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Home arrow Human Interest arrow Local arrow Ko te Timatanga mai o Ngatiwai - History of Ngatiwai
Ko te Timatanga mai o Ngatiwai - History of Ngatiwai PDF Print
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Human Interest - Local
Written by E. G. Schwimmer / Morore Piripi, Te Ao Hou   
Thursday, 18 January 2007

Ngati Wai are a tribe scattered along the coastline from Whangaroa to Whangarei while some live at Great Barrier Island. They are often presumed to be a subtribe of Ngapuhi, but in fact their first ancestor is not Rahiri, the Ngapuhi ancestor, but Manaia who lived several generations earlier and to whom Rahiri is not related in a direct line.

The confusion over the ancestry of Ngati Wai arose because the members of the tribe today do generally trace their genealogies back to Rahiri. This is done because Ngapuhi are very much the larger and stronger tribe, adjacent to Ngati Wai territory and in constant contact at tribal meetings, where descent from Rahiri is still an important source of status.

It is possible for Ngati Wai to claim descent from Rahiri because two of Rahiri's wives—Ahuairi and Whakaruru—are descendants of Manaia and all Ngati Wai can trace themselves to Rahiri by either of these two marriages.

[Puhimoanariki] came from this place to another where he heard the tides thundering continuously so he called it Ngunguru, which means ‘Rumble’. Then he climbed onto a hill there where the kaka (pigeon) was snared. The word of snaring is ‘tutu’ which is the ancient Maori word for snaring. So the Maori called this place Tutukaka. (second instalment)

It is interesting that Ahuaiti and Whakaruru actually derive from a junior line of Ngati Wai and that a number of families can trace a senior line from Manaia which does not bring Rahiri into the picture at all. This senior line is highly regarded and serves as sufficient proof that Ngati Wai is in fact an iwi and not a hapu of Ngapuhi.

The history of Ngati Wai will be presented in four instalments, of which this first one is concerned with the life of Manaia. The material was spoken into a tape recorder by Morore Kaupeka Piripi, a chief of Ngati Wai who lives at Punaruku in the Whangaruru district.

First instalment
Second instalment
Third instalment
Fourth instalment

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Last Updated ( Thursday, 19 April 2007 )
 
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