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AIajor-General H. G. ROBLEY 

Author of MOKO or Maori Tattooing, 


Historij of the 1st Battalion A)'(jijU and Sutherland Highlanders, 1794-1'S87. 


Ckrks Road, Kingston 



this little book on 

Maori Greenstone 

is respectfully dedicated by 






Introduction .... .... .... .... .... vii 

Chapter I.— CONCERNING POUNAMU .... .... 9 

Chapter II.— WORKING POUNAMU .... .... .... 19 


Chapter IV.— CONCERNING WAR-CLUBS ... ... 31 

Chapter V— GREENSTONE ORNAMENTS ... .... 39 

Chapter Vl.—HEI-TIKI .... .... .... .... 51 

Glossary of Maori Words .... .... .... ... 79 

Index .... .... .... .... • .... .... ... 80 


THIS little book is an endeavour to set down the results 
of careful investigations extending over many years on 
the subject of pounamti or New Zealand greenstone, and 
the special uses to which it was applied by the Maori. For 
savage art, rude though it be, and doomed to extinction as 
civilization advances, has an individuality of its own which makes 
it of importance to the ethnologist and of interest to the student ; 
and it is the duty, no less than the pleasure, of those who have 
studied it to place on record what they have been able to learn 
of its achievements. 

Ever since the Pakeha, the first European visitors to New 
Zealand, regained their ship there has been much carrying away 
of examples of old Maori craftsmanship, and those in greenstone 
have always had a special attraction for collectors. So many 
specimens of worked pounamu, indeed, have been brought to the 
British Isles since Captain Cook's return to England in 1771, that 
the silver streak might almost be called te wai ponnaniu. The old 
worked greenstone now sees no more wars, but it is still the 
object of the rivalry of collectors, who value it, as its former 
possessors had done, for its beauty and rarity, and for the strange 
and interesting forms into which it has been wrought. 



A glossary of Maori words and phrases used in this book is 
given on page 79. It will, perhaps, be of use to those readers 
who are not acquainted with the native tongue. 

In the hope that these notes on pounamu, and the drawings 
which have been made by the Author to illustrate them, may prove 
of interest to the general reader and of use to the student, they 
are offered, as the Maori says, Mo a muri mo a nehe — for the 
days that follow after. 

Reader, I salute you. 




Chapter I. 


THE ordinary words used by the Maori to express the colour 
green are kakariki and pounamu. Kakariki is the native 
name of the small green paroquet as well as of the green 
lizard, and it is considered by some students that this word is 
thence applied to their colour. But it appears more probable that 
kakariki is an ancient word for " green," and that it was given to 
the two creatures by the ancestors of the Maori who, centuries 
ago, invaded the islands which now we call New Zealand, and 
found the green bird and the green reptile there. 

The history of the word pounamu would seem to be somewhat 
less involved. Its last two syllables, namu, are a pure Tahitian word 
meaning "green," and they with the affix pou, make up the Maori 
word applied both to the colour and the precious greenstone 
or jade. 

Jade, as is pointed out by Mr. G. F. Smith in his Gem Stones, 
is a general term that includes properly two distinct mineral 
species, nephrite or New Zealand greenstone, which is the com- 
moner of the two, and jadeite. They are very similar in appearance, 
both being tough and fibrous silicates of ferrous oxide and calcium 
more or less greenish in colour, the variations of colour from grey 
to deep green depending on the relative amount of iron in the 


composition, while the brown markings which are sometimes seen 
in the stone are due to oxide of iron. Nephrite is about as 
hard as glass, and is found principall) in New Zealand, 
Turkestan, China and Siberia. With the rarer jadeite, the choicest 
gem of the Chinese, our notes are not concerned ; it must suffice 
to say that it is harder than nephrite ; its green is more brilliant 
in hue ; and that the finest specimens are found in Burma. 

The word "jade" has a curious etymology. The Spaniards 
early discovered that eastern peoples held this stone in high regard 
on account of its hardness and beautiful colour no less than for 
its supposed magical and medicinal qualities. The Indians, the 
Chinese and the Japanese alike believed that worn as amulets or 
fashioned into drinking cups it was a bringer of good fortune, a 
prolonger of life, a guardian against the bite of venomous reptiles, 
a specific for internal illnesses ; while by the Mexicans it was 
considered to be a protection against disease of the kidneys. It 
was on account of this superstition that the name piedra de ijada, 
of which our word "jade" is a corruption, or more correctly a 
contraction, was given by the early Spanish discoverers to this 
beautiful and remarkable mineral. 

The word pounamu represented to the Maori everything that 
is precious. The figurative expression tatau pounamu^ meaning 
literally " greenstone door," was used, as Mr. Elsdon Best remarks 
in his Notes on the Art of War, as a picturesque synonym for the 
making of peace, a happy and precious closing of the door on war 
and strife. An ambassador conducting peace negotiations would 
use some such formula as Karanga ! karanga ! tenei te haere nei, 
"Welcome us! welcome us! here we come," and naming some 
well known hill would add te tatau pounamu ko mea maunga, " Our 
greenstone door (that is, our place of peace) is such a hill." 


After the war between the tribes of Tuhoe and Ngati 
Tuwharetoa the tataii poiinamu was " erected," as the sayinjf is, 
at Opepe. Again, when peace followed the long feud between 
Tuhoe and Ngati Awa, Hatua of Awa said to Te Ika Poto of Tuhoe, 
" See the clump of bush at Ohui that has been so reduced by fire. 
No fire shall be kindled there in the days to come. It is our 
'greenstone door.' It shall be as a sanctuary, that even the women 
and the children may come there and no harm shall befall them." 
And the tatau pounamu was erected duly at Ohui where 
it still stands. "It has not fallen even to this day," say 
the Maori, meaning thereby that the peace then made has never 
been broken. 

Again, when Tuhoe and the tribes of Waikare-moana and the 
coast, weary of their bloody and protracted war, resolved to make 
peace Hipara, chief of the Waikare, said, " I will give my daughter 
Hine-ki-runga in wife to Tuhoe for the ending of the war." But 
Nga-rangi-mataeo, to make the pact more sure replied, " Let us 
raise a tatau pounamu that peace may never be broken." So the 
hill Kuha-tarewa was named as a wife, and another hill, Tuhi-o-kahu, 
as a husband, and by the mystic union of the two, tatau pounamu 
was erected and unbroken peace reigned thenceforward between 
the war-weary peoples. " Have a care," says the Maori warning, 
" lest you forget the precepts of your fathers and the support 
of the door of jade be broken in the after days." 

The only locality known to the ancient Maori where greenstone 
was to be found was on the west coast of the South Island of 
New Zealand. It could therefore be obtained by the tribes of the 
North only by barter or as booty after a successful war. 

Canon Stack, in his South Island Maoris, tells how a woman 
named Raureka, wandering from her home, went up the bed of 


the Hokitika river, and in the neighbourhood of Horowhenua came 
upon some men engaged in shaping a canoe. She remarked on 
the bluntness of their tools, and being asked if she knew of any 
better she took from her bosom a httle package which, when 
carefully unwrapped, disclosed a sharp fragment of greenstone. 
This was the first specimen that the natives of those parts had 
ever seen ; and they were so delighted with the discovery that 
without delay they sent a party over to the ranges to fetch more 
of the precious mineral. From that time greenstone gradually came 
into general use for edged tools and weapons, those made of 
inferior materials being discarded. If, as is believed, she was a 
contemporary of Moki, Raureka must have arrived at Hokitika 
about the year 1700. But this does not necessarily imply that 
greenstone and its value and uses were unknown to the Maori 
living at that period in other parts of New Zealand. 

The natives of Hawaiki undoubtedly knew of its existence 
in the South Island long before they came to live in the country, 
having heard of it from the celebrated navigator Ngahue, who, 
about the year 1400 of our era, discovered New Zealand. 
Driven from his own land, so the story goes, by the enmity of 
a powerful and vindictive woman named Hine Tuao Hoanga 
whose ill will he had incurred, he escaped on the back of a 
poutini or sea-god.* He first sighted Tuhua, now called Mayor 
Island, in the Bay of Plenty, and then Aotearoa, the mainland 
of the North Island; but, knowing that his enemy was still 

* Njiahue's sea god must have been simply a proa or canoe. Sea-going vessels were always 
regarded with great reverence by the Maori ; they even deified the first European ships that visited 
the country, calling them atuas or gods. Greenstone was regarded with such reverence by the 
Maoris that it, too, was deified as a poutini, a son of Tangaroa, no doubt from the fact that it had 
been discovered by the sea shore. Under this aspect it was often called whatii-o-poutint, and 
represented symbolically by a star. So high a value attached to it that in old days, when the 
greenstone was very hard to get, an artist would not hesitate to spend much time and labour 
on a piece of indifferent quality. 


pursuing him, he continued his voyage till he reached the 
mouth of the Arahura river, where he settled and found the 

Ngahue was so convinced of its value that he ventured to 
return to Hawaiki with a cargo of the stone, confident that the 
service which he was doing his fellow countrymen hy bringing 
so useful a material to their knowledge would ensure their favour 
and protection. It is said that it was with tools made of Ngahue's 
greenstone that the canoes were shaped which carried the first 
immigrants to New Zealand. 

" Every tribe of Maoridom," says Canon Stack, " valued this 
jade above everything else, and strove to acquire it. The locality 
in which it was found was known by report to all, and the popular 
imagination pictured unknown wealth to the explorer of that region. 
But the difficulties which beset the journey to this Maori Eldorado 
were practically unsurmountable, and frustrated the efforts of those 
who attempted to reach it. The stormy straits of Raukawa 
(Cook's) had first to be crossed, and then a land journey of great 
length and difficulty undertaken over rugged and lofty mountain 
ranges, so steep in places that the travellers were obliged to 
use ladders formed of supplejack, or other tough woodbines, to 
enable them to get past. Pathless and seemingly interminable 
forests had to be traversed, whose dark shades were made still 
more gloomy by the incessant rainfall which kept the thick 
undergrowth of moss and ferns always dripping wet. Deep and 
rapid rivers had to be crossed either on rafts of dry fiax stalks 
or on foot, the waders being only able to avoid being swept away 
by the swift current by a number of them entering the water 
together, and holding on tightly to a pole which they bore 
across the river in their hands. The scarcity of food throughout 


the region to be traversed by the searchers after greenstone 
added to the dangers of the task, for beyond the small quantity 
they were able to carry with them, travellers were entirely 
dependent for their food upon the wekas and eels, which they 
were able to catch as they went along. Besides all these 
difficulties they were in constant danger of encountering hostile 
bands of men bound on the same errand as themselves. But 
when even the joiu'ney was so far successful that the treasure 
sought after was found, its great weight made it impossible 
for the discoverers to carry back more than a few fragments, 
and these were obtained by breaking them off with stone 
hammers. In spite of the longing desire of the northern Maori 
to enrich themselves with the treasures of greenstone which 
existed on the west coast of the South Island, the serious 
obstacles which beset the approach to that region deterred them 
from making the attempt to get there, and they had to content 
themselves with what they were able to acquire from their 
fellow countrymen in the south, in exchange for mats and canoes 
and such other manufactures as their southern neighbours were 
willing to accept. The constant and bloody wars in the history 
of the South Island were caused by many pretexts, but behind 
all was the covetous desire to possess the land of xvai pounamu, 
the valuable greenstone." 

