. The second function was for the purpose of baptizing and naming the infant, and in the case of high-class families such child was dedicated to, or placed under the care of, the Supreme Being. The first of these functions was held prior to the falling of the iho (umbilical cord); the second came after that event and at the wai tapu, or sacred waters, a stream or pool at which tapu rites were performed. The third function, the pure, was held at the village home.


When it was considered advisable to enlist the services of a tohunga, or priestly expert, in order to cause a woman to conceive, his first act was to inquire as to which sex was desired. Having obtained this information, he then provided himself with a leaf, and, with a sharp-edged stone flake, so cut it that in outline it resembled the human figure. On this leaf image he marked such features as the eyes, nose, and mouth, also the sexual organs. He then conducted the woman to some tapu or retired place, spread a mat for her, and on this mat she lay. He now recited over her a certain formula, the effect of which was to absolve her from the hampering effects of any wrong acts, indiscretions (hara), that she may have committed in the past. This absolutory rite pertained not only to offences against the laws of tapu, but also to what we term moral offences. This act of whakahoro left the subject in a condition of purity, considered highly necessary in cases wherein the gods were to be invoked for the benefit of the subject. This aspect was specially stressed when the name of Io, the Supreme Being of Maori belief, occurred in the ritual formulae recited.

Having concluded the absolutory formula, the expert then took the leaf image in his hand and repeated another formula directed to Io, asking that the woman be endowed with the powers of Hine-ahu-one, the first of all mortal women, the Earth-formed Maid - that is to say, the power of child-bearing - that she might be rendered fruitful, even as Hine was, by the mana of Io, and so bear a male or female child. (Kia homai te mana o Hine-ahu-one, kia tamatane, kia tamawahine ranei.) He then drew aside the woman’s cloak so as to expose her body down to the navel, took his stand at her feet, facing her, and, holding the leaf in his left hand, he recited:-

Tenei tama ka tu, he tauira nau, e Io…e!
To manawa ko te manawa o Hine-ahu-one
Tenei ka tau.

As he concluded the above formula the priestly expert laid the leaf on the woman’s body below the lower extremity of the breast-bone, the morenga o te poho. The leaf image was deposited with the face-marked side downward and the head of the figure toward the woman's head. He then drew the cloak over the woman's body and so covering the leaf, whereupon he continued his recital of the charm. The balance of this formula the writer did not obtain.

The Maori held that the seed of life is with man, and that woman represents the sheltering and nurturing bed or receptacle for that seed, and so result conception and growth. The seed of human life emanated from Io, and man is the repository of the ira atua; a strain of divinity is inherited by mankind. Ever the Maori folk laid great stress upon this belief. (Kei te tane te purapura, kei te wahine te papa hei whakaahuru. Ko te kai whakaahuru ko te wahine, e tipu ai nga mea katoa; he tauira hoki te wahine na te tane. Ko te kakano o te atua kei te tane; na Io-matangaro te purapura.)

When the officiating expert had finished his recital the whakato rite was over, save the lifting of the tapu. Ere leaving the spot he secured the leaf used as a symbolic medium, and placed it within a piece of bark, after which he deposited it at the wahi tapu, or sacred place of the village. When, in after-days, the woman was about to be confined, he would recover the leaf, take it to the whare kohanga, or lying-in hut, and deposit it near her pae urunga (pillow). This is said to have been done without her knowledge. It might be shown to her after the birth of the child.

There were other methods and mediums employed in the whakato rite in some districts. At Kawhia is a famed stone named Uenuku-tuwhatu that possessed the strange powers of causing women to conceive. Similar powers were held by a hinau tree that stands, or stood, at Ohaua, in the Tuhoe district, a parallel to the famous cedar of Gilgit on the Indian frontier. The former tree was known as Te Iho o Kataka, and an account of the necessary procedure on the part of applicants has been published in the Journal of the Polynesian Society, vol. 15, pp. 5, 6.

The term kunenga denotes conception, the assuming of form, the commencement of the acquirement of form. The Maori held that the eyes were the first parts of the embryo to so acquire form, hence the expression “Ka whakawhetu tama i a ia.” Subsequently other parts acquired form. (Te kunenga mai o te tangata, ara te timatanga o tona whakaahua i a ia. E ki ana nga kaumatua ko nga whatu tonu te timatanga o te ahua, no muri nga wahi katoa.)

The wairua (spirit or soul) is said by the Maori to be implanted in the embryo when the eyes assume form. The phrase “Ka karapinepine te pu toto i a ia” denotes the coalescing of clots to form the embryo, while “Ka riro mai a Rua-i-te-pukenga,” &c., illustrates the implanting of the soul and the dawn of intelligence.

When a woman of the important ariki class was known to have conceived, then rejoicing would ensue among members of the village community, and her status would be enhanced. In special cases one or two female attendants might be assigned to her at this juncture, and these were termed tapuhi, but apparently this was a rare occurrence. These attendants would be women nearly related to the wahine ariki; one further removed might possibly exercise some malign influence.

Another old Maori tikanga (usage) was the collection and presentation by the people of gifts to mark their pleasure and appreciation of the fact that the wahine ariki would carry on the aho ariki, or aristocratic family line. Such gifts would consist of superior garments and articles of personal decoration - whales’ teeth, sharks’ teeth, or other prized objects.

The following ritual is said to have been recited by Tane the Fertilizer (personified form of the sun) over his daughter Hine-titama (the Dawn Maid) in order to cause her to conceive, the result being the birth of her daughter Hine-rau-wharangi:-

Tenei au he awhi nuku, he awhi rangi nau, e hine ki au!
Koia takere rangi, koia takere nuku, koia takere wai
Takere wai uriuri ki te whai ao, ki te ao marama
He wai nui, he wai tinana, he wai kai, he wai oti rangi
Ka rukutia, ka tuhikitia, ka tu hapainga he uriuri
Ka tupu, ka toro, ka whakaiho tangata
Toro te akaaka, toro te iho nui, te iho roa
Ka whakaupoko, ka whakaringaringa,
Ka whakawaewae, ka whakatinana mai koe
Tu takawhaki nuku, tu takawhaki rangi, e tu whaitiri i paoa
Ka puta i tua, ka puta i tawhito ngawariwari
E tu takawhaki karihi, e paoa ki roto ki te pokopoko nui nau, e Rangi…e!
Tapiki tu, tapiki nuku ki te whai ao, ki te ao marama, e hine...e!
He kauru nui, he kauru roa ki au nei, e hine...e!
Whai ake, whai ake ki te putahi na karihi
Whakahoro ki roto te pu nui, te pu matua
Tapi tapae [?] auaha ki uta, auaha ki roto
Auaha ki te pae kura, ki te pae kapukapu, ki te pae nau, e Puainuku
E puapua i taweke, e puapua, e hanahana
E werewere, e katitohe, e kamu to hanahana
Ki karihi ora, ki karihi auaha nui, auaha puru
Heke to pia, heke to ware, heke to nguha ki tenei aro, e hine...e!

Even so was Hine-rau-wharangi born during the Aonui branch (month) of the Orongonui season.

In cases where women desired to forgo the pains and pleasures of bringing children into the world, a peculiar rite known as taupa, whakapa, and kokoti-uru was performed over them. In this ceremony symbolism again appeared in the introduction of a stone; the trend of the meaning of the charm employed was that the woman should become as barren and unproductive as the stone.


This expressive name was applied to a hut specially constructed in order to accommodate a woman during the lying-in period. The origin of this custom lay in the tapu that pertains to birth in Maori belief, and so it was held to be highly necessary that a woman be segregated during such period. It is true that the treatment accorded to women of inferior rank at such a time verged on the barbarous, but segregation was ever imperative; it was not meet that man should enter or leave this world within a dwellinghouse. Be it borne in mind that the mode of treatment and ceremonial performances we are describing formed no feature in the lives of ordinary women, who had to be content with less comfortable quarters, less care, and less ceremony. In cases of families of inferior status there was no form of tohi or tua rite, albeit the condition of tapu still pertained to childbirth. This form of tapu connected with birth may be described as resembling the condition termed “unclean” in the Scriptures.

The Takitumu folk seem to have employed the name of whare puhi as a secondary name for the “nest house”, according to one authority. The Tuhoe Tribe also used two names - whare kohanga and whare kahu. A lone note collected is to the effect that the Kahungunu folk applied the name whare kahu to a temporary hut in which a sick person was segregated; it was also termed a whare rauhi. When taken ill a person was carried from his dwelling-hut and placed in such a hut; or, in summer-time or during fine weather, naught might be erected save a rude booth or breakwind. The term whare tupapaku is often applied to huts or tents in which sick persons are placed. This name was not, however, deemed a desirable one in former times. The word rauhi is about equivalent to our term “nurse”. A woman told off to attend a sick person, or one who nurtures, tends, and rears children other than her own, would be described as a rauhi or wahine rauhi by Kahungunu folk. The word was also occasionally employed instead of the commoner term manaaki in connection with a leading man who was ever solicitous of the welfare of his people: He rangatira rauhi rawa atu i te tangata, ara he tangata manaaki i te iwi.

The “nest hut” was not erected in the village, but at some distance from it, and all such places were located where there would be no likelihood of crops being planted in the future; it might be an infertile piece of ground, or possibly on the margin of a stream. In special cases a cooking-shed might also be erected, and a woman employed to prepare food for the expectant mother and her attendants. We are told that two female attendants were provided for the expectant mother if she were of high rank. These attendants were known as tapuhi, occasionally as puhi. Tapuhi as a verb means “to nurse, to cherish, to tend in sickness or distress”. Such women would be near relatives of the mother. Their task was simply to attend the mother and child; they took no part in the preparation of food, lest some malign influence affect the child, born or unborn. Only near relatives of the segregated woman would approach the hut, and a priestly expert when his services were required either to deal with a case of difficult birth or to perform a ceremony over the child. The attendants did not visit their homes during the period the mother was in occupation of the “nest house”, this interdiction being due to the condition of tapu. Another effect of this prohibitory condition was seen in the fact that the attendants could not fetch food from the cook-shed, nor might the cook convey the prepared food to the tapu inmates of the hut. The cook would prepare the food and take it to a spot about midway between the cook-shed and the “nest house”, and retire. The attendants would then come forward and take the food to their hut. The Maori tells us that occasionally it was necessary to employ three persons in order to convey food from the oven-side to an exceedingly tapu person. If the Maori lacked our forms of civil law and regulations he assuredly evolved many disciplinary rules and practices in place thereof.

A woman would take up her quarters in the “nest house”, together with her attendants, when she knew that her time was near. A number of signs seem to have been relied on at such a time: for instance, she might remark, “Kei te pakinikini toku tuara,” which seems to denote a numb feeling in the small of the back: this was one of the aforesaid signs. Should the weather be cold, then a charcoal fire would be kindled in the hut. This fire might be in the ordinary takuahi, or pit fireplace, or it might be in the peculiar and ingenious form known as an ahi tupopoto. This was what might be termed a self-burning stove, and it was contrived as follows: A length of such bark as that of the kahikatea (a Podocarpus) was obtained and allowed to dry out. As it so dries such bark assumes the form of a hollow cylinder, and this cylinder was set up in a vertical position in the hut, its lower end being embedded in the earthen floor. This “stove” was then filled with charcoal, and this was set on fire at the top. The charcoal burned away slowly, and, as it did so, the bark cylinder was consumed at the same rate. Such a fire does not blaze and does not smoke - a great advantage in the chimneyless huts of the Maori.


The principal being presiding over childbirth was Hina-te-iwaiwa, sometimes termed Hine-te- iwaiwa, Hina-uri, and Hina-keha. She stands as the personified form of the moon, and is a prominent figure in several singular myths. She is closely connected with Maui, who apparently represents light, and with Tinirau, of the great ocean; with Tiki, the begetter of man; and with Tuna, the phallic eel. With Tangaroa, parent of Tinirau and origin of fish, she acts as tide-controller; and she is pre-eminently the tutelary being of women, presiding over childbirth and the art of weaving. She was appealed to in cases of difficult birth, and female children were dedicated to her because she represented one of the most important of the tasks of women.

During the recital of the dedicatory formula a small hank of dressed Phormium fibre was placed in the hands of the infant. Another female being connected with the moon and childbirth, also women generally, was Hine-korako, who seems to represent the lunar bow or halo. She is one of the bevy of Moon Maidens, the other members being Hine-kotea, Hine-korito, and Hine-makehu. Like the offspring of Tangaroa, te whanau kehu a Tangaroa, they are represented as being fair-haired. These maidens are credited with acting as guides to vessels during deep ocean voyages because they represent lunar phenomena. The heavenly bodies were the main reliance of the Polynesian voyager of yore.

Maori folk claimed to be able to detect the sex of a child prior to birth - at least, some persons did. Thus if the left side of the prospective mother appeared to be the more prominent, then the infant was a female, the reverse condition betokened a male child. If the dark part (wahi pupango) surrounding the breasts was extensive, the child was a female; if of less extent but darker in colour, the issue would be a male child. There were a great many quaint beliefs and superstitions pertaining to birth, a number of which have been recorded in a former paper, noted above.

Our Maori maintains that the period of labour with women is based upon that of the Earth Mother when she gave birth to the primal offspring, the progeny of the Sky Parent. This period consisted of six po (nights), inasmuch as the Maori counted time by nights, not days. In the first place there was a period of six po during which Papa the Earth Mother nurtured the embryonic infants and so enabled them to acquire form, the breath of life, and growth. During a second period of six po these offspring sought the passage to taiao (this world), and so were born into the enduring world of life. They became separated in later times: some descended to the underworld, some abode in this world of light, some became denizens of the heavens, while yet others were despatched to distant realms, there to be fostered by Hine-makohu (the Mist Maid), Hine-rurumai, and Hine-te-ahuru (the Mother of Stars).

The men of old said: “These nights during which the primal offspring came into the world are represented by the period of labour with our womanfolk. When the movement of the infant commences, should it continue beyond the fourth night a dead child results; should it continue unto the fifth or sixth, a dead mother, a dead child; hence the expression, “Hokai rauru nui, rauru whiwhia, rauru maruaitu.”

The expression rauru nui denotes a normal birth and a normal healthy child. Rauru whiwhia describes prolonged labour and a difficult birth, the sequel being either twins or a wayward child, one not born in the normal manner. The third term, marua aitu (or maruaitu) denotes a still longer period of labour that results in a still-born child and probably a dead mother. Rauru is one of the three names for the umbilical cord, the other two being iho and pito. This last name denotes the end attached to the child; the other end is the rauru, while the middle portion is the iho. The expression rauru whiwhia means an entangled umbilical cord, while rauru motu signifies a severed one, which means a stunted child, an endangered mother. In cases of rauru whiwhia it is said that a leg or arm of the child may appear first, and, if so, then the infant would be termed a tamaiti whakatoi, a wayward child. The nurse would attend to the matter as the priestly expert recited charms to facilitate birth. In these serious cases the woman was sometimes conveyed to the tuahu, the tapu place of the village whereat many rites were performed and there a formula was repeated over her by the priest. The following is one that was employed by superior tohunga when the suffering woman was a member of an important family:-

Haramai, e hine! I te Maruaroa
Whakaputa i a koe ki taiao
Ki te ara o to tipuna, o Hine-titama
I takahia ai tapuwae nuku, tapuwae rangi
Tapuwae ki Tiritiri o Matangi hauaroa
Whaia to tapuwae, ko te tapuwae o to tipuna o Hine-hauone
Ka takoto ai i roto i a Hui-te-rangiora
Whakaputa i a koe, e hine! ki te aoturoa.

This effusion was addressed to the mother. It adjures her to bring forth her child even as her ancestress the Dawn Maid entered the world. Having concluded this recital the expert then repeated the following, addressed to the infant:-

Tenei au te hoka nei i to tapuwae
Ko te hokai nuku, ko te hokai rangi
Ko te hokai whakaputa i a koe ki Tahuaroa, ki te aoturoa.
Haramai, e tama! (e hine ranei)
Takahia mai to ara, ko te ara whanui a Tane
Whakakake i a koe i te ara o to tipuna, o Hine-titama
I whakaputa ai i a ia ki taiao
Kia takawhaki ia i roto i Hui-te-ananui
Ka tau te mauri ki te whai ao, ki te ao marama
Ka tangi te mapu waiora ki te urutapu, e tama...e!

This calls upon the infant to bestir himself, to come forth into the world by the way in which the Dawn Maid came, and prepare to tread the broad path of Tane to the end. The reciter has in this case made up his mind that the infant is of the male sex; if otherwise he would have addressed it as “e hine”.

In ordinary cases wherein a priestly expert attended a woman he would repeat a formula in which pleasure was expressed at the coming of the child, and gratitude to the source from which the soul or spirit (the wairua), spiritual welfare (toiora) and knowledge emanated. Maori myth tells us that when Hine-titama, the Dawn Maid, gave birth to Hine-rau-wharangi, who ever roams in the realm of Tane and Rehua, such a ritual formula was repeated.


He karakia whanautanga tamariki tenei. Ka uaua te puta mai o te tamaiti i te whaea, koia tenei:-

Tane, Tane i te kaukau nui, Tane i te kaukau roa
Manawa mai hoki ki te awa rerenga ariki, e Tane!
Manawa mai hoki ki to aro, ki to pia, ki to puhi
Manawa mai hoki ki te putanga tauira nau, e Tane!
Hikihiki, e Tane! ki to aro
He aro nui, he aro ki te ao marama, ki te whai ao.
He manawa hoki, e Tane! nou ki te uru tira
Ki te uru tapu, ki te uru ora ki te ao marama
Ki te kaukau nui, ki te kaukau roa
Ka tau, ka tau ki te kauru ora
Tenei to uru tapu, tenei to uru ora
Waerea te paepae tapu, waerea te paepae tea, waerea te paepae whenua
Ka taka i Aromea, i aronui he puputanga parapara
He putanga wai maukuuku nou ki te whai ao
Ki te ao marama, ki te uru ora
Haruru te rangi ko to ara
Haruru te whenua ko to ara
Haruru te ahuru tapu nou
Ko to ara ki te whai ao, ki te ao marama
Ki te uru tipua, ki te uru tapu, ki te uru ora nou, e Puhi...e…i.
Ngatata te wawa, ngatata te uha
Ngatata to aro, ngatata to ara
Ngatata he uru ora nou, e Puhi! ki waho nei
Auaha ki maui, auahi ki matau...e
Uea nuku, uea aro whenua he ara tapu nou
Huri ake, huri iho ki te aro i au, e Puhi-ariki!
Ki au ki to aro...e.

Ka pakia te tipuaki o te whaea e te ringa maui o te tohunga i tenei wa; ka mea te tohunga. (At this juncture the crown of the head of the mother was touched by the left hand of the priestly expert, as he repeated the following) —

Matahiki to ara, to tapuwae ki te ao...e...i.

Ka whanau te tamaiti i konei. (Now the child would be born.)

With regard to the position assumed in labour, the Maori woman diverges widely from European usage. She kneels down with her knees wide apart, while her female attendant squats down in front of and facing her. They clasp each other’s bodies under the armpits and the attendant uses her knees whereby to assist expulsion, working from the morenga o te poho (see above) downward. Were our hapu overtaken away from home, as in the forest, then she might perchance construct a pae whakaruru (also termed pae whakairi) as a substitute for the knees of the nurse. This structure consisted simply of a pole lashed in a horizontal position to two vertical stakes or saplings, and at a convenient height above the ground line. With this help she would obtain the desired pressure; and herein we read another lesson of self-help and of the tempering of the wind.

The iho of the infant was severed by a female attendant, or tapuhi, or possibly by some other female relative of the mother who was an expert at the task. It was severed with a keen flake of stone, sometimes a form of rehu or korahi, these names being applied to such stones as chert and flint, or possibly of obsidian. In some cases a desirable flake was rendered keen-edged by being ground on sandstone, and it might be preserved by the family and used by succeeding generations. The two terms given above seemed to the writer to have been used as denoting a thin stone flake, though the first mentioned, rehu, is also employed as the name of a kind of stone.

Any articles required at such a juncture would be provided before-hand, and so be at hand when required. Several materials were used for tying the iho, and one of these consisted of a thin stem of a creeping-plant called makahakaha that is found growing on sandy areas, as near a sea-beach: it is not a climbing-plant. A piece of this was scraped and smoothed, then coiled up and placed in water in order to keep it soft and pliable. Prior to being used it might be soaked in oil for a while, possibly oil expressed from the seed of the titoki tree. A strip of “lacebark” (inner bark of the houhi tree) was used as a bandage to put round the infant’s body. This inner bark is known as repehina. The measure employed when severing the iho is said to have been a konui (the length of the first or outer joint of the thumb). In some cases it was longer, even as much as a koiti (the length of the little finger), for an expert might remark, “He poto te konui, tukua ki te koiti” (“The konui is too short; make it a koiti”).

The iho was tied by the female attendant, or another expert, close to the body of the child prior to its being cut, and it was then smeared with titoki oil. A short piece of “lacebark” was likewise oiled and placed over the pito, over which the belt-like bandage of bark was placed and secured. The nurse would examine the infant each day and attend to washing it, in which tow from Phormium fibre (hungahunga, kahunga whitau, or waninga whitau) was employed, obtained by scraping the dressed fibre, and not directly from the leaf; it served the purpose of a sponge.

The severed iho was often buried, in other cases it was placed in a cleft in a rock or tree, often on a boundary-line of land in which the infant would have rights of ownership. If buried, a wooden post or a stone might mark the spot, which would ever after be known as “The Iho of ——” (whatever the child’s name might be). We shall see anon that it was sometimes buried at the place whereat the baptismal tohi or tua rite was performed over the infant.

There were evidently many different ways of disposing of the severed iho, even in a single district. A stone at Matahiia, apparently a natural form, in shape something like a dumb-bell, like the stone forest mauri at Maunga-pohatu, has a plugged hole in it, and this part is termed by Natives the pito. It is highly probable that this served as a repository for the pito of an infant, inasmuch as this method of disposing of such things was evidently common in that district. It may be described as a takotoranga pito tamariki. A resident of the district tells me that it was a local custom to bore a hole in a post, plug it with a piece of wood, and term it a pito. Assuredly that plugged hole contained the pito of an infant. From this same district came a carved double wooden image (now in the Auckland Museum) representing two human figures back to back. On examining the image the late Mr. Cheeseman found in it several plugged auger-holes, and these contained a child’s pito, a child’s penis, and some hair, apparently that of an infant. Natives of the same district, Waiapu, told me that, in former times, an infant’s pito was sometimes placed in a seed-pod of the rewarewa (native honeysuckle), which pod resembles a canoe in form; then a charm was repeated over it and it was placed on the surface of water, presumably a stream. Should the diminutive craft capsize, the fact was looked upon as ominous of evil; if it did not do so, then fortune would smile, presumably on the child. Evidently a divinatory performance, several forms of which pertained to the baptismal rite.

Similar methods of disposal of these objects were practised at the Hawaiian Isles, as seen in vol. 7 of Occasional Papers of the Bishop Museum of Honolulu, No. 2, p. 259. In the case of the Matahiia stone, my informant told me that certain rites of the miri aroha class, connected with divorce, were formerly performed at or over it. If this was so, then the stone was evidently deemed to possess mana.

