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The Ancient History of the Maori, His Mythology and Traditions. Nga-Puhi [Vol. XI]

Chapter XIX — Nga-ti-haua Join in the Battle at Te-tiki, and Subsequent Attacks on the Tau-mata-wiwi Plain (Nga-ti-haua)

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Chapter XIX
Nga-ti-haua Join in the Battle at Te-tiki, and Subsequent Attacks on the Tau-mata-wiwi Plain (Nga-ti-haua)

O sons, o daughters
What action shall we take?
Let us take the weapon of Tawake
And make a screen with mangemange
To stay one that I should not look
And see the sight of the grieving
Of the spirit of the beloved
But in the days of future
I can go and view the sight.
Now leave me on the winding
Promontory at the Papa
Where I may stand for nought
And be like a bare and branchless tree
To stand erect, and stand alone.

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We, the Nga-ti-haua started for Ka-wehi-tiki, crossed the Waikato and slept at Te Kohu. Next morning we started. Some of Waikato had joined us, near to Te Tiki. The scouts of Marutuahu were there. We went on and the scouts fired on us - got up to Te Tiki, and then the advanced party of Marutuahu fell back. As we descended they got to the other side of Hani-ora. Each tribe of ours formed a division (matua). Marutuahu were in occupation of Taumata-wiwi extending to Hari-ora. Te Waha-roa said his party should go by the track along the Waikato river and that Waikato should go on the west side of Hau-o-ira, and that Nga-i-te-rangi should go in the middle. Waikato crossed Hau-o-ira and Nga-i-te-rangi also. Nga-ti-haua went straight on by the Waikato river as they saw Nga-ti-paoa coming down. Te Waha-roa put the main body in position, and sent the Nga-ti-koroki on ahead. (Nga-ti-koroki) These attacked and firing took place. I was old enough then to carry a gun. Nga-ti-koroki killed the first man. Nga-ti-paoa vanguard fled and Nga-ti-haua got the body and took out the heart. Nga-ti-koroki were beaten. Te Parapara came to Te Waha-roa and said, "We have been beaten." Te Waharoa got up, and his whole force advanced. When they got close, Te Hiko-rahi fired and killed Puke-roa. Manutahiorangi was killed, and Nga-ti-paoa fled. Te Puke-roa was a great chief of Nga-ti-paoa. (The whole force of Marutuahu.) When Nga-ti-paoa turned and fled, (then) the whole of Marutuahu also fled. It was about midday. Our whole force advanced. As the enemy fled they fired and killed one of us - Te Rangai of Nga-ti-haua. The Nga-ti-paoa fled in confusion. Nga-ti-maru, Nga-ti-whatua and Nga-ti-tama-te-ra fled by page (256)the scrub. The Nga-ti-paoa fled by the river. After Te Rangai of Te Hiapa were killed. The Nga-ti-paoa seeing him ahead turned and Tuaropaki killed him with a "rakau Maori" (native weapon). They fired again and killed Torutoru of ours and another of ours Te Karauna. We fired and killed Tu-aropaki and Te Wheoro, when close to Te Reiroa. He fired and killed Te Hiki - this was the last. At the junction of the roads we caught Te Rupe, a chief. Tango caught him. We went on in a body towards the Pa - our whole force had joined - the whole of our force of Nga-ti-haua, Nga-i-te-rangi, and Waikato got to Te-Rei-roa. The swift of foot went ahead of us chasing Marutuahu, who were still in flight. The Maru-tuahu forces had joined together when these people I have named were killed at Te Rua-peka. We were following in a body - the swift men were trying to catch prisoners. Nga-ti-haua, Nga-i-te-rangi, and Waikato were formed into three divisions at Te-Rei-roa and sat down to await the (attack) charge of Marutuahu in case they should rally. The runners were still in chase, and while going on a gun was fired from the Pa and killed a man, they made a sortie and took away the body. The party who made the sortie returned into the pa. The sun was on the decline. Our forces waited for the others to come out of the Pa, but they did not come. We waited a long time and then we wished to go back. A few of our chiefs spoke about making an attack next morning. The swift runners fled back to us after the man was killed. Our three divisions got up and fired, from one end of the line to the other and then we returned to Taumata-wiwi. We all remained there that night. We did not leave our dead on the field. Our camp was close to the field. We got our dead. We got Marutuahu dead. We brought page (257)our dead to the camp. We made wharau (breakwinds). Some of the hapus who desired to burn their dead that night did so - the greater number did not. I never saw or heard of any bodies having been thrown into the Waikato - would we have thrown these great chiefs into - I heard Erana Kitu say so but I did not see it. I never heard of such a thing before. The dead that were not burnt that night were burnt afterwards. In the evening the chiefs decided to attack the Nga-ti-maru Pa in the morning. We slept and cooked food before daylight, ate it and paraded. After this Taha-roku and other women came in the morning. Taha-roku came in the rear of the women. The party consisted of Tira-ki-te-ronga, Wawa, Rangi-wawahui, Taha-roku and Te Tupua. These were all. Taha-roku and the women came together first. Te Tupua came by himself afterwards. I saw them coming myself - they came in between our camps. Te Tupua did not arrive until midday. I was in our camp when they came. When Taha-roku and the women were seen coming we sat in divisions. The women who were spoken of as having come to cry over their dead I did not see. There was no stand-up "tangi". Maikuku got up and spoke. He said "Haere mai, Taharoku i runga i a taua whawhai." ("Welcome Taha-roku in the midst of our war with each other.") He said some more and sat down.