These picturesque passages well describe at once the difficulties 
of the acquisition of greenstone and the constant efforts that were 
made to obtain the coveted mineral. But they do not exhaust 
the means, fair and foul, by which the Maori obtained possession 
of it. Ornaments and weapons, as well as rough unworked 
blocks of the stone were given as presents. They were paid as 
utn, that is, compensation for injury inflicted or v.rong committed; 


they were taken as booty after a victorious war, and, as some- 
times occurred, were handed over to cement a peace. 

"We are told," wrote Captain Cook in his Voyages, "a hundred 
fabulous stories about this stone, not one of which cari'ied with 
it the least probability of truth, though some of their most sensible 
men would have us believe them." 

" According to an ancient legend," says Canon Stack, " the 
reason why greenstone is found in such an inaccessible region is 
that the locality was chosen by the three wives of Tamatea, the 
circumnavigator, when they deserted him, as the hiding place most 
likely to escape discovery. Tamatea's search along the east 
coast was unsuccessful ; and after passing Foveaux Straits he 
continued to skirt the shore, listening at the entrance of every 
inlet for any sound that might indicate the whereabouts of the 
runaways. But it was not till he arrived off the mouth of the 
Arahura river that he heard voices. There he landed, but failed 
to find his wives, being unable to recognize them in the enchanted 
blocks of greenstone over which the water murmured incessantly. 
He did not know that the canoe in which his wives escaped from 
him had been capsized at Arahura, and that its occupants had 
been changed into stone, and so he passed them by and continued 
his fruitless search." 

Mr. J. Cowan in his book, Maoris of New Zealand, relates 
the legend as he heard it from the South Island people. They 
added the detail that Tamatea went as far down as Milford Sound 
where he found one of his missing wives transformed into green- 
stone. As he wept over her, Tama's tears flowed so copiously 
that they penetrated the rock, and that is why the clear kind of 
bowenite found on the slopes and beaches of Milford Peak in that 
great sound, is called tangiwai, or tear water. 


Another tradition tells how Tamatea pokai-whenua (fair son), 
accompanied by a slave went inland to Mount Kaniere, and on 
the way stopped to cook some birds that he had killed. The 
slave accidentally burnt his finger while preparing the meal and 
thoughtlessly touched it with the tip of his tongue. For this 
impious act he was punished by being transformed into a mountain, 
ever since known by his name Tumu-aki. Another consequence 
of his breach of the tapii was that Tamatea never found his wives, 
and, so the story goes, the best parts of the enchanted greenstone 
into which they were changed is often found to be spoilt by flaws 
known as ttitae koka, the dung of the bird which the slave was 
cooking when he licked his burnt finger. 

From Haimona Tuakau, a very intelligent native of the North 
Island who spent many years at Arahura, Hohonu and other 
places on the west coast of the South Island, and knew a great 
deal about greenstone. Canon Stack ascertained the following 
particulars respecting the native names of various kinds of 
poiinamii and their respective colours. Kahotea is stone of a dark 
vivid green and is distinguished by the spots of black and brown 
which diversify its colour. Kawakawa is stone of a pure rich 
green colour, and is not spotted or veined with dark or light 
markings. Auhii-nga is slightly paler than kaivakawa. Inanga has 
a colour paler still, so that in parts it approaches grey or creamy 
white. Aote.a, as its name implies, is of a cloudy white. 

All of these are semi-opaque. Of a different quality, but most 
valuable of all kinds of poimamii, is kahurangi, a translucent stone 
of pale green. Of this there are two kinds, one entirely devoid of 
markings, the other known by the whiteish streaks of the colour 
of inanga which run through it. Kokotangiwai is a transparent 
greenstone, soft and brittle, with characteristic markings having the 


appearance of drops of water enclosed within it.* These are the 
principal varieties ; but the natives, with a keen eye for subtleties 
of colour and quality, have invented names, such as fongarewa, 
totoeka, korito, kutukutu, tuapaka and many others for the different 
shades that are met with. Kohuwai, the name of a moss-like 
water plant, is a term that is applied to nephrite in which similar 
markings appear. 

* See page 15 for the legend connected with this variety, 

Chapter II. 


ROCKS have been discovered in various localities in New 
Zealand whose surfaces are scored with deep grooves. 
There the men of old were wont to perform the grinding 
and rubbing processes whereby greenstone implements were 
smoothed and made symmetrical. It is astonishing how well 
formed and true in outline are these stone implements of the 
Maori. The labour involved in their manufacture was enormous. 
Weapons, tools and ornaments formed from rough pieces of 
greenstone by appliances of the most primitive character, were 
brought to a \ery high degree of finish by grinding them by 
hand with pieces of rough sandstone, the work being expedited 
by the use of sand- grit and water. The stone was sawn by 
rubbing the edge of one slab with another, water being allowed 
to drip continuously but slowly from a calabash hung above the 
stone, a constant supply of the finest quartz sand being meanwhile 
dropped into the groove by the workman. 

The only mechanical appliance of which we have any 
knowledge, that can safely be described as the invention of these 
workers of stone, is the tuwiri, an implement used for boring holes. 
Of this ingenious drill, with which the Maori were very expert, a 




Figure 2. 

Specimen may be seen in the museum at Auckland. It consists, 

as our illustration shews, of four parts. The 
first is a rod of wood called the pou, about 
two feet in length and three-quarters of an 
inch in thickness, shewn upright in the 
accompanying illustration. To the lower end 
of the pou is fastened the boring point of 
mata (obsidian), kiripapa (flint), or some 
other hard stone, chipped to a rough point. 
The pou passes through a hole in the middle 
of the porotiti, a disk of heavy wood [maire 
is that most often used) which is firmly 
fastened to the pou at about one-third of its height, and serves 
the purpose of increasing by its weight the momentum of the im- 
plement. The kurupae, that is, the cross-piece shewn in Figure 2, 
is a shaped piece of wood, twenty inches long and two inches 
wide in the middle, where there is a hole through which the pou 
passes, fitting loosely. The aho is a cord of plaited fibre fastened 
to the top of the pott and having its two ends tied to either 
extremity of the kurupae, which thus is held at right angles to 
the pou. 

The method of operating the drill is as follows : — the 
boring point at the lower end of the rod being placed upon the 
spot where a hole is to be made, the cross-piece is twirled round 
until the cord, now twisted about the upper part of the upright 
rod, raises the cross-piece up the rod, up which it slides easily. 
A dovv^nward pressure of the operator's hand upon the cross-piece 
now causes it to slide back down the rod, unwinding the 
cord as it descends. The rotation thus given, which is both 
increased and controlled by the heavy disk, causes the cord 


to wind round the rod in the opposite direction and a<»ain to 
raise the horizontal cross-piece. The operator's hand constantly 
resting upon the cross-piece, exercises pressure only in a downward 
direction. Sand and water are employed to increase the cutting 
power of the boring point, which needs frequent renewal or 
reohipping, and the boring is done from alternate sides of the 
stone operated upon until a hole is pierced. 

In light work, such for instance as grooving an eardrop, 
only one hand would be placed upon the kurupae, but in the 
heavier work required for boring a patu or stone club, pressure 
is exercised by both hands in order to give additional force to the 
boring point. 

Another and more primitive drill consisted of a wooden rod 
pointed with a small piece of basalt or obsidian and weighted 
with two heavy stones lashed to opposite sides of it. A string 
attached to the other end of the rod caused it to revolve, and a 
piece of perforated wood placed upon the object kept the point 
of the instrument continually in the same spot. 

Canon Stack, in 1879, obtained from Henare Tawha, a 
Ngaitahu chief who lived at Wairewa, some interesting particulars 
about the working of greenstone, and the other tools used by the 
native craftsmen. The father of the chief was Te Pi, a skilful 
maker of weapons, tools and ornaments of pounamu, who lived at 
Taumutu, where a great many people were employed in this 
manufacture. The stone was brought on men's backs from the 
west coast over the ranges by way of the Kaniere pass. The 
tools employed by these workers were as follows : — 

Kuru was a hammer of greenstone, rather larger than a 
man's head, with which great blocks of pounamu were broken up, 
grooves being first made in the blocks by friction with kiripaka 


or mica schist in order to control the direction of the fractures. 
Hoanga was the stone used for cutting and pohshing. Parihi 
kohatii was a sharp fragment of kara^ which seems to be a 
generic term for trap or any other hard stone. Pirori was the 
name given by Mr. Stack's informant to the drill. 

Many of the Maori weapons were made by old men who were 
past the age for serving as warriors. The war-adze, however, 
which, as will be seen later, was a special emblem of chieftainship, 
was made by no one but chiefs, who, being themselves tapu 
conferred a certain sacredness on this particular weapon. 

Chapter III. 


THE principal mechanical tools of the iMaori of the old days 
were toki or stone adzes (Figure 3), of which the most 
highly prized were made of greenstone. It is convenient 
to describe these tools as adzes inasmuch as they were helved 
in the same way as our adzes ; 
but with the important distinc- 
tion that the Maori never 
inserted the handle in the 
stone head, but always lashed 
the head to the helve. Toki 
were of various kinds and 
sizes, each being known by 
its own particular name. Mr. 
Elsdon Best enumerates four 
kinds : — ngao pae, the large 
heavy tool for roughing out 
work ; ngao tu, an adze of 
medium size ; ngao matariki, 
a small finishing tool ; and 
toki whakaran^ the smallest 
of the set, used for giving 
the final smoothness to the 

surface. Figure 3. 



With the largest toki trees of great size were felled, but 
the process was naturally tedious and lengthy. Maning, writing in 
Old New Zealand, says : " With rude and blunt stones they felled 
the giant kauri — toughest of pines ; and from it, in process of 
time, at an expense of labour, perseverance, and ingenuity, perfectly 
astounding to those who knew what it really was — produced, 
carved, painted, and inlaid, a masterpiece of art, and an object of 
beauty — the war canoe, capable of carrying a hundred men on 
a distant expedition, through the boisterous seas surrounding 
their island." 