Concerning the hair found in the plugged hole, I was once told that when an infant’s pito was buried at the pou uekaha, close by the paparoa, or place of baptism, the same place might serve as a depository for the hair of its parents, when they had it cut. The Maori had very peculiar views as to the disposal of his shorn locks.

Maori myth provides several illustrations of the Caesarean operation, as in the story of Tura the Voyager, and in the singular folk-tale of Hinepoupou, for which see the Journal of the Polynesian Society, vol. 3, pp. 100-104. In Chalmers’s Pioneering in New Guinea, at p. 77, we find a reference to the same story as collected in that land.

An uncorroborated statement made by a Ngati-Kahungunu Native was to the effect that families of high standing were wont to have, at the tuahu, or tapu place of their village home, a special spot whereat the iho of all infants of such a family were deposited. The spot was marked with a stone, under which was a small rectangular pit lined with stones and covered over with a flat stone; it resembled the takuahi, or small stone-lined fire-pits used in dwelling-huts. This small cist was termed a waka taupa; occasionally the dried ewe of the mother was deposited in it. My informant claimed to have seen one of these stone cistellas. This item is doubtful until corroborated, but is here given in order to record it.

In the story of Ngarue and Uru-te-kakara (published in the Journal of the Polynesian Society, vol. 34, pp. 297, 298-312) one can see how careful women of position were as regards cleaning themselves and newly born infants and how particular they would be as to the water used. The condition of tapu would be exaggerated in their cases.

With regard to twins: The Kahungunu folk told me that the first-born was deemed the most important, inasmuch as he was the first to enter the world of light. Hence this first-born infant would be marked in some way for identification purposes. At the same time the other, the later- born, infant is believed to be more virile and robust, and so the old saying “Te potiki whakahirahira” may be applied to it. But the Tuhoe people informed me that the firstborn of twins was viewed as an interloper hanging on to the outside of the “nest”, and so in some cases it was slain.

The ewe, or whenua (afterbirth) was buried at some place where it would not be walked over by any person - often near the turuma (latrine). Such things possess harmful powers in Maori belief. See the above-mentioned paper in the Journal of the Polynesian Society for many strange beliefs and superstitions pertaining to birth.

After the mother, her infant, and attendants had abandoned the “nest house” that temporary hut was destroyed. Any such paraphernalia as mats used thereat would be collected by the tohunga, conveyed to the turuma, and there burned. His also was the duty of lifting the tapu from the site of the whare kohanga. The hut also was destroyed by fire. In the ceremonial removal of tapu, parents of the mother or her husband would consume the food utilized in such rites. It would not be seemly were another person able to say “Naku i kai tuatahi ki taua whare kohanga” (“It was I who first ate food at that nest house”). The hut was destroyed by fire lest the materials thereof be used in after- days in food-cooking operations - a serious calamity and insult. The removal of the tapu would allow persons to pass over the site of the hut without giving offence. In some cases, however, places remained tapu for quite a long period, even for many years. A place near my camp at Ruatahuna twenty years ago had then been in that condition for thirty or forty years.

An old saying of the Maori folk is as follows: “He puta taua ki te tane, he whanau tama ki te wahine” (“The battlefield with man, childbirth with woman”). These be the strenuous times, the ordeals of the two sexes. And again, “He wahine ki uta, he kahawai ki te moana” (“A woman on land, a kahawai [fish] at sea”). Both are ika toto nui, and, in times of stress, give the same evidence thereof.

The following remarks were sent to me by Hori Ropiha, of Waipawa, in 1893, in a written communication. They appear in the original Maori in No. 1 of the Addenda:-

“Women of the Maori folk did not die in childbirth [formerly]; although a native woman might give birth to many children, yet she would not in any case die. Maori women were of a fine type, robust and healthy, and wise in matters pertaining to childbirth; they did not succumb. In these times many native women die [in childbirth]; the women who so die in a single year may perchance amount to one hundred, or even as much as two hundred.

“Now, this affliction that causes native women to so die emanates from the use of European medicines, also from European foods, also from European clothing; the complaints that afflict Europeans are more numerous than the famed tairo of Kupe. Another source of weakness is the fact that the mana of the Maori has been abandoned, and his ritual formulae, and his tapu and all its rules, his clothing and his foods. The Maori folk have become Europeanized, as also the foods, and clothing, and remedies, and so many complaints now afflict the native women.”

My old correspondent spoke as a true Maori when he stressed the effect of the abandonment of old beliefs, institutions, and practices. This was a very common conviction among men of his generation.

Here commences a rendering of the main narrative as it appears in the original, with interpolations.


(Primarily a welcoming of the infant into the world of life, and, in a secondary manner, congratulating the parents and their relatives.)

When the child of important persons was born - that is, when their first child was born - then the news would be heard by the clan of the father and by that of the mother, and so a meeting of the clans nearly related to them, the woman and her husband, would be called. This ceremonious greeting would be conducted prior to the dropping of the pito, which occurs about eight days after birth. There would be no greeting of the infant by the people immediately it was born - not until it was presentable and the mother was ready to receive visitors. The mother would seat herself in the porch of the “nest house”, facing outward to the assembled people. Her infant would be lying in her lap, also facing the people.

That meeting would be one of rejoicing anent the birth of the child. Should the infant be a male, then gifts would be deposited by those clans - that is, by relatives of the husband and wife. But the gifts from the relatives of the father would be kept apart from those from the relatives of the wife [mother], and the former would be deposited first. When the gifts were so deposited, then arose the person who initiated the speech-making, and commenced with a greeting. Should the speaker be of the husband’s side he would first greet the wife’s folk - that is, the mother’s side; should the speaker be of the wife’s side, then he would greet the husband’s people. The greeting to the male or female side having concluded, he would then greet the infant as follows:-

Naumai, e tama! Kia mihi atu au
I haramai ra koe i te kunenga mai o te tangata i roto i te ahuru mowai
Ka taka te pae o Huakipouri
Ko te whare hangahanga tena a Tane-nui-a-Rangi i te one i Kurawaka
I tataia ai te puhi ariki, te hiringa matua, te hiringa tipua, te hiringa tawhito rangi
Ka karapinepine te pu toto i a ia ki roto te whare wahi awa
Ka whakawhetu tama i a ia, ka riro mai a Rua-i-te-pukenga, a Rua-i-te-horahora
Ka hokai tama i a ia, koia hokai rauru nui, koia hokai rauru whiwhia, koia hokai rauru maruaitu
Ka maro tama i te ara namunamu ki taiao
Ka kokiri tama i a ia ki te aoturoa, e tama, e!”

This recital served as a maioha, or greeting, to the infant, and it was recited (intoned) by a priestly expert, or other person versed in the procedure and in the various recitals and formulae proper to such occasions. This address to the infant welcomes him as emerging from the sheltered haven of the embryo, as having crossed the threshold formed by Tane when he fashioned the first woman from a portion of the body of the Earth Mother. Then comes an allusion to the powers conferred upon women (those of reproduction), and to the clots deposited within the membrane that represent the foetus; then the forming of the eyes of the embryo, and the acquirement of intelligence, as represented by Rua of the many names; then the movement of the infant within the calm haven, and an allusion to normal and difficult birth, already explained; then the passing of the infant into this world.

At the conclusion of this recital some would add, “Welcome, O child! You who come from Tawhiti-nui, from Tawhiti-roa, from Tawhiti-pamamao, from the Hono-i-wairua”. All these are names pertaining to old and far-distant homes of the Polynesian race. In the original this greeting runs: “Haramai, e tama! I haramai nei koe i Tawhiti-nui, i Tawhiti-roa, i Tawhiti-pamamao, i te Hono-i-wairua”. As the above recital concluded the reciter would give an exhibition of his powers of facial distortion and agile prancing, flourishing a weapon as he did so. That being over, he would then repeat the intoning of the formula; if recited but once the fact was deemed an unlucky omission, and all the people would be displeased. Then the following formula was recited:-

Haramai, e tama! Puritia i te aka matua Kia whitirere ake koe ko te kauwae runga, ko te kauwae raro Kia tawhia, kia tamaua, kia ita i roto i a Rua-i-te-pukenga, A Rua-i-te-horahora, a Rua-i-te-wanawana, a Rua-matua taketake o Tane Naumai, areare o taringa ki te whakarongo Ko nga taringa o Rongomai-tahanui, o Rongomai-taha-rangi, o Tupai- whakarongo-wananga Ka taketake i konei ki tipuaki o Rangi Ka rere mai a Poutu-i-te-rangi, ka whakaawhi i a Puke-hauone Ka hoka Hine-rau-wharangi i a ia i konei ki a Takamai-ahuahu Ahua te puke nui, ahua te puke whakaki nau, e Rongo-maraeroa! Koia te ngahuru tikotiko iere, te Maruaroa o te Matahi o te tau Te putunga o te hinu, e tama…e…i!

These effusions are difficult to translate, containing as they do so many obsolete, sacerdotal, and archaic expressions. The above karakia, as it is termed, adjures the infant to cleave to high teachings; to be clear-minded, and quick to acquire knowledge of celestial and terrestrial lore, and to firmly retain the same - the knowledge that is represented by the various Rua; to be open-eared to listen, as were the beings named, that his thoughts may be with the beings of the uppermost of the twelve heavens. Then comes a reference to the planting of crops, and the fecundating-powers of the stars, also the growth of plants as represented by one Hine-rau-wharangi; and Rongo, the tutelary being of agriculture and all cultivated food plants, is asked to foster growth and so bring about a bounteous crop, a season of plenty: this in reference to the food-supplies presented to the child at this function.

The orator here gave another exhibition of his light-foot prancing and distortion of features. That recital refers to the food-supplies of the ceremonial feast - that is, the foods presented as sustenance for the child (which means for the mother, but it is said that they are given to feed the child).

Now, should there be no such gifts of food-supplies, then the spokesman would not recite the above formula; on no account would he recite it without just cause. Should any person repeat the formula in the absence of such gifts of food, then he would be making a false declaration to the god Io the Parent. In the absence of such supplies he would repeat a different formula - that is, the following one:-

Haramai, e tama! E mau to ringa ki te kete tuauri, ki te kete tuatea, ki te kete aronui I pikitia e Tane-nui-a-Rangi i te ara tauwhaiti i te pumotomoto o Tikitiki- o-rangi I karangatia e Tane-nui-a-Rangi ki a Huru-te-arangi, i noho i a Tonganui- kaea Nana a Parawera-nui, ka noho i a Tawhirimatea Ka tukua mai tana whanau, Titi-parauri, Titi-matangi-nui, Titi-matakaka Ka tangi mai te hau mapu, ka tangi mai te roro hau Ka eketia nga rangi ngahuru ma rua i konei, e tama...e...i!

Herein is reference to the ascent of Tane to the heavens, upborne and guarded by the Wind Children, the offspring of Huru-te-arangi and Tawhirimatea, when, with the rushing winds around him, he scaled the twelve heavens.

Here again the orator performed his dance. Now, when he was reciting the above formula he would omit that portion of it in which reference is made to Io the Parent, the reason of which was that he was repeating it in a public place. He would be unable to recite that part of it on account of it being tapu. But if he was reciting it at the sacred tuahu, then he would render it in its entirety. The part omitted in public functions is as follows:-

Ka kitea i reira ko Io matua te kore anake
I a ia te toi ariki, i a ia te toi urutapu
I a ia te toi ururangi, i a ia te toi uruora
Ka whakaputa Tane i a ia ki te wai tohi na Puhao-rangi, nana a Oho- mairangi
Te wai whakaata no Hine-kauorohia, kauorohia nga rangi tuhaha
Ka karangatia a Tane ki te paepae tapu i a Rehua ki te hikumutu o Rangi
Ka turuturu i konei te tawhito rangi, te tawhito uenuku, te tawhito atua
Ka rawe Tane i te hiringa matua, i te hiringa taketake ki te ao marama
Ka waiho nei hai ara mo te tini e whakarauika nei, E tama...e!

Here the reciter gave another of his gymnastic exhibitions. This portion of the formula was never repeated in public places. This tapu portion of the recital contains the name of the Supreme Being and a reference to his attributes, hence it could not be repeated in a public place or in the hearing of the people, but only at a tapu place and in the presence of a select few. In this tapu formula we learn that, in the uppermost of the twelve heavens, Io the Parentless alone was seen by Tane the Sun-lord. Also that Io is the source of all welfare, spiritual and otherwise; of tapu, mana, and even social rank here on earth. Reference is made to the tohi rite performed over Tane in the heavens, and to its sequence performed at the turuma of Rehua, at the bounds of the heavens. Hine- kauorohia also appears, she who assists in preserving order in celestial realms, in curbing the violence of the Wind Children, and Tane acquires the revered knowledge that he sought.

Having concluded his recital, which would be the last of such formulae repeated by him, the speaker would then proceed to greet the elders of the woman - that is to say, of the mother of the infant. Even so would he greet them, the grandparents of that woman, also her parents, and the people as a whole. He would call to the assembled people, “You have heard the name of our child [or grand-child]; it is for you to deliver the final formula”.

Here ended the speeches from the relatives of the husband, and then those of the wife arose. A speaker would in the first place repeat the formula known as the whakaaraara pa, and here it is:-

Moe araara, ka tau te manu ki te pae
Koheri, kohera, ka tiritiria, ka reareaia tama ki tona hiwa
Kia hiwa!

The object of this was to call the people to order, to enjoin them to be quiet and orderly, and to concentrate their attention on the formula about to be delivered.

The speaker would take his stand in front of the woman and facing the assembled people. It was then that he would recite the matter just written - that is, the whakaaraara. Having finished it, he would then take his stand before the clan of the female parent. He would turn so as to face the clan of the male parent, and so repeat the following:-

Tenei au, tenei au ka hoka i taku tapuwae;
Te hokai nuku, te hokai rangi, te hokai na Tu-matauenga.
Taku tapuwae ko tapuwae nui o Tane i pikitia ai nga rangi tuhaha
Ki te toi ora, ki te toi matua, ki te toi tapu, ki te toi mauri ora.
Tihe mauri ora!

Here the speaker indulged in the prancing performance already mentioned - that is, at the conclusion of his recital.

Then all persons related to the male and female parents shouted a joyous refrain, a paean of satisfaction. Also, the first speaker would rise, and the two would perform a prancing dance together, facing the people as they did so. The paean chanted by the people ran thus:-

Mauri ora ki te whai ao, ki te ao marama, e tama...e!

This invokes all blessings in favour of the infant, physical and spiritual welfare. All the people joined in rendering this chant. At its conclusion the speaker turned and faced the infant, and then intoned the first formula (the one commencing “Naumai, e tama! Kia mihi atu au,” at p.16). The meaning of this was that all persons were now free to come forward and greet the infant. Then all the people would rise and chant the refrain -

Haere mai ra, e tama...e!
Haere mai ra, e tama...e!
Ki te whai ao, ki te ao marama.

(This is equivalent to “Welcome, O child! Welcome, O child! to this world, to the realm of light and life.)

The man who had been speaking then sat down, and the father of the male parent or of the female parent (not the infant’s father) would rise and greet the infant and its mother. After that he would salute the people of the female parent (if it were the father of the male parent speaking), after which he would greet his own people. (If the father of the infant’s mother was speaking he would first greet the relatives of the child’s father.)

The following greeting to a female infant was employed in some cases: “Haere mai! Haere mai, e hine! Whakaputa i a koe ki te urutapu, ki te ururangi ki taiao, ki te ao marama, e taku kahurangi...e”. Having intoned this, the expert would then chant the formula given at p.23. All this served as hei huki i te manawa o te tamaiti; he pure tetahi ingoa.

These ceremonial functions pertaining to birth are alluded to in Maori myth as having been instituted in remote times, when the offspring of sky and earth took part in them. Thus when Hine- titama, daughter of Tane, gave birth to her daughter Hine-rauwharangi during the Aonui lunar month of the Orongonui season, the mother was conducted to the famed house called Hui-te- ananui, she and her infant. After the coming-away of the iho of her high-born infant both mother and child were conducted to the porch of the house, and seated on a mat styled the takapau wharanui Then the people assembled on the plaza before the house Hui-te-ananui. Tupai, younger brother of Tane, he who preserved the sacred receptacle pertaining to the gods, then came and took the infant in his arms and repeated the following:-

Naumai, E hine wairoto!
Whakaea, whakaea to uru tapu
Whakaea, whakaea to uru tipua
Whakaea, whakaea to uru waiora ki taiao nei
E tipu, e rea, E hine kahurangi ariki!
Whakamau tai, whakamau o Rongo
Whakamau taketake toitu ki taiao nei, E hine ariki rangi...e!
E tipu, e rea koe he whatu ioio nui, he whatu io matua
He io taketake ki taiao nei, E Hine-rauwharangi...e!

At this juncture the people rose to greet Hine-titama and Hine-rauwharangi. At the conclusion of this ceremonial greeting the whariki wharanui, or ceremonial mat, was conveyed to the brink of a stream and there arranged. Hine-titama seated herself thereon with her infant. The priest took his stand in the stream where the water reached to his loins; he then took the infant Hine-rauwharangi and ceremonially baptised her according to that form of the rite known as the tohi ururangi of the toi huarewa of Tikitiki-o-Rangi, the uppermost of the twelve heavens. (For original see Addenda 2.)


No ceremonial feast was held on the day when the greeting speeches were made to the infant, the grandparents, and parents.* The food-supplies and all gifts were put aside until the time when, the pito of the child having fallen in the “nest house”, it was conveyed to the water and baptized. (The proper name of the hut was whare puhi; the name whare kowhanga was the ordinary or popular name.) The woman in that hut would announce the coming-away of the pito of the infant - that is, of the kahurangi, for it was a child of rank; the announcement would be made to the priestly expert. That expert would then say, “On the morrow, when Tama-nui-te-ra [the sun] has risen, the infant will be taken to the water and baptized”.

After that, in the night as dawn approached, or at early dawn, the priestly expert would despatch two other priests to seek a suitable place for the baptism of that infant. The baptism of that child would be carried out at a place useless for the purposes of man, and one that would not be likely to be traversed by people. Such a place was sought, and, when found, then the seekers returned and informed the priest - that is, the chief tohunga - that it had been so found. Then the head priest would go to the male elder of the father’s side, also to the male elder of the mother’s side. Should one of these persons be dead, then he would have speech with a younger brother, who would take the place of the defunct one. Then this remark would be made: “On the morrow our grandchild will be baptized; seek a fine cloak as a couch for our grandchild.” Subsequent to that notification those two persons appointed would proceed to the selected place, taking with them a mat and some cloaks. Should the infant be a male, then a paepaeroa (fine dress cloak) and a mahiti (cape adorned with dogs’ hair) would be the sole garments so taken.

The two experts would conduct the people to the prearranged place. Then the mat would be spread at the edge of the water, quite close to it. The two fine cloaks would then be arranged on the mat, the upper parts being placed at the edge of the water. The fine dress cloak would be arranged first, then the mahiti would be spread over it, but in such a manner as to leave the decorated borders of the fine cloak exposed to view.

At this juncture the mother was being conducted to the place, together with one of the tapuhi> or female attendants of the father’s side, and one of the mother’s side; these were to so conduct the woman with her child. One would be in front and one behind, with the mother of the child between them. After them came the husband - that is, the father of the child; the correct procedure was for him to carry the infant in his arms. The elders of both sides followed behind, whether female or male; no other persons were included.

The priestly experts would have arrived previously at the place selected for the baptism of the child. When the procession was seen approaching, then the garments of the two experts would be discarded, so that they had no garments on save a form of apron. One of them would enter the water and take his stand at a place whereat the water reached his navel. The other expert took his stand to the right of the seat of the wife - that is, of the paparoa - the spot whereon the fine cloaks had been spread.

When taking their positions the first female attendant advanced, skirting the rear of the paparoa, and took her stand behind the expert. Then the mother of the child came forward and stepped upon the spread garments, taking her stand in the centre thereof. Then the other attendant came and stood at the left of the paparoa. The father of the child then came, with the infant carried in his arms, and advancing by the rear to the right side, whence he stepped on to the paparoa. The mother was the only one who advanced in a direct manner to stand on it. The father then handed the infant to the mother head foremost, so that the face of the child would be facing the priest standing in the water. (All stood facing the priest in the water, who stood on the eastern side of the paparoa.) The head of the infant should rest against the breast of the mother; on account of the feebleness of the child’s neck it was deemed advisable to so place it. All these persons faced the east. The infant would not be baptized at any place whereat the people would be facing the south or west, but only where they could face the east or north, no matter how distant such a stream might be.

Then the grandparent of the infant - that is, the father of the male parent of the child, he who bore the iho of the child, the pito that had come away - came forward and took his stand behind his son, the father of the infant. (The grandparents of the infant refrained from standing on the paparoa; they kept behind it; the parents alone stood on the spread cloaks. These punctilious observances were held to enhance or accentuate the importance of the child.) The father of the mother of the child then came and stood behind the puhi - that is, the female attendant on the left side of the cloak-covered spot. Their wives stood immediately behind the paparoa. Then the expert, standing at the right side of the paparoa, stretched forth his hand to receive the iho. That expert was known as the tohunga whakairi. The title of the expert in the water was tohunga tohiora. Such were their titles when they were performing the ceremony, apart from their ordinary names.

The iho was enclosed in a receptacle fashioned from bulrush-leaves or rushes by means of a plaiting process. There was a recognized name for that receptacle, but I have forgotten it. That iho would be handed over to the expert; the grandparent who brought it would hand it to him. Should the child be a female, then the father of the mother of the child would be the bearer of the iho; were the child a male, then the male parent of the father of the infant would carry it, and also hand it to the priest. As that priest took it in his hand, then the voice of the tohiora priest in the water was heard chanting the following:-

Papa, papa te whatitiri i runga nei
Ko Takamaitu, ko Takamai-i-awhea, ko Takamai-te-ahurangi
Tenei au he tama tu, he tama ora na Io matua te kore
Ki te pu, ki te weu, ki te akaaka matua, ki te akaaka rangi
Ki te akaaka no Papa matua te kore
Ko wai taua? Ko Tawhiri-rangi
Whakaiho nuku, whakaiho rangi ki tenei tama
He uri tipua nou, e Rangi!

Here the hand of the tohiora (baptismal expert) was plunged into the water so as to take some up in his hand, which water was sprinkled over the wife and her husband as they stood on the paparoa. Again the priest chanted -

Ko te iho nui, ko te iho roa, ko te iho matua ki a koe, E Io!
Io mata ngaro ki te pu, ki te weu ki Tiritiri o Matangi.

(The first of the above two formulae calls upon the thunder of heaven to resound, the names given being proper names of phases of thunder - a loud crashing peal, distant rumblings, and lastly several loud reports. The reciter then announces that he is a follower of Io and a proper person to perform such an important rite, and, if the thunder sounds at his demand, then the ceremony acquires mana therefrom. The second recital seems to be equivalent to dedicating the child to Io the Parentless in the uppermost heaven.)