Te Tupua had not yet come. Taha-roku got up and said "Karangatia, karangatia, ko te haere hoki ko te ahu." ("Call the welcome, call the welcome, our coming is to foster.") He then chanted an incantation as a tau (song):

"Tutakina o iwi,
Tutakina o toto,
Tutakina o uaua."

(Close your bones up,
Close your blood up,
Close your sinews up.)

This is all I can recollect of it. He also said "E hara i te mea nau au i karanga kia haere mai. Naku ano tuku whakaaro kia houhia te rongo. E kore i ana e ngata te puku riri." ("It is not the son called me to come here, it is of myself to propose peace, but the feelings of revenge will not be satisfied.") He finished and sat down. Te Waharoa then got up and said "Haere mai e taku matua." ("Welcome o my parent (elder relation).") He said this in consequence page (258)of hearing what Taha-roku had said. He said "Haka! Haka! Tenei hoki koe ka haere mai (I heard this myself) ki taku me whawhai tonu, kaua e mutu totaua whawhai. Kia haere atu ano koe i tenei wahi, katahi ka mutu. Me i hinga a i a koe, i tenei ra, kua riro katoa oku whenua i a koe. Ko tenei kuia hinga koe i au. Inaianei kua hoki mai oku wahi katoa ki au - Horo-tiu, Maunga-kawa, me te Aroha kua riro i au." ("And you have really come, yes you have come here, I think we must continue our conflict, till you have gone from this district, if you go from there the war will end, if I had been beaten by you this day, you would have taken all my lands but as I have conquered you this day, I have got all my lands back - my Horotiu, Maunga-kawa, and the Aroha I have taken also.") "I have previously taken all these lands from Te-tae-a-turawaru on the Wai-toa and Pirau-nui, and now I will take the Aroha." I heard these words myself. A number of chiefs spoke - some in favour of what Te-Waha-roa said and some not - some were for driving the Nga-ti-maru south. Pohepohe and Pou-kawa repeated what had been proposed the previous evening. The word of Te-Waha-roa for sending the Nga-ti-maru back to Hau-raki could not be overriden by the other chiefs. When Te Tupua came the talk had been satisfactorily settled. Tupua came by himself from Hao-whenua. He was not sent for. Taha-roku got up and said in reply to Te Waharoa "If such is your word, I will go back to Hauraki." No party of Marutuahu came and fired on us the morning after the fight. The statement of Te Muri as to what Te Waharoa said is false. I know nothing of guns having been given on this occasion. If Te-Waha-roa had given guns I should have seen it. Some other persons may know of it. I never saw it nor heard of it. After Taha-roku and the women returned we stayed on the field of battle and in the evening we burnt some of our dead. We had burnt some the night before. In the evening a messenger came to us from the Waikato where they were collecting on page (259)the west coast. He was told peace was made. Had peace not been made we should have attacked Marutuahu. The first party of Waikato had come to Te-Kohu, and others were still coming up from Kawhia. The body at Te-Kohu had not been engaged at Taumata-wiwi. The coming of the Waikato had been arranged long before. This was a very great assemblage of Waikato, and there was a very great assemblage at the death of Kumete. Another great assemblage was a Kai-aruhe. It was arranged that all Waikato should assemble to fight the Marutuahu at Taumata-wiwi. It was arranged so because it was one of the great fights. Of all the fights between Nga-ti-maru and Nga-ti-haua Kariaruhi and Taumatawiwi were the greatest. At Kari-aruhe the Waikato were assembling but the Nga-ti-haua commenced before they had all assembled. There was a greater number engaged at Taumata-wiwi on our side than at Kari-aruhe. There were more Waikato assembled to fight at Taumata-wiwi than at Kari-aruhe. The Nga-ti-haua and Waikato assembled to fight Waikato, to drive them off the Nga-ti-haua land because they were "pouri" (sorrowful) about their proceedings in taking away cultivations and kicking the women. I said it was proposed by some to drive Marutuahu south. If they had persisted in remaining we should have continued to fight. If they had not obeyed, we could have driven them south. We had previously driven off the Nga-ti-raukawa. After the talk I went to Ka-wehi-tiki with Nga-i-te-rangi and Waikato. Afterwards I went to Wai-pa on a visit. I stayed at Ka-wehi-tiki some time before I went to Wai-pa, about ten days. It was after I left that I heard page (260)that a party went to take the Aroha. When Te-Waha-roa said to Taharoku "If he had been defeated Marutuahu would have taken all his lands," he referred to Horo-tiu and Maunga-kawa, and if they had been strong enough Waikato would have been taken also.