Spells (karakia) were pronounced over the larger toki which 
were used for felling and working timber intended for the 
making of canoes or the timbers of an important house, in order 
that they might do the work effectually and that no harm might 
happen to the work, the workers or the material. In a somewhat 
similar way a workman when beginning to whakarau or smooth 
the surface of a canoe would cast a small stone into it to save 
his knowledge of the art of timber-working from being lost. 

Many of the toki of the old Maori had special names given to 
them and are famous in song and legend. In at least one case a 
noted weapon changed hands to mark the transfer of land. When 
in 1856 the land hitherto in the possession of the Maori was sold 
at Waikawa, to European settlers, the chief, Ropoama Te One, 
addressed the commissioners in these words as he struck into 
the ground at their feet a greenstone adze: — "Now that we 
have for ever launched this land into the sea, we hereby make 
over to you this axe, Pae whenua, always highly prized because 
we regained it in battle after it had been used to kill two of 
our most famous chiefs. Money vanishes and is lost, but this 
greenstone shall endure as a lasting witness of our act that the 



land itself which now is ours has been on this day transferred 
to you for ever." 

Mr. James Cowan has preserved a tradition of a famous adze 
which was regarded as the abiding place of a spirit and possessing 
a special niana of its own. This implement, named Papataunaki, 
was the property of one Rua three centuries ago. 


Figure 4. 

A very curious adze-head (Figure 4) was exhibited in London 
in 1910. It was formed from a tiki* ^ the head of which had 

See Chapter VI. 



been ground Bat and sharpened to a cutting edge. The rest of 
the ornament had been but Httle interfered with, and still shewed 
the form of the body, arms and legs. It was evident that the 
owner or captor of the tiki had had more need for a cutting tool 
than for an ornament, while the piercings of the tiki thus altered 
would conveniently serve to aid the lashing of the tool to its 
helve. There is strong presumption that toki of the ordinary 
form were sometimes pierced with a view to facilitate the lashing 
of them to their helves. 

Another kind of greenstone toki, of small size and thin in 
section, was the war-adze (Figure 5) to which the names toki pou 

tangata, toki honu pou and toki wha- 
whao pou were given. It is said that 
this tool was sometimes used for fine 
wood- carving ; but its normal use was 
ceremonial. It was carried by chiefs 
,.;^ as a token of chieftainship either in 
the belt or in the hand when speech- 
making ; sometimes it was used in 
battle as a convenient weapon to dis- 
patch a fallen foe. Its handle was 
less than two feet in length, and was 
adorned with elaborate carving at both 
ends, the flax cord lashing of the 
blade being often ornamented with 
brightly coloured feathers or dog's 
hair. A loop of cord which went 
through a hole at the butt end of the 
handle was passed round the wrist of 
the holder to save him from losing the precious token. 



Ml'. Polack, writing* in 1885, speaks of the war-adze as an 
uncommon weapon, and tells of the difficulty that he had found 
in gettino a specimen from an aged /ohiui^a, or priest. 

John Rutherford, a sailor who had been for nearly ten years 

Figure 6. 

a captive in the hands of the Maori, was sent by the natives, 9th 
January, 1826, to decoy an English ship to land in order that 
they might plunder it. "I was then dressed," he says, "in a 
feathered cloak, belt and turban, and armed with a battle-axe, the 
head of which was formed of a stone w^iich resembled green 
glass, but was so hard as to turn the heaviest blow of the hardest 



steel. The handle was of dark black wood, handsomely carved 
and adorned with feathers." Rutherford failed his hosts in every 
particular. He not only warned the English sailors of their 
danger, but being taken off by the ship, a free man but no 
longer a Maori chief, he made a present of the ceremonial dress 







Figure 7. 


and the war-adze to Captain Johnson, the commander of the ship 
which took him back to freedom and civilization. 

A war-adze, similar, no doubt, to that which was entrusted to 
Rutherford, is illustrated in Figure 6 from a drawing by the Author. 

It was only rarely that the Maori used tools or weapons 
shaped like our axes, and the reason is obvious. The greenstone 
never being drilled or cut to receive the tool handle, an axe with 



its edge parallel with the line of the handle was an impossibility, 
and an axe-like tool made by lashing the stone head to the side 
of the handle would be clumsy and ineffective. 

Captain Cook remarking that " without the use of any metal 
tools they make everything," mentions " the chisel and goudge of 
green serpent stone or jasper." These were set in handles of hard 
wood to which they were attached with flax cord. The illustration 
(Figure 7) on page 28 shews at A. a chisel [puriipuru) now in 
the British Museum. A greenstone drill with a facetted point, 
used for making the holes by which the top strakes of war 
canoes were lashed, is shewn at B. A gouge is represented at 
C. in the same drawing. 

Chisel work and extraordi- 
nary skill with it produced 
those masterpieces of wood 
carving of the Maori which 
are to be seen in their 
houses and gates, their war 
canoes and their monuments. 
Sir George Grey gave a 
remarkable instance of the 
pride of the native wood-carvers when he told how chiefs who 
had been late for an appointment with him, though he was the 
kawana, that is, the governor, excused themselves by explaining 
that they had been engrossed with their chisels. 

Barbs made of greenstone and lashed to curved pieces of wood 
to serve as fish hooks are not common ; two specimens, now in the 
British Museum, are illustrated in Figure 8. They were hard to 
make and easy to lose, and the material was too valuable to risk 
when bone, wood and shell answered as well for the purpose. 

Figure 8. 



Mr. Elsdon Best, speaking in his Forest Lore of bird-spears, 
says " seldom were greenstone points used, they were very rare." 

Figure 9 shews an implement which is 
possibly the point of a bird-spear. 

There is a tradition of one that belonged 
to Tamatea-kai-taharua, who flourished about 
250 years ago. It is said that one day when 
hunting he speared a pigeon, and the point 
becoming detached from his weapon the bird 
flew away with it sticking in its body. The 
agile hunter is said to have followed the 
wounded pigeon for fifty miles before he 
recovered his tara pounamu; and men still point 
to Tara Pounamu hill, so named in memory of 
the event, as proof of the truth of the tale. 

Other implements such as wedges, cutting 
tools, circular knives, rasps with worn edges 
that have been used in sawing blocks of stone, 
burnishers and even needles, are to be seen in 
museums among collections of articles made 
of this wonderful stone. 

Figure 9. 

Chapter IV. 


DEAR to the heart of the Neolithic Maori was the mere, or 
as it is sometimes called, patu pounainu, the war-club of 
greenstone which was the principal emblem of chieftain- 
ship, and the most valuable of all objects made of the New Zea- 
land nephrite. It took so many years of careful and patient toil 
to bring a war-club to the desired condition of finish, that it became 
an heirloom, and it was considered to hold the luck of the tribe. 
Tales bordering on the supernatural gathered about famous mere. 
Chiefs were incited to acts of reckless bravery, young warriors 
were roused to deeds of valour by those memorials of past 
struggles ; and European observers have ever been impressed by 
the extraordinary influence which appeared to reside in these 
prized weapons. The Rev. \V. Yate, one of the early missionaries 
to New Zealand, told that " the 7nere was made of green talc in 
the shape of a beaver's tail. This is the only native weapon 
which has not been laid aside by the chiefs ; it was a mark of 
distinction (carried) under their outer garment or suspended to 
their girdle. The finest of these beautiful specimens of native 
workmanship descend from father to son, and for scarcely any 
consideration are they ever parted with. Pieces of pounamii suit- 
able for a chief's mere were of a value which can hardly be 
realized by us in the present time. No weapon of warfare was 




more affectionately regarded than these legacies of ancestors, and 
to take one in battle was like capturing a colour with us." 

The conventional shape of this weapon, which never varied, is 
shown in Figure 10. 

Figure 10. 

The mere is an oval-bladed weapon, in length from about 14 
to 16 inches, flattened on both sides and having a double edge 
to the blade, which diminishes with two subtle curves to end in 
almost imperceptible shoulders at the handle, as is shewn in 
greater detail in Figure 11. 

Figure 11. 

This swells out again to the butt or pommel, called reke, which 
has some simple decoration such as the concentric grooves shewn 
in the example illustrated above. 

One of the mere in the British Museum collection has the 
butt carved with the partially finished head of a manaia* but 

* See Chapter V. page 42. 


it was not usual for the maker to put anything more than the 
simplest ornament on these weapons, nor at any part of it except 
the reke. 

Between the butt and the handle is a hole for the thong, 
or loop of strong cord. The hand was passed through the loop ; 
a few turns of the club caused the cord to close upon the holder's 
wrist, and the mere being grasped just forward of the reke the 
warrior was ready for battle or palaver. That was theoretically 
its use ; but more often the thumb or fingers only were inserted 
in the loop of the thong, so that the wielder of the club might 
be in less danger of being dragged off his balance by an enemy 
who could successfully grasp the blade of it. 

The mere^ being a short weapon, was usually carried thrust in 
the belt. In time of war weapons shared in the tapu with which 
the warriors were imbued, and mere, being thus themselves 
tapu, were always carefully guarded. 

Though mere are commonly spoken of as " war-clubs," they 
are actually stabbing and cutting weapons, and the only blow^s 
given with them were thrusts and sweeping cuts. If the blow was 
a forward stab in an enemy's face or ribs, it was called tipi ; a 
back-handed lunge was named ripi. With this weapon prisoners 
were slain by the chief before their bodies went into the oven. 
The thrust was given into the temple of the doomed men, and 
with a sharp turn of the wrist the top of the head was jerked 
open. It was with a patu that, after one of his victories, 
Te Wherowhero, father of the chief Potatau, who was proclaimed 
king of the Maori nation in 1858, slew two hundred and fifty 
prisoners of war. Hochstetter describes this weapon, made from 
a piece of beautiful transparent nephrite which was shewn to him 
by the chief's successor, and tells that a notch in the edge was 



caused by the last fatal blow struck at a hard skull. Another 
renowned greenstone weapon, known as Hau Kapua, was 
surrendered to the Government of New Zealand at the end of 
the late war. 

Enormous care was taken to preserve famous mere from loss 
or accidental damage. Hamilton, in his Maori Art, gives illustra- 
tions of two wooden boxes, 22 and 25 inches in length respectively, 
covered with carving of the most elaborate and intricate designs 
of mythological figures and distorted monsters, which he pronounced 
to have been used as receptacles for noble weapons. 

If by chance a mere should be broken the precious fragments 
were carefully preserved in order that they might be made into 
tools, implements or ornaments according to their size. Figure 12 
shews an adze-head made from a broken mere. 

Much might be written about famous 
mere and the mark that they made in 
Maori history ; and books on New Zealand 
and the native race will be found to 
contain many tales about these weapons 
and their owners. 