At this juncture the thunder would resound, without fail (though I did not hear any thunder when Karauria was baptized**). The tohunga whakairi (assistant expert) then handed the iho to the chief priest, who, with his right hand, dipped it in the water and intoned the following words: “Whakaea, whakaea ki runga te iho nui, te iho roa, te iho matua o tenei tama, o [Child’s name repeated] ki a koe, E Io te wananga o Tikitiki o Rangi.” Here ended the formula pertaining to that action. The officiating expert would have previously been made acquainted with the name assigned to the infant.

The assistant on the bank then took the iho from his chief with his left hand, it being passed to him in the left hand of the superior; it was then handed to the male parent of the infant, who stood there with the receptacle in his hand. The assistant then took the infant, supporting its head with his left hand and its legs with his right hand, which hand represents strength and virility, and so is termed the male hand, the ringa tamatane. Should the infant be a female, then her head would be supported by his right hand and the legs by his left hand, and the left hand was called the female hand, the ringa tamawahine. He then faced the superior expert and recited -

Tenei tama he tupe, he tupe rangi nau, E Io matua te kore…!

As he chanted these words he was advancing toward the superior expert; as he finished his chant he would have reached him. The infant was handed over so that its head rested on the left arm of the chief expert and its legs on his right hand - that is, if it chanced to be a male; if a female, then its legs rested on his left hand. Then the chief expert chanted this formula:-

Naumai, e tama! Whakaputa i a koe ki runga te turanga matua
Marama te ata i Ururangi, marama te ata i Taketake nui o Rangi
Ka whakawhenua nga hiringa i konei, e tama!
Naumai, e mau to ringa ki te kete tuauri, ki te kete tuatea, ki te kete aronui
I pikitia e Tane-nui-a-Rangi te ara tauwhaiti ki te pumotomoto o Tikitiki-o-Rangi
I karangatia e Tane ki a Huru-te-arangi, &c.

(Herein the infant is called upon to enter into the tapu sphere of influence of the Supreme Being, the realm of light and life, and therein acquire all high-class knowledge, as represented by the three kete, or receptacles of occult lore. He is called upon to grasp those receptacles, to gain which Tane ascended by the whirlwind path to the uppermost of the twelve heavens, when he called upon the parent of the winds, who sent the Wind Children to assist him. Then were heard the sounds of gentle winds and fierce, the rush of whirlwinds, by means of which the twelve heavens were scaled.)

Having finished his recital, the priestly expert immersed himself and the infant in the water until the water reached the neck of the child. He would clasp the infant’s body with his left arm, and then, with his right hand, take up water and sprinkle it over the child’s head, after which he would stand up. He would then recite the formula pertaining to the oho rangi rite, which causes thunder to resound. Should the roll of thunder be heard in the east or north, then such was viewed as a mauri ora, the welfare of the infant was assured. Should it sound in the south or west it was a bad omen for the infant’s future: in all probability he would never attain manhood.

(In another version of this account of the baptismal rite we are told that as the expert sprinkled the child with water he repeated the following words: “Uhi rangi...e! He tahatu no Rangi.” The explanation of this was that, at this juncture, clouds would ascend from the horizon and render the sky overcast. Again the expert dipped his hand in the water and then drew his wetted hand lightly across the infant’s face, at the same time repeating; “Mauri hikitia, mauri hapainga, mauri ora ki te whai ao, ki te ao marama.” This effusion entreats the infant to be diligent and exact in his higher duties, to follow lines of thought and ceremonial observances as approved by his elders, and asks for his continued welfare in the world of life. Such was the explanation given, though this must be taken on trust so far as the present writer can see.)

The mother then took the child; she and her husband stepped off the spread cloaks and mat, which were then turned back so as to expose the ground they had covered. The chief expert then grasped a stout pole, sharpened to a point, that had previously been prepared, and proceeded to punch a deep round hole in the ground after the manner Maori. This was effected by punching the sharp end into the earth, moving it to and fro in order to enlarge the hole, then deepening the hole by means of another vigorous downward thrust, until the hole was deemed to be deep enough. This hole was formed in the centre of the paparoa site. The expert then took the iho from the father of the child with his right hand and deposited it in the hole. He then reversed his implement, and, with its blunt end, tamped some earth down on the iho. He then placed a number of stones, say six, in the hole, and tamped more earth down on the top of the stones. As he did so he repeated the following:-

Tukia i Wharerangi ko te ngaruru mai rangi
Te mata a tohi kura ko Apa i te ihonga.

This recital is said to refer to the buried stones in the hole: they are “tamped at Wharerangi”, which was the abode of Tane. Ngaruru mai rangi is an expression applied to thunder on the East Coast; tohi kura is a form of the baptismal ceremony; while Apa-i-te-ihonga is one of the whatukura, or denizens of the uppermost heaven.

As to the buried stones, the method followed was to so bury one stone for each night (read “day,” as the Maori counted time by nights) during which the mother had experienced the trials of childbirth. If that period should last for ten nights, then no stones were buried, because the child would be a wayward and perverse person. Neither would experts consent to the depositing of stones in cases of miscarriage. The iho or pito was buried as a tohu (a sign or proof), and the spot would be ever after known as “The Iho of ———.” In any subsequent disputes over land boundaries, or mana over surrounding land, the buried stones served as proof that the child’s elders had mana over the land whereon the stones had been buried. Their knowledge of the number of stones so buried might also be useful at such a crisis, and so it might be asked, “E hia nga po o taua tamaiti?” in inquiring the number of stones buried. One would reply “He mea” (so-many). Then the spot would be visited and the stones examined. (Ka tikina ka tirohia aua kohatu, mehemea e hia ranei.)

In his account of Uenuku-titi, the semi-human daughter of Ihu-parapara by Uenuku-rangi, Te Matorohanga seems to show that the pure rite was sometimes performed prior to the tohi or tua rite, the former being carried out at the tuahu, or tapu place of the village, and the latter, of course, at the wai matua or wai tohi (baptismal waters). Uenuku-titi was subjected to the pure, and it was then proposed that she be tohia (baptized); but Tamatea, husband of Ihu-parapara, said, “No! Her name has been tohia by her father in the realm of Hine-moana.” (Ka purea a Uenuku-titi, ka oti, katahi ka kiia kia kawea ki te wai tohi ai. Ka ki atu a Tamatea; “Kaore, kua oti tona ingoa te tohi e tona matua ki Tuahiwi nui o Hine-moana.”) This performance of the pure was probably owing to the fact that the girl Uenuku-titi was by that time well grown, but had never previously been seen by her mother or by Tamatea. Celestial visitors and marvellous conception form a feature of Maori myth.

Now, the iho of the infant having been disposed of, the expert took up the fine paepaeroa cloak and placed it across the shoulders of the child’s father, and then arranged the mahiti cape so as to cover the upper part of it. The husband would then take the infant from his wife and carry it clasped in his right arm; with his left hand he would arrange the mahiti cape so as to cover the infant. The party now started to return to the village, where the pure rite was to be performed at the principal whare whakanoho (superior framed house) of the place. The “nest house” was now done with and would be destroyed.

When preparing to depart the husband would be in front, and he would be followed by his wife, after whom came their mothers, then their fathers, then the nurses - that is, the two female caretakers. The principal priestly expert would then move forward and precede the father, while his assistant brought up the rear. So they proceeded, and as they neared the village the principal expert would chant the whakaaraara formula as he walked (see p.19 for this recital). The voice of the expert chanting as he proceeded would be heard by the folk of the village, and they would know that the ceremony was over.

Should the peal of thunder heard have been ominous of evil - that is, should it have so sounded to the south - then the whakaaraara formula would not be chanted by the expert, but the following would be substituted:-

Nei ka noho ka hihiri ngakau
O tangata ki te mahi e takoto ake nei
I kona te rahurahu tipu noa mai ai
Kia piki ake au ki runga te kiritai
Nga manu e wheko i raro Rangiahua
Homai ano koe kia hurihia iho
E tapu ana au, e ihi ana au i a Rongomai-matua
He tane pani karariri
E kore koe e whakamanaa e te tamaiti niho koi
Nana i noho te pu o te rangi.

This recital is a form of charm to avert the evil fortune foreshadowed by the ominous thunder-peal, and expresses the determination of the expert to disregard the evil omen, or to overcome it.


The floor of the porch of the home would have a mat arranged on it - a coarse plaited mat would be laid down, and a fine woven ornate one would be spread over it. Those mats being spread, then prized articles were arranged to set the place off. The neck-bands of all native garments were placed next the window, no matter what kind of garments they might be, whether korowai, paepaeroa, pekerangi, pota, mahiti, uhipuni, takapau whara, or tatangi. (The last name but one is that of a fine floor-mat, not of a garment. The korowai is a dress cloak with black twisted thrums, the pekerangi a cloak with an ornamental border, the pota has short thrums, and the tatangi hard thrums that rattle as the wearer moves.) These garments were arranged on the fine upper mat. Should the desire be to specially honour the infant, then a greenstone or whale’s bone weapon would be placed on the cloaks, below the neck-bands. Should two such weapons be employed, then they would be deposited on the cloaks so that the butt ends were together and the blades extending outward. Should one chance to be a taiaha (a two-handed wooden weapon), then it also was laid on the upper parts of the garments, and a carved box to contain heron or huia plumes would be placed beside it. No other forms of weapons would be so deposited, only these; the hoeroa and pounui and others are viewed as inferior weapons. Now, this employment of the greenstone and whale’s bone weapons for ceremonial purposes is one of the principal reasons why those weapons were so highly prized.

So the party marched onward and arrived at the village. As it came on, the expert continued his chant, repeating the same formula until the party so arrived. When it reached the vicinity of the outer threshold of the home the husband and wife halted just opposite the window, while the expert took his stand at the post supporting the barge-board at that side of the house. He directed the husband and wife to face the window, and then said, “Step on to the tahuaroa” (that is, on to the place covered by the mat and fine cloaks). The husband then advanced alone and took his stand on the garments, facing outward, while the wife crossed over and took her seat on the mat to the right of her husband; she did not sit upon the spread cloaks, but on the mat on the right of her husband.

Now, as the baptismal party was approaching the place the people of the village would be crying a welcome, even until the party arrived at the threshold of the porch, welcoming with cries and tears. Also all those following behind the two parents would be weeping, but the weeping of these was not spoken of as a tangi but as whakaingo, a special term employed in connection with highborn infants. Should the term tangi be applied to this form of greeting, then people would say that it was comparing the ceremonial to weeping for the dead. The priestly experts alone did not participate in this ceremonial weeping.

Well, so the husband stood in the porch facing outward, while his wife seated herself at his side. The father of the husband, carrying the child, now came forward, though he did not set foot on the tahuaroa, but stood on the mats spread in the porch. The husband then pulled his mahiti cape round until the opening was in front, as the expert chanted a karakia (formula). Standing near the post (mentioned above), he faced the plaza and people, and so intoned the recital:-

Haramai, e tama! Puritia i te aka matua
Kia whitirere ake koe ko te kauwae runga, ko te kauwae raro
Kia tawhia, kia tamaua, kia ita i roto i a Rua-i-te-pukenga,
A Rua-i-te-horahora, a Rua-i-te-wanawana, a Rua-matua taketake o Tane
Naumai, e…., kia areare o taringa ki te whakarongo
Ko nga taringa o Rongomai-tahanui, o Rongomai-taha-rangi, o Tupai-whakarongo-wananga
Ka taketake i konei ki tipuaki o Rangi
Ka rere mai a Poutu-i-te-rangi, ka whakaawhi i a Puke-hauone
Ka hoka Hine-rau-wharangi i a ia i konei ki a Takamai-ahuahu
Ahua te puke nui, ahua te puke whakaki nau, e Rongo-maraeroa!
Koia te ngahuru tikotiko iere, te Maruaroa o te Matahi o te tau
Te putunga o te hinu, e tama…e…i!

He then chanted this formula:-

Haramai, e tama! Whakapau to mahara, ko nga mahara o Tane-matua
I tokona ai nga rangi ngahuru ma rua kia tuhaha
Kia tangi te piere, kia tangi te wanawana, kia tangi te ihiihi
I konei, E tama! ka toro te akaaka rangi, ka toro te akaaka whenua
Ka tupea ki te wehe nuku rangi, ki te wehe nuku atea
Ka takoto te urunga tapu mowai, ka whakahoro ki roto te whare pukaka nui
Ki a Rongomai-tuwaho, ki a Rongomai-whakateka
Ka hoaia e Tane-matua ki te iho taketake na Tuhaepawa, na Io matua te kore
Koia pou takeke, koia pou takiki
Ka kapua te toiora i konei ki te wheuriuri e Hine-titama, e tama...e!

(Here the infant is called upon to be as clever as was Tane the Parent, he who propped up the twelve bespaced heavens, when dread and awe were felt in the presence of great beings and great deeds, when the heavenly bodies came into being and vegetation and animal life appeared on earth and in the ocean. Then comes some reference to the vast realm of space and to permanence or stability, then to the three receptacles of occult knowledge procured from Io and Tuhaepawa, one of the whatukura, or attendants of Io, all of which are unchangeable, stable; while in those remote times it was that the Dawn Maid descended to the underworld, there to receive the souls of the dead.)

The people now advanced to the threshold of the porch in order to greet the infant with tears and words, this being their final greeting. Having finished their tearful greeting, then some of them would greet the child with ceremonial speeches. These would commence with such expressions as “Welcome, O child! You who come from the unsullied waters.” This was a much-favoured expression in such greetings. The term wai matua (in full wai matua o Tuapapa) denotes the pure waters of earth as they issue forth from the body of the Earth Mother. Only such waters were deemed fitting for use in such baptismal rites as those described above. When Maori folk saw early missionaries utilizing water contained in receptacles fashioned by the hand of man, they condemned the practice. Tuapapa represents rock, and the Maori says that rock causes water to flow from the earth in the form of streams. Were it not for rock all water would sink deep into the earth and remain there. This is the explanation of an old aphorism, “E kore a Parawhenua e haere ki te kore a Rakahore” (“Water would not flow were it not for rock”). Parawhenua and Rakahore are the personified forms of water and rock.

When the greetings and speechmaking were over, then a feast was spread on the plaza. For this ceremonial feast some food was cooked for the priestly experts in a special and separate oven called the umu tara, while another such oven provided a meal for the leading chiefs. The large steam-oven for the bulk of the people was known as the umu rauroha and umu mataki tini. The infant was left lying on the spread cloaks during the greeting ceremonial, and in such a manner that its head was on one of the weapons. Should the head of an infant so rest upon weapons at such a time, then that child would become tapu - he would never carry food products on his back, and he would sleep near the window of a house. For the tapu that pertained to him is tapu ariki (pertaining to high rank and primogeniture); it is not tapu tohunga, the tapu pertaining to priestly experts, which differs from the tapu ariki. The priestly tapu is brought about by the priest himself; he renders himself tapu, and performs the tohi over himself. The tapu of the high-born child was the result of his being baptized at the wai matua, and the fame of that rite would reach all places and all peoples. Therefore, when travelling, even though in his old age, when he arrived at a far- distant place he would be known by the people of such place, and a bed for him would be prepared under the window, the place of honour. The principal persons of the place would send of their choicest food-supplies for his entertainment, and these would be laid before him. This was, in the first place, an honouring of the visitor, and, in the second place, it upheld the reputation of the hamlet for hospitality, while the visit of such a person was in itself an honour.

(It was explained that in olden days some tribes marked this ceremony by slaying a person, but that the act of laying the infant down so that its head rested on a weapon was he arai i te patu tangata, and so served to abolish the custom of man-slaying for this function. Apparently it was a form of substitute for such a killing, and so may be viewed as a survival, like the placing of coins under a foundation-stone. It was also said that when, in olden times, a person was so slain, it was for the purpose of adding éclat to the occasion, and to enhance the mana of the infant; it could scarcely be termed a religious ceremony.)

To return to our feast: The mother of the infant would leave the porch and take her seat on a mat spread outside the threshold, while her husband would seat himself at her side. One of the tapuhi (nurses) would feed the mother, while the other would attend to the father. It was not correct for them to touch food with their hands, though this restriction continued for the one day only.

The pure rite was performed by the priests in order to render permanent the sacred and spiritual mana; it was not a removal or lifting of tapu. Men had the pure performed over them ere going to war, in order to render them courageous. A canoe was served in like manner that it might retain its mana and that the gods might protect it. A crop of sweet potatoes was sometimes purea in order that a fine crop might result. These forms of pure did not remove the condition of tapu, but had just the opposite effect.

Priestly experts who officiated at such functions as the above were recompensed by means of gifts, such as garments, food products, weapons, &c.

As observed, the pure rite herein described had nothing to do with the abolishing of the condition of tapu. All persons who attended the tohi performance had to undergo the whakanoa, or tapu- lifting ceremony, after the conclusion of the pure function. It was considered necessary that the restrictions of the laws of tapu should be removed on the same day. This ceremonial relief was sometimes conducted at the turuma (village latrine), a place at which many singular rites were performed. One of the reasons why such sacerdotal functions were held at such a place was the fact that it was highly improbable that any person would ever pollute such a site by conveying to it any form of cooked food, which is viewed as the very antithesis of tapu. So serious an effect has it that no atua (spiritual being) can possibly remain in its vicinity, and hence any rite or task performed near such polluting matter can carry no mana or power whatever; those powers are entirely nullified. Lacking the presence - that is, the assistance - of the atua, no ceremony or task could be effectual or satisfactory. Such tapu was strictly observed when a superior canoe was being fashioned or a superior house was being built. The presence of a woman or of cooked food at a place where such tasks were being performed would pollute the tapu and so cause the atua to withdraw their assistance and protection: as the Maori bluntly puts it, “Ka oma nga atua” (“The gods would run away”). The result would be that luck, prosperity, welfare were denied to such canoe or house, and any disaster might overtake it, and those who used it. No atua were protecting its welfare: it was exposed to every mischance, to every ill wind, to all the subtle arts of wizardry.

The passing of a woman - that is, of the female organ - over such tapu places had the same disastrous effect as the introduction of cooked food: the tapu was desecrated, abolished; the atua under whose aegis the task was being performed retired, and so trouble and disaster lay before. All this is in explanation of the reason why the assistance and protection of the gods is necessary in all human activities, and why it is that cooked food and women are employed in the ceremonial removal or banishing of the condition of tapu.

The performing of the tapu-lifting ceremony at the latrine was most common with respect to minor rites and the ordinary people. Such a performance might lead to sarcastic remarks in the future, such as “I whakahoroa ai nga tapu o ou matua ki te paepae hamuti” (“Your parents were freed from tapu at the latrine”). In the case of a high-class family of the ariki class, such as we have been dealing with, the whakanoa rite was often performed at a pond or pool of water utilized and set aside for such purposes. Some experts seem to have held that there was an element of danger in conducting these very tapu functions in running waters.

The general object of these rites described above was to place the infant in the care of the gods, to endow him with mana atua, and to make some recognition of the powers and influence of the gods; the bestowing of a name upon the infant seems to have been but a secondary consideration, and not viewed as the important part of the function.

The different names of Io, the Supreme Being, have their varied meanings descriptive of the qualities and functions of that important atua. Also, each of these names is employed in its proper connection only, as when inserted in ritual formulae. Thus it was that the name of Io-matua (Io the Parent) appeared in formulae pertaining to these baptismal rites, though other forms of the name might also be employed. This revered name, however, was inserted only in recitals connected with superior families and the highest form of the rite, the tohi ariki; it never entered into those employed when infants of families of lesser status were dealt with. In an invocation to endow a child with cleverness, mental ability, the name of Io-mataaho appeared; while if the child was tohia as a scholar in the whare wananga, or school of learning, then Io-te-wananga was the form used.

The following is a highly interesting illustration of the formulae employed by priestly experts when performing the tohi ariki form of the baptismal rite. The sixth line thereof shows us how the infant was lifted and held up in the hands of the reciter as a hapainga, or offering to Io the Parent. This dedicatory offering and address represents the most striking feature of the tohi ariki rite. “Uplifted here on my hand is an offering to thee, O Io!” Again: “Now is baptized thy disciple in the waters of Moana o Rongo, &c., to thee, O Io!” Also: “I now ceremonially name him for thee, O Io the Eternal.” In this recital six different forms of the name of Io appear.


(A Child-baptizing Formula - that is, a Tua.)

Ka turuki atu ki a koe, ki nga atua o nga rangi tuhaha
Kia turuki mai koutou ki tenei tama, ki tenei aro, ki tenei pia
Ki tenei tawhito, ki tenei tipua nou, E Io-mata-ngaro….e….i!
Tenei to uriuri, tenei to pia, tenei o aro, he aro turuki mai nou, E Io-matua….e….i!
Tenei ka rewa, ka rewa ki runga ki taku ringa
He hapahapainga nuku, he hapahapainga rangi ki a koe, E Io….e!
Tenei ka tohia to pia, to uriuri ki te wai o Moana o Rongo,
O Moana o Kura, o Moana wairangi o Moana Parawhenuamea ki a koe, E Io….e!
Tenei au ka tohi i te ingoa ki a koe, E Io-taketake….e….i!
Ka tohia, ka tohia ki...., ka whakamau atu ki te uru tu,
Ki te uru tau, ki te uru rangi, ki te uru tangata nau, E Io-rangi….e!
He puri nui, he puri roa, he mauri taketake nou, E Io-te-waiora….e!
Tenei ka tau, ka tau ki a koe he uri, he pia, he aro
He tama tane, he tama wahine no Tane, no Hine-ahuone
Ka tau, ka tau ki tenei...., E Io-taketake….e!
E tipu, e rea he pia nou, e tipu hei kauru nui, hei kauru roa
Hei kauru toi nui, toi roa, toi matua ki te ao taruaitu,
Ki te ao marama taiahoaho nau, E Io-taketake….e….i!
Tenei au te turuki atu nei ki a koe, E Io-matangaro….e
Kia turuki mai koe he hikitanga, he hapainga, he arewa
Ki tenei tama, ki tenei pia, ki tenei uriuri nou, E Io-tama-akaaka….e!

The occurrence of many sacerdotal expressions in these formulae, also of words that have become obsolete, make one very cautious about attempting a translation of them. Almost every word in the above is to be found in Maori dictionaries, but in many cases words have an unrecorded sacerdotal meaning, and that is where the danger lies. In this case the words uriuri, turuki, aro, tawhito, tipua, puri, kauru, and uru must be included in that category.

The following formula is said to have been employed in the time of Toi, some seven centuries ago, though, as given, it is not clear as to whether it was recited over Toi himself or one of his children by Huiarei:-

Ihi a tau…e, ihi a Rongo…e, ihi a Maru...e
Aua atu, aua mai ki tenei wai
Wai na huka a tai, wai na Makohurangi, wai na Te Ihorangi
Whakauru tapu…e, whakauru ora
Ngatata o tapuwae, ngatata te pararo, ngatata whaitiri a Ururangi…e,
Ki tenei tama nau, e Ihinuku, e Ihirangi!
Ka tau, ka tau he toi nuku, he toi rangi taketake ki a koe, e Io matua te kore!
Whakaruru ki runga, whakaruru ki waho, whakaruru ki roto
He putunga, he horunga, he akaaka atua nou, e Io…e…i!
Tuaina ki waho ko toi nuku, ko toi rangi, toi te matahi o te tau…e…i.
E tipu...e, e tipu, e rea he pipi nuku, he pipi rangi
Toro te akaaka whenua, toro te akaaka rangi
He akaaka tangata ki te ao-turoa…e…i
He waerenga a rangi, he waerenga nou, e Ruatau…e…i!
He hukinga a rangi, he hukinga nau e Io matakaka!
Ki tenei urutapu toi nui, toi roa, toi te huatahi nau, e Io matua…e…i!
Tenei au te huru atu nei kia huru mai koe ki tenei toi matua nau, e Tane!
He ihonga a rangi, he ihonga a tau…e
Ki tenei toi, toi nuku, toi atua, toi rea, rea to toi…e…i.

