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History and traditions of the Maoris of the West Coast, North Island of New Zealand, prior to 1840

Anotjieh Waikato Ope to Taranaki. (1824 or 1825.)

Anotjieh Waikato Ope to Taranaki. (1824 or 1825.)

It was said a few pages back that Waikato was threatening another expedition to Taranaki in order to secure some satisfaction for the death of their great chiefs at the battle of Te Motu-nui. The only account we have of this is to be found in W. Te Awa-i-taia's narrative,* which is very sketchy. Nearly all the Ati-Awa had gone south, and page 406hence we have no information from their side. He says, "Some time after Te Motu-nui Waikato again went to Taranaki, and also Ngati-Paoa (of Hauraki Gulf), Ngati-Haua (of Upper Thames), Ngati-Mania-poto (of Waipa), Ngati-Mahanga, Ngati-Mahuta, Ngati-Hourua (of Waikato), Ngati-Te-Ata (of Waiuku and Manukau); in all, one thousand six hundred warriors. They went to Mokau, Pou-tama, and on to Te Taniwha, Waitara, Nga-Motu, and even as far as Taranaki (Cape Egmont, etc.). They found no men—all had fled to the mountains. We (Ngati-Tahinga) came back without doing anything, only that some of our people were slain on the mountains. On the return home the party came to the Tonga-porutu river, where some of the Waikato were killed, amongst them the chief Te Raro-tu-tahi. The payment for him was sixty of the Ngati-Tama, and Tu-hira, a woman of high rank, was captured there.

The war-party now returned to their homes at Waikato. They still bore in mind the good actions of those of Ati-Awa who had befriended Waikato in their need at Puke-rangi-ora, and therefore remained quiet and did not return to Taranaki for some time. But, nevertheless, they longed in their hearts to obtain satisfaction for the deaths of Te Hiakai and party at Te Motu-nui."

From this absence of people it is clear the incursion of Waikato took place after the departure of the "Niho-puta" heke, either late in 1824 or early in 1825.

* A.H.M., Vol. VI., p. 4.