The famous chief Te Heuheu was 
overwhelmed with all his people, save one 
man, on 7th May, 1846. His mere was one 
of the most celebrated in New Zealand. 
Years afterwards a hundred men were 
employed to dig at the place of the 
catastrophe, and they worked with such 
diligence and care that the mere was 
eventually found, and is still in the 
possession of the tribe. 

Figure 12. 


War-clubs were generally buried with the chiefs, but were 
seldom allowed to remain permanently in the grave. Other 
articles of value might be allowed to stay in the earth ; but the 
mere^ being the principal badge of leadership, was recovered when 
the dead chief's bones were taken up for the second burial. It is 
well known that many mere have been hidden in the North Island, 
and in some cases subsequent mortality in the tribe has obliter- 
ated all knowledge of the hiding places. 

Occasionally tnere that had been lost were found and recognized 
to the great joy of the tribe. In 1864, just after the Gate Pa affair, 
a soldier of the 68th Light Infantry, one of a burial party at the 
cemetery at Te Papa, near Tauranga, came across a long buried 
greenstone mere, which he shewed to a party of Maori passing 
the spot in a canoe. They at once landed and claimed it at head- 
quarters, on the ground that it had belonged to one of their 
famous chiefs interred at that place ; and the English commander 
gave it up without demur, as was tika or correct. 

A Maori warrior, faced with violent death, would elect to be 
killed by a patu rangatira, a chief's patu, and would calmly await 
the death stroke, content to be despatched to reinga, the next 
world, even with his own good mere, comforted by the knowledge 
that it was no mean weapon that touched his proud head. Mr. 
Elsdon Best, in Notes on the Art of War, tells how a chief named 
Potiki pursued his enemy Kahu and ran down the fugitive, who 
was burdened by the weight of his child. But when Potiki 
raised his hatchet to slay his enemy, Kahu cried " Let me not 
be slain with a one-edged hatchet," and drawing his own good 
greenstone mere, Te Heketua, from his belt he surrendered it to 
Potiki, saying, " Here is the weapon to slay me with. Let me 


feel the softness of its stroke." And the chivah'ous chief, not to 
be outdone in courtesy, forebore to kill him, and giving his own 
patiti to the conquered foe, bade him take it and go in peace with 
his child. 

During the intertribal wars a leader of the Ngai Tai was 
slain by the Whakatohea who cut up the body, the head falling 
to the share of the Ngati Rua tribe. At a later time the Ngai 
Tai redeemed the head, giving a mere named Wawahi Rangi in 
exchange for it. 

The longest mere in the British Museum belonged to Te 
Hiko-o-te-rangi, son of the chief Te Pehi, who visited England in 
1826. The name of this weapon is Tuhi-wai. Another historic 
mere in the same collection is Papa-tahi, which was once in the 
possession of Rauparaha. Both were presented by Sir George 
Grey. Unfortunately they were injured in a fire that occurred 
at Government House, Auckland, while he owned them. 

Another famous patu was Piwari, formerly the property of 
Ripa, one of the chiefs of the Bay of Islands. In Canon Stack's 
Kaiapohia mention is made of Te Kaoreore, the greenstone patu 
of a chief named Te Aratangata, who in a very fierce fight 
against a hostile tribe did great execution with it till it broke, 
leaving only the handle in his hand. Seven other northern chiefs 
who had been driving bargains in greenstone fell on that day in 
the same pa- 
There is something of simple and touching dignity in the 
story of the first presentation of a mere by a Maori chief to 
the King of England. H.M.S. Buffalo, Captain Sadler, came 
to New Zealand in 1834 to buy kauri spars for the British 
Navy. When the English officer had accomplished his mission, 


Titore, chief of the Ngapuhi, sent a message to King WiUiam IV. 
of which the following is a translation : — 

" King William. Here am I, the friend of Captain Sadler, 
The ship is full and is now about to sail. 1 have heard that 
you aforetime were the captain of a ship. Do you therefore 
examine the spars, whether they are good, or whether they are 
bad. Should you and the French quarrel here are some trees 
for your warships. 1 am now beginning to think about a ship 
for myself. A native canoe is my vessel, and I have nothing 
else. The native canoes upset when they are filled with potatoes 
and other matters for your people. I have put on board the 
'Buffalo' a greenstone war -club and two garments. These are 
all the things which New Zealanders possess. If I had anything 
better I would give it to Captain Sadler for you. This is all 
mine to you — mine — Titore to William, King of England." 

In due course a letter of thanks was sent to Titore by the 
Earl of Aberdeen, Secretary of State for War and the Colonies, 
together with a present from the king, "a suit of armour, such 
as was worn in former times by his warriors, but which is now 
only used by his own bodyguard." This armour is now in the 
Dominion Museum at Wellington. 

"A good mere poutiauiu," says Maning in his Old New 
Zealand, " would be a temptation. I had once a mere, a present 
from a Maori friend, the most beautiful thing of the kind ever 
seen. It was nearly as transparent as glass; in it there were 
beautiful marks like fern-leaves, trees, fishes, and — I would not give 
much for a person who could not see almost anything in it. 
Never shall I cease to regret having parted with it. The Emperor 
of Brazil, I think, has it now ; but he does not know the proper 


use of it. It vsent to the Minister long ago. I did not sell 
it; I would have scorned to do that; but I did expect to be 
made knight of the golden pig knife, or elephant and watch box, 
or something of that nature." 

Chapter V. 


^¥ AHE Maori possessed a remarkable variety of ornaments, of 
I great diversity of form, motif and size ; for in spite of 

the dangers and the difficulties which attended the 
acquisition of greenstone, there were very few natives of either 
island who did not possess something made of it. All such orna- 
ments were worn by men and women alike, suspended from a 
cord which passed through a hole bored through the stone at 
the top, either at the neck, or hanging from the lobes of the ears, 
or as long pendants to adorn the cloak. 

The most common ornaments were the straight cylindrical 
ear-pendants called kiirii, and straight Hat pieces of stone, to 
which the name whakakai was given. But simple pendants of 
this kind were of all sorts of shapes, the form depending on the 
size and shape of the fragment of stone at the artist's disposal. 
Ornaments of this simple type were noticed by Captain Cook, 
who remarks that " in the ears both of men and women, which 
are pierced or rather slit, are hung small pieces of jasper." The 
great variety of their shapes, which is shewn in Figure 13, is no 
doubt due to the fact that the greenstone was so highly prized 
that any small fragment of it which could not be utilised in any 




other way would be treasured and adapted, no matter what its 
shape might be. 

Figure 13 

But many of the Maori ornaments were of far more elabo- 
rate character. The most important of the ear-ornaments was 

* A ♦ 

^I^J^W^^t^ , 


Figure 14. 

the pekapeka (Figure 14), or bat, so called from its fancied resem- 
blance to that animal. It was worked, with the figures rounded 



on both sides, into a conventional representation of two bird- 
headed snakes, the mythological inanaia*, placed back to back. 

Figure 15. 

Figure 15 is an illustration of a carved piece of greenstone 
now preserved in the University Museum at Cambridge, which 
will be seen to have a great likeness to the pekapeka shewn in 
Figure 14. It is, however, obviously a representation of a single 

Figure 16- 

The remarkable pendant illustrated in Figure 16 is worked on 
both sides in the form of a bird-headed monster, the leg having 

*The esoteric meaning of this symbol is lost, and will probably never be discovered. It 
is suggested, however, that it may perhaps have some connection with the ancient religion of 
India. It is at least a coincidence that the Maori symbolical group of two iiiaitaias pecking at 
a god is paralleled by Vishu peeked by his sacred bird Garnda. Ari was one name of Vishnu, 
and the ariori mummery of Tahiti bears a strong resemblance to a degraded form of Vishnu 
worship. It is remarkable, too, that the eleventh day of the moon was in India sacred to Ari, 
while the Maori name for the eleventh night of the moon is ari. 



two claws. It is clearly a variant of the same type of ornament ; 
but it presents a daring departure from the usual form, very un- 
common in the work of the Maori, who were slaves to traditional 


The single manaia was usually fashioned in the spiral form 
illustrated from two actual examples in Figure 17. 


Figure 17. 

This malignant spirit, which figures in so many ancient carvings 
of the Maori, is commonly shewn attacking man and viciously 
biting his ear or body. A small carved pendant (Figure 18) 
in the British Museum represents the head of a manaia. 

Figure 18. 

In Figure 19 is shewn the mako, which was a very popular 
ornament, highly valued as a keepsake. It is a representation 



of a shark's tooth with its root, the graceful curves of 
the orii^inal beini* faithfull\ copied. When correctly worn 

it hun<4 from tlie ear with 
the point to the front The 
natural white tooth of the 
shark was also much prized 
as an ornament, but its in- 
feriority to a jewel of kahu- 
rangi, jade of the finest 
quality, is recognised in a 
native poem which has been translated as follows : — 

Figure 19. 

That is worthless, 

That is the bone of a fish ; 
But if it were the little pounamu, 

That ancient source of evil, 

The fame whereof reaches 
Beyond the limits of the sky — eh ! 

/^ V 

The porta (Figure 20), otherwise called inoria, was a 
small double ring of round or oval section, made for the leg 
of a decoy or the large russet 
brown parrots {nestor meridion- 
alis) called kaka, which were 
kept as pets by the Maori. 
Through the smaller ring shewn 
at the top of the two examples 
here figured, was passed the 

cord by which the bird was Figure 20. 

secured to its perch. 




The kapeu or tautau (Figure 21) was a 
long eardrop of oval section, straight for the 
greater part of its length, but having a slight 
curve at its lower end. The difficulty of 
cutting this ornament was much increased by 
its pecuhar shape, which is believed to be 
suggested by that of a face-strigil. An 
unusually long and very valuable specimen, 
called by the ancient name of Tikirau, was 
given to the Hon. Victor Alexander Herbert Huia 
Onslow, the second son of the fifth Earl of 
Onslow, on the occasion of his presentation 
to the Ngatihuia tribe at Otaki, 12th Septem- 
ber, 1891, Huia's father being at that time 
Governor of New Zealand. 

Some years ago a very ancient green- 
stone ear-drop came into the possession of 
the Author. This ornament, which is of con- 
siderable value on account of its age and 
beautiful workmanship, was sent to him from 
New Zealand by an aged chief against whom 
^ he had fought in the Maori wars. The touching letter that 
accompanied the gift, with its pathetic mingling of the musical 
native language and prosaic matter-of-fact English phrasing, 
shewed that with the lapse of years the old antagonism had 
completely passed away, and the gallant and honourable foe 
of the old days had become a loyal citizen of the Empire. 
We make no apology for printing this interesting communica- 
tion in full. 

Figure 21. 


