Volume 26 1917 > Volume 26, No. 4 > The Ngati-Tuharetoa occupation of Taupo-nui-a-Tia, by Hoeta Te Hata, p 180-187
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- 180
(Continued from page 97. Vol. XXVI.)

WE now tell of Meremere the 2nd and Te Heuheu the 1st. [Meremere is the same person as the Meremere given in the list No. 1 on page 25 of Vol. XXVI “Journal Polynesian Society.”] This man for some unknown reason went to Waitangi, Rotoiti, and died there. His son and heir was Te Rangi-tua-matotoru, who was a man of great power and influence and who did much to uphold the mana of Ngati-Tuharetoa. In his time there was much fighting, but I am unable to tell the reason of the fighting. This fighting was the cause of much passing to and fro of Ngati-Tuharetoa. On one occasion Tuharetoa met some of Ngati-Kea at Okurawi on the Wairakei Block. A fight ensued and Ngati-Kea were beaten and their chiefs Te Ihukino, Rongo-whiti-ao and Te Hau-o-Taranaki were killed. It was at this time Te Tauri lost his taiaha (or halbert) in a peculiar way. After the fight Tuharetoa collected the bodies of the slain and placed them in a heap; but there seems to have been one of them only stunned. For in the night, while the taua was asleep and the taiaha was struck upright near the heap of slain, the man arose, grasped the taiaha and fled. The name of the taiaha was ‘Matua-kore.’

We return to the story of Matotoru the son of Meremere. When he grew up his first work was to build a house. This house was built at Heretoa, Roto-a-Ira.

It was named Haruru-o-te-rangi, and it was modelled after the plan of a whare called Te Riri-ka-wareware at Tokaanu. There was another whare like it at Motu-tere called Hau-tu-te-rangi. The whare of Te Rangi-tua-matotoru was a sacred carved house, where the Maori gods Ririo, Takaka and all their company were accustomed to frequent. The reason why they used it was because the house was named after their dwelling place on Tongariro.

- 181

[These gods were said to be of human form, and they were in the habit of sweeping down on the dwellers in Taupo-nui-a-Tia. A Maori artist has depicted his idea of what they were like on the walls of a wharepuni at Korohe. If they were anything like their portraits, they were fearsome monsters indeed.]

The axe used in sharpening the rafters and posts of the house was of greenstone, and it was named Hauhau-pounamu. The chisels used in carving the posts and other things were also of greenstone, and were given the same name as the axe. There was a song about these houses, about Haruru-a-te-rangi, Riri-ka-wareware and Hau-tu-te-rangi. This is the song:—

Kaore hoki koia te mamae
E wahi pu ana te tau o taku ate
Ka tu te whare puni ko Haruru-a-te-rangi
Hei whakawaiutanga mo taua e
E kaoa nei kai runga tuakana ki
Te manaaki ki te whare ka tu ki Tokaanu
Ko Te Riri-ka-wareware
Ka tu ki Motu-tere ko Hau-tu-te-rangi
Ka ngangana mai te whakairo
Na Hopara i taratarai ki te pounamu
Te reo o te wai i mate ano au
Ki te mapunga mai o tona reo haere
Kia maro te mau toki
Kai hukerikeria kai motu mai to poupou
Waiho tonu atu kia kino ana a he tauira
Ki te mau toki Tu-ramarama-i-nuku Tu-ramarama-i-rangi
Haere i te pupuke haere i te koronga
Haere i te ara tapu o Tane
Kai te whakarite koe ki te marama
E titi mai ra ki tou tumuaki
Ka whaka—Maui koe ia a koe.

Alas the pain I feel throbbing as if it would break my heart strings. We have, as yet, no house, but our elder brother has taken pity on us.

There will stand a large house to be called Haruru-o-te-rangi. At Tokaanu there is Te Riri-ka-wareware and Hau-tu-te-rangi at Motu-tere. There gleams the carving of Hopara, shaped with the greenstone. Listen to the voice of the waters; I am weary with the sound of its rushing.

Hold fast the adze, grip it firmly, that the posts may be shaped. Do it carefully, lest the pattern be marred. Hold fast the adze 1Tu-ramarama-i-nuku, 2Tu-ramarama-i-rangi.

