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Hine-Ra, or The Maori Scout: A Romance of the New Zealand War.


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Note.For the information of readers not conversant with the Maori language, I may explain that it contains only 14 letters, namely:—A, E, H, I, K, M, N, O, P, R, T, U, W, and Ng. The vowels are pronounced as in French, except U, which is pronounced like oo in boot, and the consonants as in English, except T, which is pronounced somewhat like the sharp th in apathy, sympathy, &c., or rather like tth cut short. Ng is pronounced like the n in the French word encore. Every vowel in Maori is pronounced, that is to say, every word is divided into as many syllables as possible, although the diphthongs are amalgamated or coalesced.

R. P. W.

  • Aho—Rope or twine of twisted flax.

  • Aitimai—“Welcome to you.”

  • Aotearoa—Literally ao, world, universe, or land; tea, white; and roa, long, the name given to New Zealand by the original Maori discoverers.

  • Apiti—A curse.

  • Ariki—Priest of the first-class. The first-born son of a chief is an Ariki by birthright.

  • Atua—A god, a demon, a spirit. This term is also sometimes applied to any moving substance, the cause of whose motion is not apparent, as a clock, or watch.

  • Atuakihiko—A spirit taking up its abode in some one's body, and through him speaking or prognosticating the future.

  • Aukati—The boundary of a sacred place. In this sense, within neutral territory.

  • E—Denotes the vocative case.

  • E Hoa—Oh, male friend!

  • Ekore—Young man.

  • E Ko—Oh, girl friend!

  • Ekui.—Oh, mother!

  • Haere atu ra—Go in peace.

  • Haka—A dance.

  • Hake—A bowl, a basin, a calabash.

  • Hapu—Tribe or family.

  • Hari—Solo in a canoe song.

  • Hau—Wind blowing through the hair, a token of the presence of the deity.

  • Haupapa—An ambuscade.

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  • Hawaiki.—The tradition as preserved by Te Heuheu, a late chief of Taupo, is that their forefathers came from this place in nine large canoes. Hawaiki is supposed to be an island or islands in the South Seas, but not definitely known where. Some authorities contend that they came from Hawaii, i.e., Hawa-iki, Little or Fiery Java.

  • Hine-hine—A shrub (elæocarpus).

  • Hinè-Ra (literally Girl Sun or daylight, or, as we should say, Sun or Day Girl). Hinè (pronounced Hinny) is a Maori word for girl, and Ra for the sun, which is supposed to be feminine, and the wife of the moon, Marama, masculine.

  • Hoi-hoi—A horse.

  • Hongi—The salute by rubbing noses together. This is considered sacred by the Maoris. A chief, whose pah might be attacked, would save himself and tribe by thus saluting his enemy.

  • Hou—One of the first Maori chiefs who arrived in New Zealand.

  • Irirangi—A voice from heaven, the voice of the deity.

  • Kahaka—A calabash.

  • Kai-Kai—Food, a meal, sustenance.

  • Kainga—An unenclosed village or town.

  • Kaka—A kind of parrot.

  • Kakapo—A night parrot (strigops habroptilus), a kind of yellowish-green owl, which makes its nest in a hole in the ground.

  • Karakia—A hymn, the general name for religious rites or worship.

  • Karamea—A tree bearing fruit like an orange, its juice being bright red.

  • Kareao—A climbing shrub; the supple jack. (Ripogonum parviflorum.)

  • Katipo—This is the only poisonous insect or reptile known in New Zealand. It is a large spider, of which there are two kinds, one red, and one black with a red spot on its back.

  • Kauri—The monarch pine of the New Zealand forest. (Dammara Australis.)

  • Keretohi—Outer fence.

  • Kiwi—A small bird of the ostrich species. The Apteryx (Struthionidæ). It has merely rudimentary wings, and therefore cannot fly. The feathers are long and narrow, and are used by the Maoris for making their best mats.

