Other formats

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


    mail icontwitter iconBlogspot iconrss icon

Arachne. No. 3

(2) Laments (nga waiata tangi)

(2) Laments (nga waiata tangi)

The majority of the Maori poems that have been recorded fall under the heading of laments. They are laments for the dead who may have died through sickness, accident, murder or some other disaster. In this class many of the most famous Maori songs are to be found and poetic style reaches its highest excellence. Genealogies tracing back to Hawaiki also occur in these laments. The lament of Turaukawa, a great chief from Taranaki (Nga Mokaka, p. 322) the lament of Rangiuia, the last of the priests of Te Rawheoro, the greatest of the Houses of Learning of the East Coast, for his child Tuterangiwhaitiri, are two of the greatest Maori poems recorded. Some of the greatest poems are the laments for Te Heuheu, killed by a land-slide at Te Rapa, Te Heuheu's lament for Rapaka and the lament for Tupoki, killed by Ngati Maniapoto at Parawera.