If the previous formula seemed difficult to translate, then this one must be viewed as a veritable tipua. Makohurangi and Te Ihorangi are the personified forms of mist and rain, while Ruatau is one of the influential denizens of the uppermost of the twelve heavens, and is spoken of as an atua, one of the gods of the heavens. A brief discourse followed the repetition of the above formula, to the effect that when Huiarei, wife of Toi, gave birth to Ruarangi, Ruatau rendered assistance in bringing about a safe delivery. This seems to have endowed Ruarangi with mana atua, and, in order to preserve this quality and to observe the strictest form of primogeniture, the fruitful womb of Huiarei was tupatia (closed by means of magic arts), and so rendered barren, lest a female child be born later. “Hence,” remarked the narrator, “the mana atua descended to Rongokako and others, and so down to our elders.” The statement that Ruarangi was born through the agency of Ruatau is followed by a singular remark, viz., “Whangaia tonutia ki te hau, ki te kapua o Tutumaiao, koia i haere atua tonu tena whanau.” This may be in connection with the belief that Ruatau dwells in space. East Coast tribes, as a rule, maintain that Ruarangi was not a son of Toi, but took to wife one Rongoueroa, a daughter of Toi.

The tupa act above mentioned is allied to several other performances of white magic termed tuapa, while taupa denotes a magic spell repeated by a man over his wife when about to leave her for a time. Should any man interfere with the woman during the absence of her husband, then the powers of the magic formula would destroy him. Such formulae are empowered by the atua who stand behind them; lacking these malignant but useful spirits the repetition of a charm would be an idle thing, a waste of time.

When the time came to perform the pure ceremony over Hineahuone, the Earth-formed Maid, the first of mortal women, then Tumatauenga said, “Let it be so conducted that man shall possess the quality of courage.” But Rongo said, “Let it be arranged that man shall possess the two desirable qualities of courage and maru.” This latter term is said to include many desirable things, such as industry, hospitality, and kindness. Then dour Whiro spoke: “Kati; maku te poautinitini.” Thus it was that misfortune, trouble, sickness, and death entered the world and became the lot of man, introduced by Whiro. These were the three things given to man - ihi, maru, and poautinitini; and from one or another emanate all phases of thought, all activities of mankind, all conditions of human life.

When the procedure of the tohi rite dealt with war, it being desired that the child should develop into a warrior of renown, then the following was one of the formulae repeated:-

Kia whakangungua koe ki nga rakau matarua na Tu-matauenga
Ko nga rakau tena i patua ai tini o Whiro i te Paerangi ka heke i Tahekeroa
Koia e kume nei ki te Po tangotango, ki te Po whawha o Whakaruaumoko e ngunguru ra i Rarohenga
Ka waiho nei hei hoariri mo tini o Tane-matua i te ao turoa
I konei, e tama! Ka whakamau atu ki te pito ururangi
Ki a Tu-matakaka, ki a Tu-mata-tawera, ki a Tu-matahuki, ki a Tu-mata-rauwiri
Hei whakamau i te pona whakahoro kai na Hine-titama
Ka waiho hei tohu ki a Tane-matua
Ka whakaoti te pumanawa o Tane i konei, e tama…e…i!

In this effusion the child appears to be called upon to tread the path of war instituted in the time of Tane-matua, and to acquire knowledge of the double-edged weapons of Tu the War-god, the weapons by means of which the hordes of Whiro were defeated at the Paerangi, and so descended to the underworld. By Tahekeroa they went the way that gives upon the Po, where rumbles Ruaumoko, the origin of earthquakes, and ever they are enemies of the multitudes of Tane-matua, the living folk of this upper world. I cannot say what pito ururangi refers to, but there is a reference to the fleeing Dawn Maid locating the pomum Adami in the throat of her parent Tane, the Sun-lord.

In another version of the description of the tohi rite, given by a Kahungunu native, appears some account of a peculiar divinatory performance on the part of the principal priestly expert engaged. It is said to have occurred prior to the act of immersion already described, when the infant was placed in the water. It may be, however, that the sprinkling described below was the real baptism and replaced the act of immersion. We have many accounts of infant baptism that describe the act of aspersion, but immersion is rarely alluded to in that connection.

For the performance of this ceremony the expert provided himself with a green branchlet of mapau (Myrsine) or of tawhiri (Pittosporum) and half a dozen young unexpanded leaves (rito); we are told that outer or matured leaves were not employed for the purpose. As the mother stood near the brink of the water, holding the infant in her arms, the expert approached her, reciting a karakia as he did so. He touched the infant with the leafy branchlet, then dipped it in the stream, and with it sprinkled the infant; this was done at a certain part of the recital. The Maori of old taught that water is life - that it represents the welfare of all things. (Te ora o nga mea katoa ko te wai; ki te kore he wai kaore he painga o nga mea katoa.)

Having finished the recital of the formula, the expert cast the half-dozen young leaves into the stream, and the movement of those leaves was watched closely by him, and also by all onlookers, inasmuch as this was a divinatory performance. Should the six leaves drift away without separating, and fairly close together, then the fact was hailed with pleasure - it was a good omen, and the infant would assuredly be healthy, vigorous, robust, and also attain manhood. But should the pieces separate and drift down-stream in a scattered manner, then an ominous future loomed before the child. This peculiar and exceedingly simple act of divination was, we are informed, a whakataki i te mauri o te tamaiti.

It was explained that a priestly expert took his stand in the water in order to perform rites wherein occurred formulae in which the name of Io was mentioned, save in a few cases connected with the whare wananga, or school of learning. This was on account of the intense tapu pertaining to that revered being and his name. Water flowing from the earth is the purest of elements, and in that element a man is spiritually insulated, as it were. If any polluting object came into contact with flowing water, then such pollution was swept away. This custom originated in remote times: when Tane ascended to the heavens he had to undergo twice the tohi rite as a purificatory and tapu rendering performance, ere he could approach the majestic Io.

In some districts, or among some tribes, the tohi ceremony was, we are told, by no means so spectacular a performance as that described above, there being no ceremonial presentation of gifts, no paparoa, and less punctiliousness and ceremonious observance. The elaborate form of the rite described was known as tohi ariki; that form in which a human being was slain was called tohi raupara; while an inferior performance, lacking gifts and show, was the tohi kura. The first-named form is said to have always been performed at the orthodox time, but the last-named might be postponed, as among folk of inferior rank, owing to lack of means. In olden days one might hear such a question as “I tohia koe ki hea?” (“Where were you baptized?”), or a sarcastic query such as “Ko wai koe, ko hea te wai i tohia ai koe?” (“ Who are you? At what waters were you baptized?”).

My informant, in describing the garments used in preparing the paparoa at the wai tohi, described a peculiar method of adorning the mahiti cape. The small tufts of dogs’ hair used for the purpose were not composed of loose hair, but small pieces of skin, with hair attached, were taken from a dog’s tail, and it was this bit of skin that was fastened on to the body of the garment.


When the tohi and pure functions were over, and also the ceremonial feast, then a leading person of the community, or of quite a different tribe, might rise and say, “I wish to bespeak our grandchild for So-and-so.” Were the infant a male the person who made the above remark would here repeat the name of the female infant of some man of position. Now, the parents of the infant would be quite unable to decline such a proposal; should they so decline it, then such action would be a serious affront. Neither would the grandparents and other elders be able to refuse the offer; such would be a contemptuous act that would cause much trouble in the future between the two parties. Suppose fighting should ensue in later times, and that child be captured during an engagement, then he would be retained as a slave. He would not he slain, but spared, but ever after the saying “a slave of mine” would be used in reference to him and his descendants.

Female children of rank, as also male children of that status, were given in marriage to persons of important, powerful tribes, possibly of a quite unrelated people, as a means of procuring assistance from such tribes in time of war. In this connection we can see the application of the following saying of olden times: “He taura taonga e motu, he taura tangata e kore e motu” (“A gift connection may be severed, but not so a human link”). Two peoples may meet in friendship and exchange gifts and yet quarrel and fight in later times, but intermarriage connects them in a permanent manner. Like many other sayings, the above represents facts - with limitations.

Should, however, the parents of the infant, or the people, decline the offer, then he who made the proposal would reply briefly, “Very well. Never mind; but, remember, man flourishes and man degenerates.” That is a saying that carries this meaning: the fortune of man cannot be foretold; some flourish and survive, while others meet with trouble and disaster.

Should the request be granted, then such consent was marked by the chanting of the karakia hono by the relatives of the newly-born infant, after which the fine cloaks pertaining to the baptism of the infant would be produced. These would be arranged near the gifts presented by the toro, the envoy or person who had come to claim the infant in the taumau, or betrothal ceremony. In the event of there being similar articles on both sides, then cloaks were so arranged that the collars were together, and short weapons (patu) so that the butt ends thereof were together. Then were recited the formulae that had been chanted during the performance of the tohi rite over the infant. Thus the delegates who had proposed the taumau would understand that the matter was satisfactorily arranged. If the articles mentioned had not been produced and displayed, and the karakia recited, then the proposers of the alliance would have been uncertain as to whether or not their proposition had been approved of. Those garments that had been employed at the tohinga of the child would be handed over to the delegates, who would take them to their home. In after-time, even if those two communities did chance to quarrel and fight each other, neither would ever disavow the connection established by the taumau.

The term taunaha, meaning “to bespeak,” is sometimes used to denote betrothal of infants, as also is taupua, which carries a similar meaning. I am told that precise speakers, however, did not use the word taunaha in this connection, but only when referring to land and ordinary things.

The toro (delegates) sent to arrange a betrothal of infants would send forward no notice of their visit. In some cases the principal person of the visiting party would make known the object of the visit when the two peoples foregathered in some roomy house in the evening. Or the visiting party, after being welcomed, and having partaken of a meal, would retire to the house set aside for its accommodation, whereupon the leader would send word to the chief man of the village that he wished to see him. On the arrival of that person the toro (delegate) might possibly wait for him to open the conversation, which he would do by making the very brief remark “Inutai,” which is an invitation to speak. The other person would then proceed with his narrative, or whatever it might be - in this case an explanation of the object of his visit. In such interviews, should the chief of the place require more details, he would say “Hokia ano.” But this applies more to cases wherein a messenger speaks in an enigmatic manner. Thus a messenger conveying news of a raid often made it known by means of such a remark as “Kore na hoki maua; ko te wai anake e rere ana” (“We are no more; naught remains save the flowing waters”).

We have seen that there is a certain etiquette pertaining to the presentation of gifts. Thus, when presenting a cloak or cape to a person, it would be laid outspread before him so that the upper part, the collar, would be next him. When gifts were made in a house we are told that a garment was deposited so that the neck faced the window; this was because visitors always occupied that part, or, in the absence of such, then it was the sleeping-place of the principal person of the inmates. Be it observed that the Maori did not hand a gift to the recipient, but deposited it before him. Gifts presented to an infant during the above-described functions were alluded to as paremata.

The refusal of an offer of betrothal such as is described above was deemed a slight, and, among such “touchy” folk as the Maori, the act might be productive of bitter trouble in the future.

This taumau function might take place at almost any time, as when the child was five or six years old, or some weeks or months after the tohi rite had been performed. An active man of good address was selected as a toro, and a small number of persons would accompany him on his errand. When making known the object of that errand the delegate would make some such remark as the following: “I have come hither in order to see our grandchild of whom so much has been heard by all, hence we are seen here” (“Taku haramai he toro i to tatou mokopuna, kua rahi ia ki roto i te taringa o te tangata; ina matau e noho nei”). In order to make known the child selected by his people as a mate for the local infant he would say, “Na Mea ka noho i a Mea ko Mea” (“From So- and-so who married So-and-so comes So-and-so”). This would be quite sufficient; his hearers would know the persons mentioned and their various lines of descent. The toro (delegate) would bring with him some form of gift, such as a cloak or a weapon, which he would deposit before his hosts. This is a form of gift alluded to as a paremata. The speech-making and arrangement of matters concerning the betrothal might take place the day after the arrival of the party, the previous evening having been devoted to the reception of the visitors. If the party arrived early enough in the day the ceremonial reception would be held during that day, and the village folk would entertain their guests during the evening, postponing all business until the morrow. Not more than two of the visitors would rise to speak concerning their business. The person who acted as spokesman for the village folk would, if the betrothal proposal was accepted, recite the formula termed a karakia hono.

After the deputation had departed on its return home the village folk would hold a meeting in which related peoples of other hamlets took part. At this meeting the gifts received from the deputation would be exhibited, also arrangements would be made as to who should have the custody of such presents. Hence, in after-days, one might inquire, “What became of the garments of the baptism of So-and-so?” and it would be explained, “So-and-so has them,” or “I riro i te kuwha o Mea” - that is, utilized as marriage gifts to a woman of the clan that had sent the deputation concerning the proposal of betrothal.

When the betrothed children reached the marrying age, that function was the occasion of a meeting of the clans, and at this meeting any of the betrothal gifts available would he exhibited on the marae (plaza) where the people were assembled, after which they would be handed over to the young couple. Any such articles as garments among these presents might be utilized later as ceremonial gifts and so passed on to others, but any “hard goods” (taonga maro) such as weapons were often retained. The ceremonial presentation of garments, ornaments, weapons, food-supplies, &c., represented a frequent occurrence in Maori social life; such gifts were made in connection with birth, marriage, death, exhumation, peace-making, moral delinquencies, and many other things too numerous to mention.

In connection with betrothal and marriage the Maori has an old saying as follows: “He hono tangata e kore e motu, kapa he taura waka, e motu” (“A human joining is inseverable, but not so a canoe-painter, which can be severed”).

The ceremonial betrothal of children, termed taumau, has survived to some extent even to late times. Some twenty-five years ago or more Te Hati Houkamau, of the East Cape district, heard of the birth of a female infant in a certain family at Wai-rarapa. He thereupon despatched a messenger to that place, who took with him a superior garment to be handed over to the father of the child, so as to bespeak her for his own son Te Mana. He said to the messenger, “Haere, kawea te kakahu hai whariki mo te tamahine a -----” (“Go, take the garment as a couch for the daughter of -----”). Occasionally a toro would be despatched to convey a message to the chief of a neighbouring clan, asking him to select a suitable wife for the son of the applicant. The despatcher of the messenger would say to him, “Ki atu ki a Mea kia tirohia tetahi o ana kotiro maku” (“Tell So-and-so to select one of his girls for me”), although the young woman was wanted for his son, or possibly his grandson.

Infants are said to have been weaned when they had become able to turn over without assistance. This statement has been made to the writer by a number of natives. Others have said that the appearance of the child’s teeth marked the time for weaning. In some cases mothers hastened the process by rubbing crushed leaves of horopito (Drimys axillaris) or kawakawa (Lomaria fluviatilis) on their breasts. Occasionally, we are told, a mother would allow a child to suckle her as long as it chose to. A lack of milk on the mother’s part might lead to her masticating such food as the flesh of young birds as sustenance for her infant. Suitable foods for young children must have been difficult or impossible to procure in many cases - unless, indeed, all foods were suitable for the shorn lamb.

The practice of massaging infants was followed by Maori mothers in former times. Several different kinds of massage were employed by Natives, and to these were applied the terms romiromi, takahi, and toto. The first-named method is as its name implies, one of pressing, squeezing, and stroking, while the second is performed with the feet, it being a treading or trampling process (takahi = to tread). This latter, as may be assumed, was not employed in the case of infants, but is said to have had excellent results when practised on a person suffering from excessive fatigue. The form of massage employed in dealing with infants is termed toto, the substantive or gerundial form being toanga; it consisted of stroking, pressure, &c. The limbs, features, &c., were subjected to manipulation daily so that the child might acquire a comely form. When the child attained maturity the final beautifying process was begun - that of tattooing. Thus massage and tattooing are by the Maori coupled together, as seen in the following remark made by Hori Ropiha, of Waipawa: “Ka whanau mai te tamaiti ka toia e tona whaea kia ataahua ai nga waewae, te tinana, me te kanohi; a ka pakeke ka taia ki te moko. No reira tenei whakatauki. He toanga ke ta tona matua, he toanga ke ta te kauri” (“When a child was born it was massaged by its mother to render its legs, body, and features shapely; when grown up it was tattooed. Hence this saying, ‘The manipulation of the parent differs from that of the tattooer’ ”).

Occasionally a form of basket cradle was used by the Maori mother, and this porakaraka, as it was termed, would be suspended in some way near where the mother chanced to be employed. This basket-like receptacle was distended by means of a hoop, and one informant stated that a trailing cord might be attached to it, and by means of which the mother would occasionally set it swinging. Another form, termed a pakokori or korowhitiwhiti, was a small enclosure made by thrusting into the earth four supplejack hoops so as to enclose a small square area. To the upper parts of these hoops, on the inner side, was tied a circular hoop, and a folded mat or old garment was arranged round the hoop and there secured. This was constructed at such a height that when the child was placed standing inside the enclosure its arms could be placed over the padded edge thereof. This was for children not yet able to walk: the child supported itself partially by means of its arms, and its feet took the balance of its weight; in this manner a child soon learned to stand.

When a mother occupied a sleeping-hut that was tapu, as most of such places formerly were, she would go outside the hut whenever it was necessary that her infant should receive its natural sustenance. This was in accordance with the general custom that no food may be partaken of within a dwelling-hut.

In former times the Maori was evidently much given to the singing of songs to infants, and many songs were specially composed for that purpose, of which a considerable number has been preserved. These songs are known as oriori (in full, oriori tamariki) and they must not be confused with lullabies sung with the intention of causing a child to sleep. When examined they are found to be peculiar compositions in many cases, and, from our point of view, utterly unsuitable for the purpose of being sung to children. This aspect is the result of their being packed with allusions to occurrences in tribal history and ancient myths, beliefs, &c. It is a fact that many of these songs composed for children are among the most interesting of Native compositions, and that is on account of their contents. They are so composed because their purport was primarily an educational one. They were so worded as to contain much information that it was considered desirable children should become acquainted with. Certainly such a song would be sung to a child long before it could understand the same, and before it had acquired the faculty of speech. But the child would grow and develop the faculties of thought and speech, and also knowing the wording of the song. Sooner or later the child would commence to ask questions regarding the song, the meaning of names, &c., and so knowledge was acquired. This was, in fact, one of the methods of instruction adapted by the Maori. Schools for small folk did not exist, but there were certain peculiar and interesting usages by means of which desirable knowledge was imparted to children and so handed down succeeding generations.

The following is given as a specimen of these oriori, or instructive songs. Attention is directed to the number of proper names it contains; these would be the subject of inquiry on the part of children:-

Naumai, e hine! ki te aoturoa a to tipuna a Tane-matua;
I tiki ai ki roto o Matangi-reia i a Io mata ngaro; i roto o Rangiatea e whata ana
Mauria mai nei ko te kete tuauri, ko te kete tuatea, ko te kete aronui, e hine!
I te ara tiatia i he ai Whiro te tipua; kake noa tera i te ara taepa, te kite, te aha.
Koia tarahau o nga puhi o nga rangi, e hine…e!
Ka kawea mai e Tane-nui-a-Rangi, e nga whatukura,
Ki roto o Wharekura nei whata ai te wananga, e hine!
Ka waiho hei ao marama ki taiao nei, e hine…e!
Koia i tipu ai te tarahau, te hinana na;
Tau ke atinuku, tau ke atirangi i konei, e hine…e!
Ka kutia te po, ka kutia te ao, ko Te Paerangi tenei, e hine…e!
Koia i noho ai Tane i a Hine-titama i konei, e hine…e!
Ka titamatia te po, ka titamatia te ao;
Ka uia i reira e Te Kuwatawata “E haere ana koe ki whea, Tane te waiora…e!”
Ka uia “E hine! Haere ana koe ki whea?”
Ka mea a Hine “Kei whea toku matua e ngaro nei i au…e?”
Ka uia ki nga poupou o te whare, kaore te ki mai te waha.
E mate ra i te whakama, ka konau haere i Whitianaunau, ki marae nui o Poutere-rangi
E ohomauri ana a Tane, ka atiu i waho ra o Hui-te-ananui
“E hokai ana koe ki whea, e Tane-tikitiki…e?”
Ka pa mai te waha “Ki te whai atu i ta taua nei puhi, e hika…e”!
“E hoki; tangohia e koe i nga tupuni o Wehi-nui-a-mamao
Ko Hihira ki uta, ko Hihira ki tai, ko Parinuku, ko Parirangi
Tikina e koe ki te kahui whatu punga nei…e”
Ko Takurua nei, e, Meremere nei, e, Atutahi-ma-Rehua nei, e;
He ariki no te tau ka wehe nei, e;
Ka tau mai ko Whakaneke pungarehu nei, e, ko Ruaki-motumotu nei…e;
Hei tupa i a Wero-i-te-ninihi, e, ko Wero-i-te-kokota nei…e.
Ka puta i konei o raua tuahine, a Wero-i-te-marie, a Wero-i-te-ahuru…e;
Koia te wero i te mahana, e, i tataia ki te poho o Rangi-nui;
Koia Tama-nui-te-ra, e hine, e! Ka haere wareware atu na koe, e;
Koia i tau ai te haere i te aoturoa, e hine…e…i!
Ka wehea te po i konei, te ao i konei, e hine aku…e…i.”

Here we have a song that would, from our point of view, be utterly unsuitable for such a purpose as singing to infants - a song utterly unlike our lullabies and nursery ballads. In this oriori the child is welcomed into the world of light, this world into which Tane introduced light and knowledge. Then occur references to the ascent of Tane to the heavens, his procuring the three baskets of knowledge and bringing them down to earth, where they were preserved in Wharekura. Then comes the story of Tane and his daughter Hine-titama, and of her descent to the underworld; after which come allusions to old astronomical myths - and this was composed as a song to be crooned over infants!

Another of these oriori collected in past years was composed by Tamahau, of Ngati-Hikawera, of the Wai-rarapa district. It was composed in retaliation of some offensive remarks made by one Toko-pounamu, and the first part runs as follows:-

E tama ki te matangi e tangi nei, turituri noa.
E tama maniania kia whakarangona ake te ki a te mokai.
Tenei taua te kiia mai nei he toenga,
Tenei taua te kiia mai nei he mutunga,
Tenei taua te kiia mai nei he mau maro,
Tenei taua te kiia mai nei he taurekareka…e…i.
Mau hoki e utu atu, noku anake te tupuna;
To haramai i mua i waiho nga huruhuru o te tara
Hei piki mo te tino tangata e korero mai na…e.
Ko taua ano i Nga Konohi, e; ko taua ano i Wai-o-ruarangi;
Ko taua ano i te putakari tipua ki muri.
Ka ea ona mate, ka waiho te whenua mo taua, e tama!
Tahuri utua ke te ki e ki mai ra.