- 182

Go on learning and desiring to tread the sacred paths of Tane, until you are like the moon, now shining on your head, for brightness. Until you become as clever as Maui.

The man who carved this house, Hau-tu-te-rangi, was Hopara, a man skilled in the art of carving. After the erection of the house the fame of Te Rangi-tua-matotoru increased among his own people and throughout the whole of Taupo-nui-a-Tia.

This is another exploit of this man:—A man named Kereua of Ngati-Awa was killed near the Waikato, to the north of Tauhara, by some of Ngati-Tahu. A chief named Tu-taka-roa, a young relative of Te Whatu-Pounamu of Tu-hare-toa, heard of the death of Kereua, who was also a connection of his. Tu-taka-roa at once started for Motu-tere, where Te Rangi-tua-matotoru was living. When he arrived, Matotoru said to him, “Where are you going?” He replied, “I am going to Whakatane to see about the death of our relative Kereua, and to kill some one in payment.” Matatoru said, “If you return alive take a recompense for Kereua from my armpits.”

The reason for this saying of Mototoru is as under:—

Tu-taka-roa went on to Whakatane to see Ngati-Awa. When they heard the reasons for his coming they arranged a truce between them. Ngati-Awa and Tu-taka-roa then arranged to avenge the death of Kereua. They came to the Waikato and assaulted the Ngati-Tahu pa and took it.

A number of men were killed, but Tama-kino fled. He was seen by Tu-taka-roa, who went in pursuit. Tama-kino was overtaken and killed as payment for Kereua.

Ngati-Awa then returned to Whakatane, and Tu-taka-roa came on to Taupo, to Te Rangi-tua-matotoru at Motutere. He told Matotoru that he had killed Tama-kino. Matotoru replied, “Well then, it will be for us to avenge the death of Tama-kino.” Tu-taka-roa knew from this that at some time he would be the payment for Tama-kino.

Tu-taka-roa travelled on until he came to Toka-anu, then Te Whatu-pounamu, an elder relative of Tama-kino, heard of his death. Te Whatu [and others] were very angry at this, for Tama-kino belonged to this place; he was a Ngati-Tu-hare-toa.

Tu-taka-roa kept in mind the words of Matotoru, that he would avenge the death of Tama-kino. He built a pa for himself and named it Whaka-oho-kau. This pa stood on the western side of the mouth of the Toka-anu stream by the side of the sea of Taupo.

Mototoru had said that he himself would avenge Tamakino, but he sent messengers to the Arawa, to Tu-hou-rangi, to Ngati-Whakaue, to Rangi-tihi and other hapus of Te Arawa to come and avenge the death of Tama-kino.

- 183

The coming of Te Arawa was like that of grasshoppers. They came on to Mototoru at Motutere, and then on to Tokaanu to beseige the pa of Tu-taka-roa. Mototoru came on with the party and they asked him how they should know Tu-taka-roa. Mototoru told them that Tu-taka-roa could not be hidden for he was a tall stout man, a warrior and a good man to fight. This description of Tu-taka-roa by Matotoru was sufficient for the taua. Some of the party went on by canoes to the mouth of the Tongariro river with Matotoru. They landed there and waited for the rest of the party to come along the shore so that they might all go across to the assault of Tu-taka-roa's pa. While they were waiting Matotoru went away quietly by himself to make peace with Tu-taka-roa. It was only when the taua was making preparations for the fight that his absence was discovered. The canoes were paddled across and approached close to the pa. As they came Tu-taka-roa came out of the pa, and he was recognised by the taua by the signs mentioned by Matotoru. Tu-taka-roa waded out into the lake to try and spear some of them. He waded out until the water was up to his breast, then he turned to see what had become of his men. Not seeing them, he turned and made for the shore. The canoes chased him, but he reached the pa in safety.

As the canoes reached the shore the men saw Matotoru coming out of the pa, and they knew by that that peace had been made. The men were angry at the idea of peace being made in this way. Te Arawa returned to their own country.

