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The Front Gable

The Front Gable.

On top of the gable stands the figure of Kahungunu, the eponymous ancestor of the Ngati-Kahungunu tribe whose history is fully recorded in this book. This figure is the tiki of ornamental figure, and is held by the Maori to be the most important adornment of a house, and must be represented by the most prominent ancestor of the tribe. On the barge-board or maihi sloping downwards on the right-hand side of the building, is the carved picture of the Takitimu canoe. On the lower end of the barge-board, in line with the outer wall of the building, is a slab supporting the maihi called ama. On this are carved two figures; on top is Tamatea-Ariki-nui alias Tamatea-Mai-Tawhiti, who commanded the Takitimu canoe, and whose history is recorded in this book. Below is the figure of Ruawharo, the High Priest of Takitimu, whose history is recorded in this book. On the left-hand maihi or barge-board is carved the picture of the Horouta canoe. On the ama or supporting slab are carved two figures: Pawa, the commander of the Horouta, and that of Kiwa, the priest below.