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Te whakatuwheratanga o Te Tumu Herenga Waka : 6 Tihema 1986, Poneke, Te Whare Wananga o Wikitoria



KAOKAO: This pattern was dedicated to the warrior who came under the protection of the war God, Tumatauenga. This pattern was also known as 'takapau wharanui' which was used on all important marriage mats of older times.

POUTAMA: Poutama (step-like pattern) has both religious and educational meanings. The steps symbolise levels of attainment and advancement. At one time, Poutama was the only pattern used in tukutuku.

PATIKITIKI: This pattern is likened to the flounder and portrays favourable times. It is a familiar pattern on kete, whariki, tatua and taniko.

PURAPURA WHETU: This relates to the peopling and population of a region. It is the feature pattern of Rangiatea Church in Otaki. The symbolism of this is that the church and the Christian faith would be "as many as the stars in number". There is a proverb which expresses this sentiment:

Tini te whetu, ko Ngati Maru kei raro."

WAEWAE PAAKURA or TAKITORU: This design came from the secret message sent by Rongomaituaho to Paikea, and Paikea having received the message in the form of three angled stitches, tied them the opposite way and sent them back. It means to communicate.

WAHARUA: This pattern is also known as whenua. It has symbolic connections with the land and goes back to early times when the umbilical cord was buried on the land.

ROIMATA TOROA: Tears of an albatross. This pattern denotes misadventure, particularly to crops.

NIHO TANIWHA or NIHONIHO: Which literally means — teeth of the taniwha. It is also the sign of the historian. In some instances, it represents the chief and hospitality. It represents also, family houses within a tribe.

MUMU (Whanganui): The people of Whanganui specialise in this design. It portrays alliance and intermarriage between senior families.

POROURANGI: A design introduced by Sir Apirana Ngata, representing the famous ancestor Porourangi of the Tairawhiti district.

TE TUMU HERENGA WAKA: This pattern depicts the name of the Wharenui; 'the tying post of the canoes'.

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Heeni Kerekere working on a tukutuku panel

Heeni Kerekere working on a tukutuku panel