The Māori are the indigenous Polynesian people of New Zealand. Māori originated with settlers from eastern Polynesia, who arrived in New Zealand in several waves of canoe voyages some time between 1250 and 1300. Over several centuries in isolation, the Polynesian settlers developed a unique culture, with their own language, a rich mythology, distinctive crafts and performing arts. Early Māori formed tribal groups based on organisation. Horticulture flourished using plants; the arrival of Europeans to New Zealand, starting in the 17th century, brought enormous changes to the Māori way of life. Māori people adopted many aspects of Western society and culture. Initial relations between Māori and Europeans were amicable, with the signing of the Treaty of Waitangi in 1840, the two cultures coexisted as part of a new British colony. Rising tensions over disputed land sales led to conflict in the 1860s. Social upheaval, decades of conflict and epidemics of introduced disease took a devastating toll on the Māori population, which fell dramatically.
By the start of the 20th century, the Māori population had begun to recover, efforts have been made to increase their standing in wider New Zealand society and achieve social justice. Traditional Māori culture has thereby enjoyed a significant revival, further bolstered by a Māori protest movement that emerged in the 1960s. In the 2013 census, there were 600,000 people in New Zealand identifying as Māori, making up 15 percent of the national population, they are the second-largest ethnic group in New Zealand, after European New Zealanders. In addition, more than 140,000 Māori live in Australia; the Māori language is spoken to some extent by about a fifth of all Māori, representing 3 per cent of the total population. Māori are active in all spheres of New Zealand culture and society, with independent representation in areas such as media and sport. Disproportionate numbers of Māori face significant economic and social obstacles, have lower life expectancies and incomes compared with other New Zealand ethnic groups.
They suffer higher levels of crime, health problems, educational under-achievement. A number of socioeconomic initiatives have been instigated with the aim of "closing the gap" between Māori and other New Zealanders. Political and economic redress for historical grievances is ongoing. In the Māori language, the word māori means "normal", "natural" or "ordinary". In legends and oral traditions, the word distinguished ordinary mortal human beings—tāngata māori—from deities and spirits. Wai māori denotes "fresh water", as opposed to salt water. There are cognate words in most Polynesian languages, all deriving from Proto-Polynesian *maqoli, which has the reconstructed meaning "true, genuine"; the spelling of "Māori" with or without the macron is inconsistent in general-interest English-language media in New Zealand, although some newspapers and websites have adopted the standard Māori-language spelling. Early visitors from Europe to New Zealand referred to the indigenous inhabitants as "New Zealanders" or as "natives".
The Māori used the term Māori to describe themselves in a pan-tribal sense. Māori people use the term tangata whenua to identify in a way that expresses their relationship with a particular area of land; the term can refer to the Māori people as a whole in relation to New Zealand as a whole. The Māori Purposes Act of 1947 required the use of the term "Māori" rather than "Native" in official usage; the Department of Native Affairs was renamed as the Department of Māori Affairs. Before 1974, the government required documented ancestry to determine the legal definition of "a Māori person". For example, bloodlines or percentage of Māori ancestry was used to determine whether a person should enroll on the general electoral roll or the separate Māori roll. In 1947, the authorities determined that a man, five-eighths Māori had improperly voted in the general parliamentary electorate of Raglan; the Māori Affairs Amendment Act 1974 changed the definition, allowing individuals to self-identify as to their cultural identity.