    “What seemed so surely—for 'twas clear in sight—
    Some puny three-legged thing—no tail—no head—
    Fixed to the ground—a tripod! How amazed
    Was he to find when, serpent-like, it raised
    Strong neck and bill, and, swiftly running, fled.
    'Twas nothing but that wingless, tailless bird
    Boring for worms—less feathered too than furred—
    The Kiwi—strange brown—speckled would be beast.”

  • Kohekohe—The New Zealand mahogany or cedar. (Hartighsea spectabilis.)

  • Kohoromako—The chief of New Zealand singing birds. (Authornis melanura.)

  • Kohowai—Red ochre; used as an ointment for wounds.

  • Koratti—A flax stalk.

  • Korero—Council or Parliament; assemblage for the purpose of talk or consultation.

  • Kotuhu—The large white crane.

  • Kowhai—Acacia bearing a yellow flower. (Edwardsia microphylla.)

  • Kuku—The wood pigeon. (Carpophaga, N.Z.)

  • Kumera—A kind of sweet potato.

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  • Kupe—The first person to reach New Zealand. He came in the Canoe Mataorua from Haiwaiki. Hence the proverb, “I Kunei mai i ha Hawaiki, te kune kai te kune tangata.” (The seed of our coming is from Hawaiki, the seed of man.)

  • Kuri—A bushy-tailed, yellowish variety of the common dog, the wild dog of the Maoris. In its wild state it does not bark, but howls like the wolf.

  • Kuwaha—Entrance, doorway.

  • Lame Seagull—A derisive name given to one of the British commanders by the Maoris.

  • Makutu—Witchcraft, bewitching.

  • Mamuka, or Korau, or Pitau—A fern-tree of which the pulp is eaten. (Cyathea medullaris.)

  • Manuka—A scrubby plant or small tree.

  • Mangatoetoe—Cape Palliser, the S.E. point of the North Island.

  • Maori—Pronounced conventially as if spelt Mow-rie, and signifying native—not black and akin to Moor, as has been said by some.

  • Marama—The moon (masculine).

  • Maripi—A knife, a sharp-cutting instrument.

  • Maru po—Midnight.

  • Mat—A blanket or cloak, made of flax or dogskin. Some of them are highly ornamental, being woven or plaited in various colored designs, and decorated with reeds, feathers, &c.

  • Matai—Pine (Podocarpus spicata).

  • Mata-Kiti—prophecy or divination.

  • Matua—Father.

  • Matariki—The Pleiades, the sign of winter; it is in the ascendant in May, the first month of the Maoris, and creates an important epoch in their agricultural operations.

  • Matutu—See Makutu.

  • Maui—The name signifies the asker, the enquirer.

  • Maunga—Mountain.

  • Mere—a club or axe or greenstone, bone, or wood. The latter kind is also called Patu, and is in shape something like a violin, often elaborately ornamented with carving.

  • Moa—A family of colossal birds, which has become extinct during the past century; in height, ranging from ten to fifteen feet, approximately wingless, and akin to the Kiwi, the emu, the ostrich, and the cassowary. (Dinornithidæ and Palapterygidæ.)

  • Moewha—A vision or dream.

  • Moko—The general name for tattooing on the face.

  • Morioris—A people dwelling in New Zealand antecedent to the Maoris. The tradition is that they were the oldest race on earth, and that they rode on Moas, which had then the gift of speech.

  • Mosquitos—None but those who have been in the West Coast bush of New Zealand can form an adequate idea of the ferocity and virulence of these insects, especially in swampy country. The torments inflicted by these rapacious bloodsuckers at night are only equalled by those caused by the sandflies by day, and I know of no other part of the Australian colonies, except perhaps the south shore of the Hunter river, between Ash Island and lake Macquarie, near Hexham, N.S.W., where the mosquitoes are so furious, or their bite so painful.

  • Nae-Nae—Mosquito.

  • Ngeri—War song or chorus.

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  • Nga—The plural of the definite article.

  • Ngahui—The third person to reach New Zealand.

  • Nikau—A species of palm (areca sapida), one of the most remarkable of the living plants of New Zealand, representing the flora of the coal measures of Europe and America.

  • No, or O—Denotes the possessive case.

  • Nui—Small.

  • O—See No.

