Other formats

    Adobe Portable Document Format file (facsimile images)   TEI XML file   ePub eBook file  


    mail icontwitter iconBlogspot iconrss icon

The Greenstone Door


page 400


Ariki, the Priest-Chief, the eldest son of the eldest son, tracing descent back to the Maori gods.

Pa, a fortified village. It was usually situated on the summit of a hill, so as to command a view of an approaching enemy. Its defences consisted of ditches and palisades, one within the other.

Te Reinga, the World of Spirits. The soul having quitted the body was supposed to travel to the extreme north of New Zealand, where was the leaping-off place or entrance to the Land of Shadows. See p. 61.

Royal Huia Bird. The tail feathers of the huia, black tipped with white, were highly prized as hair ornaments. See p. 38.

"The Southern Cross," one of the two newspapers published in Auckland at that date, adopted a tone highly antagonistic to the Governor. It is said, however, that Grey never read it. See p. 172.

Tapairu, the first-born of an exalted lineage of the female sex, a High Priestess.

Tapu.Mr. Tregear, to whose valuable work, "The Maori Race," I am much indebted, says: "The true inwardness of the word is that it infers the setting apart of certain persons or things on account of their having become possessed or infected by the presence of supernatural beings, particularly of the ancestral spirits who were guardian deities of the tribe." The reverse of tapu is noa, "cleansed from tapu," "common."

Tatau Pounamu. This figurative expression was used to denote the making of a lasting peace. The Greenstone Door, through which war and rapine might enter, was conceived to be finally closed with those making the compact. It was the most sacred bond of peace to a people whose chief delight was in war. See p. 71.

Tohunga. The tohunga was the master of arts and sciences or trades, the teacher, the priest, and the physician, though not all of these were combined in the same person. Common usage has considerably reduced the scope of the word, and the tohunga nowadays is merely a rather discredited medicine-man and religious mystic.