Tauranga, New Zealand, 

30 No%>., 1901. 

Te Teniere Rope re. 
E hoa, tena koe, 

Kia ora koe. Ma te atua koe e tiaki. Heoi te mihi. I have 

received your letter of 12th October, and my heart is exceedingly 

glad. Of all your old friends mentioned in your letter I alone 

am left ; all are gone. When the Duke of Cornwall came to 

Rotorua I was presented to him, and as the chief of the Bay 

of Plenty tribes received a medal in honor of his visit, and, on 

behalf of the natives generally, would now like to express their 

extreme pleasure at the royal visit. I am now^ an old man and 

am unable to say all I would wish to say to you ; but 1 am 

sending you by this mail a pounamu whakakai e mati ana ki te 

taringa o te tangata, and I hope that you will w^ear it in 

remembrance of the old days when we fought together side by 


Heoi ano 

Na^ tail hoa aroha 





The hei* niafaii (Figure 22) is a neck ornament with the 

general shape of 
a fish-hook, but 
made in a large 
variety of shapes 
and sizes. Spells 
were recited over 
them, and they 
seem to have 
been regarded as 
charms to ensure 
Figure 22. succcss in sea- 

fishing. It has been suggested that the hook form commemorates 

Fij.iire 23. 
* For the signiKcance of the word liei thus prefixed to a .Maori word see page 55 



the drawing up of the North Island from the depths of Wainui, 
the mother of waters, by the demi-god Maui, a legend that 
is current also among the inhabitants of the islands of the Pacific. 
A very curious matau is shewn in Figure 23, which illus- 
trates one in the British Museum. It is evident that it was the 
first intention of the carver to make a tiki (see Chapter VI.) of 

the piece of stone from which it is fashioned; the artist, how- 
ever, changed his mind before he got to work on the upper part. 
The oldest matau, of which a typical example, preserved 
in the University Museum at Cambridge, is shewn in Figure 24, 
are to be recognized by their rude workmanship and coarse 
form, as well as by the rough edges, which indicate an early 
period when the native lapidaries had not attained to the high 



pitch of excellence in the art of cutting and grinding green- 
stone which they afterwards reached. 

Mention may also be made here of two curious pendants of 

eel-like form (Figure 25), now in the 
Dominion Museum of New Zealand. 
Possibly they were charms for eel- 
fishing. They are made of different 
qualities of greenstone. That to the 
right of the illustration, which is bored, 
is of fine translucent kahurangi. 

This list only gives the most im- 
portant of these trinkets, which were. so 
highly prized that, as Mr. Elsdon Best 
records, during the wars of Ruatoki a 
man's life was redeemed by the gift to 
his captor of a greenstone ear-ornament. 
It would be difficult to describe and 
to figure the many curious shapes into 
which pieces of stone were ground and 
fashioned. Figure 26 shews one of cres- 
cent form. It is perhaps an amulet, 
although its inner edge, which is 

sharpened, suggests a scraper or a 
cutting tool ; but the little pierced pro- 
jection on its upper side shews that it 
was designed to be worn as a pendant. 
'w Figure 27 shews another of somewhat 
similar form from the Island of Ruapuke 

in Foveaux Straits, made of a fine fragment of translucent stone. 

Some ornaments shaped as the barbs of fish-hooks have been 

Figure 25. 

Figure 26. 



found; an example is illustrated in Figure 13. It may be 
stated as a general rule that the larger ornaments were hung 
from the neck, while those of smaller size were used as 

Favourite pendants, like famous implements and weapons, 
were distinguished by having names given to them, and some, 
of course, are very ancient. One mentioned by Mr. James Cowan 





Figure 27. 

is said to have been fashioned from a piece of the greenstone 
taken by Ngahue to Hawaiki and brought back to New Zealand 
in the Arawa canoe when the islands w^ere settled at the 
immigration. It was jealously preserved until quite recent times 
when it was unfortunately lost by its wearer, a woman of 
the Heuheu family, in the waters of Lake Taupo. Its name 
w^as Kaukaumatua. 

Now and again worked pieces of greenstone, ancient work 
of the Maori, are discovered. Polack's prediction, made over half 



a century ago, that in future years many aboriginal curiosities 
would be discovered by European colonists, has been fully 
realised. It is at the Maori burying places that the most 
important finds have been made; for, as we have already 
seen, it has always been the custom of this people to bury with 
their dead the favourite weapons, ornaments and tools which 
their chiefs had held in high esteem. 


Chapter VI, 


THERE is one special class of ornaments which, from their 
remarkable form, the extreme care lavished upon their 
production and preservation, and the feeling almost 
approaching veneration with which the Maori regarded them, 
demand detailed notice. These are the hei-tiki, neck-ornaments, 
c/ grotesquely shaped as male or female human figures, which were 
worn by the Maori as memorials of specially dear relatives or 
venerated ancestors. The illustration (Figure 28) given on the 
next page is a full-sized drawing of a typical hei-tiki, shewing 
the front and back of the ornament. 

The wearing of tiki by the Maori was as common as that 
of lockets among Europeans., and they were freely parted with 
as gifts or in exchange unless the value of an individual specimen 
consisted in the fact that it had been worn and handled by dead 
relations. If that were the case, reverence for the ancestor 
attached, as it were, to the ornament, which thereby became an 
object to be treasured as oha or an heirloom. 

Canon Stack considers that the custom of carving and 
wearing hei-tiki was brought to their new home in New Zealand 




by the immigrants from Hawaiki. He notes how Maori art 
deteriorated after the white man came to the country. He could 
remember large tiki being worn by old Maori between 1840 and 
1850; after the latter year they practically disappeared. Possibly 

Figure 28. 

the adoption by the natives of European clothing partly accounts 
for the disuse of native ornaments. Certainly the acquisitiveness 
of curio hunters hastened their disappearance. Anyhow the best 
expression of Maori art is a thing of the past ; and though 
countless copies and replicas have been made by lapidaries and 
jewellers they lack the characteristic touch and skill of the old 
workers and can never deceive a connoisseur. 

A curious instance of the native reverence for their orna- 
ments and their customs is recorded by Angus, who relates that 

HE1-TIKL 53 

he saw a fiki on a child's f^rave which the fapu made absolutely 
safe, although it would naturally be an object of envy and a prize 
easily to be secured by anyone who passed the spot. 

It is agreed by all students of Maori art that tiki were not 
representations of deities. As early as 1830 Mr. Yate, the 
missionary, who was an industrious collector of native lore, had 
come to this conclusion ; and Canon Stack, whose earliest 
recollections of New Zealand date from the year 1840, maintains 
that the tiki " did not represent a god, but the spirit of a deceased 
relative. It was worn," he says, "to keep in memory some beloved 
one, for the same reason that our ladies wear lockets containing 
the likenesses of those who had passed into the other world." 

The same authority considers that all tiki, whether of wood 
or stone, were purposely made grotesque, because the artist 
wished to show that these objects of his skill were not represen- 
tations of living human beings but symbolical memorials of the 
dead. The Maori never attempted to copy the human form and 
features exactly ; perhaps they had not the requisite artistic skill 
to enable them to do so ; nor did they ever make statues or 
other representations of living men. Their carved figures were 
made to preserve the memory of deceased relatives or in honour 
of some god ; not that they worshipped the effigy, e\en if it 
were that of a god; it was merely a symbol of the unseen. 
They seem to have believed, however, that a spiritual being 
could, when rightly invoked, enter into the image made to 
represent it and in some way manifest its presence to the person 
invoking it. 

The Maori themselves declare that these figures were 
deliberately made imperfect, and are not to be regarded as like- 
nesses of ancestors. Any harm, therefore, which might happen 


to the figure or any insLilt offered to it, could not liarm the spirit 
of the deceased. Mr. Polack says " The most valued ornament 
that has stood the test of many generations is the tiki, made of 
the potuiamu or green serpent-stone in the form of a distorted 
monster. There is no reason given for the otitre shape in which 
this figure is invariably made Gods or lares are not in this 
land ; and they are equally unlike departed friends, for the 
resemblance is neither like anything above the earth or perhaps 
beneath the waters. These ornaments stand paramount in public 
estimation ; the original cause of their manufacture is forgotten." 

The Maori themselves have lost any traditional knowledge 
that they may once have possessed of the origin of these remark- 
able objects ; and it is unfortunate that the old priests who knew 
the symbolic meaning of these figures have all passed away. The 
Maori who now pose as authorities are untrustworthy. They 
are at best theorists and less likely to theorize correctly than 
Europeans, because of their limited knowledge. For while the 
knowledge of the white man ranges over the whole race, that of 
the native New Zealander is confined to customs and practices 
of the particular family or tribe to which he belongs. 

Perhaps in its origin the tiki was a symbol of an ancient 
creed or a representation of a being worshipped in some long 
forgotten religion, and its persistent retention of its archaic form 
would seem to lend support to this theory. Some students, 
observing the superstitious dread which the Maori have of the spirits 
of unborn children, consider that the doubled-up attitude of the 
tiki is suggested by that of the human foetus, and that the ornament, 
in its original intention, was a talisman to guard the wearer 
against the maleficent influence of those spirits. Others believe 
it to be possible that the curious compressed appearance which 


the tiki presents may be remotely connected with the custom of 
doubHng up the corpse which obtained in many ancient burial 
customs."*^ However that may be the tiki had among the Maori 
no religious significance. iMr. Yate refers to this theory only to 
demolish it. It was held, he acknowledges, by the earliest 
European settlers, who observed that when a few Maori friends 
met together they were accustomed to lay a hei-tiki ceremoniously 
on a leaf or tuft of grass in the middle of the assembled people 
while they wept and sang dirges over it. It was addressed by 
the name of its late possessor, those present weeping and caress- 
ing it with loving gestures, and cutting themselves deeply and 
c/^everely in token of the regard which they bore to the deceased. 
But this, he declares, was only done to bring more vividly 
to mind the dead person to whom the liei-tiki had once belonged. 
These ornaments, he states emphatically, were preserved and 
worn in remembrance of the dead, not only of the ancestors who 
last wore them, but of all those in whose possession they 
had been. 

The noun hei means neck ; but when conjoined with another 
noun it has an adjectival force as is shewn in the native lullaby: — 

Taku hei piripiri — my necklace of scented moss ; 

Taku hei inokimoki — my necklace of fragrant fern ; 

Taku hei tawhiri — my necklace of odorous shrubs ; 

Taku kati taramea — my sweet locket of taramea. 
Tiki are cut from a single piece of greenstone, and var\- in 
length from two to eight inches. They are carved on the front 
side with rude representations of the face, neck, arms, body and 
legs. The back is usually plain (see Figure 28), shewing only 
the piercings which shape the limbs and the reverse side of the 

* cf. Hewitt. Primitive Traditional History, pp. 216-218, 377-389. 


hole bored in the upper part of the figure for the purpose of 
suspension. Tiki worked on the back as well as the front are 
very rare. One of these is in the Ethnological Collection at the 
British Museum, where it is exhibited on a raised stand placed 
above a mirror, to shew the carving on its back. 