  • Otou—The North Cape of the North Island.

  • Pah—An enclosed fortification or village.

  • Pai-Marire—The religion of the Hau-Haus. Literally “good, gentle.”

  • Pakeha—A stranger, a foreigner. Pa-ke-ha, a person from a far distant country.

  • Papai, or Kuweo—A prickly plant (aciphylla squarosa).

  • Papa Kiri—A splint formed of the bark of a tree to suit the form of a wounded limb.

  • Parekura—A battle field, a place where persons are slain.

  • Patu—A stroke, a blow.

  • Pipiwharauroa—A cloud extending across the sky (commonly called Noah's Ark), which was supposed to be a sign of the arrival of strangers.

  • Pitau—War canoe with a carved stern.

  • Piti-piti—A burr-bearing plant (acæna sanguisorbæ).

  • Poaka—A pig, or wild pig.

  • Pohutukawa—a beautiful tree, which blooms at Christmas into masses of gorgeous crimson blossoms (metrosideros tomentosa).

  • Poi—ball, played with a string appended; also a game with the hands.

  • Ponga—A tree fern (Cyathea and Dicksonia).

  • Pounamu—Nephrite or jade stone, a very hard, semi-transparent green stone which is wrought by the Maoris into ear pendants, axe-heads, meres, &c.

  • Rahotu—Cape Egmont, the most westerly point of the North Island.

  • Rangitira—A gentleman, a chief, sometimes but incorrectly spelled Rangatira.

  • Rata—A tree, at first a climber; it throws out aerial roots, clasps the tree it clings to, and finally kills it. Bears a profusion of scarlet flowers. (Metrosideros robusta.)

  • Raupo—A flag or rush used in building houses. (Typha angustifolia.)

  • Rehua—The star Sirius.

  • Reinga—The place of spirits, supposed to be beyond Otou or North Cape, that being the extremity of the land northwards.

  • Roa—Long

  • Rotomahana, Rotorua, Wairakei—The two former lakes (Roto moaning a lake, Mahana warm, &c.), among the myriad thermal springs, steam jets, mud volcanoes, fumaroles, geysers, hot lakes, and other wonderful natural phenomena, which have deservedly caused the remarkable Hot Lake district of Auckland to be called the eighth, if indeed it be not the first, as being the greatest, wonder of the world. It lies inland of the Bay of Plenty, and generally between 38 deg. and 39 deg. S. lat., and 175 deg. 30 min., and 176 deg. 30 min. E. long., thus embracing an area of about 3850 square miles in round numbers. The pink and white terraces were looked upon as the most beautiful and perfect of their kind in the world, and attract numerous visitors from all parts during the summer season. For their accommodation, the townships of Ohinemutu (the place of the last maiden), Whakarewarewa (to keep floating), and others have been built, in which good hotel accommodation may be had, and where guides may page 131 be obtained to show the wonders of the region. Recently a severe volcanic eruption took place at Tarawera (burnt peaks) mountain and lake. The fine and splendidly-fitted and found vessels of the Union Steamship Company of New Zealand afford visitors easy opportunities of inspecting these wonders of nature.

  • Ruapehu—A volcanic mountain in the North Island; the dwelling place of the great Atua, or god of gods.

  • Ruawahine—Female prophet, priestess.

  • Taipo—Evil spirit.

  • Takaro—To wrestle.

  • Tamahine—Daughter.

  • Tamaiti—Son.

  • Tangaika—An avenging war party.

  • Tangi—A cry or wailing.

  • Taokete—Husband of a sister, brother-in-law.

  • Tapu—Sacred, a sacred rite, a singular religious ceremony, the power of performing which is confined to the priests, and which gives them almost unlimited power over the community. The word means literally priestmarked.

    “The Tapu was a fearful spell,
    Potent as creeds, or guards, or gold,
    The power of priest and chieftain to uphold,
    The basis of their savage church and state!
    Yet most 'twas used as stronghold and as stay
    For the aristocrats' and hierarchs' sway
    No high divinity that hedges kings
    Could with the sheltering deviltry compare,
    Or forge for tyranny a subtler yoke;
    For chief or priest at whim or will could dower
    Sticks—stones—most treasur'd or most trivial things—
    With deadliest excommunicative power.”—

  • Taro—An edible plant.

