1959 - Taylor, N. (ed.) Early Travellers in New Zealand [Selected Accounts--Some Augmented with Missing Sections] - CHARLES ABRAHAM. Journal of a Walk with the Bishop of New Zealand [including sections omitted] p 92-112

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  1959 - Taylor, N. (ed.) Early Travellers in New Zealand [Selected Accounts--Some Augmented with Missing Sections] - CHARLES ABRAHAM. Journal of a Walk with the Bishop of New Zealand [including sections omitted] p 92-112
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'IT seems too good and too happy to be even yet quite and entirely true. The warm co-operation and ready sympathy always at hand are so great a support to my dear Husband who has for the most part been little understood and less supported.... I look at Charles with admiring astonishment at his good tempered easy adaption of himself to his altered circumstances--three thousand a year is more than most people would have given up to share our crowded home and homely way of living.... Now too can George discuss his far reaching plans and great thoughts with some chance of their being understood and can also adorn his talk with witty sayings and illustrate them with much Greek and Latin with a prospect of it being taken in--a vast amount of apt quotations has been wasted on my unlearned ears these many years past.'

So wrote Sarah Selwyn in June 1852. 1 Charles was Charles John Abraham, close friend of Selwyn's Eton tutorship, who two years before had left his work at Eton and come to join Selwyn in New Zealand. Abraham was head of St. John's College at Auckland, then the chief school for European boys and the senior mission school as well as the training college for the clergy of the colony. He was also, from 1853, Archdeacon of Waitemata, then Bishop of Wellington from 1858 to 1870, when he followed Selwyn back to England and the see of Lichfield, as coadjutor-bishop and canon.

A month after his arrival Abraham had written: '... now the desire of my heart for nine years has been granted and it all seems so natural that I step from '41 to '50 and find the Bishop all that we have believed him to be.... his conceptions and schemes for the good of this Diocese and the Pacific Islands, his thoughts, words and deeds are more noble and exalting than I can hope to take in within the limit of one's lifetime.' 2 Selwyn, who believed, with his friends, that he was a man destined to do a great work, had to endure the loneliness of the large mind. The unstinted admiration and devotion of Abraham, who alone among his clergy shared his English background and his churchly inspiration, were undoubtedly great strength and solace to that strenuous priest. Abraham was not

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Walk from Auckland to Taranaki

usually his travelling companion, either in New Zealand or in Melanesia. His was a quieter role, pursuing what he called his old trade of Latin grammar in the sluggish colonial market. In March 1855 he wrote: 'The style of Colonial youth with whom I have had to deal lately is as you may suppose very different from Eton boys--yet I have enjoyed moulding them into something more gentlemanly and public-spirited than is the tone here--and they have responded pretty well.... Their minds are strangely undisciplined and abhorrent from all classical taste--so that the school has been downright drudgery without a single ray or gleam of light--no pleasant change from 4th form verses and Exercises to Horace and Homer and a neatly expressed Pentameter or a short and sweet copy of Lyrics. I find a great difference in sitting six hours a day in school with one class of the same boys and those very dull ones, compared with the hourly changes of classes and schoolrooms at Eton.... What your garden was (and I hope is) to you, the College farm is to me--I podder about and count my sheep, and quote Virgil to myself--and my talk is of bullocks and my thoughts are of fences--so that Sir G. Grey said with much naivete to my wife, "I think the Archdeacon is looking rather farmer-like".' 3

Four months after that letter was written, in July 1855, Selwyn returned from a visit to England and, at the Governor's request, made a hurried journey to New Plymouth. Two Maori parties, disputing the sale of some land, were on the verge of fighting, and the people in nearby New Plymouth, thoroughly alarmed, had demanded the protection of soldiers. The Governor, while sending the soldiers, feared their presence would excite the Maoris still more, and wanted the bishop to pacify them. It was hard travelling for Selwyn, who had been away from New Zealand for over eighteen months and had rather lost his bush legs; while Abraham had never had any. With them went Rota Waitoa, the first Maori priest, ordained in 1853, the faithful companion of Selwyn's journeyings since 1842. In October Abraham wrote: 'He took me down to Taranaki overland--having been sent there by the Government who were afraid of the English settlers being involved in a native war that was going on there--I dare say you will see my Journal if you care to do so giving a full account of the walk there--and the Bishop's work when he arrived. He was successful in getting the natives to retire to their own homes and plant their Potatoes, and so give time for negociations which may or may not end like the Vienna conferences in

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nothing.... ' 4 His scepticism was justified, for the strife dragged on spasmodically till in December 1856, after some sixty Maoris had been killed and more wounded, a truce was arranged. And trouble flared up once more, with further murders and reprisals, in February 1858.

This journal was published in London in 1856 by the Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge, in its periodical Missions to the Heathen, No. xxxi, from which it is reprinted here, with the peacemaking portion omitted. Several misprinted words have been corrected without note, and where Abraham used a dash plus a comma one or other has been deleted; also, his capitals--for School, Teacher, Service, and so on--have been cut down.