The face of the figure is consistently of conventional form, 
with a curious raised band or ridge down the forehead, branch- 
ing to the eyes and continued as the nose, where it again 
branches into strongly marked and acutely arched nostrils. The 
eyes are shewn as little circular shallow pits under heavy over- 
hanging brows. In the more ancient tiki, as was noticed by 
Captain Cook, the whites of the eyes (Figure 30) were repre- 
sented by pierced disks of the irridiscent paua 
shell, which are sometimes marked with serra- 
ted edges, apparently to represent eyelashes. 
When in the middle of the nineteenth century 
objects of European manufacture began to be 
introduced by traders it was found that red sealing 
wax* had a peculiar fascination for the Maori, 
who often used it to fill the eyes of tiki and for the adornment 
of other greenstone articles. 

The curious heart-shaped mouth is always shewn open, with 
coarse, thick lips, and the prominence given to the tongue 
is thought to suggest the grimace of Maori defiance. No 
marks representing tattoo are ever found on the faces of green- 
stone tiki. The arms are carefully cut out, and the hands 
are placed in various positions according to the type to which 

* Red was the colour of mourning among the Maori, and stains of red ochre may still 
be seen on ornaments which have been buried with the dead, or whose wearers had daubed 
themselves with it, 


the ornament belongs. The thumbs are always shewn, but never 
more than three fingers appear. 

This fashion of carving the hand has puzzled many students 
of the ancient New Zealand art. The Maori have the ingenious, 
but perhaps hardly credible, explanation of this phenomenon, that 
the first man to carve and decorate was an ancestor who had 
himself only three fingers on each hand. Whether this is true 
or not the fashion has been rigidly followed since the legendary 
Nuku-mai-teko, the skilful worker, deceived Tangaroa with his 
art. This representation of three-fingered hands is not, however, 
peculiar to the Maori. Hands of this rude form have been noted 
in ancient Chinese ideographs and in other Eastern sculptures, 
in the relics of the Peruvian Incas and in other forms of 
primitive art, as is remarked by Mr. Cowan in his Maoris of 
New Zealand. 

From this general description it will be seen that tiki con- 
form to a certain conventional shape, which is that which was 
handed down from generation to generation ; for the Maori con- 
sidered that it was aiitia, an ill omen, to depart from the lines 
laid down by their forefathers. Some of these little effigies are 
squat and others more elongated, a result no doubt due to the 
dimensions of the piece of stone at the artist's disposal. They 
vary in form, as our illustrations shew, but a close inspection 
shews that they fall into two main types, in both of which the 
head is inclined to right or left, and in many cases resting, 
as it were, upon the shoulders. 

In both types the legs are shewn with the knees bent, and 
the feet, with what appear to be sometimes two and sometimes 
three pairs of toes, gathered under the body. But these limbs 
are really an attempt to represent the motif of the manaia 



(see page 41) pecking the body. Figure 29 is an illustration 
of a wooden Hki which shews these fabulous monsters very 
clearly. Tiki made of bone* have also been preserved which 
distinctly shew that the parts, which in greenstone fiki 
degenerated into a rude likeness to the legs of the figure, are in 
their origin not legs but manaia. 

Figure 29. 

Type A, of which Figure 28 at the beginning of this chapter 
is a well marked example, shews the arms akimbo with the 
outspread hands resting upon the thighs. It has four teeth 
in the mouth, indicated by knobs at the middle and ends of 
the lips, beyond which the tongue does not extend. 

In the British Museum there are two specimens of liei-tiki made from pieces of human skull. 



Fiitures 81-37 shew these various points in more or less detail. 
In Figures 31 and 32 we give examples of fihi that haxe cut-out 
necks. The former of these is a full-sized representation of the 

Figure 31. 

Figure 32. 

head of the figure only. It will be observed that it has the 

eyes of shell, and the additional peculiarity of a projection 

at the top of the head pierced for the cord hy 
was suspended. 

which it 



Another method of suspension is shewn in Figure 33. 
Here it will be seen that the cord by which the figure was 
hung at the wearer's neck was tied round a knob at the top 
of its head. 

Figure 33. 

Fi-«uie :U. 

Figure 34 is an illustration of a very ancient tiki brought 
from New Zealand by Midshipman Burr, who sailed with 
Captain Cook on his last voyage. In this case the boring is 
through the right eye. 



In the tiki illustrated in Figure 35, the boring is through 
the right ear, while that in Figure 3(S was suspended by the 
hole at the left elbow, where the wearing of the hard green- 
stone by the friction of the suspending cord is plainly visible. 

Figure 35. 

Fig me 36. 

A comparison of this ornament with those illustrated on pages 72 
and 76 shews that hei-fiki suspended by the elbow naturalh' 
hang in a horizontal, instead of an upright, position. In 
Figure 37 overleaf the cutting out of the neck is shewn only 
on the right side. 

It will be observed that the tiki illustrated in Figures 33, 34 
and 35, have the necks not cut out; the heads rest solidly upon the 



shoulders. The ornament shewn in Figure 36 has, on the other 
hand, its head quite clear of the body. 

In tiki of the A type the ribs, either one or two pairs, 
are indicated by raised ridges forked at their lower ends, where 
in some cases (see Figs. 28, 33 and 34) the navel is shown. 

Figure 37. 

y A historic tiki of the A type, over six inches in height and 
of very fine workmanship, was brought to England in 1820 by 
the chief Hongi and presented by him to the Rev. Basil Wood, 
a life governor of the Church Missionary Society, who received 
him and his companion, the chief Waikato. After many 
vicissitudes this ornament is now preserved in the Dominion 
Museum at Wellington, having been secured for that national 
institution by Mr. T. E. Donne. 



In the Tourist Department at Wellington is an oil painting by 
J. Barry, presented by the Church Missionary Society, through Mr. 
Donne's instrumentality shewing Hongi wearing a iiki and a feather 
cloak, and accompanied by Wail<ato and Kendall the missionary. 

Figure 38. 

In tiki of the B type, of which Figure 38 is a good example, 
the design varies from those of the A type in several important 
particulars. The head is generally cut free of the shoulders and 
not resting upon them, the ears are usually shewn, and the neck 
is thicker. One hand with its outspread fingers and thumb is 
placed on the breast. The other hand, which is always that 



on the side towards which the chin points, rests on the 
thigh. The eyes in this type are smaller in proportion to 
the size of the head than those of type A. As a rule it 

has no ribs. Its tongue, called 
arero rua, is forked and its 
teeth are two or three in num- 
ber. In some cases the navel 
is shewn. Figures 38-44 illus- 
trate this type. Figure 38 is an 
example shewing in admirable 
detail all the characteristics 
just enumerated. 

Figure 39 shews a tiki of 
B type, now in the Museum of 
Archaeology and Ethnology at 
Cambridge, with the characteris- 
tic double tongue which, however, 
is of unusual form, being given 
in relief by the holes at either 



Figure 39. 


side of it and going to the chin 
instead of to the side of the mouth. 
The little tiki illustrated in Figure 40 is excep- 
tional in having three ribs on the right side. 

The tiki shewn in Figure 41 indicates 
a change of motif on the part of the 

,N?y / 




artist during the process of manufacture. It is evident tliat 
the- right hand of the figure was at first designed to rest on 
the thigh. But this hand was awkwardly changed to the B 

N^ w-y/ 


y^ , 

Figure 41. 

position on the breast, and thus a tiki begun in the style of 
type A was changed to the conventional rendering of type B, 
to which also the double tongue belongs. 



A comparison of this very remarkable tiki with the illustra- 
tion of the three pieces of jade in Figure 42 shews quite 
plainly that the original intention to make it of the A type. 
For the illustration of the partially formed ornaments proves 
that the first cuts in the greenstone were those that outlined 

Figure 42. 

the legs and arms. This point appears to be emphasised by 
the drawing in the middle of Figure 42, where the beginnings 
of the work upon the head prove that though the Maori 
artists were not always particular to finish the lower part 
of their figures first, they began work on the limbs with a 
clear intention as to the type to which the figure was to belong. 



A fiki, now in the Salford Museum, illustrated in Figure 43 
.s noteworthy in having little cuts on its hands, as if to denote' 
the jomts of the fingers and thumbs. It is drawn here in 

Figure 43. 

outhne to make this peculiarity more clearly visible. The tiki 
shewn in Figure 44 is an admirable e.x-ample of the B type 
It was presented to Colonel Mundy, the author of Our Antipodes 



by Tamihana, son of the notorious chief Rauparaha, who about 
the year 1828 devastated the South Island in his relentless 
greed for greenstone. Less than two decades later Tamihana, 


Figure 44. 

helped by his cousin Matene-te-whiwhi, nobly atoned for his 
father's cruelty by winning the Southern Islanders to Christianity. 
A greenstone neck-ornament of rare form (Figure 45), now at 
Dresden and known as Heke's tiki, has great affinity with the 
B type, but is exceptional in having both hands placed upon the 
breast. This attitude is very unusual in figures made of jade ; 



it is, however, common in wood carvings. Mr. Elsdon Best, in 
a recent letter to the Author, speaks of a very fine hei-tiki 
belonging to Mr. John Baillie, which is said to have been 

Figure 45. 

taken home by the mate of the " Endeavour." Its length 
is 6| inches and its width 3J inches. This ornament is remark- 
able in having both the arms extending downwards with the 
hands clasping the thighs, an attitude also found in some tiki of 
bone. The tiki shewn in Figure 46 also resembles those of 
the B type, but departs from the regular design in the upright 



position of the head, 
is also unusual. This 

M — »_ til 

The support under the figure's left arm 
ornament shews signs of long use. Its 
surface is greatly worn ; the legs 
are broken off ; and the original 
hole has been broken or worn 
through and a fresh hole has 
been been bored on the other side 
of the nose ridge. 

The British Museum possesses 
two curious little greenstone figures 
of tiki form, shewn in Figure 47, 
which have the right arms raised 
to the head. They have the 
appearance of great age, and are 

Figure 46. 

Figure 47. 

perhaps relics of a time before the form of these ornaments 
had settled down into the two normal types. It will be 



Figure 48. 

observed that the tiki illustrated at the right of Figure 47 has 
the fingers of the raised hand carefully worked with perforations 

between the fingers. This figure has lost 
its legs. Figure 48 shews part of another 
remarkable tiki with the upright head that 
has already been remarked as a departure 
from the usual form, and with the fingers 
of the left hand raised to its mouth. It 
is possible that this attitude is a memorial 
of the legend of Tamatea's slave who was 
punished for breaking tapu. 