Some time after this there was a man named Tai-hakoa, of Taupo, who owned two pas in the Taupo district named Nga-mokai and Operua, went on a visit to Te Arawa. As he went by lake Tarawera he came upon a party of Te Arawa and a party of Tuhoe fighting. Tai-hakoa joined himself to the Arawa. They met and fought at Puke-kahu and Te Arawa were beaten. Tai-hakoa was killed, and as he had been specially noticed by Tuhoe, some of the captives they had taken were asked about him. The prisoners said he was a man of Taupo.

This is the reason why trouble afterwards came to Taupo. It was the “seen face of Tai-hakoa,” and his unwarranted interference in the fight between Tuhoe and Te Arawa, that was the cause of the fighting that afterwards took place at Taupo. When Tuhoe came they over-whelmed two pas belonging to Tai-hakoa. These pas were Nga-mokai and Operua. Tai-hakoa's people fell before the invaders and many of them were taken prisoners.

Among the slain was Te Hinga-nui a grandson of Te Rangi-tua-matotoru. Matotoru at this time was living at Motu-tere when he heard of the taking of these pas by Tuhoe. He at once thought that perhaps his grandson had been either taken captive or slain. So he went on board his canoe, with thirty men to paddle, and came on to - 184 Hamaria. They anchored outside in the sea (lake), and Matotoru called out to the taua to enquire if Te Purewa, Te Umu-ariki and Te Hiko, chiefs of Tuhoe were there. The reply was, “They are here.” Matotoru then asked that they might be called. The chiefs were called, and Te Purewa and his companions stood up on the cliffs at Nga-totara, Hamaria. Mototoru then called out, “Has my grandson been killed?” Te Purewa replied, “What was he like?” Matotoru said, “He was red haired.” Te Purewa said, “Yes, he is dead.” Matotoru waved his hand. He then made arrangements for peace with Te Purewa and the other chief, and they agreed upon Opepe as the place where peace should be made. The peace was to be the “Peace of the Jade door” that should never be broken. When these things were finished Matotoru and his party returned to Motu-tere.

When they arrived there they found a party of Tu-hare-toa, who had come in their canoes to attack Tuhoe. Matotoru advised them to return for he had made peace with Tuhoe. But the men stood up and persisted in their intention of going on to fight Tuhoe, and because of the desire of the chiefs of Tu-hare-toa the advice of Matotoru was unheeded. The taua went on to Orona [at Hamaria] and fell upon Tuhoe, thus breaking the peace that Matotoru had made. Tu-hare-toa was badly beaten.

[There are several references to Tai-hakoa in Mr. E. Best's valuable papers published in the “Journal of the Polynesian Society.” In Vol. VI., pages 9-65, and Vol. XI., pages 14, 57, 58 and 132.]

Some time after the above events Matotoru died and his body was placed in a small house on Motu-taiko Island. The house stood there with the body inside it with a Maori mat as a screen across the door-way. This was the Maori custom of treating the bodies of their principal chiefs.

While the body lay there in the house on Motu-taiko a party of Ngati-Maru and Ngati-Raukawa came through on their way to Hau-raki and Maunga-Tautari. They were returning from Kapiti, and their leaders were Pataua, Wahine-iti and Hape. The party called at Te Rapa, where Te Heuheu was living, to borrow canoes from him.

The canoes were given to them, and they were told to go straight on and leave the canoes at Marae-kowhai.

But they had only got beyond Whaka-rongo-tukituki at Pukawa, when they went ashore and dug up some bodies of the dead belonging to Ngati-rua. When this was known to some of the tribe, they sent on to Te Heuheu and told him that the bodies of his relatives had been desecrated by Ngati-Maru and Ngati-Raukawa. Te Heuheu replied, “They are not people of ordinary rank. Ko te tangata i mohio ki te matatahi, me te kaituha.” This is a saying of Te Heuheu about Matatoru. The words “matatahi” and “kaituha” are to be understood - 185 as applying to Te Rangi-tua-matotoru, for he was a man who had the power of life and death. The saying of Te Heuheu was uttered because Ngati-Maru and Raukawa had gone out of their way to visit Motu-Taiko and desecrate the grave of Matotoru.

