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The Pamphlet Collection of Sir Robert Stout: Volume 70

Questions asked by Mr. F. R. Chapman, of Dunedin, for Professor Fischer, of Freiburg

Questions asked by Mr. F. R. Chapman, of Dunedin, for Professor Fischer, of Freiburg.

You are requested to return this paper with answers to these questions giving all possible details, and stating any facts within your knar Ledge besides those touched upon in these questions.

1.How did the natives make the figures known as hei-tiki, and what was their method of working greenstone?
2.In the process did they use chipping instruments, or was anything done by grinding?
3.Are these objects idols or gods, or the portraits of ancestors, what do they represent?
4.Are the existing hei-tiki the result of the patient labour of modere or comparatively modern people, or are they objects remaining m the hands of the Maoris from a former age, the relics of an earlier vanished culture?
5.Is such a vanished culture to be inferred as well from these highly worked objects as from the fine wood-carvings of this race? ls it supposed that they came to New Zealand with a knowledge of these advanced arts, or that they have so advanced themselves here?
6.Do the natives continue to make these objects? Do they make them in their ancient fashion or by means of modern appliances?
7.Have the Maoris any traditions or superstitions on the subject of or with reference to these objects? Are individual hei-tiki treated with reverence? Are they highly prized by Maoris beyond their money value?
8.Do the Maoris make other objects in greenstone than hei-tiki, and articles of actual use, such as axes, chisels, &c.?
9.How many varieties of greenstone do the Maoris recognise? What are their names and description, and what peculiar use or value has each?
10.Where is greenstone found in sitû in a virgin state? Whether in more than one place?
11.Is a rusty yellow-coloured nephrite known in New Zealand? Is a peculiar nephrite with thread-like streaks, having a beautiful silky lustre like asbestos, common in New Zealand?
12.Is the true name of the South Island "Te Wai Pounamu," The Water of Greenstone, or "Te Wahi Pounamu," The Place of Greenstone?
13.Have the Maoris any traditions as to when they first found and began to work it?
14.Have the greenstone objects occasionally seen in other oceanic islands been carried from New Zealand, or is the stone native elsewhere
15.Are the greenstone and other hard-stone axes first chipped to shape and then polished, or are they all ground to shape from water-worn stones?
16.Can you state any special native customs, superstitions, traditions, or other lore relating to greenstone, or objects of greenstone?
17.Was greenstone really the object of Rauparaha's invasion of this Island?
18.Are there any other traditions of wars on this account?