In matters involving financial benefits provided by the government to people of Māori ethnicity—scholarships, for example, or Waitangi Tribunal settlements—authorities require some documentation of ancestry or continuing cultural connection but no minimum "blood" requirement exists as determined by the government. The most current reliable evidence indicates that the initial settlement of New Zealand occurred around 1280 CE, at the end of the medieval warm period. Previous dating of some kiore bones at 50–150 has now been shown to have been unreliable. Māori oral history describes the arrival of ancestors from Hawaiki, in large ocean-going waka. Migration accounts vary among tribes, whose members may identify with several waka in their genealogies. In the last few decades, mitochondrial-DNA research has allowed an estimate to be made of the number of women in the founding population—between 50 and 100. Evidence fro
John Cornelius Moorfield known as Te Murumāra, was a New Zealand academic whose expertise was in the teaching of the Māori language. His work, including the publication of resources for learners of the language, contributed to the language's revitalisation. Born in Huntly on 18 October 1943, raised in Te Kauwhata, Moorfield was the son of Moya Ella Winifred Moorfield and her husband Robert Peter Moorfield. Despite being Pākehā, he was educated at St Stephen's School—a Māori boys' boarding school at Bombay, south of Auckland—where his teachers included Hoani Waititi. Moorfield became captivated by the Māori language, went on to study at the University of Auckland, he was one of the first students to complete a Bachelor of Arts majoring in Māori language. After graduating from Auckland, Moorfield went to Auckland Secondary Teachers' College in 1967 to train as a schoolteacher, began his quest for an effective method of teaching the Māori language. In 1984, Moorfield completed a Master of Education at the University College of Wales, where his thesis was titled, An analysis of the bilingual method: theoretical and practical considerations.
In 1998, he earned a Doctor of Literature degree from the University of Otago, based on his body of work of textbooks and resources for adult learners of the Māori language. After leaving teachers' college, Moorfield taught at secondary schools in the Waikato and South Auckland areas: namely Ngaruawahia High School, Wesley College, Tuakau College. Moorfield was appointed to the staff of the University of Waikato in 1976, working and teaching alongside Timoti Kāretu, Te Wharehuia Milroy and Hirini Melbourne. Concerned at the inadequacy of available resource material to support the teaching of the Māori language to adult students, Moorfield set about compiling audio resources and writing appropriate books; the resulting Te Whanake series of resources and textbooks has been recognised internationally as a model for minority language education programmes. At Waikato, Moorfield was responsible for the establishment of the first Māori-medium undergraduate degree programme. After 21 years at Waikato, Moorfield moved to the University of Otago in 1997, his Te Whanake system for Māori language learning was implemented at all levels.
There he began collaborating with Tania Ka'ai, in 2007 both Moorfield and Ka'ai moved to Auckland University of Technology to take professorships in Māori innovation and development. In 2005, Moorfield published a Māori–English dictionary entitled Te Aka, available both in hard copy and online. Moorfield died of cancer on 19 May 2018. In the 2010 Queen's Birthday Honours, Moorfield was appointed a Companion of the Queen's Service Order, for services to Māori language education. Published works by Moorfield include: Moorfield, John C.. Nga kupu. Auckland: Longman. ISBN 978-0582542556. ——. Te pihinga. Auckland: Longman. ISBN 0-582-54327-4. ——. Te kākano: pukapuka tātaki = study guide. Auckland: Longman. ISBN 9780582545458. ——. Te Kōhure. Auckland: Pearson Education New Zealand. ISBN 9780582545199. Te Aka Māori–English, English–Māori Dictionary online
In folklore, a mermaid is an aquatic creature with the head and upper body of a female human and the tail of a fish. Mermaids appear in the folklore of many cultures worldwide, including the Near East, Europe and Africa; the first stories appeared in ancient Assyria, in which the goddess Atargatis transformed herself into a mermaid out of shame for accidentally killing her human lover. Mermaids are sometimes associated with perilous events such as floods, storms and drownings. In other folk traditions, they can be benevolent or beneficent, bestowing boons or falling in love with humans; the male equivalent of the mermaid is the merman a familiar figure in folklore and heraldry. Although traditions about and sightings of mermen are less common than those of mermaids, they are assumed to co-exist with their female counterparts; some of the attributes of mermaids may have been influenced by the Sirens of Greek mythology. Historical accounts of mermaids, such as those reported by Christopher Columbus during his exploration of the Caribbean, may have been inspired by manatees and similar aquatic mammals.