Here the slighted one composes an oriori in order to avenge an insult - indeed, to doubly avenge it. In the first place, it would quickly become known, and so doubtless annoy his detractor; in the second place, he explains in the song belittling expressions made concerning himself, and calls upon his infant son to square the account. The child would grow up thoroughly conversant with the song, its meaning, and with what was expected of him. At some time in the future the account must be settled. When the opportunity came to do so the offender might no longer be in the world of life, but that mattered little - his children or other members of the clan must pay the reckoning.

The following is the first stanza of an oriori composed by one Nga-rangi-whakaotia for Meretini:-

Uiui noa au, e hine! Ko wai to ingoa
I kawe ai koe e o matua ki te wai tuaroa ai?
Maku e tapa atu ki te ingoa o to tipuna, o Whakarewa-i-te-rangi, e hine…e!
Noho mai, e hine! I roto i to whare i Taiwhetuki, e, te whare no Tuarangi.
Ka patua e Tane hei topetope i tana toko,
I a Toko-hurunuku, i a Toko-hururangi, i a Rakau-tuke, i a rakau-koki
Nga toko, e hine! I tokona ai te rangi i runga nei.
Rere te maramara no te Awhiorangi;
Ko te toki tena i topetopea nga ngaru.
Ki mai te tangata - Na wai ra, e?
Mau e ki atu na Te Kahui-pou, na Pou-titi, na Pou-tata, na Pou-korero
Na Kahu-taringa i tiki ki roto o Wharekura, e hine…e!

Here again the composer goes away back to the origin of things, to the separation of earth and sky, to find a theme for a song to be sung to an infant. Here are mentioned the four props or supports by means of which the heavens were supported; the ancient and tapu stone adze said to have been used in cutting those props, and in after-times employed in a singular rite performed in order to calm a storm-tossed sea. This magic implement is said to have been used to fell or hew down the great billows; its name is the Awhiorangi, and rumour states that it is in possession of the Nga-rauru folk, who keep it concealed.

One Wai-Karaka was responsible for the following oriori, composed for a female infant named Hiki-pakupaku:-

E Hiki-pakupaku! E ware ana taua i te korero o te mokai;
Nuku mai taua ki raro, kihai taua i tata.
I tikina e koe ki te motuhanga o nga waka i tawhiti;
I a Tainui taua, i a Te Arawa, i a Horouta, i a Takitimu, i a Kurahaupo;
Ko te waka tena o to tupuna, o Whatonga.
Ko Ihu-papangarua, te hoe tena i u mai ai ki Aotearoa;
Ko te hoe whakairo i waiatia i te ngaru tuatea.
I u ki uta ra ko te karaka huarua, ko te kopou ai (?) ratau.
I toro mai taua, e hine! I Tawhiti-nui, i Tawhiti-roa, i Tawhiti-pamamao;
Koia te nukuroa nana [a] Maurea, nana Rongokako, nana Tamatea,
Ka noho i a Iwipupu ko Kahungunu-matangi-rau.
Kotahi tonu, e hine! Te whawharua i takoto ai raua ko Rongomai-wahine…e…i.
Whakautua taua, e hine, ki Maungaroa ki te tiraha aruhe…e…i.
Whakautua taua ki te kawhiu paua i a Uepata.
He peka ianei taua, e hine! I te korero o te mokai;
I rapa taua, e hine! Ki te tahunga a to tipuna i te maota i mate ai te moa.
Na Uenuku taua, e hine! I mokai ai;
I haere ai Ruatapu i te huri purei ata, tona hokowhitu;
Te hoki mai hoki ki te whai ao, ki te ao marama.
Ka whakapuaretia e te tuakana, e Kahutia-te-rangi;
Ka tukua i reira ko te rahui nui ki raro;
Ka mate taua i te Upoko-poito, e hine…e…i.

Here again we encounter references to tribal traditions - to the coming of vessels from Polynesia some twenty generations ago; to persons of that period and their doings in the world of life. The lengthy production below has been constructed on similar lines: it is an oriori composed by one Rangikawea -

Tenei roa taku tapairu ariki te haramai nei;
I haramai ano koe i roto i a Pipiri;
He uranga, he harurutanga, he ngatorotanga ka tau ki mua ra.
Naumai, e tama! Ki te ao marama nei;
Whakarongo ake ai ki te korero o te mokai e hau mai ra kei a taua.
Na to tipuna, e tama! Na Te Rangi-kamangungu i ki mai he mokai taua no roto ake nei;
Mau ra e ki atu - Ko koe anake te mokai, no te Rowhitu papa…e
No taku hau te kawa, no te pohatu paremoremo…e
No te kirikiri tatangi mai i roto o Tawhiti-nui…e
No te mea raia, e tama! He rurenga taua no nga pou.
No runga, taua, e, no te tahu atua nei;
No te kimihanga taua, no te rangahautanga,
No te kore te whiwhia, no te kore te rawea.
Pupuru mau ake ki te kanoi o te uha
Te kawitiwiti, e, te katoatoa kai tirawa i hapua he tane ko Hawaiki…e
Na Tangaroa taua, na Te Whatu, na Maire, na Maika, na Uira, na Tato
Na Rongokako, na Tamatea, na Kahungunu, na Kahukura-nui, na Rakai-hikuroa
E ka taketake taua ki te ao marama…e…i.
Na Ngaitaua, e, na Ngainui, na Ngairoa, na Ngaipehu,
Na Ngaiakiaki, na Te Manu-waerorua, na Toi, na Rauru-toa,
Na Whatonga, na Ruatapu, na Tahatiti, na Rakaiora, e tama!
Ki te whai ao, ki te ao marama…e…i.
Ko Kahukura anake te atua i whanau mai ki waho;
Na te hau, na te matangi, na te hau whakarawarawa;
Na Tuatea, nana i ai mai ko Tara-kumukumu ki mua, ko Kahukura ki muri;
Whangai rawa atu ki te waiu o tona matua hamama tonu ki tawhiti,
Whangai rawa atu ki te ate kahawai;
Ka ruakina mai ki waho ra, koia te maroro.
E hanga ana Pou i tona whare i Pohokura
Toia nga waka e rua ki te tauranga, hoki tonu mai tera ki te kainga.
Hoki rawa atu ka riro i nga taokete te kahaki,
I a Kauoa, i a Paeaki, i a Rongoiamoa, i a Atahinga-matua.
Eke tonu tera ki runga ki tona waka huruhuru manu;
Ka tu ki waho ki te moana ka tuku te roro hau;
Ka taka ki raro ra koia Rumakina ka whanake i raro ra.
Pipiha i te uru o Maruanuku, whakaea te uru o Maruararo;
Ka haere tera i runga i te ika moana;
Tutaki tonu atu ki nga taokete e haramai ana;
Whakahoki rawa mai, maro tonu atu.
Tangi te pou mau kita kau ki uta ra;
Ka hoa i tona karakia, tukia mai te papa;
He koenga, he papa matiketike, he papa makeukeu…e.
Kei te whakahotu nuku, e, kei te whakahotu rangi, kei te huihui aromea;
Te kakau whakawhiwhia e Rua, Rua nui a Toru…e.
Ko wai koe e whakahua mai nei ki toku ingoa? Ko awau ko Rangahua, e
I haramai au ki nga kakano, kia tangohia mai ko te tutae tara, ko te kawakawa tawhiti.
Tirahatia mai ko Hautakere-nuku, ko Hautakere-rangi;
I haramai i runga i aku manu, i a Tiunga-rangi, i a Haronga-rangi
Ka tau ana ko te aro o te atua.
Ka tiria, e tama! Ki te puke tahi anake
Whiti a tau rawa ake, ka heke ki te raupapa nui (?)
Ka tae ki te tua kiato [? atua kiato] hei whangai mohou…e…i.

Portions of the above are somewhat obscure. We have here another case of a person feeling insulted on account of slurring remarks, and so the aggrieved one composed this song in order to ease his mind and to keep the memory of the insult green. The composer welcomes his (or her) child into the world of life, and the child is told of the verbal affront and of the person who offered it, and how to make answer to it. We are then carried back to times remote and told the descent of the singer and his child, and of Pou-rangahua, who sought the seed of the sweet-potato at far Hawaiki, and of his wife, who was guardian of the prized greenstone, and of how the prized tuber was brought to these isles and here planted. All of which seems to us as being extremely inappropriate and unfitted for insertion in a nursery song.

In the following we see that lines of descent were traced in these songs, and so a knowledge of them was acquired by children as they grew up. This oriori was composed by one Tahatu-o-te- rangi for the benefit of two infants, twins, named Kupe and Ngake - so named, presumably, after the two Polynesian explorers who are said to have reached these shores in the mist-laden past.

Ka pau hoki ra o taua nei hau te tuku e o matua ki raro;
Ka hemo te maunga, e ora ana te wa ki o kaiure na….
Whakaawatea rawa ake ko te puta kakari ko Ue (?)
Ka puta Pani taonga ki te ahi, ko Tohatoha te ika i te ati;
Ka puta ki te ahi i te Papanui, ko Waerea te ika i te ati;
Ko Te Atinuku, ko Tupai-whakarongo-wananga.
Ka rea i o matua nei ko te puta kakari ko Whakamarino;
Ka mau to taua nei wehi ki te rangi ka iri ta taua nei kai,
Kati pea, ma Kupe raua nei ko Ngake e tina te whenua nei,
Tina te tukutuku o te rangi, tina te aweawe o te rangi, tina tamore i Hawaiki.
Kia noho ai taua i te kainga o to tipuna o Whatumamoa i Heretaunga;
Waiho e Whatumamoa ki a Te Orotu nona te kiri pango e mau atu nei i a taua nei.
E kiia mai nei e Tahaia ki to tuakana ki te kiri papakiri
Na Houruru taua, na Hourea, na Houpango,
Na Taiwiri, na Taipopoia, na Tama-nohorangi,
Nana i ai mai ki waho ko Kura-tawhiti;
Ka noho i a Tu-rauwhanui a Kea (?), ko Rakai-te-kura;
Ka noho i a Te Rangi-tuehu, ko Hine-iao, he wahine;
Ka noho i a Te Rangi-taumaha, ko Te Huhuti, ko Te Ruatiti;
Ka noho i a Te Whati-apiti, ko Te Wawahanga o te rangi, ko Te Hikawera;
Ka noho i a Te Ao-patu-whare, ko Te Rangi-kawhiua te tane;
Ka noho i a Horonga-i-te-rangi, ko Te Manawa-hawa…e…i.

There is an interesting allusion in the above to Te Orotu, an old-time chief of the Ngati-Mamoe folk who occupied the Napier district many generations ago. Now, Ngati-Mamoe are described in Maori tradition as being a branch of the Maruiwi people, the first occupants of the North Island. Ngati- Mamoe are said to have moved to the Napier district when harassed by enemies elsewhere. The composer of the above song remarks on the fact that Te Orotu was a dark-skinned person - “his the dark skin that we possess” - which reminds us of the traditionary statement that the Maruiwi folk were a dark-skinned people. The Houruru mentioned in the song was the son of Te Orotu. The Kura-tawhiti mentioned flourished seventeen generations ago. The other persons mentioned are well-known ancestors of the Hawke’s Bay district. The following is a line of descent from Te Orotu through Houruru -

Whatu-mamoe or Hotu-mamoe (see Journal of the Polynesian Society, vol. 35, p. 75):-
Te Orutu
Kura-tawhiti == Turauwha
Taraia II
Renata Kawepo
Two more generations.

Many more of these oriori songs might here be given, but the above will suffice to show the nature of such compositions, the utter lack of the simple themes and simple language that mark our nursery ballads and lullabies.



This practice seems to have been viewed as a somewhat important one in India and Burma, as it was among the Maori folk, at least among the higher-class families. All my notes pertain, I find, to the ceremony as performed over female infants, although males also wore ear-pendants in former times. Pendants were sometimes suspended from a child’s neck long before its ears were pierced. The operation was performed when a child was four or five years old. In the case of an infant of a high-class family the piercing might be done by a near relative or by some expert at such work - by the ubiquitous tohunga, perchance. Occasionally the piercing-instrument was fashioned from human bone, the bone of an enemy; but iwi toroa (albatross-bone) seems to have been more commonly used. In the former case the bodkin-like instrument would be known by the name of the hapless individual who had furnished the bone. The human-bone tools were prized for the purpose of piercing the ears of boys. So it might be asked, “Ko wai rawa te iwi i pokaia ai o taringa?” (“Whose bone was it by means of which your ears were pierced?”). The reply might be, “E! He toroa a ruru” (“Oh, it was an albatross-bone”). The operator would probably receive some form of gift from the near relatives of the child.


Female children seldom had the tohi rite performed over them; a few cases are known in which the first-born female was so honoured. Even in the case of male children only the first-born received this treatment. Our native informant proceeds as follows:-

“Some females of the East Coast were tohia, as were Hine-matioro, of Titirangi, at Uawa, and also Mahinarangi; those women had this tohi rite performed over them. Those were the only women whom I heard of as having been purea in this manner. The last person so tohia was Karauria, father of Airini Tonore, who had it performed over him at Tapu-te-ranga, a small islet at the Whanga-nui- a-Orotu (Inner Harbour at Napier); that was during my childhood, possibly about the year 1846….”


“O, friend! understand this: should the pains of labour extend beyond the seventh day, then serious trouble results. The application of the term rauru nui ceases on the seventh day, after which commences the period known as rauru whiwhia, and when the trouble continues beyond the seventh day it is known that it is a case of twins; if it continues until the tenth day, or over, then such condition is a marua-aitu, and the child will be still-born.

“Now, should one of the arms of the child first appear, or one of its legs, then it is known that the child will be of a forward disposition. In these distressful cases the woman would be conveyed to the tapu place of rites, where the following formula would be recited over her:-

Haramai, e hine! I te Maruaroa
Whakaputa i a koe ki taiao
Ki te ara o to tipuna, o Hine-titama
I takahia ai tapuwae nuku, tapuwae rangi
Tapuwae ki Tiritiri o Matangi hauaroa
Whaia to tapuwae, ko te tapuwae o to tipuna o Hine-hauone
Ka takoto ai i roto i a Hui-te-rangiora
Whakaputa i a koe, e hine! ki te aoturoa.

“After the conclusion of the above another formula connected with the infant was recited:-

Tenei au te hoka nei i to tapuwae
Ko te hokai nuku, ko te hokai rangi
Ko te hokai whakaputa i a koe ki Tahuaroa, ki te aoturoa.
Haramai, e tama! (e hine ranei)
Takahia mai to ara, ko te ara whanui a Tane
Whakakake i a koe i te ara o to tipuna, o Hine-titama
I whakaputa ai i a ia ki taiao
Kia takawhaki ia i roto i Hui-te-ananui
Ka tau te mauri ki te whai ao, ki te ao marama
Ka tangi te mapu waiora ki te urutapu, e tama…e!”

This charm is used in order to cause the infant to be born.

“When Moe-te-ao gave birth to twins, one of them, Mahanga-tikaro, became awry and protruded a leg into the passage. Appeals to the god Maru were made from the eighth to the tenth day, when the leg was withdrawn. On that same day the right arm was thrust forward, and so the woman was conveyed to the tuahu or tapu place known as Toka-a-Hine-moko, and Maru caused the arm to be withdrawn. The other twin, named Mahanga-puhua, was then born, while the other remained in the womb. Moe-te-ao was then conveyed across the river to Te Wao-kairangi, where the second twin was born, and named Mahanga-tikaro, while that place was named Nga Mahanga [The Twins], or, in full, Nga Mahanga-a-Moeteao.

“Now, concerning the nights [i.e., days or periods] during which the offspring of Papa and Rangi [Earth Mother and Sky Parent] were preparing to emerge into the world, these are represented in this world by the following names: The Po tamaku, the Po aoaonui, the Po kerekere, the Po kakarauri, the Po uriuri, the Po tiwhatiwha. These names represent the first period of preparation among the offspring of Rangi and Papa to escape from the embrace of their parents.

“Now, if a child be born during this period, then it is looked upon as an easy, normal birth; it is a rauru nui birth - the child will be healthy and robust; but if the infant be not born until the seventh or eighth day, then trouble ensues during those two days. If the time chance to be the Rakaunui [seventeenth] or Whiro [the first] night of the moon, or the Tangaroa nights [twenty-third to twenty-sixth], then the woman will be in grievous plight: she should be conveyed to the tuahu and there treated by an expert, and so be saved. Should a woman give birth to a child during the early days of a branch of the season [i.e., lunar month] it were well that it occur not after the seventh or eighth day, for such is the rauru-nui period already mentioned. Should birth not take place until the ninth or tenth day - that is, the rauru whiwhia period - these two days betoken a forward child. In such cases an arm or leg will be thrust forward, or the body of the infant be somewhat awry, and, unless care be taken, the end will be a dead woman, a still-born child: such is termed a weu tapu, and, if the child survive, he will develop into a warrior.

“Should the time of birth be extended to the eleventh day, then the lunar month should be referred to, and, should it chance to be the Whiro phase of the moon, then the conditions are those of rauru matua, and the child will survive, and should be carefully nurtured. Should the child be born during the Orongonui season, then the moon should be observed as to whether it is pale-lined or has a halo round it, or is ‘in the yellow.’ If the infant selects the time when the moon is surrounded by a form of halo, the child will turn out to be wayward; should it choose either of the other aspects mentioned, then the child will be healthy, a desirable child. However, enough on that point.

“Now, the twelfth night is one of evil omen; though it fall in the early part of the lunar month it would be termed a po matohi (a Matohi phase) verging upon the Korekore phases, and so this night is consigned to Whiro; so is this period known as po taruaitu, and no infant survives.”

Here is another recital of the Takitumu elders concerning the above subject. “The first six po periods, or nights [the Maori counted time by nights, hence where he used the term ‘nights’ in this connection we would say ‘days’] were as follows: The Po, the Po nui, the Po roa, the Po uriuri, the Po kerekere, the Po tiwha. [Of the words here used in an adjectival manner the last three convey the meaning of ‘darkness’; nui means “great, extensive, numerous”; while roa means “long.”] These po represent the original periods that concerned the offspring of Rangi and Papa [the Sky Parent and Earth Mother]. To these were added the following: The Po te kitea, the Po tangotango, the Po whawha, the Po namunamu ki taiao, the Po tahuri atu, the Po tahuri mai ki taiao, thus making twelve in all, as in the case of the lunar months, of which also there are twelve: these here enumerated are the divisions of the Po.

“Now, these twelve divisions of the po were divided; during six of them Papa the Earth Mother fostered the development of all her children, that they might acquire form, the breath of life and growth, including all things, whether man, fish, animals, insects, herbage, or birds. Some of the offspring of Papa were distributed throughout the divisions of the heavens, and these were placed under the care of Hine-te-ahuru, Hine-rurumai, and Hine-makohurangi: these were the guardians of such as were so distributed. [These ‘children’ distributed throughout space are the heavenly bodies, sometimes said to be the offspring of Hine-te-ahuru. Hine-makohurangi is the Mist Maid.]

“Now, the other six po represent the period during which the offspring of Rangi and Papa moved and prepared to seek the passage into this world, and this first activity of theirs is indicated by the expressions ‘the Po tahuri atu’ and ‘the Po tahuri ki taiao.’ Now, this condition of restless movement among the offspring of Papa is represented among our women. When the infant begins to move within the womb of the mother, should such efforts continue for over four nights, then a still-born child results; should they continue beyond the fifth or sixth, a dead mother, a dead child, result. Hence the expressions hokai rauru nui, rauru whiwhia, and hokai rauru maruaitu. You now understand this matter; but these expressions, &c., must not be viewed as being connected with human lines of descent.”


In the ceremonial baptism of infants as performed by the Maori in past times we see a close resemblance to a Christian usage. This peculiarity extends to other matters, as seen in the old Maori institutions of confession, immersion, and absolution, for example. E. B. Tylor, the anthropologist, expressed the opinion that such baptismal rites practised by barbaric folk might have been borrowed from Christianity; but this surmise must be laid aside in the face of far-reaching evidence to the contrary. It is clear that Christianity, like all other cults, was based upon preceding faiths, and that many of its rites and teachings, &c., can be traced far back into paganism. In like manner we can trace many Maori usages to far-off lands. The tapu pertaining to birth; the whare kohanga, or “nest hut,” in which the mother was segregated; the planting of a branch at the birth of an infant; the performance of the baptismal and naming rite seven days after birth; the ceremonial piercing of the ears of children - all these usages were observed in far-off India as they were in the land of the Maori.

It must be borne in mind that the ceremonial described in this paper pertained to the first-born male children of high-class families only; this was owing to the respect the Maori ever had for the law of primogeniture.

In an account of the superior tohi rite collected by the late Colonel Gudgeon, a komako (bell-bird) is said to have been released during the performance. This ceremonial releasing of birds also appears in old-time lore of India and Babylonia.

Readers will note that in a number of cases the formulae or so-called charms recited by the Maori during such ceremonies as those described above seem to have no bearing whatever on the matter in hand. This peculiarity is said to pertain to such recitals of many peoples of a similar culture stage, and even to those of nations of antiquity that had attained a much higher level than that attained by the Polynesians.

Personal names in many cases owed their origin to incidents, and sometimes these were of quite a trivial nature. When the tua rite was performed over the child of Ruatapu, of the Toi line, a lizard was employed as a whakahere, or placatory offering, to the atua, or spirit god, under whose aegis the ceremony was conducted, hence to that infant was assigned the name of Rakaiora. This name is that of the personified form of lizards.

In a little-known work entitled Maori Mementos, by C. O. Davis, we find some unusual features assigned to the baptismal ceremony. He writes: “The mode of baptizing the Maori children was simply as follows: The mother and nurse accompanied the priest to a stream, the latter holding in his hand a small branch, which he dipped in the water, and, sprinkling the infant, uttered certain prayers. The mother of the child was not allowed to see the ceremony performed; she stood at a short distance with her back turned toward the priest, but at the conclusion of the rite the infant was delivered to the mother, who bore it in her arms to a sacred house, where the infant, herself, and nurse were obliged to remain in a state of tapu for one month. During this period no visitor was allowed to approach, and frequently the nurse was not even permitted to fondle the child until the expiration of the month. As to the father, he was treated as the veriest stranger. The extreme sacredness of this ceremony, however, was confined to the first-born, and took place three days after the child was born. Sometimes the rites were far more complex than the above.”

The above notes were probably derived from a northern source, whereas the account I have given of baptismal ceremonies was obtained from the Ngati-Kahungunu folk.

Among the Tuhoe folk we hear of two huts as having been constructed for the accommodation of the expectant mother. The first one occupied by her was called the whare kahu and whare whakakahu, and in this she gave birth to her child. The word kahu denotes the membrane enveloping a foetus. The mother left this hut soon after delivery, according to some natives, while others state that she remained therein until about the seventh day after delivery, when she took up her quarters in the second hut, the whare kohanga. This latter statement is not so credible as the first one. According to the Tuhoe folk the tua rite had the effect of removing the condition of tapu from infant and mother, and it endowed the child with health, vigour, and other desirable qualities.