They had taken away the mat that was used as a curtain to the doorway of the whare in which the body of Matotoru was lying. After this they crossed over to Motu-tere and illused the people living there by taking away their garments and all their other goods. They then paddled on towards Ranga-tira [at the north end of the lake].

As soon as they had gone on, Hurihia, a sister of Te Heuheu, who was married to Te Tauri, a grandson of Matotoru, started for Te Rapa to tell Te Heuheu what had happened. As she went she had an old broken net girt around her loins, with no other garment, for they had all been taken by Ngati-Maru. When Te Heuheu saw his sister coming with nothing on save an old net, he knew that the people of Motu-tere had been badly used by Ngati-Maru. He asked her what had happened, and she told how they had been robbed, and that the grave of Matotoru had been desecrated by the party of Ngati-Maru and Ngati-Raukawa.

Word was at once sent forth to all the boundaries of Tu-hare-toa to assemble at Motu-tere. When they were assembled, Pipiri and Te Tauri advised Te Heuheu not to pursue Ngati-Maru, but to let the desecration work its own revenge. [The violation of the tapu of such a man as Matotoru would be avenged by his atua or god.] This advice was by no means pleasing to Te Heuheu; he was for instant pursuit. His counsel was taken and the chase commenced.

This was one of those actions that led to the mana that Te Heuheu became famous for. When the canoes went on to Motu-tere, Hape went from there by land, for he reckoned from the words of the others in the pa that Ngati-Maru would not be pursued.

Ngati-Maru and Ngati-Raukawa arrived at Ranga-tira, and were seen by the men living there. Hape had already arrived and told his story, so the men of the pa knew about Matotoru. Hape was hidden by his relatives, so that he would not be seen by the visitors.

The men of the pa told the ope or war-party to bind their canoes with three ropes to each canoe so that they might not be drawn away into the current of the Waikato. So the canoes were tied to portions of the palisading of the pa. The pa was Ranga-tira. The ope slept outside.

The pursuing Ngati-Tu-hare-toa crossed to the Karaka, about two miles from Ranga-tira, and left their canoes drawn up on shore. They then sent some spies along to see where the ope were camped. The spies found them asleep outside of the pa, so they quickly went back to report. Te Heuheu ordered his party to surround the sleeping ope and wait for the dawn. This was done, and the party crouched ready and - 186 watched for daylight. At the first streak of dawn the assault was made.

Ngati-Maru and Ngati-Raukawa were badly beaten, and the chiefs Pataua and Wahine-iti were killed.

In this way the insult to Te Rangi-tua-matotoru was amply avenged as a lesson to the generations coming after.

There was no chief of those days equal to Te Rangi-tua-matotoru in mana. It was because of his mana that Te Heuheu spoke of him—“Te tangata i mohio ki te matatahi me te kaituha.” (The man who understood good and evil, or who had the power of life and death.) He was the equal of men like Rangi-horoa of Tarawera, Te Ruruku-o-te-rangi of Heretaunga, and others.

Another story is told of Matotoru and Te Ua-mai-rangi. There was a man named Takuao of Ngati-Kahuhunu married to a woman named Te Ra-to-ahiahi of Ngati-Awa. Because of his own connection with Heretaunga, and his wife belonging to Ngati-Awa of Whakatane, he was continually passing to and fro. On one occasion as he was passing he was attacked and killed by some people along the track.

When Ngati-Kahuhunu heard of it they closed the tracks between the two places. One track by way of Titi-o-kura, and the other by way of Te Ranga-a-Tawhao. So that no one was able to come from the east to this place, or to go from this side to the East Coast. Te Ua-mai-rangi was unable to visit his people Ngati-Awa and Ngati-Pikiao of this side because of the prohibition. Te Rangi-tua-matotoru heard that Te Ua-mai-rangi was unable to get through, so he sent him a message to come on to Motu-tere by way of Tahu-nui and Te Puta-a-te-haki. Te Ua did so, and then was able to get to his people at Roto-iti and Whakatane. [Te Ua-mai-rangi was the grandfather of Renata Kawepo. His name and that of Te Rangi-tua-matotoru are coupled together in the “Polynesian Journal,” Vol. XXI., page 86.]

Matotoru in mentioned in the following patere, it is called the “Patere of Manomano.”