Hei-tiki were difficult to make, and 

only the most skilful tohungas who were 

experts in the arts of carving and tattooing 

undertook their manufacture. A pointed 

stick, sand and water were the simple 

tools that they employed, together with the shell of the pipi 

or common cockle, which was used as a ready-made tool by 

the Maori craftsmen. 

After the stone had been polished, the last operation was 
the boring of the hole for suspension, a piece of work requiring 
great care. 

The hole, like all other holes pierced in greenstone was, 
as is mentioned above, made by boring from both sides of 
the stone, and being usually bored at the top of the head of 
the effigy, the tiki was normally worn so that it hung upright. 
But if it so pleased the wearer, the ornament might be 
worn hanging from that arm which allowed the face to look 
downward. The chin always pointed downward ; that rule 
was invariable. 



Figure 49, which is a drawing 
of part of an ancient wooden monu- 
ment raised to a Maori chief, shews 
in careful detail the tattoo marks 
on his face. For our present pur- 
pose it is of special interest as 
shewing that he wore a tiki of .the 
B type suspended, in the same 
way as is shewn in Figure 36, by 
the left arm. 

The left-hand drawing in Figure 
42 shews a tiki in process of forma- 
tion from a water-worn piece of 
greenstone, which is now in the 
British Museum. The work, as has 
already been noted, began with the 
fashioning of the limbs. The same 
illustration shews two adze-blades of 
greenstone on which are the begin- 
ings of the perforations, which prove 
Figure 49. that it was also intended to make 

tiki of them.. When iron axes supplanted the native adzes 
many tiki and other ornaments were made out of the discarded 
blades of greenstone. Tiki made from these blades can be readily 
recognised, because the adzes being thin in section the ornaments 
made from them are not so plump as those more ancient 
specimens that were cut from rough blocks or water-worn 
fragments of nephrite. 

Famous tiki were named in the same way as famous weapons. 
The largest in the British Museum collection, which was given 


to Sir George Grey in 1848 by Hone Heke, had the title 
Ko vvakatere kohu kohu. Another noted hei-iiki is mentioned by 
Canon Stack, who describes how he made the acquaintance at 
Grahamstown, near Auckland, of a native clergyman named 
Hohepa Paraone. This man showed the Canon a highly prized 
tiki called Mihi rawhiti, that is, 'object of lament and greeting in 
the East,' which was an heirloom in the two branches of the 
family into which Maru Tuahu's descendants had split, being held 
alternately by the one which lived at the Thames and by the 
other which had settled at Taranaki. The ornament was always 
buried with the person who happened to be wearing it at the 
time of his death. When his bones were taken up in due time 
to be placed in the tribal sepulchre, the ceremony of the second 
burial was performed by members of the other branch of the 
family, who returning to their own home took back with them 
the family heirloom. They then kept it until it passed once 
more into the hands of the other branch who in their turn 
performed the funeral rites of the last wearer of it. 

There is a tradition that this venerable and crudely formed 
ornament was worn by Maru Tuahu when he arrived in New 
Zealand ; and Canon Stack, who had an opportunity of examining it, 
was confirmed in his belief that finely wrought specimens were not 
produced till the art of working greenstone had been practised 
for many generations after the coming of the first canoes. 

One of the three tiki deposited in the Auckland Museum by 
Mr. Arthur Eady, has the name of Maungarongo, that is, the 
peacemaker, It belonged at one time to Rangi Purewa, a priest 
of the Wairau Valley, who allowed Te Rauparaha to see and 
handle the precious trinket. It chanced that that chief had a 
feud with a man named Pukekohatu, and seized and imprisoned 


a kinsman of his enemy. Whereupon Pukekohatu, in fear for his 
relative's Hfe, asked the aid of the priest Purewa, who lent him his 
tiki, saying " Here is a tiki that will make peace. Put it round 
the neck of your wife's slave girl and offer both as payment ; 
and your wish that your kinsman may be restored will be 
granted." And so it fell out. But some time afterwards one 
of Rauparaha's relations became ill, and the priest was accused of 
having bewitched the man. Purewa maintained that the patient 
was ill because he had broken tapu in wearing the sacred tiki, and 
would surely die if it were not returned to its rightful owner ; 
which being done the sick man was restored to health. Afterwards 
the tiki had many owners till at length it passed into the 
possession of Europeans and eventually found a resting place in 
the Auckland Museum. 

Henare Tawha, a Maori chief whose remarks on the working 
of pounama are quoted in Chapter II., once told Canon Stack that 
very few people know how to make hei-tiki, the natives of the 
North Island being more skilful in their manufacture than those 
of the South. It did not require, he said, very great skill to 
make weapons and tools and the simpler ornaments, but only 
very clever workers could make tiki. 

Hakopa-te-atu-o-tu, a noted chief of the Ngai Tahu, who 
won great fame for his defence of Kaiapoi against Rauparaha's 
besieging army, wrote, in July 1882 when he was upwards of 
eighty years of age, a letter to Canon Stack, which is so striking 
a confirmation of much that has been said above that we are 
glad to have the opportunity of reproducing it here. 

" Friend, greeting. I never saw the making of a hei-tiki in 
my childhood. The North Island natives were the people who 
made hei-tiki. The tools used to perforate the greenstone when 



forming it into ornaments were not chisels, but pieces of obsidian 
and flint with which drills were pointed. The shaping of the 
holes when made was done by rubbing with gritty stone. Maoris 
never worshipped the hei-tiki. It was only an oka tiipuna^ he tohu 
ki ona tin, a relic of an ancestor, a sign to his descendants. 
The names of the different kinds of greenstone were hauhunga, 
kawakawa, inanga, kaJiiiraugi, taugiicai, iiiatakirikiri, aofea, 

Figure 50. 

kahotea. The places where greenstone was formerl} found were 
Arahura, Waininihi, Hohonu {i.e., Taramakau) and Pio pio tahi 
{i.e , Milford Sound). Some pounautu was so hard that it could 
only be broken by using hammers of greenstone." 

The detail drawing (Figure 50) illustrates the method of 
fastening the ornament to the kaui-tiki, the cord which went 



round the wearer's neck. The tiki was firmly fixed to the kaui 
by its own separate fastening, which was a loop passing through 
the suspension hole and made of the wiry fibre of the tot or 
mountain palm {cordyline indivisa), a material of very great 
strength obtained from the outer part of the mid-rib {tuaka) 

Figure 51. 

of the palm leaf. This fastening fairly filled the perforation, to 
prevent, as far as possible, friction of the stone. The kaui with 
the tiki so attached by its fibrous fastening had at one end 
a small loop, and at the other a toggle about two inches long, 
called puau if made of wood, or poro toroa if of albatross bone. 
The cord being now clasped by toggle and loop about the 
wearer's neck the hei-tiki lay suspended as is shewn in Figure 51. 


Our last illustration (Figure 52) of these singular and 
characteristic ornaments represents a beautiful little greenstone 
tiki of the A type. Although, no doubt, it was originally a 
hei-tiki, it was not so used by its last Maori possessor. It was 
worn as an ear-pendant by a Ngatipikiao warrior, and was taken 
from him in battle on 21st June, 1864. It is here shewn in its 
exact size, as indeed are all the tihi illustrated in this chapter. 

Figure 52. 

A striking contrast to this diminutive piece is exhibited by 
the remarkable hei-tiki of Izawakawa in the Museum of Geology, 
in Jermyn Street, London. It is an unusually large figure of the 
A type, having eyes of irridiscent shell, and is quite 8 inches 
high with a width of nearly 5 inches from knee to knee. 
This ornament shows signs of a great age. Its surface is in 
parts worn almost smooth by constant wear, and it has had 
no less than three suspension holes bored through the upper 
part of the head, two of which are broken through. 


Nowadays old and good specimens of tiki and other orna- 
ments and implements of the native greenstone are rare in 
New Zealand. Very many have left the country ; and those 
that remain in private hands are for the most part in the 
possession of rich natives, who are keenly alive to their value, 
and can rarely be induced to part with those treasured 
memorials of their ancestors. 

When, however, in the course of their memorable journey 
to the Dominions beyond the seas, their present Majesties visited 
New Zealand, in 1901, the Maori chiefs loyally presented to 
the royal visitors many valuable heirlooms and works of art, 
which are now exhibited in the British Museum by command 
the King. 


Aho, the cord of a drill. 
aittia, an ill omen. 
aotea, clouded white jade. 
Aotearoa, " the Long White Cloud." 
arero rua, the forked tongue of a tihi. 
atua, a guardian deity. 
anhunga, light green jade. 

E hoa, friend 

e 7nau ana hi te tarituja a te tanyata, 
which is fixed to the ear of a man. 

Hei, neck. 

hei-tiki, neck ornaments of grotesque 
human form. 

heoi te viihi, that is all the greeting. 

hoanga, stone for cutting and polish- 
ing greenstone. 

Iiianga, grey jade. 

Kaliotea, dark spotted greenstone. 

haliiivangi, translucent greenstone. 

kaka, the large russet parrot. 

kapeu, see tantan. 

kara, hard stone other than greenstone. 

karakia, spells. 

kakariki, the colour green, also a small 
green parrot and a green lizard. 

kaianga, welcome ! 

kaui, the neck cord of the hei-tiki. 

kauri, a New Zealand pine. 

kawakawa, dark jade without spots. 

kia or a koe, may you he well ! 

kiripaka, flint. 

kohuwai, jade with moss-like marks. 

kvm,, a greenstone hammer, also a cylin- 
drical ear-pendant. 

kvriijmc, the cross-piece of a di-ill. 

Mako, an oi'iiameiit like a shark's tooth. 
tnana, supernatui-al excellence. 
manaia, a malignant spirit. 
ma te atua koe r tiaki, ma>' God keep 

you ! 
niata, the obsidian point of a drill. 
niatau, a hook-shaped neck ornament. 
mere, the war-club. 
moria, see poria. 

Na tail Jioa aroJia, by your loving friend. 
}tgao matariki, the small finishing ad/.e. 
iigao pae, the largest adze. 
ngao tii, the medium sized adze. 

Olia, an heirloom. 
o)ia, his. 

Pa, a Maori fort. 

pakclia, a white foreigner. 

parihi poliatn, a sharp fragment of liaid 

patiti, a hatchet. 
i)atii, the war-club. 

pekapeka, an ornament shaped like a bat. 
pirori, see tuiri. 
poria, a parrot ring. 
porotiti, disk of a drilling machine. 
poro toroa, a toggle of albatross bone. 
jjoit, the rod of a drill. 
powiamii, greenstone, also the colour 

puau, a w^ooden toggle. 

Rangatira, a chief. 

rciiiga, the next world. 

reke, the butt or pommel of a war-club. 

ripi, a backward thrust with a war-club. 