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I remember when the Marutuahu and Haua lived together at Horotiu. I was very young at that time. They had quarrels. These disputes led to Haua going to Maunga-kawa to live and leaving Horo-tiu. When Haua went to Maunga-kawa there were no Marutuahu there. They followed us there. Taka-riro and about 100 of Tamatera. After this Marutuahu went to take possession of Maunga-kawa and live there. They built a Pa called Kai-paka. We remained at peace one year. After that Te-Whakaete was killed - he belonged to Waikato. We lived quietly a short time after Whakaete, and then we went to seek payment for Whakaete. We were beaten at Kari-aruhe. The Maru brought the heads of the slain to Ka-wehi-tiki, and dipped them into the water holes from which we obtained our water to drink. Te-Waha-roa was there at the time. Te-Waha-roa spoke to Takurua. He used (sung) a tau (a song to heart), "Hia, hia, haere, haere." ("If you wish to leave, go away.") - a warning to go away Takurua did not go, but Te-Waha-roa went to Tauranga. After Te Waharoa left, the Haua killed Takurua with 100 of his people. They were attacked at daylight. They were living in and out of the Kai-puka Pa. We and Marutuahu lived in a state of quarrel and fighting up to the time of Taumata-wiwi. I was at Taumata-wiwi. The tribes on our side were Nga-i-te-rangi, Waikato and Haua. It had been arranged before that we should assemble. Nga-i-te-rangi had come from Tauranga with Te-Waha-roa to Ka-wehi-tiki. The Waikato had arrived before Te-Waha-roa came - 200 of Waikato came. The other Waikato were expected up. 2,000 were on their way from Taranaki.