E noho ana i te koko ki Wai-hora,
Hewa noa ki te karanga oho noa mai ko tu pari.
E hoa ma taia atu i te putanga mai i te matarae ki
Hinga-rae. Pewhea tena te kokihi o te waka i a Te
Puau. Ma ie kawariki e taunu mai he tureti ahahaia.
He aha te manu e tiorere nei te moana?
He tara ka muhuka i maua atu. E Hi, aku korero
Hau atu ana ki te tore wa he kenokeno
He pororua tupapatihake te tau iho turama tonu.
Ka haere ra i kaha o te ngutu ki Waikato.
Ki a Muri-whenua ai rawa he peha turanga korero
Ko te ngutu maioro e, ki Hangahanga ki a te Whata-nui.
Ko wai te pai kia torere au ko Ta-tare.
Kai te uranga o tera ko Hine-mati-oro.
Tē mutu noa te korero. Wani noa koe i te tau tahi.
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Wani noa koe i te tau rua. Waiho ano te toremi papa,
Kia anini. E kore pea e tahuritia mai. He tihotihoia
Katahi. He waha mangaia ka rua. Ako noa koutou nei
Ki te atahu. He ongaonga i te ngaherehere.
Ko au kia wehe nei. Ka whiti ra i te taha mate.
Ka wani ra i taha kaha. Ka tau kau I waenga.
Ko nga ruru au o te ngare o te Kohera.
Taku pukepuke ko Pae-nui-o-Rehua.
Taku taumata ko Hinemoa. Kia marama te titiro
Ki nga keo rau ki Tarawera. Awhi ana au
Ko te hahae kia homai te korirangi
Hai whakangaoko noa i toku kiri.
E tara mai nei e te ngutu tui.
Mei kore te kei o te waka i a Haerehuka.
Piri ana au i te kopa o te whare o Te Rangi-kouariro
Ko tona tama. Hoki mai ano ki te paekiri ki te Motu-
Tawa. Ko te Kahuroro koi he mai Te Hurinui.
He ruru pehopeho au. Mene tonu mai runga,
Mene tonu and raro, Mene tonu mai runga,
Mene tonu ank raro, Mene tonu mai te ngare o Te
Rangi-Ita. Hei kahika i te aroaro.
Katahi nei ka tikanga, katahi nei ka ponanga,
Katahi nei ka rawe rua taku mea.
Ki te mea no roa te tau te amanga mai a taku mea.
He aniwha koia te manawanui o taku mea.
Ka whiti nei kai te pae. Ka rongo ra te ngutu iti.
Ka rongo ra te ngutu rahi. E Whata! hoea te wai ki
Taupo. Kai te whakatutu au i taku poi tawhare.
Ko titi te waru, hewa noa nei ki te karanga o runga
Te rangi. Ka herea i te ihi o te ra.
Ka kutia mai e te paea o hanga kino e te waro.
I tari mai te pukupuku. I tari mai te harehare.
Te hokahokanga o te marama. Te tau akinga o Matariki.
Taku huihui ko Hinewai, Tautoru, Whanui, ko Puanga
Ko Rehua kai tangata. Kia mau koia e Tao te hapai
Hai mariunga kokinga ki Hauraki.
Hangarau e waiho noa i te takiwa ki kai perei.
Ka kite ra Matotoru e tutaki i te whakataumanutanga
O ana na waka. Ko koia e ara, e. 3

[There are several obscure points in this patere to be cleared up before we can give a passable translation.]

There is another patere beginning:—

“E noho ana i toku taumata i Tiheia.”

But as this has already appeared in the pages of the “Polynesian Journal,” Vol. XV., page 11; and another version is given in Sir George Grey's “Moteatea,” we do not give it.]

1   1 and 2 are given on page 161 of Vol. I. “W.A.H.M.,” as two of the beings who dwelt in the bosom of Rangi and Papa before their separation.
2   1 and 2 are given on page 161 of Vol. I. “W.A.H.M.,” as two of the beings who dwelt in the bosom of Rangi and Papa before their separation.
3   Many words in this composition appear doubtful they are not known in other connections. Maoris are much given to altering common words when used in song for the sake of euphony.—Editor.