Journal of a Walk with the Bishop of New Zealand from Auckland to Taranaki in August 1855

July 31st. The Bishop arrived at the College in the afternoon, and at 5 o'clock set out for Papakura. The party further consisted of Rota Waitoa, the Bishop's trusty companion in all his former walking Visitations; and two Maori men who had been working on the College farm of late. It is quite delightful to see how perfectly unchanged Rota is in the simplicity of his character, notwithstanding his raised position to be a Deacon in the Church. He carried a portion of my burden all the way to Taranaki, after the first day or two, when he saw it was too much for me; and worked away much more readily and cheerfully than our paid lads, at striking the tent, cooking, &c.; in short, the Bishop said he was just as useful to him in these respects (and much more so in others), as when he took him twelve years ago on his first overland walk. My pikau (or burden) weighed 30 lbs.; and very hard work did I find it, that first night, ploughing through mud up to our knees, from Panmure 5 to Papakura. The Bishop exchanged with me occasionally, and so helped

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Walk from Auckland to Taranaki

me on; for his weighed only 15 lbs. or so. I began to fear that I should be a drag upon him, as we were bound to Taranaki on urgent business. The Governor 6 had requested the Bishop to go down there, to try and arrange matters between the two contending parties of natives, who had begun firing at one another within five miles of the town of New Plymouth; and the English were afraid that if the party they favoured was beaten, they would take refuge in the town, and so involve the settlers in the quarrel. They had, consequently, made urgent applications for troops to be sent to keep the peace, and the soldiers were to be there in a fortnight or so. But as the arrival of soldiers might be misunderstood by the natives, the Government was anxious that the Bishop should go down, and try to make peace between them; and explain that the soldiers were not coming to interfere in their quarrel, but to protect the English town from being involved in it. Therefore, we were anxious to be there before the ship arrived with the troops; and, as the Bishop had been sent down there ten years ago, with Rota, on exactly the same errand, and had accomplished the journey in seven days, by forced marches of thirty miles a day, I felt pretty sure that if that was to be the order of march this time, I should knock off in a couple of days. However, as we went on we found, by the end of the third day, that a year's stay in England, with railway travelling and seven months' sea voyaging, had beaten the Bishop off his walking legs; and Rota was much fatter and less active than in the year '45; so that when Rota relieved me of 15 lbs. of my pikau, I was equal to the pace, and was not likely to detain them. Besides, on that former occasion they had no companions to carry the food, &c.; whereas now our two lads were knocked up the two first days, being quite unused to the work.

Well, to go back to our first afternoon, we started in the rain, and there was no moon; so we scrambled on as we best could, through the swamp between Panmure and Otahuhu. 7 There we overtook the mail, 8 who wished to go in company with us as far as Kawhia. We had not got out of Otahuhu, when we heard a cry behind us that Mr. Ashwell9 was there in a house, having ridden down from his station expressly to see the Bishop, and having thus almost missed

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him. We stuck in the mud, waiting for him to overtake us, and held a Synod of Clergy there, drenched with rain. It was most amusing to see, or rather to hear him--for it was pitch-dark--continually jumping off his horse into the swamp, and trying to persuade the Bishop or me to ride. He seemed so shocked to be riding aloft, while his Diocesan was up to his knees.

We got to Papakura by 9 o'clock that night, having walked about thirteen miles from College. There is a beautiful place for an encampment there--wood and water in abundance, and we soon pitched our tent, and made ourselves comfortable, in spite of rain.

Aug. 1st. Up early. Breakfasted and started off for Waiuku. 10 This is a roundabout way of getting there. We might have crossed from Onehunga 11 in twelve hours; but I fancy the Bishop took the land route to spare me the sea-sickness. After leaving Runciman's farm at Opaheke, it is a very uninteresting country. We took the surveyor's line for a path, and found the tide up, which stopped our progress over a creek. The Bishop found a ford. There are several rapid streams to cross, very deep, but not wide. We generally got over them by fallen trees; but as these trees are very narrow, and our wet shoes very slippery, it is a chance if you get over without a ducking. The Bishop fell in over head and ears at once. The only remarks he made, was one of anxiety for his watch and his pedometer; the other, when he found them uninjured and kept dry in his waterproof girdle, was, that he now understood the full meaning of the poet's language about 'purling 12 brooks'. We did not reach Waiuku that day; stopped at Whanakahu, all of us foot-sore and weary. The mail left us.