While there is no evidence that mermaids exist outside folklore, reports of mermaid sightings continue to the present day, including 21st-century examples from Israel and Zimbabwe. Mermaids have been a popular subject of art and literature in recent centuries, such as in Hans Christian Andersen's well-known fairy tale "The Little Mermaid", they have subsequently been depicted in operas, books and comics. The word mermaid is a compound of the Old English mere, maid; the equivalent term in Old English was merewif. They are conventionally depicted as beautiful with long flowing hair; as cited above, they are sometimes equated with the sirens of Greek mythology, half-bird femmes fatales whose enchanting voices would lure soon-to-be-shipwrecked sailors to nearby rocks, sandbars or shoals. Sirenia is an order of aquatic, herbivorous mammals that inhabit rivers, coastal marine waters and marine wetlands. Sirenians, including manatees and dugongs, possess major aquatic adaptations: arms used for steering, a paddle used for propulsion, remnants of hind limbs in the form of two small bones floating deep in the muscle.
They look ponderous and clumsy but are fusiform and muscular, mariners before the mid-nineteenth century referred to them as mermaids. Sirenomelia called "mermaid syndrome", is a rare congenital disorder in which a child is born with his or her legs fused together and small genitalia; this condition is about as rare as conjoined twins, affecting one out of every 100,000 live births and is fatal within a day or two of birth because of kidney and bladder complications. Four survivors were known as of July 2003; as the anthropologist A. Asbjørn Jøn noted: "these'marine beasts' have featured in folk tradition for many centuries now, until recently they have maintained a reasonably standard set of characteristics. Many folklorists and mythographers deem that the origin of the mythic mermaid is the dugong, posing a theory that mythicised tales have been constructed around early sightings of dugongs by sailors." Depictions of entities with the tails of fish, but upper bodies of human beings appear in Mesopotamian artwork from the Old Babylonian Period onwards.
These figures are mermen, but mermaids do appear. The name for the mermaid figure may have been kuliltu, meaning "fish-woman"; such figures were used in Neo-Assyrian art as protective figures and were shown in both monumental sculpture and in small, protective figurines. The first known mermaid stories appeared in Assyria c. 1000 BC. The goddess Atargatis, mother of Assyrian queen Semiramis, loved a mortal and unintentionally killed him. Ashamed, she jumped into a lake and took the form of a fish, but the waters would not conceal her divine beauty. Thereafter, she took the form of a mermaid — human above the waist, fish below — although the earliest representations of Atargatis showed her as a fish with a human head and arm, similar to the Babylonian god Ea; the Greeks recognized Atargatis under the name Derketo. Sometime before 546 BC, Milesian philosopher Anaximander postulated that mankind had sprung from an aquatic animal species, he thought. A popular Greek legend turned Alexander the Great's sister, into a mermaid after her death, living in the Aegean.
She would ask the sailors on any ship she would encounter only one question: "Is King Alexander alive?", to which the correct answer was: "He lives and reigns and conquers the world". This answer would please her, she would accordingly calm the waters and bid the ship farewell. Any other answer would enrage her, she would stir up a terrible storm, dooming the ship and every sailor on board. In the second century AD, the Hellenized Syrian writer Lucian of Samosata wrote about the Syrian temples he had visited in his treatise On the Syrian Goddess, written in Ionic Greek: "Among them – Now, the traditional story among them concerning the temple, but other men swear that Semiramis of Babylonia, whose deeds are many in Asia founded this site, not for Hera but for her own mother, whose name was Derketo." "I saw Derketo's likeness in a strange marvel. It is woman for half its length, but the image in the Holy City is a woman, the grounds for their acco
In Māori mythology, Punga is a supernatural being, the ancestor of sharks, lizards and all deformed, ugly things. All ugly and strange animals are Punga's children. Hence the saying Te aitanga a Punga used to describe an ugly person. Punga is a son of Tangaroa, the god of the sea, when Tāwhirimātea made war against his brothers after they separated Rangi and Papa, the two sons of Punga, Ikatere and Tū-te-wehiwehi, had to flee for their lives. Ikatere fled to the sea, became the ancestor of certain fish, while Tū-te-wehiwehi took refuge in the forest, became the ancestor of lizards; as is appropriate for a son of Tangaroa, Punga's name has a maritime origin - in the Māori language,'punga' means'anchor stone' - in tropical Polynesia, related words refer to coral stone used as an anchor. According to some versions, Punga is the son of Rangi-potiki and Papatūānuku and a twin brother to Here. In a version of the epic of Tāwhaki attributed by White to the Ngāti Hau tribe, Punga is named as a brother of Karihi and Hemā.