  • Taupo-Moana—A large lake in about the middle of the North Island.

  • Te—The definite article singular.

  • Te ahi a Maui—See Te Iti a Maui.

  • Teawhakari—Ditch.

  • Teina—Younger brother.

  • Te Hohioi (Harpagonis Moorei)—The great eagle—now nearly extinct.

  • Te iti a Maui (literally the fish of Maui)—The Maori name for the north island of New Zealand. Maui, one of the heroes of antiquity, was supposed to have been out fishing with his brothers, and, with the jawbone of his grandfather as a hook, to have pulled that part of New Zealand out of the water.

  • Tena-Koe—Salutation; literally, “Here you are.”

  • Tiki—A greenstone ornament or amulet suspended round the neck, and worn on the breast.

  • Timanga—Storehouse raised on posts.

  • Tipau or Mapau—Tree similar to beech (Myrsine Urvilliæ).

  • Tiwha—Red, a name applied to Europeans.

  • Tohunga—Priest of the second-class.

  • Toi Toi.—This graceful plant is a tall kind of rush or grass, growing to a height of ten or twelve feet, and having at the extremity of its stalk a thick plume or tassel of soft, silky, almost downy fibre. A number of these tassels form a most luxurious couch. (Arundo conspieua.)

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  • Tokaro or Takaro—To wrestle.

  • Tongariro—A volcanic mountain in the North Island.

  • Totara—Pine; its timber is very durable. (Taxus.)

  • Toto Kuri.—The ear of a dog is slit, and the blood boiled; a remedy for spear, &c., wounds.

  • Totowake—Alternate parts or verses in a paddling song.

  • Tuahua—A post or stone stuck in the ground to which the priest prays for victory in war.

  • Tuakana—Elder brother.

  • Tuatara—An anomalous reptile peculiar to New Zealand, an object of terror and loathing to Maoris; a mythic dragon or enormous lizard. In one of the legends translated by Sir George Grey it is described thus:—“It lay there in size large as a monstrous whale, in shape like a hideous lizard; for in its huge head, its limbs, its tail, its scales, its tough skin, its sharp spines, yes, in all these it resembled a lizard.” The Tuatara was one of the factors of the god Tutewanawana.

  • Tui—A beautiful black bird, having two pendent white feathers on the throat, not unlike clerical bands; hence the name “Parson-bird,” given by settlers. (Prosthemadera, N.Z.)

  • Turi—The second person to reach New Zealand. He came in the canoe Aotea.

  • Tutewanawana—The father of reptiles, and god of war. See Tuatara.

  • Tutua—A poor or mean person.

  • Tutu—A fruit-bearing shrub; fruit hanging in bunches; the juice is sweet and harmless, but the seeds and leaves are highly poisonous to man and beast; it produces a black dye, also a red. A kind of wine or spirit is expressed from the fruit. (Coriaria sarmentosa.)

  • Tutungarau—War dance.

  • Uenguku—God of the rainbow; the chief god of many tribes. He dwells in the highest or eleventh heaven. The feathers of the hawk are sacred to him.

  • Umere—Song repeated in dragging or launching a canoe.

  • Wahine—Woman, female.

  • Waikato—The largest river in New Zealand.

  • Wairoa—Long Water. Wai means water or river; and roa, long.

  • Waitorcke—The otter, the seal.

  • Waraki—European.

  • Weka—The Maori hen, a rail as large as a pullet.

  • Whaea—Mother.

  • Whakaari—East Cape.

  • Whanako—One who takes that to which he has no right, a robber.

  • Wherè—A house, hut, or habitation.

  • Wharekura (literally, Red house)—The meeting place or temple of the tribe. It has its high priest or Ariki (the head of a tribe or family is an Ariki by birth), its tohungas or priests of the second rank, its adytum, &c.

  • Wharepuni—Sleeping house, guest house.

  • Whenua—Country, land or territory.

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