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Messengers were sent to them to come straight on. We attacked Hao-whenua before they came up. The chiefs wished to await the arrival of Waikato. Te Waharoa determined to attack at once - made a bridge across Wai-kato and crossed and went to Te Tihi. The night before the battle we slept on our side Waikato, above Te-Kohu. Next morning we saw Maru on the other side of Hau-o-ira. Some of Maru came to Te Tiki, and fired guns. We formed in three divisions. By the time we reached the Tiki, Maru had got to the other side of Hau-o-ira. Our division separated - Te-Waha-roa said "He would advance by Waikato river a little above." The fighting commenced by the bank of the Waikato, and continued until Te-Puke-roa fell. Haua dead covered a large space - father and brother together. Te Waha-roa was in the van. He had fought a long time before Puke-roa was killed - till midday. Te-Waha-roa was not hit before Te Puke-roa was killed. Te Waha-roa had a Maori "kori" (rough mat) on and a weapon in his hand. When Te-puke-roa fell Te Waharoa rushed ahead and the enemy fled. Te Waharoa said "Tataia, tataia nga upoko." ("Dash their heads to pieces.") We followed them to Taumata-wiwi. When we got there, Tu-aro-paki rallied. He had a taiaha (a wooden weapon only used by the most noted warriors) and there was a hand-to-hand fight between him and Hi-api of our people. We charged them again - they fled and did not make another stand. Te Wheoro and Tu-aro-paki were killed later at a stream. Tu-aro-paki killed Te Hiapo with one blow of his taiaha. Te Hiki of Maru was the last killed. He was killed at Te-rei-roa. Some of the Haua were killed when Tu-aro-paki made a stand - none were killed after that. We pursued, the swift footed on ahead, the slow page (263)ones behind. I stayed at Taumata-wiwi. I heard that one of Haua was killed near the Hao-whenua Pa. When our forces returned from Te-rei-roa. We all went to Hau-o-ira. It was near sundown. That night we slept by the Hau-o-ira stream. Waikato and Nga-i-te-rangi were on the other side. We the Haua talked about attacking Maru next morning. All the chiefs agreed. We had got all the Maru dead and we got all our own dead except two, the head of which Marutuahu had got. The Maru got the body of the man who was shot outside the Pa - making three in all. We burnt our own dead - some that night - some the next morning. None of our dead were thrown into the Waikato. I head what Erana Ketu said. There were no dead bodies thrown into the river. When the morning star "Tawera" appeared we cooked our food. After eating Te-Waha-roa got up and made a speech to Kukutai. Kukutai was friendly disposed to Marutuahu. Kukutai said to Te Waharoa - "Waikato is at Te-Kohu. 400 have already arrived at Te Tihi." He wanted Te Waha-roa to wait till they arrived, but he would not listen. Our division was ready. Maikuku came up and said the same as Kukutai - to wait till Waikato came up. These discussions occupied some time. In the meantime Taha-roku came. If we had started early as Te Waha-roa wanted, we should have met Taha-roku on the road. Taha-roku had some people with him - two men and three women including Taha-roku. They were coming on a ridge some distance away on the battle field when we first saw them, (about as far as from here to the church away). The women were in front, but all close together.