In some Hawaiian stories and Punga are sons of Aikanaka and Hinahanaiakamalama. R. D. Craig, Dictionary of Polynesian Mythology, 1989. E. R. Tregear, Maori-Polynesian Comparative Dictionary, 1891. J. White, The Ancient History of the Maori, Volume I, 1887
The Polynesian narrative or Polynesian mythology encompasses the oral traditions of the people of Polynesia, a grouping of Central and South Pacific Ocean island archipelagos in the Polynesian Triangle together with the scattered cultures known as the Polynesian outliers. Polynesians speak languages that descend from a language reconstructed as Proto-Polynesian, spoken in the Tonga - Samoa area around 1000 BC. Prior to the 15th century AD, Polynesian peoples fanned out to the east, to the Cook Islands, from there to other groups such as Tahiti and the Marquesas, their descendants discovered the islands from Tahiti to Rapa Nui, Hawai‘i and New Zealand. Latest research puts the settlement of New Zealand at about 1300 AD; the various Polynesian languages are all part of the Austronesian language family. Many are close enough in terms of vocabulary and grammar to permit communication between some other language speakers. There are substantial cultural similarities between the various groups in terms of social organisation, childrearing, as well as horticulture and textile technologies.
In some island groups, help is of fishing. There is a story of the marriage between Sky and Earth. There are stories of islands pulled up from the bottom of the sea by a magic fishhook, or thrown down from heaven. There are stories of voyages, migrations and battles, as one might expect. Stories about a trickster, Māui, are known, as are those about a beautiful goddess/ancestress Hina or Sina. In addition to these shared themes in the oral tradition, each island group has its own stories of demi-gods and culture heroes, shading into the firmer outlines of remembered history; such stories were linked to various geographic or ecological features, which may be described as the petrified remains of the supernatural beings. The various Polynesian cultures each have distinct but related oral traditions, that is, legends or myths traditionally considered to recount the history of ancient times and the adventures of gods and deified ancestors; the accounts are characterised by extensive use of allegory, parable and personification.
Orality has an essential flexibility. In an oral tradition, there is no fixed version of a given tale; the story may change within certain limits according to the setting, the needs of the narrator and the audience. Contrary to the Western concept of history, where the knowledge of the past serves to bring a better understanding of the present, the purpose of oral literature is rather to justify and legitimatise the present situation. An example is provided by genealogies, which exist in multiple and contradictory versions; the purpose of genealogies in oral societies is not to provide a'true' account, but rather to emphasise the seniority of the ruling chiefly line, hence its political legitimacy and right to exploit resources of land and the like. If another line should rise to ascendency, it was necessary to bestow upon the new line the most prestigious genealogy if this meant borrowing a few ancestors from the preceding dynasty; each island, each tribe or each clan will have their own version or interpretation of a given narrative cycle.
This process is disrupted when writing becomes the primary means to record and remember the traditions. When missionaries, anthropologists or ethnologists collected and published these accounts, they changed their nature. By fixing forever on paper what had been subject to infinite variation, they fixed as the authoritative version an account told by one narrator at a given moment. In New Zealand, the writings of one chief, Wiremu Te Rangikāheke, formed the basis of much of Governor George Grey's Polynesian Mythology, a book which to this day provides the de facto official versions of many of the best-known Māori legends; some Polynesians seem to have been aware of the danger and the potential of this new means of expression. As of the mid-19th century, a number of them wrote down their genealogy, the history and the origin of their tribe; these writings, known under the name of "pukapuka whakapapa" or in tropical Polynesia as "puta tumu" or "puta tūpuna” were jealously guarded by the heads of households.