The following contribution from native sources includes an interesting formula recited by an expert in cases of difficult parturition, also a considerable amount of information pertaining to the training of male children in useful arts. In No. 3 of Addenda this matter appears in the original, while No. 4 consists of an old formula employed as late as the “forties” of last century, when the tua rite was performed over Karauria on Tapu-te-ranga, an islet in Napier Harbour. The No. 3 contribution explains the conditions under which the appeal to the gods was made. In this case only one is appealed to, that one being Rongomai. After the recital comes the account of the training of a young lad, which account runs as follows:-

“Now, when the lad was fairly grown, then the task of teaching him the use of weapons and tools commenced - such implements as were connected with Tumatauenga, Tane-matangi-nui, and Tama-akaaka-nui, as the taiaha, greenstone and bone striking-weapons, also spears, both weapons and bird-spears. Then the lad was taught the use of tools used in agriculture - the various forms of wooden spades employed in cultivating the sweet-potato and taro, and in digging fern-roots; the scuffle-hoe, and small forms of spade-like tools used in working among crops.

“Then the lad was taught the construction of houses, huts, cooking-sheds, storehouses, also elevated platforms or stages on which certain food-supplies and other things were stored. He was also taught the construction of fence-like breakwinds, such as were erected to protect crops and shelter huts and hamlets. Also was he taught the art of dressing timber with stone adzes of two kinds, the toki tata and the toki aronui, used in various ways. Again, he was taught to use the wooden beetle and wedges in splitting timber as material for dwelling-houses, storehouses, defensive stockades, &c. The use of stone chisels and drill were also taught, also the arts of wood- carving and of painting designs. Yet another course of instruction was that connected with the making of canoes and their numerous appurtenances, and likewise the manufacture of fish-hooks.”

The account of these training operations concludes with a somewhat lengthly formula that was recited by an expert instructor, and which is said to have enabled lads to acquire and retain desirable knowledge. In this recital the beings Tane, Tupai, Te Akaaka-matua, Rauru-matua, Rongomai-waho, Tanga-i-waho, and Tiwhaia are appealed to. In the baptismal chant given in No. 4 of Addenda the gods Rongo, Kahukura, Tumutauenga, Rongomai, Tane, Maru, Tunui-a-te-ika, Tangaroa, Rehua, and Korako are appealed to; certainly such a combination should have some effect.


In No. 5 of Addenda is given a remarkable tradition preserved by the Maori. This recital describes a peculiar custom said to have been practised in olden times by certain folk of Irihia, the original homeland of the Maori. This custom was one of taunaha wahine, the claiming or selection of women as wives; though the women were also allowed to choose their husbands, hence there must have been, as with us, cases of disappointed hopes. Te Matorohanga explained in his recital that Irihia was a very hot country, so much so that the people thereof went naked, or nearly so. Men wore a very scant form of maro, or loin-cloth; girls and lads were practically naked, but when a girl married she took to wearing a taupaki, a very abbreviated form of kilt that just covered the posteriors.

When the time arrived for young people to mate they assembled at a certain place and there arranged themselves in two ranks according to sex. The young men had first choice, and each selected the young woman of the opposing rank who appealed most strongly to him, after which the girls made their choice. We are not given any details as to adjustment of matters in cases wherein the views of young folk did not coincide. Young men selected girls whom they deemed good- looking as to the face, who had shapely legs with a well-poised body, a comely junction of the trunk with the buttocks, a straight legged, erect carriage. Girls selected young men of a stalwart, matured aspect, with well-shaped body, handsome face not too wide, large eyes that looked with a mild expression upon mankind, with shapely loins and lacking any excessive protuberance of the buttocks or stooping-forward of the body; lacking also restless eyes, overhanging eyebrows, upturned nose, and gaping mouth. Such would be the choice of these young folks. Another matter was with regard to the mouth - that the cutting-teeth might be well set and sightly, as also the double teeth. And so were marriages arranged. When all was arranged, then male and female elders would give their consent. Then the woman donned a taupaki and the man a loin-cloth.

Now, this peculiar institution described above was also known in Polynesia, but we know not how far the custom was spread. It was a feature of the social life of the island of Mangaia, as explained to me by the late Colonel Gudgeon in 1912. The whare motunau was an old institution at Mangaia. It was a place where young girls of good family were received and cared for until they were of marriageable age, which would be when they were well matured - say, twenty years of age. When a number of these girls had arrived at that period of life they were conducted to a house and formed a rank along one of the walls thereof. A number of young men of equal rank were then admitted and seated in a row along the opposite wall; thus the rows of young folk faced each other. Each young man then selected the girl whose appearance pleased him most, and, if she agreed, then the two were, with much ceremony, conducted to the young men’s house and were looked upon as man and wife. Presumably the young men took it in turns to make a selection, otherwise some confusion would probably arise.

It seems quite possible that the whare motunau institution had been introduced into Polynesia from elsewhere, and equally possible that our local pundits have credited to the ultimate homeland what pertained to the immediate homeland. The Maori of New Zealand is unfortunate in having two homelands to deal with - namely, the isles of Polynesia, and the remote land from which he came to Polynesia in the mist-laden past. Both are known as Hawaiki, and the two have probably been confused to some extent.




He mea kauwhau mai e Te Whatahoro, Akuhata, 1913; otira na Te Matorohanga te nuinga o enei korero.

Ka whanau te tamaiti a tetahi tangata raua ko tona wahine rangatira, ka whanau ta raua tamaiti matamua ka rangona e te hapu o te taha ki te matua tane, ki te matua wahine, ka karangatia he hui o nga hapu tata o raua tokorua, o te wahine raua ko te tane. Taua hui he hui whakahari, he ngakau hari mo te whanautanga o taua tamaiti. Ki te mea he tane te tamaiti katahi ka whakatakotoria nga taonga e aua hapu, ara e nga whanaunga o te tane, o te wahine. Engari ka takoto ke nga taonga o te taha ki te matua tane, ka takoto ke nga taonga o te taha ki te wahine, a ko nga taonga o te taha ki te tane ka takoto i te tuatahi. Ka takoto nga taonga ka whakatika te tangata whakataki korero, te tuatahi tonu ko te maioha. Mehemea no te taha ki te tane te kaikorero, ka maioha ia ki te taha ki te wahine, ara te whaea, a mehemea no te taha ki te wahine te kaikorero, ka maioha ia ki te taha ki te tane. Ka mutu te maioha ki te tane, wahine ranei, katahi ka maioha ki te tamaiti.

He karakia tetahi wahi o te maioha, anei taua karakia e whai ake nei:-

Naumai, e tama! Kia mihi atu au
I haramai ra koe i te kunenga mai o te tangata i roto i te ahuru mowai
Ka taka te pae o Huakipouri
Ko te whare hangahanga tena a Tane-nui-a-Rangi i te one i Kurawaka
I tataia ai te puhi ariki, te hiringa matua, te hiringa tipua, te hiringa tawhito rangi
Ka karapinepine te pu toto i a ia ki roto te whare wahi awa
Ka whakawhetu tama i a ia, ka riro mai a Rua-i-te-pukenga, a Rua-i-te-horahora
Ka hokai tama i a ia, koia hokai rauru nui, koia hokai rauru whiwhia, koia hokai rauru maruaitu
Ka maro tama i te ara namunamu ki taiao
Ka kokiri tama i a ia ki te aoturoa, e tama, e!”

Ka mutu, ka peke nga waewae o te kaikorero, ka ngangahu te tangata nei, ka whakapi, ka whakatitiko haere. Na, ka mutu tena ka tuaruatia te karakia, no te mea ki te pana tahi he aitua. Mehemea ka pena kua riri katoa nga tangata. Katahi ka whakahuatia te karakia e whai ake nei:-

Haramai, e tama! Puritia i te aka matua
Kia whitirere ake koe ko te kauwae runga, ko te kauwae raro
Kia tawhia, kia tamaua, kia ita i roto i a Rua-i-te-pukenga,
A Rua-i-te-horahora, a Rua-i-te-wanawana, a Rua-matua taketake o Tane
Naumai, e…., kia areare o taringa ki te whakarongo
Ko nga taringa o Rongomai-tahanui, o Rongomai-taha-rangi, o Tupai-whakarongo-wananga
Ka taketake i konei ki tipuaki o Rangi
Ka rere mai a Poutu-i-te-rangi, ka whakaawhi i a Puke-hauone
Ka hoka Hine-rau-wharangi i a ia i konei ki a Takamai-ahuahu
Ahua te puke nui, ahua te puke whakaki nau, e Rongo-maraeroa!
Koia te ngahuru tikotiko iere, te Maruaroa o te Matahi o te tau
Te putunga o te hinu, e tama…e…i!

Ka peke nga waewae o te tangata i konei, ka whakapi haere, ka ngangahu. He karakia tena mo nga kai o tena hakari, ara mo nga kai e tukuna ana hai whangai i te tamaiti, ara i te whaea tona hangaitanga, engari ko te kupu tenei ka hoatu aua kai hai whangai ki te tamaiti.

Na, mehemea kaore he kai kaore te tangata e karakia i tenei karakia, kore rawa e karakia pokanoa. Mehemea ka karakia tetahi tangata i taua karakia i runga i te kore kai, kua teka ia ki te atua, ara ki a Io-matua. Mehemea kaore ana kai ka karakia ia i tetahi karakia ke, ara koia tenei:-

Haramai, e tama! E mau to ringa ki te kete tuauri, ki te kete tuatea, ki te kete aronui
I pikitia e Tane-nui-a-Rangi i te ara tauwhaiti i te pumotomoto o Tikitiki-o-rangi
I karangatia e Tane-nui-a-Rangi ki a Huru-te-arangi, i noho i a Tonganui-kaea
Nana a Parawera-nui, ka noho i a Tawhirimatea
Ka tukua mai tana whanau, Titi-parauri, Titi-matangi-nui, Titi-matakaka
Ka tangi mai te hau mapu, ka tangi mai te roro hau
Ka eketia nga rangi ngahuru ma rua i konei, e tama…e…i!

Na, ka peke nga waewae o te tangata i konei. Na, i te tangata e karakia ana i tenei karakia ka kapea e ia ki waho te wahanga o te karakia e pa ana ki a Io-matua, ko te take he nohoanga marae tangata, kaore e kaha ki te whakahua i taua wahi o te karakia, he tapu hoki. Engari mehemea kai runga i te tuahu, a katahi ka puta, ka pau katoa; anei aua kupu:-

Whakarongo mai, e tama!
Kotahi tonu te hiringa i kake ai Tane ki Tikitiki-o-Rangi, ko te hiringa i te mahara
Ka kitea i reira ko Io matua te kore anake
I a ia te toi ariki, i a ia te toi urutapu
I a ia te toi ururangi, i a ia te toi uruora
Ka whakaputa Tane i a ia ki te wai tohi na Puhao-rangi, nana a Oho-mairangi
Te wai whakaata no Hine-kauorohia, kauorohia nga rangi tuhaha
Ka karangatia a Tane ki te paepae tapu i a Rehua ki te hikumutu o Rangi
Ka turuturu i konei te tawhito rangi, te tawhito uenuku, te tawhito atua
Ka rawe Tane i te hiringa matua, i te hiringa taketake ki te ao marama
Ka waiho nei hai ara mo te tini e whakarauika nei, E tama…e!

Ka peke i konei nga waewae o te tangata nei. Kore rawa nei e whakahuatia tenei wahi o te karakia ki te marae tangata. Ka mutu tena.

Ka mutu nga karakia a te tangata ka huri ia ki te taha ki nga matua o te wahine, ara o te whaea o te tamaiti, a ka manaaki i a ratau, i nga tipuna o taua wahine, tae atu ki ona matua, tae atu ki te iwi nui tonu. Ka karanga atu ia ki te iwi nui tonu: “Kua rongo koutou ki te ingoa o to tatou tamaiti (mokopuna ranei); ma koutou te hiringa whakamutunga” - ara te karakia whakamutunga.

Na, ka mutu nga korero o te taha ki te tane, katahi ka tu te taha ki te wahine. Ko te mea tuatahi ko tana whakaaraara i te pa, koia tenei tana whakaaraara nei na:-

Moe araara, ka tau te manu ki te pae
Koheri, kohera, ka reareaia tama ki tona hiwa
Kia hiwa!

Ko tenei he whakaoho i nga tangata kia mahara, kia kaua e turituri, kia noho katoa nga mahara ki runga ki te karakia.

Ka haere atu ia ki te aroaro o te wahine, a ka huri tona aroaro ki nga tangata. Katahi ka whakahua i enei kupu i tuhia nei, ara te whakaaraara. Ka mutu, katahi ia ka haramai ki te hapu o te matua wahine, ka tu ia i mua i te aroaro o taua hapu. Katahi ka huri atu tona aroaro ki te taha ki te hapu o te matua tane, ka whakahuatia e ia nga kupu e whai ake nei:-

Tenei au! Tenei au ka hoka i taku tapuwae
Te hokai nuku, te hokai rangi, te hokai na Tu-matauenga
Taku tapuwae ko tapuwae nui o Tane i pikitia ai nga rangi tuhaha
Ki te toi ora, ki te toi matua, ki te toi tapu, ki te toi mauri ora
Tihe mauri ora!

Katahi ia ka whakapi, ara i te whakahuatanga i nga kupu whakamutunga. Katahi ka umere katoa nga tangata o te taha ki te matua wahine, tae noa ki te taha ki te matua tane. Ka tu mai hoki te tangata i tu mai i te tuatahi, ka tu mai ia ki runga, ka ngangahu raua, ka whakatitiko haere. Engari ka huri tonu te aroaro ki te iwi i a raua e whakatitiko ana. Ko te umere a te iwi ra, koia tenei:-

Mauri ora ki te whai ao, ki te ao marama, e tama, e!

Ma nga tangata katoa tenei umere. Ka mutu te umere katahi ka huri tona aroaro ki te tamaiti ra, katahi ka meatia ko te karakia tuatahi, ara ka hirihiria e ia ko te karakia tuatahi. Engari ko te tikanga o te karakia “kia mihi atu au,” no te mea kua tuwhera ki nga tangata katoa i muri i a ia:-

Naumai, e tama! Kia mihi atu au
I haramai ra koe i te kunenga mai o te tangata i roto i te ahuru mowai
Ka taka te pae o Huakipouri
Ko te whare hangahanga tena a Tane-nui-a-Rangi i te one i Kurawaka
I tataia ai te puhi ariki, te hiringa matua, te hiringa tipua, te hiringa tawhito rangi
Ka karapinepine te pu toto i a ia ki roto te whare wahi awa
Ka whakawhetu tama i a ia, ka riro mai a Rua-i-te-pukenga, a Rua-i-te-horahora
Ka hokai tama i a ia, koia hokai rauru nui, koia hokai rauru whiwhia, koia hokai rauru maruaitu
Ka maro tama i te ara namunamu ki taiao
Ka kokiri tama i a ia ki te aoturoa, e tama, e!

Katahi ka tu te iwi, katahi ka umere ake:-

Haere mai ra, e tama e!
Haere mai ra, e tama e!
Ki te whai ao, ki te ao marama.

Katahi ka tau te tangata ki raro, katahi ka tu te papa o te matua tane, o te matua wahine ranei, kauaka to te tamaiti papa ake, ka maioha ki te tamaiti raua ko tona whaea. Ka mutu ka maioha ki te iwi o te matua wahine (mehemea ko te papa o te matua tane e korero ana), ka mutu katahi ka maioha ki tona iwi ake.

Kaore e takoto nga kai i te ra e whai korero ana, e mihi ana ki te tamaiti, ki nga tipuna, ki nga matua. Engari ka waiho nga kai me nga taonga kia takoto ana; kia taka rawa te pito i roto i tona whare kohanga (engari ko te tino ingoa o tenei whare he whare puhi, he ingoa iti te whare kohanga) katahi ia ka kawea ki te wai tohi ai. Ma nga wahine i roto i taua whare e whakaatu mai kua taka te pito o te tamaiti, ara o te kahurangi nei, he tamaiti rangatira hoki; he mea whakaatu ki te tohunga. Katahi ka ki atu te tohunga: “Mo apopo, kia moiri a Tama-nui-te-ra, ka kawea te tamaiti ki te wai tohi ai.”

I muri i tena, i te po, ka whanake ki te ata, i te ata puao, ka tonoa e te tohunga nga tohunga tokorua ki te titiro i te wahi pai hai tohinga mo taua tamaiti. Ka kawea te tohinga o taua tamaiti ki tetahi wahi kaore he painga ki tetahi tangata, kaore nei e takahia e te tangata. Ka kimihia taua wahi, ka kitea. Katahi ka hoki mai, ka ki mai ki te tohunga kua kitea, ara ki te tino tohunga. Katahi ka haere te tino tohunga ki te tipuna tane o te taha ki te matua tane, ka haere hoki ki te tipuna tane o te taha ki te matua wahine. Ki te mea kua mate tetahi o enei tangata, na me karanga ia ki tetahi o nga taina hai whakakapi i te tangata kua mate. Katahi ka kiia atu tenei korero: “Apopo ka tohia ai ta tatou mokopuna; tetahi parawai hai takotoranga mo to tatou mokopuna.” I muri o tena korero ka haere aua tangata tokorua i whakaritea ra, ka mau ki te whariki me nga kahu. Mehemea he tane te tamaiti me mau he paepaeroa, he mahiti, ka mutu aua kahu.

Ma nga tohunga tokorua e arahi ki te wahi i whakaritea ai. Katahi ka meatia ka horahia te whariki ki te tapa tonu o te wai, kia tata tonu. Katahi ka hoatu te paepaeroa me te mahiti ki runga, ka parea ko te ua ki te tapa o te wai; ko te paepaeroa ki te tuatahi, katahi ka uhia te mahiti ki runga ake, engari kia puta te taniko o te paepaeroa ki waho o te mahiti.

Na, kai te arahina mai te wahine ra, kia kotahi te tapuhi ara te kaitiaki wahine o te taha ki te matua tane, kia kotahi hoki te kaitiaki o te taha ki te matua wahine hai arahi mai i te wahine ra me tona tamaiti, kotahi ki mua, kotahi ki muri, ko te wahine nana te tamaiti ki waenganui. I muri ko te tane, ara ko te papa o te tamaiti, te tikanga mana e mau te tamaiti, he mea hiki e ia. Ko nga tupuna o nga taha e rua ki muri mai, ahakoa nga wahine, ahakoa nga tane, kauaka etahi.

Ko nga tohunga kua tae noa atu ki te wahi i whakaritea ra hei tohinga i te tamaiti. Ka kitea mai e haere atu ana ka maunu nga kakahu o nga tohunga tokorua, kia kore rawa he kaka, engari ko te maro anake e mau o nga tohunga tokorua. Ka rere tetahi ki roto ki te wai, kia tae ki te pito te hohonu o te wai i a ia. Ka tu tetahi o nga tohunga i te taha katau o te nohoanga o te wahine, ara o te paparoa, te wahi i horahia ai te paepaeroa me te mahiti.

Ka tae mai te tapuhi tuatahi, ara te wahine tuatahi, ka whakataha i te paparoa, ka haere i muri ki te tunga o te tohunga, ara ki muri mai o te tohunga tu ai.

Na, ka haramai te wahine nana te tamaiti, ka haere tonu ki runga i nga kahu i whakatakotoria, ka tu ki waenganui tonu o aua kahu. Katahi ka haramai ko tetahi o nga tapuhi, ka tu ki te taha maui o te paparoa. Katahi ka haramai te papa o te tamaiti, me tana tamaiti e hikitia ana e ia, ka haramai ma muri ki te taha katau, katahi ka hiki atu ki runga. Ko te whaea anake te mea e haere tika tonu ki runga ki te paparoa. Katahi ka hoatu e te papa te tamaiti ki te whaea, ko te upoko e hoatu i te tuatahi, ko te kanohi o te tamaiti kia hangai atu ki te tohunga e tu ana i roto i te wai. Ko te matenga o te tamaiti me pa ki te uma o te whaea, ko te take kai te ngohengohe te kaki o te tamaiti, na reira ka whakapiri ai te mahunga ki te poho o te whaea. Ko enei tangata katoa e anga ana nga aroaro ki te rawhiti. Kaore e purea te tamaiti ki te awa e anga ana ki te tonga, ki te mauru ranei, engari ki te rawhiti, ki te raki ranei; ahakoa pehea te roa o te awa, kore rawa.

Katahi ka haramai te tipuna o te tamaiti, ara te papa o te matua tane o te tamaiti, i a ia te iho o te tamaiti, ara ko te pito i makere. Ka tu ia i muri mai o tana tama, ara o te papa o te tamaiti. Katahi ka haramai ko te papa o te matua wahine o te tamaiti, ka tu ia ki te taha ki muri mai o te puhi ra, ara o te wahine tapuhi i te taha maui. Ka haramai o raua wahine ka tu i muri o te paparoa. Katahi ka whatoro mai te tohunga e tu ra i te taha katau o te paparoa ra. Te ingoa o taua tohunga ko te tohunga whakairi. Ko te ingoa o te tohunga i roto i te wai ko te tohunga tohiora; ko o raua ingoa ena i te wa e tu ana raua i tena mahi, haunga hoki o raua ingoa ake.

Na, ka whatoro mai te ringa o te tohunga ki te iho. Ko taua iho kai roto i te waka e takoto ana; taua mea he mea whatu ki te raupo, ki te wi ranei. Tenei ano te ingoa tuturu o taua waka, engari ka wareware ake ahau ki taua ingoa. Ka riro taua iho i te tohunga, ma te tipuna nana i mau mai e hoatu ki a ia. Mehemea he tamaiti wahine ma te papa o te matua wahine nana te tamaiti e mau te iho. Mehemea he tane te tamaiti, na, ma te matua tane o te papa nana te tamaiti e mau te iho, e hoatu hoki ki te tohunga. Te rironga atu ra o taua iho i taua tohunga ki roto i tona ringa, ka pa te waha o te tohunga tohiora i roto i te wai:-

Papa, papa te whatitiri i runga nei
Ko Takamaitu, ko Takamai-i-awhea, ko Takamai-te-ahurangi
Tenei au he tama tu, he tama roa na Io matua te kore
Ki te pu, ki te weu, ki te akaaka matua, ki te akaaka rangi
Ki te akaaka no Papa matua te kore
Ko wai taua? Ko Tawhiri-rangi
Whakaiho nuku, whakaiho rangi ki tenei tama
He uri tipua nou, e Rangi!

I konei ka heke te ringa o te tohunga tohiora ki te wai, ka meatia ake te wai ki roto i tona ringa, katahi ka tauhitia atu te wai ki runga i te wahine me tona tane i a raua e tu ana i runga i te paparoa. Na, ka mea ano te tohunga:-

Ko te iho nui, ko te iho roa, ko te iho matua ki a koe, e Io!
Io mata ngaro ki te pu, ki te weu ki Tiritiri o Matangi.

I konei ka tangi te whatitiri, kaore e kore (Engari kaore au i rongo i te whatitiri i te tohinga o Karauria). Katahi ka hoatu e te tohunga whakairi te iho ki te tohunga tohiora, a ka meatia [tukua] e ia ki roto i te wai ki tona ringa katau, me te whakahua i nga kupu nei na:-

Whakaea, whakaea ki runga te iho nui, te iho roa,
Te iho matua o tenei tama ———*** ki a koe
E Io te wananga o Tikitiki o Rangi

Ka mutu te karakia mo tena.

