[Image of page ii]
TRADITIONS & SUPERSTITIONS
Morere, a Native Game.
LONGMAN, BROWN, GREEN, LONGMANS & ROBERTS,
[Maori with canoes and sail]
[Image of page iii]
TRADITIONS AND SUPERSTITIONS
ILLUSTRATIONS OF THEIR MANNERS AND CUSTOMS.
LONDON: LONGMAN, BROWN, GREEN, LONGMANS & ROBERTS,
[Image of page iv]
PRINTED BY WILLIAM BRENDON,
[Image of page v]
BUT little is generally known of the superstitious practices of the New Zealanders. The Missionaries, who, from their knowledge of the language, alone had it in their power for many years to converse freely with the native race, seem to have avoided all enquiries on such subjects. They came to teach a religion, and not to learn the principles of superstitions, which, however valuable in reference to matters of ethnological interest, they regarded as having for their author the great enemy of mankind.
Similar views have probably influenced Missionaries in all new countries; for precisely the same course was taken by the early Spanish Missionaries at the Philippine Islands, who, we are told, 1 did their utmost "to extirpate the original memorials
[Image of page vi]
of the natives, substituting religious compositions of their own, in the hope of supplanting the remains of national and pagan antiquity."
Several years' residence in New Zealand, passed for the most part in constant intercourse with its native inhabitants, either while travelling or while stationed at Maketu--a large village on the shore of the Bay of Plenty, where the influence of the Missionaries had made little or no impression-- gave the writer of the following pages opportunities of studying the manners of the Aborigines, such as they were before they became modified by intercourse with Europeans.
The first seven chapters give the result of the author's personal observations and inquiries touching the Traditions and Superstitions of the New Zealanders. The succeeding chapters are chiefly devoted to the consideration of points of the social condition and manners of this people, which could be learned only by residing among them on terms of intimacy.
1, CRESCENT PLACE, PLYMOUTH,
[PREFACE TO THE SECOND EDITION]
[Image of page vii]
PREFACE TO THE SECOND EDITION,
SINCE the publication of the first edition of "The Traditions and Superstitions of the New Zealanders," two works have appeared, more or less on the same subject; one written by Sir George Grey, late Governor-in-Chief of New Zealand, the other, quite recently, by the Rev. Richard Taylor.
When it is borne in mind that the matter contained in each of these works must have been collected independently, at different times, and in different parts of New Zealand, one cannot but be struck with the agreement in the historical traditions thus obtained from various sources. What more convincing proof can there be that the New Zealanders have preserved from remote ages oral records of their history, by committing them to
[Image of page viii]
memory, and so transmitting them, from generation to generation, down to the present time; and that these oral records contain the germs of truth?
In this edition a more complete account of the tribal divisions of the New Zealanders is given. The first and third chapters have been partly rewritten; and some additional matter introduced, which has been obtained in reply to inquiries made through friends who have for many years been resident in New Zealand, and who, from their knowledge of the Maori language, are competent to extract information from the most trustworthy sources.
1, CRESCENT PLACE, PLYMOUTH,
[Image of page ix]
Different classes of traditions. Origin of the New Zealanders from Hawaiki. Traditions relating to the canoes in which their ancestors came from that island. Evidence as to the age of the first colonization of New Zealand ............1
Natural divisions of the New Zealanders. Mottoes of tribes. New Zealand first colonized from the Sandwich or from the Navigator Islands. Long voyages made in canoes. Points of resemblance between the New Zealanders and the Sandwich Islanders. Papuans in connexion with Polynesians. Probable course of migration of the Polynesians from the continent of Asia. The New Zealanders a mixed race. Points of resemblance between the New Zealanders and the natives of the Navigator Islands....................31
Genealogy of mankind. Traditions referring to times prior to the voyage from Hawaiki. Fable of the shark and the Lizard. Legend of the brothers 'Maui' and the 'Great-daughter-of-night.' Legend of Tinirau's pet whale. Story of Wakatau, and the burning of the Tihi-o-manono. Traditions of the former existence of large Sauria in New Zealand. Adventures of a ' Taniwha.' Remarks on Traditions supposed to refer to the Deluge..............55
[Image of page x]
'Atua,' their nature and attributes--their place of abode-- mode of communicating their will to mortals. Nature of the belief of professing Christians generally. Faith of heathen natives in their superstitions. Narrative of the author's personal interview with certain 'Atua.' Reflections suggested by the adventure.....................81
Explanation of the words 'Tapu' and 'Noa.' Laws relating to things 'Tapu.' Instances of the influence of these laws on the social state of the New Zealanders. Meaning of the title 'Ariki.' Hair-cutting, a scene from domestic life. Ceremony of removing the restriction of 'Tapu'..........101
Causes of disease. 'Makutu' or witchcraft. Anecdotes showing the prevalence of this superstition. 'Matakite' or seer. Early reception of the Christian religion. Mode of treating disease.......................114
Charms and spells. Dreams and omens. Anecdotes showing faith in them. Divining sticks to determine the chances of war. Second sight. Regarding marriages. Ceremonies attending the birth of a child. Festival and theatrical exhibition, called 'Hahunga,' in honour of the dead. An account of the land of spirits, by a person who died and came to life again......................130
Education of youth--their amusements and games--skill at drafts. 'Maminga.' Songs used in pulling heavy spars, &c. by land. Songs for war canoes. Love ditty, called 'Haka.' War song and dance......................156
Selections from Songs, called 'Waiata,' with translations .......177
[Image of page xi]
Oratory. 'Whakatauki,' or Proverbs......................180
State of civilization of the New Zealanders when first discovered. Their method of cultivating the potato. Their knowledge of wild plants and insects. The flax-plant. Manufactures. Dying. Mechanical skill. Ingenious devices for catching birds. Giving and accepting presents merely a system of bartering. Anecdote relating to a present of some pigs. Knowledge of astronomy. Mode of dividing the year and day..................202
Divisions of the New Zealanders into 'Waka,' 'Iwi,' and ' Hapu.' Distinguishing names of tribes. Classes of society. Retributive justice. 'Utu' and 'Uto.' Laws and precedents. Anecdotes of the chief Nini. Modes of punishing crime and redressing grievances .................223
Arms. Pa, or fortifications. Modes of carrying on war. Te Rauparaha's wars of the Middle Island. War between natives and Europeans..................244
A New Zealander's will. Descent of land to males in preference to females. Titles to land--by inheritance--by conquest. Classification of lands according to titles of claimants. Propensity of natives to sell land to which they have bad titles. Observations on the purchase of land from natives...................271
[page xii is blank]