Many were destroyed. In the 1890s, Makea Takau, a Rarotongan chief, ordered his tribe to burn all their family books, save his own; as a result, Makea Takau's version became the official history of the chiefly line, removing the possibility of dissent. At his request, extracts were published in the Journal of the Polynesian Society. Beckwith, Hawaiian Mythology, Yale University Press, 1940, as re-issued in 1970, University of Hawaii Press Buck, Sir Peter / Te Rangi Hiroa, Samoan Material Culture. Bishop Museum bulletin. Craig, D. Robert, Dictionary of Polynesian Mythology, 1989, Greenwood Press. Kirch, Patrick,'On the Road of the Winds' 2000, University of California Press. Malo, Hawaiian Antiquities, first published in English in 1898, available as Bernice P. Bishop Museum Special Publication 2, Second Edition, 1951
In Māori mythology, Tāwhirimātea is the god of weather, including thunder and lightning, wind and storms. He is a son of Ranginui. In his anger at his brothers for separating their parents, Tāwhirimātea destroyed the forests of Tāne, drove Tangaroa and his progeny into the sea, pursued Rongo and Haumia-tiketike till they had to take refuge in the bosom of their mother Papa, only found in Tūmatauenga a worthy opponent and eternal enemy. To fight his brothers, Tāwhirimātea gathered an army of his children and clouds of different kinds - including Apū-hau, Apū-matangi, Ao-nui, Ao-roa, Ao-pōuri, Ao-pōtango, Ao-whētuma, Ao-whekere, Ao-kāhiwahiwa, Ao-kānapanapa, Ao-pākinakina, Ao-pakarea, Ao-tākawe. Grey translates these as'fierce squalls, dense clouds, massy clouds, dark clouds, gloomy thick clouds, fiery clouds, clouds which preceded hurricanes, clouds of fiery black, clouds reflecting glowing red light, clouds wildly drifting from all quarters and wildly bursting, clouds of thunder storms, clouds hurriedly flying on'.
Other children of Tāwhirimātea are the various kinds of rain and fog. Tāwhirimātea's attacks on his brothers led to the flooding of large areas of the land; the names of the beings involved in this flooding include Ua-nui, Ua-roa, Ua-whatu, Ua-nganga. Tregear mentions Hau-maringiringi as a personification of mists. Tāwhirimātea live on the sky with his father Rangi and star Rehua. Eons ago, the Sky Father and Papa, the Earth Mother, were in an eternal embrace because of their love for each other, their union gave rise to many powerful sons. As their sons grew up, they soon began to grow tired of living in a cramped up space, forever in darkness. One brother, Tūmatūenga, the God of War and Humans, suggested. However, his brother, Tāne, the God of Forests, suggested. Except for Tāwhirimātea, all other brothers accepted the proposal; the brothers individually tried to separate their parents, but Tāne put his head on the earth and feet in the sky and pushed them apart. Tāwhirimātea was enraged. So the god communed with his father.
Rangi reluctantly agreed to help his son wage a brutal war on his siblings. Rangi and Tāwhirimātea together had many children, they were the spirits of winds and rain. Tāwhirimātea set out to conquer his brothers. Tāwhirimātea first attacked Tāne, razed his forests, causing Tāne to flee. Next Tāwhirimātea attacked his brother, the Sea God, he caused huge waves, spreading panic in Tangaroa. Tangaroa was himself helpless before Tāwhirimātea, as the sea was in such a chaotic rage, harming all living beings. Having never seen such chaos at sea, many of Tangaroa's children deserted their father and took shelter with Tāne. Since Tangaroa is at war with Tāne. Tāwhirimātea pursued his brother and Haumia, the gods of cultivated and uncultivated food, but they were cleverly hidden by their mother, who still loved her children. Tāwhirimātea began to fight Tumatuenga; this time, Tumatuenga embedded his feet in earth, saving him from Tāwhirimātea's storms. He cast spells, but neither brother could prevail against each other.