Katahi ka whatoro atu te ringa o te tohunga o uta, ko tona maui te ringa e toro atu. Katahi te tohunga tohiora ka mau i te iho ki tona ringa maui, ka hoatu ki te tohunga o uta, mana e hoatu ki te matua tane o te tamaiti. Te rironga atu i te matua tane ka tu tonu ia i kona, me te waka i tona ringa. Katahi ka whatoro mai te tohunga o uta ki te tamaiti, ka riro i a ia te tamaiti. Ka takoto ko te mahunga o te tamaiti ki tona ringa maui, ko nga waewae ki te ringa katau ko te ringa kaha hoki tera, ka kiia tena ringa ko te ringa tamatane. Mehemea he wahine te tamaiti ko te mahunga ki te ringa katau, ko nga waewae ki te ringa maui, a ka kiia te ringa maui he ringa tamawahine. Katahi ia ka huri atu ki te tohunga tohiora, a ka mea ia:-

Tenei tama he tupe, he tupe rangi nau, e Io matua te kore…e!

Na, e haere tonu ana ia i roto i te wai ki te tohunga tohiora, me te karanga haere i aua kupu, pau rawa ake aua kupu kua tae ki te tohunga tohiora. Ka takoto te matenga o te tamaiti ki runga ki te ringa maui o te tohunga tohiora, ko nga waewae ki runga ki te ringa katau, mehemea he tane, mehemea he wahine kua whiti ko nga waewae ki runga ki te ringa maui. Katahi ka karakia te tohunga tohiora i tenei karakia:-

Naumai, e tama! Whakaputa i a koe ki runga te turanga matua
Marama te ata i Ururangi, marama te ata i Taketake nui o Rangi
Ka whakawhenua nga hiringa i konei, e tama!
Naumai, e mau to ringa ki te kete tuauri, ki te kete tuatea, ki te kete aronui
I pikitia e Tane-nui-a-Rangi te ara tauwhaiti ki te pumotomoto o Tikitiki-o-Rangi
` I karangatia e Tane ki a Huru-te-arangi
[Tirohia te wharangi 18].

Katahi ka whakatotohu te tohunga i a ia me te tamaiti ki roto ki te wai, engari ka ara te ringa maui ki runga. Katahi ka heke te tamaiti ki roto i te wai, kia tae rawa te wai ki te kaki o te tamaiti, katahi ka awhi mai i te tamaiti ki a ia, ka waiho nga waewae kia tarewa ana. Ka mahue penatia nga waewae o te tamaiti i te wa e heke ana raua ki roto i te wai. Katahi ka meatia te ringa maui ki runga hai awhi i te tamaiti, ko te matenga o te tamaiti kai runga i te ringa o te tohunga e takoto ana, na ka watea te ringa katau. Katahi ka tauhi i te wai ki te mahunga o te tamaiti ki te ringa katau. Katahi ka tu ki runga, katahi ka whakahuatia e ia te karakia kia tangi ai te whaitiri, a ka tangi te mauri ora, ara te whaitiri. Ki te ahu te whakahoronga o taua whaitiri ki te taha rawhiti, ki te marangai hau raro ranei, he tamaiti ora. Ki te ahu ki te tonga, ki te mauru ranei, he aitua kai mua i a ia; ara mehemea ka tangi te whaitiri ki te tonga e kore ia e kite i tona kaumatuatanga.

Katahi ka riro te tamaiti i te whaea. Katahi ka hurahia te whariki me nga kahu e nga tohunga; kua heke te wahine me tana tane ki raro o te paparoa. Katahi te tohunga tohiora ka mau ki te rakau kua oti noa atu te whakakoi, ka werohia ki te oneone ki waenganui tonu o te paparoa, ka whakaoioi, ka wero ano kia hohonu ai. Katahi ka whatoro atu tona ringa ki te iho e mau ana i te ringa o te papa nana te tamaiti, katahi ka hoatu ki roto i te rua, engari ma te ringa katau e whiu ki roto. Katahi ka tukia e ia nga oneone ki te pito punuki o te rakau, ka tukia ki runga i te iho. Katahi ka whiua e ia nga kohatu e ono ki roto i te rua, a ka tukia ano te oneone ki runga ki aua kohatu, me te whakahua i te karakia na:-

Tukia i Wharerangi
Ko te ngaruru mai rangi
Te mata a tohi kura ko Apa i te ihonga.

Mo nga kohatu tena karakia. Ko te tikanga tenei, kia kotahi te kohatu mo ia po, mo ia po e whakamamae ana te whaea o te tamaiti. Mehemea ka tae ki te tekau nga po kaore e hoatu nga kohatu, no te mea he tamaiti whakatoi, a he kohatu whakatoi aua kohatu. Ko nga kohatu o nga po o te materoto kaore e whiua ki te rua, kaore e whakaae nga tohunga.

Katahi ka mauria atu nga kahu ra, ka mau te tohunga ki te paepaeroa i te tuatahi, ka whakamauria ki runga ki te matua tane o te tamaiti, katahi ka uhia te mahiti ki runga. Katahi ka riro ma te tane e whatoro atu te tamaiti i te wahine, ka whakatakotoria te tamaiti ki tenei taha, ara ki te taha katau. Katahi ka rere mai te ringa maui ki te uhi i te mahiti ki te tamaiti. Katahi ka haere, katahi ka riro ko te tane ki mua, ka riro ko te wahine ki muri i a ia. Muri mai i a ia ko o raua matua wahine, muri mai ko o raua matua tane, i muri mai ko nga puhi rahiri, ara nga wahine tokorua nana i tiaki. Katahi ka haere ko te tohunga tohiora ki mua rawa, ka whiti ko tetahi o nga tohunga ki muri. Katahi ka haere, ka tata atu ki te kainga, na ka karakia te tohunga tohiora i te wa e haere atu ana ki te kainga; koia tenei te karakia:-

Moe araara, moe araara [Tirohia te wharangi 19].

Ka rangona e nga tangata o te kainga te reo o te tohunga e takutaku haere atu ana, na kua mohio nga tangata o te kainga kua oti.

Mehemea i aitua te tangi a te whaitiri, ara i tangi ki te tonga, kaore tenei karakia te moe araara e whakahuatia e te tohunga, engari tenei:-

Nei ka noho ka hihiri ngakau
O tangata ki te mahi e takoto ake nei
I kona te rahurahu tipu noa mai ai
Kia piki ake au ki runga te kiritai
Nga manu e wheko i raro Rangiahua
Homai ano koe kia hurihia iho
E tapu ana au, e ihi ana au i a Rongomai-matua
He tane pani karariri
E kore koe e whakamanaa e te tamaiti niho koi
Nana i noho te pu o te rangi.

Ko tenei karakia he kaupare i nga aitua, he whakaatu na te tohunga ki te iwi kaore ia i whakaae ki taua aitua.


Ka horahia te roro o te whare i te kainga ki te whariki, he kaitaka a raro, he takapau-rangi a runga. Ka takoto ena whariki katahi ka horahia nga taonga; ko nga ua o nga kahu maori katoa ka anga ki raro o te matapihi, ahakoa he aha te kahu, he korowai ranei, he paepaeroa ranei, he pekerangi ranei, he pota ranei, he mahiti ranei, he uhipuni ranei, he takapau whara ranei, he tatangi ranei. Ka whakatakotoria enei kahu ki runga ki te takapau-rangi. Mehemea he tino mahi nui te whakanui i te tamaiti, ka whakatakoto i te patu pounamu, patu paraoa ranei, ki runga ki nga kahu, ki raro mai i nga ua. Mehemea e rua nga patu ka whakaanga i nga reke o nga patu ki a raua, ko nga rapa e huri ki waho. Mehemea he taiaha tetahi ka whakatakotoria ki te taha ki nga ua o nga kakahu. Ka whakatakotoria te waka kotuku, huia ranei, ki te taha o te taiaha; kaore etahi rakau ke atu e whakatakotoria ki kona, ko enei anake. Ko te hoeroa, ko te pounui [he pouwhenua tetahi o nga ingoa o tenei rakau], me era atu he rakau iti. Ko te take tuatahi tenei i nui ai enei rakau e toru, te patu pounamu, te patu paraoa me te taiaha, no te meatanga hai pera.

Na, ka haramai te ope ra, ka tae mai, kai te karakia tonu te tohunga i taua takutaku ano, ka tuaruatia e ia, ka tuatorutia. Na, ka tae ki te taha o te paepae-kai-awha. Ko te tane raua ko te wahine ra ta raua haere kia hangai tonu ki te matapihi, ko te tohunga kai te pou o te maihi e tu ana. Ka karanga atu ia ki te tane raua ko te wahine kia hangai ki te matapihi. Katahi ka karanga atu te tohunga: “E hiki ki runga ki te tahuaroa” - ara ki runga ki nga kahu. Katahi ka haere atu ko te tane anake, ka tu ki runga i nga kahu, ka huri mai tona aroaro ki waho. Ka whiti te wahine ka noho ki raro o te tahuaroa i te taha katau o te tane; kaore e noho te wahine ki runga ki nga kahu, engari ki te takapau i te taha katau o tana tane.

Na, i te wa e haramai ra te ope kai te powhiri nga tangata o te kainga, a tu noa ki te taha o te paepae-kai-awha, me te tangi o te tangata, he tangi tonu te mahi. Me nga tangata e whai ana i muri i te tokorua kai te tangi katoa; engari te tangi a enei kaore e kiia he tangi, engari he whakaingo, he ingoa tapu tenei mo nga tamariki rangatira. Mehemea ka kiia he tangi ka kiia e te iwi he tangi tupapaku. Ko nga tohunga anake nga mea kaore nei e tangi.

Kati, ka huri mai te aroaro o te tane ki waho, ka tau te wahine i tona taha. Katahi ka rere atu te matua tane o te tane e hiki ra i tona tamaiti nei, engari kaore e tu ona waewae ki runga ki te tahuaroa, engari ka tu ki runga ki nga whariki. Ka hurihia e te tane tona mahiti ki mua, katahi ka karakiatia e te tohunga te karakia; ka tu te tohunga ki te taha o te pou, ka anga tona aroaro ki waho; katahi ia ka hirihiri i te karakia:-

Haramai, e tama! Puritia i te aka matua
Kia whitirere ake koe ko te kauwae runga, ko te kauwae raro
Kia tawhia, kia tamaua, kia ita i roto i a Rua-i-te-pukenga,
A Rua-i-te-horahora, a Rua-i-te-wanawana, a Rua-matua taketake o Tane
Naumai, e…., kia areare o taringa ki te whakarongo
Ko nga taringa o Rongomai-tahanui, o Rongomai-taha-rangi, o Tupai-whakarongo-wananga
Ka taketake i konei ki tipuaki o Rangi
Ka rere mai a Poutu-i-te-rangi, ka whakaawhi i a Puke-hauone
Ka hoka Hine-rau-wharangi i a ia i konei ki a Takamai-ahuahu
Ahua te puke nui, ahua te puke whakaki nau, e Rongo-maraeroa!
Koia te ngahuru tikotiko iere, te Maruaroa o te Matahi o te tau
Te putunga o te hinu, e tama…e…i!

Katahi ka whakahuatia tenei:-

Haramai, e tama! E mau to ringa ki te kete tuauri, ki te kete tuatea, ki te kete aronui
I pikitia e Tane-nui-a-Rangi i te ara tauwhaiti i te pumotomoto o Tikitiki-o-rangi
I karangatia e Tane-nui-a-Rangi ki a Huru-te-arangi, i noho i a Tonganui-kaea
Nana a Parawera-nui, ka noho i a Tawhirimatea
Ka tukua mai tana whanau, Titi-parauri, Titi-matangi-nui, Titi-matakaka
Ka tangi mai te hau mapu, ka tangi mai te roro hau
Ka eketia nga rangi ngahuru ma rua i konei, e tama…e…i!

Katahi ka haramai te iwi ki te taha o te paepae-kai-awha ki te tangi ki te tamaiti, ko ta ratau mihi whakamutunga tena. Ka mutu ra te tangi ka tu nga tangata ki te whai korero: “Haere mai, e tama! I haramai koe i roto i te wai matua” - ara te wai matua o Tuapapa. Te tino kupu tenei o roto i nga mihi.

Ka mutu nga mihi, nga whai korero, katahi ka takoto nga kai ki te marae. Ka waiho te tamaiti kia takoto i runga i nga kahu, ko tona mahunga ki runga i nga patu. Ki te takoto te mahunga o te tamaiti ki runga ki te patu kua tapu tena tamaiti, e kore rawa ia e pikau kai, a me moe ia i raro i te matapihi o te whare. Ko taua tapu he tapu ariki, ehara i te tapu tohunga, he rereke te tapu tohunga i te tapu ariki. Ko te tapu tohunga mana ano e ki he tapu, mana ano ia e tohi. Ko te tapu o te tamaiti ariki ko te kawenga i a ia ki te tohi ki te wai matua, a ka haere te rongo o taua tohi ki ia wahi me nga iwi katoa. Na reira, ka haere atu taua tamaiti, ahakoa ko tona korouatanga, ka tae ki tetahi kainga tawhiti noa atu, kua mohiotia e nga tangata o reira, kua whakapaia te moenga i raro i te matapihi mo taua tangata. Ka tukuna e nga rangatira he tino kai mo taua tangata, ka whakatakotoria ki tona aroaro. He whakanui tenei i te tangata ka tahi, a he whakanui i te marae ka rua, no te mea he tino ariki ia.

Ko te whaea o te tamaiti ka puta ki waho o te roro, ka noho ki raro ki tetahi whariki ki waho iti atu o te paepae-kai-awha, a ka noho hoki te tane ki kona ki tona taha. Ka riro ma tetahi o nga wahine tapuhi e whangai i te whaea ma tetahi e whangai i te papa, kaore hoki e tika kia pa o raua nei ringa ki te kai, engari mo te ra kotahi anake tenei tikanga.

Ko te pure he mahi na nga tohunga kia mau ai te mana tapu me te mana atua, ehara i te whakanoa. Ka purea te tangata kia toa e ka haere ki te riri. Ka purea te waka kia tapu, kia mau tona mana, kia noho nga atua ki te tiaki i te waka.


Ka mutu te tohi me te pure, me te hakari, ka tu te tangata rangatira o te iwi, o tetahi iwi ke noa atu ranei, ka korero: “Taku kupu, he taunaha taku mo ta tatou mokopuna ma Mea (mehemea he tane te tamaiti, na ka whakahuatia te ingoa o te tamaiti wahine a tetahi tangata rangatira). Na, kaore nga matua o te tamaiti e kaha ki te ki mai “Kaore”; mehemea ka ki mai nga matua “Kaore,” he whakahawea tena. Ko nga tipuna, ara nga koeke, hoki, tae noa ki te iwi, kaore e kaha ki te ki atu “Kaore,” he whakahawea, ka tipu hai raruraru i waenganui o ena iwi. Na, ki te tupono ki te pakanga a muri atu, ki te mau taua tamaiti i roto i tetahi pakanga, ka mauria ia hei taurekareka, engari e kore e patua, ka whakarauoratia, a ka mau tonu te karanga “He taurekareka naku” - tae atu ki nga uri.

Ka whakamoea nga tamariki wahine rangatira, me nga tamariki tane hoki, ki nga tangata o tetahi iwi nui, iwi ke noa atu pea, hai taura mai mo tera iwi ki te pakanga.

Na, mehemea ka ki mai nga matua, te iwi ranei, “Kaore” - kotahi tonu te kupu whakahoki e puta i tera taha, te kupu na: “Waiho ra, e hika! He toi tipu te tangata, he toi heke.” He whakatauki tena, e penei ana tona hangaitanga - te ora o te tangata kaore e mohiotia, ka tipu etahi, ka ora, ka mate etahi.

Mehemea ka whakaaetia te tono, na ko te karakia hono te tohu whakaae a te tangata whenua. Na, ka takoto te hono karakia, katahi ka tikina nga taonga ra o te tohinga o te tamaiti, ara nga kahu, te mahiti me te paepaeroa. Katahi ka whakatakotoria ki te aroaro o nga taonga i homai e te toro, a ka anga mai nga ua ki nga ua o nga mea o te toro, a ko nga reke o nga patu ka pera ano. Katahi ka karakiatia nga karakia ra i whakahuatia i te tohinga o te tamaiti, aua karakia katoa. Na, kua tino mohio nga tangata toro kua tuturu tenei mahi. Mehemea kaore i homai nga taonga, me te whakahua i nga karakia, kaore e tuturu te mohio. Ko aua kahu o te tohinga ka riro i nga toro. Na, ahakoa ka pakanga aua iwi e rua i muri nei, e kore e taea te whakakore i taua mahi, kua tuturu hoki.

Ko etahi wahine o te tai rawhiti i tohia, ko Tamairangi, ko Hine-matioro o Titirangi, Uawa, a ko Mahinarangi hoki; i tohia aua wahine ki tenei tohi. Ka mutu nga wahine i rongo au i tino purea ki tenei pure. Ko te tangata whakamutanga i tohia peneitia ko Karauria, papa o Airini Tonore, i tohia ki Tapu-te-ranga, he moutere paku kai Te Whanga-nui-a-Orotu; no toku tamarikitanga tena; no te tau 1846 pea tena.

E hoa! Kia mohio. Mehemea ka neke i te whitu o nga ra o te whakamamaetanga o te hapu, kua he. Ka mutu a rauru nui i te whitu o nga ra, na kua timata a rauru whiwhia. Mehemea ka neke i te whitu o nga ra kua mohiotia he mahanga; mehemea ka tae ki te tekau nga ra, neke atu, kua mohiotia he marua-aitu, ara he materoto, he tamaiti mate.

Na, mehemea ka puta tetahi o nga ringa o te tamaiti i te tuatahi kua mohio he tamaiti whakatoi, ko te waewae ranei ka pera ano. Na, katahi ka kawea taua wahine ki runga ki te tuahu, katahi ka karakiatia te karakia na:-

Haramai, e hine! I te Maruaroa
Whakaputa i a koe ki taiao
Ki te ara o to tipuna, o Hine-titama
I takahia ai tapuwae nuku, tapuwae rangi
Tapuwae ki Tiritiri o Matangi hauaroa
Whaia to tapuwae, ko te tapuwae o to tipuna o Hine-hauone
Ka takoto ai i roto i a Hui-te-rangiora
Whakaputa i a koe, e hine! Ki te aoturoa.

Ka mutu tena karakia, na kua hoki ki te karakia mo te tamaiti:-

Tenei au te hoka nei i to tapuwae
Ko te hokai nuku, ko te hokai rangi
Ko te hokai whakaputa i a koe ki Tahuaroa, ki te aoturoa.
Haramai, e tama! (e hine ranei)
Takahia mai to ara, ko te ara whanui a Tane
Whakakake i a koe i te ara o to tipuna, o Hine-titama
I whakaputa ai i a ia ki taiao
Kia takawhaki ia i roto i Hui-te-ananui
Ka tau te mauri ki te whai ao, ki te ao marama
Ka tangi te mapu waiora ki te urutapu, e tama…e!

Ko tenei karakia hai whakaputa i te tamaiti, kia tika tana puta mai.

Ka whakawhanau a Moe-te-ao, ka whakahapa a Mahanga-tikaro i a ia, ka homai ko te waewae ki te ara takoto ai. Timata i te po waru tae noa ki te ngahuru o nga po, ka hoki te waewae i a Maru. I taua po ano ka homai ko te ringaringa katau, ka kawea ano ki runga i te tuahu o Toka-a-Hinemoko, ka whakahokia e Maru. Ka taka mai a Mahanga-puhua ki te ara haramai, a ka puta ki waho, noho tonu mai tetahi i roto i to raua whare. Ka mauria a Moe-te-ao ki rawahi ki Te Wao-kairangi, ka whanau te tamaiti i reira, koia a Mahanga-tikaro, waiho tonu iho hei ingoa mo tena wahi ko Nga Mahanga, ara ko nga mahanga a Moe-te-ao.

Na, ko nga po i takatu ai te whanau a Papa raua ko Rangi koia tenei tona koiwi i te ao nei, ara: Ko te Po tamaku, ko te Po aoao nui, ko te Po kerekere, ko te Po kakarauri, ko te Po uriuri, ko te Po tiwhatiwha. Ko nga po tuatahi tenei i takatu ai te whanau a Rangi raua ko Papa kia puta ratau ki waho o te awhi a o ratau matua.

Na, ki te mea ka whanau te tamaiti i roto i enei po ka kiia tena he tamaiti rere matua, he tamaiti rauru nui, he pai, he ora. Na, ki te mea ka neke mai te po o te tamaiti ki te tuawhitu, ki te tuawaru ranei, he po uaua enei po e rua. Mehemea kua Rakaunui te marama, kua Whiro ranei, kua uru ranei ki roto ki nga Tangaroa, he po kino rawa enei mo taua wahine, me kawe ki runga ki te tuahu te umu hai takotoranga mona, a ma te tohunga e mahi, ka ora ai tena wahine. Ki te uru te whanau a te wahine ki nga ra timatanga o te kaupeka o te tau, kaua e huri ki tua o te whitu, o te waru ranei; koia tena kua kiia ake na, he rauru nui. Ki te taka ki roto ki te iwa, ki te ngahuru, ko rauru whiwhia tenei. Ko enei po he po whakakake, he po whakatoi. Ka homai ko te ringaringa, ko te waewae ranei, ka whakapae ranei te tinana o te tamaiti, a ki te kore e tupato, he wahine mate, he tamaiti mate; ka kiia tena he weu tapu; ki te puta taua tamaiti, no Tu tena.

Ki te taka nga po ki te ngahuru ma tahi me titiro ki te marama; mehemea kei te Whiro te marama, he rauru matua, he tamaiti ora, kia pai te whakatipu i taua tamaiti. Ki te taka ki roto ki te Orongonui taua tamaiti tirohia te marama, he marama kotea ranei, he kura hau po ranei, he kura tea ranei. Ki te tango te tamaiti i a ia ki te kura hau po, he tamaiti kino; ki te tango i nga po e rua kua kiia ake nei, he tamaiti pai, he uruora; kati mo tena. Na, ko te po ngahuru ma rua, he po kino tenei po. Ahakoa i te timatanga o te kaupeka ka kiia tenei he po matohi, e kainga ana e nga po korekore, ka takapautia e nga Tangaroa ki te remu o te atua, ka tukua ki a Whiro tenei po. Ka kiia i konei ko te po taruaitu, kaore he tamaiti e ora.

Anei tetahi kauwhau a nga koeke o Takitumu mo nga po i whakahuatia nei: Te Po, Te Po nui, Te Po roa, Te Po uriuri, Te Po kerekere, Te Po tiwha. Ko enei po, he po taketake enei po no te whanau a Rangi raua ko Papa.