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When they arrived as we were finishing the burning of our dead, Te Tupua spoke - he said to Te Waha-roa "E Waha, he aha i maumau ai nga utu o Marutuahu i tahuna ai ki te ahi?" ("O Waha-roa, why waste this food of Maru-tuahu by burning it in the fire?") What he meant was not to waste the bodies, but to give them to Maru to eat - a bit of chaff of his, he was partly Haua. Te Waharoa laughed. Te Tupua sat down and Maikuku got up but I don't remember his exact words. A woman named Tira-ki-te-tonga had been called privately to come among Haua before the talk commenced. Te Tupua did not speak about wasting the bodies, so that all could hear, but only to Te-Waha-roa aside. Rangi-te-wiwini (a female) divulged it out afterwards. When Tira-ki-te-tonga was called aside, she was asked "Why they had come" - she was asked by Te Hura. I did not hear him ask. I heard of it when it was publicly proclaimed, which was after Tira-ki-te-tonga went back to her own party. We learnt it afterwards from the nature of the speeches. After the woman got back to her party to Taha-roku, and Maikuku stood up and said "Ahakoa he tikinga tau i haere mai ai, e kore au e whakaue." ("Though you may have come with an object, I will not agree.") Te Taha-roku got up and said "Tenei te haere (mai) nei. Ehara i te mea hoa i haere mai ai au ki a koe kia houhia te rongo, whaka mutua te whaiwhai." ("Give the welcome. I was not invited or requested to come to you to make peace, cease to the war.") Rawhirawhi of Haua got up and said - "He would not consent to Taha-roku's peace." Taharoku got up the second time and said the same words about peace. Te Tiwha got up and said "Peace should not be made." Te-Waha-roa had not yet stood up. All the chiefs of Haua had spoken. Te Tiwha spoke the strongest. He wished to drive Marutuahu to Kapiti. Te-Waha-roa got up and consented to the peacemaking. He said "Ka whakaae au page (265)ki te maunga rongo, engari haere mai haere ki Hauraki. Waiho mai taku whenua." ("I consent to peace being made, but you go back to Hau-raki and leave my land.") Te Tupua then got up and said - "E Waharoa, me pehea e puta ai au ki Hauraki?" ("Oh Waha-roa, how shall I get through to Hau-raki?") Te Waharoa said "Me kawe mariri koe." ("You shall be escorted.") Te Tupua asked was that because they were in fear of Waikato - those who were on the road. Te Waharoa then spoke to the Waikato and said "Don't say anything bad to Marutuahu or interfere with them - let them go back. Te Waharoa then sent a messenger to those Waikato who had not come up, to take this word to them. This was all that Te Waha-roa said. Taha-roku and his party returned to Hao-whenua. We stayed at Te-tiki - at our camp. We stayed four days and then left for Maunga-kawa. Nga-i-te-rangi accompanied us. Waikato returned to Waikato. During those four days I did not hear that we communicated with Marutuahu. When we got to Maunga-kawa the persons who were to conduct Marutuahu to Hau-raki were sent from Ka-wehi-tiki - Puke-rahaki (a man), Tira-kahurangi (a woman), Rangi-herehere (also a woman), Te-Whare-koioi (a man) and Hura (the younger - a man) - those were all. We were about three days at Ka-wehi-tiki before we sent these people. I heard after that these people went with Marutuahu by different ways. They returned from Te Ranga-a-kuri - Nga-i-te-rangi were at Maunga-kawa when they went - they were kept there until Tama-te-ra should have gone. Whanaunga left by way of Tauhara. Puke-rahaki came back and said they had parted with Tamatera at Ranga-a-kuri he and Pare-kahurangi. Rangi-herehere and the others conducted Whanaunga by way page (266)of Pi-ako to Tama-here. They told us they had done so on their return. I don't know how long they were absent before they returned (a week or more). It was many days.

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On the morning after the battle of Taumata-wiwi I don't remember seeing any of Maru coming out of the Pa as far as Te-Rei-roa and firing guns. They did not come out of their Pa. I am quite sure about where the Haua camped and slept the night after the battle - it was on the Maunga-tautari side of Hou-o-ira. The Nga-i-te-rangi camped on the opposite side of Hou-o-ira. The Waikato camped on the same side as Nga-i-te-rangi, near the road. I am quite sure that no party of Marutuahu came out of Hao-whenua on the morning of the battle. A party could not have come out without my knowing it.

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There was a great chief of Haua called Pohepohe. He had a son called Tai-epu. He was called Tai-epu because Kai-whia, Pohepohe's sister, is buried there - she died a natural death.

You are sure that is the reason? Yes.

It was not because the dead at Taumata-wiwi were burnt there. Nga-i-te-rangi and Waikato burnt the dead there and Haua burnt theirs at Hau-o-ira where the bones are still to be seen.

Kaparoa was a name given to Te Hetini on account of the lay kapa (line) - 2 dead killed at Taumata-wiwi.

Did not you hear that in that line there were 140? They did not come up to that number.

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When our people rushed to our Pa for powder and were pursued by the enemy, Te Taniwha called out "Marutuahu, E! Ka mahue Hauraki." ("O Maru-tuahu, we should lose Hau-raki.") Te-Rau-roha and Kohi-rangatira, the leaders of the 140 turned and made a stand. The main body now got up and advanced, and Tu-aro-paki killed Te-hiapo of the enemy with a "taiaha". As soon as we had killed this man we all fled. We fled because Haua were too strong for us. They followed us firing on us as we fled. The whole Marutuahu force retreated in bad order. After the Tuhi-o-te-rangi, Te Wheoro was killed, and next Tu-aro-paki, next Te-hiki. This was the last. He fell at Te Rua-pekapeka.