Tāwhirimātea withdrew. To punish his brothers for cowardice, Tumatuenga invented the arts of hunting, agriculture and fishing, to subjugate their respective denizens as food for humans; however and Tawhirimatea still fight each other to this day. Another result of the war was that, most of the land was submerged into the ocean, because of Tāwhirimātea causing heavy rains and thunderstorms. G. Grey, Polynesian Mythology, Illustrated edition, reprinted 1976. 1956. G. Grey, Nga Mahi a Nga Tupuna, fourth edition. First published 1854. 1971. E. R. Tregear, Maori-Polynesian Comparative Dictionary, 1891. Tāwhirimātea – the weather in Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand
Māori mythology and Māori traditions are the two major categories into which the legends of the Māori of New Zealand may usefully be divided. The rituals and the world view of Māori society were based on an elaborate mythology, inherited from a Polynesian homeland and adapted and developed in the new setting. Few records survive of the extensive body of Māori mythology and tradition from the early years of European contact; the missionaries had the best opportunity to get the information, but failed to do so at first, in part because their knowledge of the language was imperfect. Most of the missionaries who did master the language were unsympathetic to Māori beliefs, regarding them as'puerile beliefs', or even'works of the devil'. Exceptions to this general rule were J. F. Wohlers of the South Island, Richard Taylor, who worked in the Taranaki and Wanganui River areas, William Colenso who lived at the Bay of Islands and in Hawke's Bay. "The writings of these men are among our best sources for the legends of the areas in which they worked".
In the 1840s Edward Shortland, Sir George Grey, other non-missionaries began to collect the myths and traditions. At that time many Māori were literate in their own language and the material collected was, in general, written by Māori themselves in the same style as they spoke; the new medium seems to have had minimal effect on the content of the stories. Genealogies and narratives were written out in full, just as if they were being recited or sung. Many of these early manuscripts have been published, as of 2012 scholars have access to a great body of material containing multiple versions of the great myth cycles known in the rest of Polynesia, as well as of the local traditions pertaining only to New Zealand. A great deal of the best material is found in two books, Nga Mahi a nga Tupuna, collected by Sir George Grey and translated as Polynesian Mythology; the three forms of expression prominent in Māori and Polynesian oral literature are genealogical recital and narrative prose. The reciting of genealogies was well developed in Māori oral literature, where it served several functions in the recounting of tradition.
Firstly it served to provide a kind of time scale which unified all Māori myth and history, from the distant past to the present. It linked living people to the legendary heroes. By quoting appropriate genealogical lines, a narrator emphasised his or her connection with the characters whose deeds were being described, that connection proved that the narrator had the right to speak of them. "In the cosmogonic genealogies, to be described genealogical recital is revealed as a true literary form. What appears at first sight to be a mere listing of names is in fact a cryptic account of the evolution of the universe"'. Māori poetry was always chanted. Rhyme or assonance were not devices used by the Māori; the lines are indicated by features of the music. The language of poetry tends to differ stylistically from prose. Typical features of poetic diction are the use of synonyms or contrastive opposites, the repetition of key words. "Archaic words are common, including many which have lost any specific meaning and acquired a religious mystique.
Abbreviated, sometimes cryptic utterances and the use of certain grammatical constructions not found in prose are common". Prose narrative forms the great bulk of Māori legendary material; some appears to have been sacred or esoteric, but many of the legends were well-known stories told as entertainment in the long nights of winter. "Nevertheless, they should not be regarded as fairy tales to be enjoyed only as stories. The Māui myth, for example, was important not only as entertainment but because it embodied the beliefs of the people concerning such things as the origin of fire, of death, of the land in which they lived; the ritual chants concerning firemaking, death, so on made reference to Māui and derived their power from such reference". Myths are set in the remote past and their content have to do with the supernatural, they present Māori ideas of people. The mythology accounts for natural phenomena, the weather, the stars and the moon, the fish of the sea, the birds of the forest, the forests themselves.
Much of the culturally institutioned behaviour of the people finds its sanctions in myth. "Perhaps the most distinctive feature of myth, as distinct from tradition, is its universality. Each of the major myths is known in some version not only throughout New Zealand but over much of Polynesia as well"; the Māori understanding of the development of the universe was expressed in genealogical form. These genealogies appear in many versions, in which several symbolic themes recur. "Evolution may be likened to a series of periods of darkness or voids, each numbered in sequence or qualified by some descriptive term. In some cases the periods of darkness are succeeded by periods of light. In other versions the evolution of the universe is likened to a tree, with its base, tap roots, branching roots, root hairs. Another theme likens evolution to the development of a child in the womb, as in the sequence “the seeking, the searching, the conception, the growth, the feeling, the thought, the mi