Tapu, a prohibition forbidding contact 
with persons or things considered 

tautau, a long eardrop. 

ten a koe, there you are. 

tika, correct. 

tiki, see hei-tiki. 

tipi, a forward thrust with a wai-club. 

tohu, a sign. 

tohiuiga, a priest. 

toi, the mountain palm. 

toki, the greenstone adze. 

toki lohakarau, the smoothing adze. 

tuaka, the mid rib of a palm-leaf. 

tapuna, an ancestor. 

tinriri, a drill for boring holes in jade. 

Uri, descoiulants. 

iitii, compensation for injury. 

Whakakai, a flat ear-pendant. 




Adze, the Maori ... ... ... 23 made from a broken 7nere ... 34 

„ ,, from a tili ... 25 

alio ... ... ... ... 20 

aitua ... ... ... ... 57 

amulets and charms ... 46, 48, 49 

Angus, cited ... ... ... 52 

aotea ... ... ... ... 16 

Aotearoa ... ... 12, 79 

Arahura river ... ' ... 13, 15, 16, 75 

arero riia ... ... ... 64 

ari ... ... ... 41 note 

(ifiKi ... ... 12 note, 45, 79 

Auckland museum, fiAi in ... ... 73 

auliiDUja ... ... ... ... 16 

axes ... ... ... ... 28 

Barbs of fish-hooks, greenstone ... 29 

,, ,, illustrated ... 29 

Best, Elsdon, Forest Lore quoted ... 30 

Notes 0)1 tJie Art of War 35 

remarks by ...10,23,48,69 

bird-spear, greenstone, legend of ... 30 

,, ,, ,, illustrated ... 30 

boxes for weapons ... ... 34 

British Museum, adze-blades in ... 72 

,, ,, barbs in ... ... 29 

„ ,, greenstone in ... 72 

„ „ Maori works of art 

exhibited by the 

King in ... 78 

„ ,, head of )iia)iaia in 42 

„ ,, inatau in, illustrated 46 

„ ,, ,, described 47 

„ ,, 7nere in ... 32, 36 

tiki in 56, 58 vote, 70, 72 

Buffalo, H.M.S. ... ... 36,37 

Burr, tili belonging to Midshipman ... 60 

Cambridge University Museum — 

manaia in, illustrated ... 41 

„ ,, matau in, illustrated ... 47 

„ „ tiki in, illustrated ... 64 

canoe, making of a 
chisel, greenstone .. 


... 24 
... 29 

„ „ illustrated ... 28 

Cook, Captain ... 7, 15, 29, 39, 56, 60 
Cowan, James ... ... 25, 49 

,, ,, Maoris of Neiv Zealand, 

cited ... 15, 57 


Donne, T. E. ... ... 62, 63 

Dresden, f/Ai of rare form at, illustrated 69 
drill, the Maori ... ... 19,20 

,, ,, illustrated ... ... 20 

,, ,, how operated 20, 21 

,, ,, primitive form of ... 21 

,, greenstone, with facetted point... 29 

illustrated ... ... 28 

Ead>', Arthur 


Foveaux Straits 

. . . 73 
14, 48 

20, 74 
,.. 15 


Geology, tiki in Museum of... ... 77 

gouge of greenstone ... ... 29 

illustrated ... 28 

green, Maori words for the colour 9 

greenstone, colours of ... ... 16 

,, difficulty of obtaining ... 13 

,, early user of ... ... 12 

,, flaws in, see t^itae koka 

„ known to natives of 

Hawaiki ... ... 12 

„ legends concerning ... 15 

,, native names of... 16, 17, 75 

,, boring of ornaments ... 72 

where found ...10,11,14,75 

" greenstone door " ... ... 10 

Grey, Sir George ... ... 29,36,73 


INDEX — coil fi lined. 



Hakopu-te-atu-o-tu, letter ol' ... 74 

Hamilton, Maori Art cited ... ... H4 

hands, tlu'ee-flnfjcred ... ... 57 

Hatua ... ... ... ... 11 

/ie/ = neck ... ... ... 55 

hei niataii, illustrated and described 40, 47 

,, ,, legend referring" to ... 47 

jic i -tiki, how yvovn ... ... 51 

,, significance of ... ... 5H 

Heke's tiki, see Dresden 

Hewitt, Primitive Traditional Histor.ij 

cited ... ... ... 55 

Hiko-o-te-rangi ... ... ... '56 

Hine-ki-runga ... ... ... 11 

Hipara ... ... ... ... 11 

Iioaiifja ... ... ... ... 22 

Hochstetter cited ... ... ... 38 

Hohonu ... ... ... IG, 75 

Hokitika river ... ... ... 12 

Hongi ... ... ... 62,68 

Hone Heke ... ... ... 78 

Hoi'owhenna ... ... ... 12 


Implements, miscellaneous greenstone 80 
inaiifja ... ... ... ... 16 



21, 39 
20. 21 


Mako, liow worn 
,, i II usl rated 

... 43 
... 43 
iiKiiKiid ... ..." 82, 41 note, 57 

,, head of, illustrated ... 42 

illustrated ... ... 41 

,, single, illustrated ... ... 42 

Maning, Old Neir Zealand, (luoted 24, 37 

" Jade," et>niolog> of 


Maori art 

,, burial customs 

,, burying places 

,, mourning colour 

„ supei'stitions 

,, warrior, characteristics of 

,, untrustworthy authorities 
Maori customs 
Maru Tuahu 
mat a, see obsidian 
Matene-te-whiwhi ... 

Mayor Island, see Tuhua 
mere, see war-club 
mica schist 
Mil ford Peak 

,, Sound 
nioria, see porta 

monument, ancient wooden, illustrated 72 
Mund>-, Colonel, author of Our 

Aiitijiodeii ... ... ... 6H 

52, 53, 77 
... 50 
56 note 
24, 46, 4H, 58, 54 
. . . 35 

... 54 
78, 74 

... 68 
... 47 

.. 22 
.. 15 
15, 75 
.. 12 


Kaliotea ... 
Kaiapoi ... 
Kaniere, Mount 


karakia, see spells 
kaui-tiki ... 

kiripaka, see mica schist 
kiripapa, see flint 
koliiiirai ... 
Kuha-tarewa hill ... 


16, 4; 

Nephrite ... 



,, where found ... 10, 

11, 14, 



New Zealand, Dominion INIuseum 



48, 62, 



Nga-rangi-mataeo ... 



Ngahue, discoverer of New Zeal; 

nd 12, 



Ngai Rua tribe 



Ngai Tahu tribe ... 


Ngai Tai tribe 



iifjao )natariki 



iKjao pac ... 


iifjao tu 


Ngatai, liori, letter of to Authoi 



Ngati Awa 



Ngati Tiiwhai'etoa... 






I'^DBX— continued. 



Obsidian ... ... ••• ^0. 


Onslow, Earl of 
Onslow, Hon. V. A. H. Huia 

ornaments of greenstone, how worn... 
varied forms of, illustrated 


Paraone, Hohepa ... 


parrots as Maori pets 


pa til,, see war- club 

pehapel-a, illustrated 



pendants, Maori names given to 




Polack cited 

27, 49 


povia, illustrated, its use 




Potatau ... 










2)nfii/)iii'i(, see chisel 


Rangi Purewa 

... 78 


.. 86, 

(3H, 78, 74 

Raureka ... 

... 11 

reA'e = butt of mere, see 




. . . 8G 


... 88 

Ropoama Te One ... 

... 24 


... 25 

Rutherford, John ... 

27, 28 

Salford Museum, tiki in, illustrated 

and descril)ed... ... ... 67 

sealing wax ... ... ... 56 

slave of Tamatea, legend of... 1(), 71 

Smith, G. F., Gem Stones, remarks on 

nephrite and jadeite ... ... 9 

South Island Maoris ... ... 11 

spells ... ... ... ... 24 

Stack, Canon, remarks by ... 11, 18, 21 
„ ,, cited ... 78, 74 

„ „ Kaiapohia, quoted ... 86 

,, „ on tihi, cited... 52, 58 

Tamatea ... 




taiif/iirai, legend concerning 


15, 16 
... 80 

... 68 
12 note 
... 15 

16, 22, 88, 58, 71, 74, 79 
... 75 



Taumutu... ... ... ... 21 

Tauranga ... ... 85, 45 

tavtaii, see kapev 

Tawha, Henare ... ... 21, 74 

Te Aratangata, death of chief ... 86 

Te Heuheu ... ... ... 84 

Te Ika Poto ... ... ... 11 

Te Papa ... ... ... ... 35 

Te Pehi ... ... ... ... 36 

Te Pi, worker in greenstone ... 21 

Te Wherowhero ... ... ... 33 

tihi, ancient examples, illustrated and 

described ... ... ... 70 

,, antiquity of ... ... ... 74 

,, as ear- pendant ... ... 77 

„ bone ... ... 58 note, 69 

,, change from. A to B type 64, 65, 66 
,, eyes of shell ... ... 56, 59 

,, how to distinguish modern ... 72 

,, in process of making, illustrated... 66 
,, makers of ... ... ... 74 

,, Maori names given to ... 72, 73 

,, methods of suspension... 59,60,61,75 
,, method of wearing, illustrated 72, 76 
„ of rare form ... ... 69, 70, 71 

,, theories as to origin of ... 54,55 

,, tools used in making 71 

,, t^■pes of ... ... ... 57 

„ type A. . . 52, 58, 59, 60, 61, 62, 66, 67 
„ typeB ... 63,64,65,67,68,70 

,, wooden ... ... ... 58 

... 33 
... 37 
... 76 
... 23 
... 24 
... 24 
... 23 


Titore, chief of the Ngapuhi 


toli, see also adzes 

,, exchange of ... 

,, Maori names given to 
toki ivhakaran 
Tuakau, Haimona, information con- 
cerning greenstone given by 
Tuhi-o-kahu hill ... 

Tuhua=Mayor Island 
tiiiviri, see drill 
Tumu-aki mountain 
tutae koka 



mD'EX— con tin !(<'(]. 





Waikare moana 
^Yaikato . . 
AVaikawa .. 
Wairewa . 
wai-adze, the 



pagp: page 

14 wai-cliil), i^i-eenstoue, illiist rated 
„ its shape 

,, Maori names given to 

„ owned b>' Maning 

,, sent to King William IV. 

..41 „ recover> of 

weapons, makers of 

ancient, owned by Author 
irluikaniu =to smooth a surface 
11 Whakatoliea ti'ibe ... 
62, G;-) wood carving of the Maori — 

2i 24,20,29,84, 

7'""' \Yood, Rev. Basil ... 

21 Y 

26,27 Yate, Rev. W., quoted ... 81,58 

















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