He po apiti atu enei po ki era: Te Po te kitea, Te Po tangotango, Te Po whawha, Te Po namunamu ki taiao, Te Po tahuri atu, Te Po tahuri mai ki taiao. Na, enei po katoa tona huihuinga ngahuru ma rua katoa, pera me nga kaupeka o te tau, ngahuru ma rua hoki era; na ko nga kaupeka hoki enei o te po.

Na, ka wehea nga kaupeka o te po i konei; e ono nga po i whakatohua ai a Papa i ana tamariki katoa kia whai ahua, kia whai manawa ora, kia whai tipu ai, ahakoa he aha te mea, he tangata, he ika, he kararehe, he ngarara, he otaota, he rakau. Ko etahi o taua whanau a Papa i makaia ki waho ki nga kaupeka o Rangi. Ko ena whanau he mea whakaawhi ki a Hine-te-ahuru, ki a Hine-rurumai, kia a Hine-makohu-rangi; ko ratau te kaiwhakaawhi i era i makaia ra ki waho.

Na, e ono nga po whakamutunga nei; ko ena po ko nga po tenei i takatu ai te whanau a Rangi, a Papa ki te kimi i te ara namunamu ki taiao; koia te po tahuri atu, ko te po tahuri ki taiao. Tona koiwi o enei po i takatu nei te whanau a Papa e mau nei i a tatau wahine. Ka timata te takatu o te tamaiti i roto i te kopu o te whaea, ki te neke atu i te po wha he tamaiti mate; ki te neke atu i te rima, i te ono, he whaea mate, he tamaiti mate hoki. Koia i kiia ai ko hokai rauru nui, rauru whiwhia, koia hokai rauru maruaitu. Katahi ka marama koe ki tenei. E he ana te waihotanga hei whakapapa tangata.


Ko enei kupu e whai ake nei he mea tuku mai e Hori Ropiha o Waipawa i te tau 1893.

Ko nga wahine o te iwi Maori kaore e mate i te whanautanga tamariki, ahakoa nui nga tamariki a te wahine Maori e whanau ai kore rawa atu e mate. He pai rawa atu nga wahine o te iwi Maori, he kaha rawa atu, he nui te ora, he matau rawa atu ki te whakawhanau tamariki, kore rawa atu e mate. Inaia nei nui rawa atu nga wahine Maori kua mate, e tae ana pea nga wahine e mate ana i te tau kotahi ki te kotahi rau, neke atu ranei ki te rua rau.

Ko tenei mate i matemate ai nga wahine Maori na nga rongoa pakeha, ko tetahi na nga kai pakeha, ko tetahi na nga kakahu pakeha, nui atu hoki o te pakeha mate i nga tairo a Kupe. Ko tetahi mate kua mahue to nga Maori mana, me ona karakia, me ona tapu Maori, me ona ritenga katoa, ona kakahu me ana kai. Kua pakeha i naia nei nga Maori, me nga kai, me nga kahu, me nga rongoa, a he nui hoki nga mate e pa ana ki nga wahine Maori.

Ka whanau a Hine-rauwharangi i te Aonui o te Orongonui o te tau. Ka kawea te whaea ki roto i Hui-te-ananui noho ai, me tona tamahine. No te whakatarepatanga i te iho o tona tamahine kahurangi ka whakaputaia mai ki waho o te whare, ki te roro o taua whare, ki runga i nga takapau wharanui raua ko tona whaea noho ai. Ka whakatata atu te maru iwi, te maru tangata ki te marae o Hui-te-ananui. Ka tu a Tupai, taina o Tane, i a ia hoki te ipu tapu, ka mau nga ringa ki te tamaiti, ka okookotia ki roto i ona ringa; koia tenei tona karakia:-

Naumai, E hine wairoto!
Whakaea, whakaea to uru tapu
Whakaea, whakaea to uru tipua
Whakaea, whakaea to uru waiora ki taiao nei
E tipu, e rea, E hine kahurangi ariki!
Whakamau tai, whakamau o Rongo
Whakamau taketake toitu ki taiao nei, E hine ariki rangi…e!
E tipu, e rea koe he whatu ioio nui, he whatu io matua
He io taketake ki taiao nei, E Hine-rauwharangi…e!

Ka tu nga tangata ki te maioha ki a Hine-titama me Hine-rau-wharangi i konei. Ka mutu te maioha katahi ka mauria te whariki wharanui ka horahia ki te pareparenga o te awa wai takoto ai. Ka hiki a Hine-titama raua ko Hine-rauwharangi ki runga noho ai. Ka heke te tohunga ki roto i te wai tu ai, kia to nga hope te wai; ka mau ia ki a Hine-rauwharangi, katahi ka tohia ki te tohi ururangi o te toi huarewa o Tikitiki-o-Rangi.


Na mo te whanautanga wahine i tona kopu, ka kore e puta mai te tamaiti ka tikina te tohunga, ka tae mai ka uia e te tohunga, “Ka hia nga ra i whakamamae ai to kopu, e hine?” Ka mea mai te wahine nona te hapu, “Ka rua,” a “Ka toru” ranei, maha atu, iti iho ranei. Ka ui ano te tohunga, “I pewhea te ahua o te whakataka o to kopu i roto i ena ra?” Ka mea te wahine nona te hapu, “E whakataka ai i roto i a au ki taku taha katau, ka huri ki taku maui, ka heke ki taku kona, ka hoki ki te morenga o taku poho nei, he pena te mahi.” Ka mea mai ranei te wahine nona te hapu, “Ka heke iho ki taku kona, ka toro mai te ringa, a ka hoki atu ano.” Ranei ka mea mai te wahine hapu ra, “Ka kuhu mai i tona waewae ki taku aroaro nei, a ka hoki atu ano.” Na, ka marama te tohunga i konei ki te ahua o te whakamamae o te kopu o te hapu nei. Ka mea te tohunga tuahu i konei:-

Tenei au he tauira, he taura nau, e Rongomai e!
Tenei au ka tu ki to aroaro he tauira tipua
He taura na ena tawhito, he tauira na ena atua [o] Papa-tuanuku
He tauira na nga apa o nga kauwhanga
Tenei au he taura na nga apa o te rangi tuatahi
He tohunga taketake na nga atua o nga rangi
Ka tau, ka tau ki tenei tauira, ki tenei taura
Tenei au ka turuki atu ki a koutou, e Rongomai…e!
Taku koronga he koronga ki a koutou
Kia turuki mai koutou ki tenei tapuhi kura, ki tenei kahurangi
He puhi aronui, he puhi rauhi na nga whatukura
He puhi rauhi na nga mareikura ki tenei puhi wahine
Ka tau, ka tau he aro tipua, he aro tawhito, he aro apa atua
Ki tenei puhi kahurangi na koutou, e Rongomai…e!
He aha te aro o tenei kahurangi? He aro mamae tona aro
He aha tona aro? He aro whakaputa tamariki ki taiao
He aha tona aro? He aro no te tamaiti ki taiao nei
Tu hikitia, tu hapainga kia puta ki taiao nei
Tu maniania mai ki taiao nei
Tu pahekeheke mai i to ara ki taiao nei
Oi whiwhia, oi rawea, ka puta, ka puta taiki…e…i.

Na, e kiia ana ko te tino karakia tenei a nga tino tohunga o nga tuahu e taratara ai i te whanautanga hapu. Na, ki etahi tohunga rereke, ka aro atu ki te atua kotahi, tokorua ranei. Kati enei kupu whakamarama i konei.

Na, ki te pakeke te tamaiti tane, ara kia whitu tau, ka timata atu te ako i te tamaiti ki te hapai rakau mana. E toru nga rakau mo uta, e rua mo te moana; he taiaha, he patu pounamu, he patu iwi, he tokotoko, he huata, he tao wero manu, ka mutu te rakau tuatahi, ara nga rakau tenei motu ki te aroaro o te mata uraura ki a Tama-akaaka-nui, ki a Tane-matangi-nui, ki a Tu-matauenga mata uraura.

Na, tuarua o nga rakau e akona he ko kumara, he ko aruhe, he ko taro, he ko mo nga mahi katoa e pa ana ki te take mahi kai, me te kaheru tipitipi haere i nga taru, me te kaheru tuahu i nga puke kumara, taro ranei, i era atu hiahia ranei e rite ana mo aua tu kaheru.

Na, ko te toru o nga rakau hei ako ko te mahi whare wharau, whare kauta, whare kai, ara pataka rahoraho hei pukaitanga taonga, kete, tuwhara, purapura, horahoratanga aruhe, me era atu mea e rite ana mo tera tu whare. Ka oti enei ka ako ki te mahi takitaki hei patu kumara, taro, kainga ranei kia ruru ai i te hau. Ka ako ki te mahi whakaara taiepa mo te kainga, mo te mara, koi takahia e te tangata, e te kararehe kuri nei. Ka oti enei te ako ka akona te mahi whare whakanoho, tamarua nei, ara whare noa iho nei, he pakitara, he tuarongo, he whatitoka, he tahu tona. Ka oti tenei ka akona ko te mahi rua kumara me te whata karaho nei.

Ka oti enei te mahi ka akona te tamaiti ki te tarai rakau, he tata te toki tuatahi, i muri mai o tena he tarai papanui, i muri mai he tarai kaokao, i muri mai he tarai aronui, i muri mai he tarai whakangao, i muri mai o tena he tarai tamaku. Ka mutu ena mahi ka akona te tamaiti ki te hapai ta me te mahi i nga matakahi hei ako ki te wawahi i te rakau hei hanga whare, hei hanga whata, hei hanga rua, hei hanga taiepa kainga, pa tuwatawata ranei. Ka mutu katoa enei ka akona ki te whakaara whare puni, whare ope. Ka oti enei ka akona ki te mau i te whao, i te ore. Ka akona i konei te tatai o te whakairo, o te tuhi, te whakairo hopara, hei muri ko te tuhi whakairo whakangao. Ka oti enei te ako ka akona te whakaara whare whakanoho, ara whakairo tuhi, whakairo whakangao. Ka oti enei ka akona te whakairo i nga take pa nei, te mahi whakaara pa tuwatawata. Ka oti enei ka akona te mahi i nga whata whakanoho, i te whata rangi ranei. I konei ka mutu te ako i tenei ahua mahi ki nga tamariki e kowhiria ana mo tera ahua mahi.

I muri o tenei katahi ka akona te tamaiti ki te hapai toki tarai kopapa. Ka oti tera ka akona ki te tarai tiwai. Katahi ka tutuki atu ki te tarai waka whakarei, me ona haumi, me ona taurapa, me ona tauihu, me ona karaho, me ona poutoko, me ona whiti, me ona taupoki, me ona tokotu, me ona huapae, me ona taura wharona, me ona taura whakaaweawe, me ona taura whakaheke, me ona taura hokai, me ona tata, me ona purupuru, me ona kauhora, me ona hoe, me ona tawatawa, me ona pairi, me ona taumanu, me ona korewa, me ona huapae, me ona kaokao whititua, me ona whakatere, me ona ra, tauaro nui, tauaro riki, me era atu mahi o tenei hanga o te waka rere moana nui.

Ka oti tenei ka akona te mahi matau ika riki, matau ika nunui, ara hapuku, mango, haku, kohikohi, moki, tamure, tarakihi, warehou, maomao, manga, makomako, ururoa, ngoiro, tuna, me era atu tu ika katoa. Koia nei nga take ako tamariki a mua i roto i nga whare wananga ako i nga mahi penei me enei i kiia ake nei e au.

Koia tenei nga karakia a nga tohunga tuura [?] i aua tamariki ki nga matauranga, e whiwhi ai ki te matauranga mo era mahi:-

Tenei au he iho nui, he iho roa ka turuki atu ki a koe, e Tane-matua!
Tenei au ka turuki atu ki a koe, e Tupai…e!
Tenei au ka turuki atu ki a koe, e Te Akaaka-matua…e!
Tenei au ka turuki atu ki a koe, e Rauru-matua…e!
Tenei au ka turuki atu ki a koe, e Rongomai-i-waho…e!
Tenei au ka turuki atu ki a koe, Tanga-i-waho…e!
Tenei au ka turuki atu ki a koe, Tiwhaia…e!
Kia aronui mai te apa tuanuku…e
Kia aronui mai te apa kauwhanga…e
Kia aronui mai te apa rangi tuhaha…e
Kia tautika, kia tau aronui mai ki enei pia, ki enei tama ariki…e
Kia tohitu mai ki enei tamaroa…e
Kia tu tawhaki nuku, kia tu tawhaki rangi, kia tu tawhaki aro
O ena tahito ki enei pia, o ena tipua ki enei tamariki aronui, ki enei tamaroa aronui
Ka wheau atu ki aua apa rangi…e.
Tukua mai te akaaka nui, tukua mai te akaaka matua
Tukua mai te akaaka tipua kia tohitu ai
Kia tohi rangi ai, kia tohi nuku ai, kia tohi aronui ai
Enei tauira, enei taura ki ena tipua, ki ena atua
He tohi no te pu, he tohi no te weu, he tohi no te aro nui, no te ara roa ki enei tamaroa…e
Whangai atu ana, whangai ana mai kia ki upa, kia ki aro nui ki enei tamaroa…e
E taute nei, e whawha nei, e rahurahu nei, e okooko nei he ringa hai toki
Ko wai to toki? Ko te Whironui. Ko wai to toki? Ko te Awhiorangi
Ko wai to toki? Ko Hui te rangiora. Ko wai to toki? Ko te Rakuraku a Tawhaki
Ko wai te mata whao? Ko te Matatiti o te rangi
Ko wai te mata o to whao? Ko Tohirangi
Ko wai te mata o to whao? Ko Uhinuku.
Ka puta ki tua, ka puta ki tawhito ngawariwari
E tu tapawha ki nuku, e tu tapawha ki rangi…e
Whaiti i paoa e ki roto i a Tane-mahuta…e
Tenei ka puta, ka puta ki tenei aro…e; ki enei tauira…e…i
Taiki e ki enei pia.

Mo te whakairo me te tarai tenei karakia, me te matauranga ki te mahi whare, era mahi katoa.


Ko te karakia tenei i tuatia ai a Karauria, papa o Airini, e Tareahi, e Te Karawa, me etahi atu.

Tenei, e tama, ka tu ake ki runga
Ka tau turuki, ka taumau atu ki a koe, e Rongo!
He tautanga, he tahuritanga nou ki tenei tamariki nau, e Rongo…e!
Tenei ka hapai nga atu [? atua] ki to aro, e Rongo…e!
Ka whakamau atu ki a koe kia tohia e koe ki te tohi waiora, e Rongo…e!

Ka whatoro te tohunga ki te tamaiti, me takoto ki te ringa maui te tamaiti. Kia tae ki te pito o te tohunga te wai, ka huri te aroaro ki te uranga mai o te ra, ka mea te tohunga:-

Tenei tama nau, e Kahukura!
Tenei tama nau, e Tumatauenga…e!
Tenei tama nau, e Rongomai…e!
Tenei tama nau, e Tane…e!
Tenei tama nau, e Maru…e!
Tenei tama nau, e Tunui a te ika…e!
Tenei tama nau, e Tangaroa…e!
Tenei tama nau, e Rehua…e!
Tenei tama nau, e Korako…e!
E he tama rauhi na koutou…e
Tenei tama he tama puhi na koutou…e
He tama whakapure na koutou…e
He tama tauira na koutou…e
Ehua nga aitu…e. Ehua nga hakirara…e
Ehua nga tunawhea…e. Ehua nga tuwiri…e.
Ehua nga winiwini…e. Ehua nga tarapuhi…e.
Ehua nga makawe…e. Ehua nga tae heke…e.
Ehua nga taringa…e. Ehua nga wharo…e.
Ehua nga roimata…e. Ehua nga ringa…e.
Ehua nga waewae…e. Ehua nga nohoanga…e.
Ehua nga tapuwae…e. Ehua nga wairoto…e.
Ehua nga kino roto…e. Ehua nga takotoranga…e.
Ehua nga kai…e. Ehua nga wai inu…e.
Ehua nga tapu whakaeke…e. Ehua nga mana tangata…e.
Ehua nga karakia whakaeke…e. Ehua nga mana tauira…e.
Ehua nga mana tohunga…e. Ehua nga mana atua rawaho…e.
Tamaua tenei tama kia aropiri…e.
Tamaua tenei tama kia ita…e.
Tamaua tenei tama ki te pu o nga atua…e.
Tamaua tenei tama ariki ki te toiora…e.
Tamaua tenei tama ki te pungakengakenga ki o koutou aro…e.
Tawhia kia mau, tamaua kia ita, kita ki taketake…e
Ahuahu nuku…e. Ahuahu rangi…e. Ahuahu ki te whai ao…e.
Kia tipu, kia rea, kia hiwa ki tona hiwa…e
Tona ara ko te toiora…e. Tona marae ko te toiora.
Tona moenga ko te toi matua…e. Tona mahara ko te toi aronui…e.

I konei ka whakatotohu te tohunga i a raua ko te tamaiti ki roto i te wai; ka mea ia i a ia e whakatotohu ana:-

Tenei ka rumaki atu ki te aro atua, he aro nui, he aro roa.

Ka ea ake te tamaiti ki runga ka mea ano te tohunga:-

Ko wai to ingoa? Ko tama i whakakite he aro atua
He aro tangata tenei ka tamaua ki a koe, e tama…e!
E tipu, e rea ki a tama te hakiri, ki a tama te torokaha
Ki a tama te hihiri, ki a tama te haere, ki a tama te rakau
Kia karo tama, kia hipa tama i tona hipa, kia hipa ki toiora
Na enei atua ki a koe, e tama…e!
Oi whiwhia, oi rawea, oi tamaua ki tenei tama
Na nga atua o runga o nga rangi tuhaha, o nga kauwhanga
Tamaua kia ita, kitakita ki tenei tama o koutou aro
He aro tipua, he aro atua, he aro ki tenei tama…e.
He toi tu hei kaha, he toi toa, he toiora
He toi tipua, he toi atua no tenei tama ariki
Tihere mauri ora!



He reo tenei no Irihia, ara no te tino Hawaiki i heke mai ai nga tupuna o te iwi Maori i nga wa onamata. He mea kauwhau mai e Te Matorohanga o Ngati-Kahungunu i te tau 1882.

Ko te taunaha wahine a taua iwi o Irihia e kiia ana he mea whakatutu ki runga i te kapa, ara i te rarangi, nga tane, nga wahine. Na, ma nga tamariki tane to kowhiri tuatahi; ka kowhiri hoki nga kotiro i a ratou na tane i pai ai. E kiia ana ko te kowhiri a nga tane i te wahine pai e penei ana, kotahi mana te kowhiri tuatahi ka titiro ki te pai o te kanohi, a ka rite ki tana i pai ai. Ka titiro ki te pai o te tu o nga waewae, ki te ahua o te tinana, ahua pai te hononga iho o te tinana ki nga remu, ara ki nga papa; ahua totika te tu a nga waewae; pai te aroaro o te kotiro, kia whanui te puke, kia raupapa te puke, kaua te puke e whaiti, kaua hei tiketike te puke, ki te pera kaore e paingia tena kotiro, ki te whaiti te puke, ki te tiketike ranei te puku o te puke o te aroaro o taua kotiro.

Na, ko ta te kotiro titiro ki te tane mana hei te tane tipu pakari, ataahua te tipu o te tinana, ataahua te kanohi, whaiti te ahua, roa te mata, ahua rarahi nga whatu, aumoe nga whatu ina titiro mai ki te tangata; pai te hono o nga papa ki te tinana, kaore i kounu ki waho nga papa, kaore i wharara te tinana ki mua, kaore nga mata i kanae, i tamaru ranei nga tukemata, i tawhana ranei te ihu, i waha tarera ranei. Pera ano te puke, kaua hei tiketike, kaua hei whaiti te puke, kaua hei mohani te ure o te tane, engari kia atanga te awakari o te tane. Koia tera nga tohu a te hunga kotiro mo te taha ki nga tane e tu ana i runga i te kapa taunaha kotiro, tane ranei. Ko nga waha tetahi, ka ata tu nga niho tapahi me nga niho pu; katahi ka tino oti tena whakamoe tane, wahine; ka pai katoa, katahi ka whakaae nga matua tane me nga matua wahine. Heoi ano ka mau te taupaki wahine ki te wahine, te waero ki te tane.


Ko te karakia tenei a Paia i wehea ai a Rangi raua ko Papa-tuanuku.
Tenei au ka turuki atu nei ki a koe, e Rangi…e!
He uri tipua, he uri tawhito, he uri atua, he uri nou, e Rangi…e…i!
Hapai ake nei au i a koe, e Rangi…e!
Nei to ara, he ara te whaia, he ara te keukeu, he ara te haruru, he ara te ngatoro ki te pu wawa, ki te pu mairekura…e
Tahia, tahia te papa nui, tahia te papa roa, tahia te papa te oi
Oi tahia te papa te makeukeu, te papa tiketike i nuku, te papa tiketike i rangi
Te papa tiketike ki te hau winiwini, ki te hau wanawana, ki te hau tuhi rangi…e
Tenei au ko te whiri nui, ko te whiri roa, ko te whiri tamaua
Tamaua ki te kauru nui, ki te kauru roa
Tamaua ki te pu mairekura, ki te pu maire rangi
Ko te pu, ko te weu, ko te aka titamaua
Tamaua i roto, tamaua i waho ki te kauru nui, ki te kauru no Rangi-tamaku, e Rangi…e!
Tenei au, e Rangi…e! kei te tupe nuku, kei te tupe rangi, kei te tupe uru tau
Akaaka nui, akaaka roa kei te pu i whiria, kei te pu i tamaua.
Kei te pu haohao nui, kei te pu haohao roa, kei te pu haohao tipua
Kei te pu tawhito, kei te pu haohao atua nou, e Io nui!
Ko te ueue nui, ko te ueue roa, ko te ueue tawhito, ko te ueue tipua, ko te ueue atua nou, e Io matua…e!
Tamaua ki te kauru nui, tamaua ki te kauru nau, e Io te waiora…e!
Tamaua ki te pu, ki te weu, ki te aka titamaua, ki te aka ti tamore rangi…e
E tama ki te tihi, e tama ki te rakerakenga o Rangi-nui…e
Ko taku ahi tuiri nuku, tuiri rangi, tuiri akaaka rangi
Kita tuiri taketake ki te kauru kaukau nui, ki te kauru kaukau roa
Ki te kauru kaukau tipua, ki te kauru kaukau atua nou, e Io taketake…e!

Ka mutu i konei te karakia a Paia i rewa ai a Rangi-nui ki runga nei tu iho ai. Ko te karakia tenei i waiho ai e nga tohunga o te whare wananga hei karakia wehe i te tane, i te wahine ranei; hei karakia whakapiri ranei i te wahine, i te tane hoki ki te wahine, ara koia tenei te tauira mai o taua mahi a ratau.

* This statement must be read as meaning that the principal ceremonial feast was held on the day of the baptismal rite, when the gift food-supplies formed part of the provender. What may be termed a minor feast was certainly held on the day of the maioha or koroingo, the ceremonial greeting of the infant.
** Karauria, father of Airini, was baptized (tohia) about 1846 at Tapu-te-ranga (Watchman Isle) in the Inner Harbour at Napier.
*** Ka whakahuatia i konei te ingoa o te tamaiti.

1929 Elsdon Best