Aug. 2nd. Started early for the Awaroa, 13 and found a very large party of natives encamped there, at the portage, with supplies of wheat. There could not have been less than 200 people, and we could see upwards of thirty canoes. The Waiuku carts were carrying off the produce, to be embarked for the Auckland market. Of course, we had much talk with all these people. They were very hearty in welcoming back the Bishop, and asked infinite questions about

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England and the Queen. They were chiefly from Rangiawhia, 14 (the people who sent the Queen the present of flour some years ago, the first grain that has been grown and ground by the Maories; and to whom she sent a present of the picture, which is highly valued by them) and were guided across the river in a war-canoe. At last, we got off on our walk, and were guided across a very deep and ugly swamp, a quarter of a mile wide, on fallen trees, under water, so that you had to feel with your stick before you for your footing. Luckily, I had hobnails in my boots, and so clung to the slippery boards; but the Bishop had none, and he had some very narrow escapes. The natives of the place very kindly eased me of my pikau, or else I should have tumbled in. We then had a walk on the beach for ten miles to Maraetai, Mr. Maunsell's old station at Waikato heads. We hailed a canoe; and when it arrived with three people in it, one man named Tiopira, and most undeserving of the name (Theophilus), wanted to charge 16s. for taking us over. We refused, and stepped back on shore. The other two remonstrated with the fellow, and accordingly he reduced his charges to whatever we chose to give him. The native teacher and chief on the other shore was very indignant at the Bishop's being so used, and promised to make a tariff; and, moreover, he made us a present of food. This is a fair instance of the character of the people, perhaps. Many persons abuse the whole race as covetous, because they meet with such impostors as this Tiopira; but they forget that two out of the three were the very reverse, and that the leading men repudiate such conduct. An Englishman here said to the Bishop the other day, 'I find your Lordship's words in one of your Journals fully verified, where you say that the Maories are the most covetous people you ever met with.' To which the Bishop added, 'But you have only quoted half my sentence, for I said further, "except the English".'

We got to Mr. Maunsell's empty house at 9 o'clock at night, very tired; the sand-walking being a very fatiguing termination of our day's work. We were right glad, therefore, to have no tent to pitch, and to find wood and water at hand. The Bishop had established half-a-dozen frightful 'raws' on his soles and heels, and was besides very sick and unwell. Rota and I did what we could to make him comfortable; and we agreed to give ourselves a thorough rest that night, so that we might enjoy Sunday at one of our own villages

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before we got among the Wesleyans, who occupy all the territory between Waikato and Taranaki.

Aug. 3d. We did not start till 10 o'clock in the morning. The Bishop better, and cheering up as we reached the top of the first hill, and saw our destination before us, 100 miles off--the snow pyramid of Mount Egmont, overhanging Taranaki, and rising 8,000 feet above the sea, greeted our eyes, sparkling in the sun, and seemed to lighten the hearts of our Maori lads, when, for the first time, they saw the glorious monarch of New Zealand mountains. It reminded me very much of my first impressions on seeing Mont Blanc, twenty years ago, from Geneva. Not that this has any avalanches for his sceptre; but at this time of year the snow comes two-thirds of the way down his sides, and the 'eternal sunshine settles on his head', as seen in the distance; while the necklace of clouds float[s] half-way, and when you are on the spot very often shut[s] out the view. The walk from this point to Taranaki consisted of continual changes from ridge-paths and table-land to woods; up and down, high and low, sandy beach, rocky beach, cliffs and rivers, so that every muscle was alternately called into action, and no one set overwrought; besides, the successive varieties freshened the spirits. I cannot think of any place but the coast of Devon, north and south, that could afford such beautiful and grand scenery for so many days continuously. We were never more than a couple of miles from the coast. We were then walking for an hour, perhaps, on the beach; then inland, on an undercliff, like the Isle of Wight; then up the side of a high hill, covered with forest trees of every variety of colour and shape, starred with luxuriant fern trees on the slopes. Of course, the ascent involved a descent through the forest on the other side; and though this is difficult walking, from the slippery paths and the tanglement of the roots and supplejack, yet it changes the muscles, and helps you to get over the ground pretty quick. Then we come down into a rich valley or glade, with a fresh stream rattling over the stones to the sea, or else deep enough to make you wade up to your waist. The bath refreshes you for another hour's walk on the beach, and then comes the tug of war. After dinner, a stray goat-path along the side of the cliff, the earth crumbling beneath every step, and your nails worn out with digging stand punkts 15 different from Neander's, and your hands cut to pieces by the toe-toe, which

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Walk from Auckland to Taranaki

you rashly laid hold of to save yourself from falling. Luckily, there are no dinner-parties on the road, or at the end of your journey, else your hands would be hardly presentable, what with toe-toe and rocks. These last form the colophon to the day's varieties. I did not care for the slippery cliffs, for I had nobnail shoes, as I said before. But when we came to the rocky beach, and the tide was coming in, and we had to leap from stone to stone, and climb the rocks as best we could, the Bishop was in his element; springing from one to another like a schoolboy; laughing and joking, scrambling and clinging on, like a sailor to a mast; while my nobnails were slipping off every stone, and my hands streaming with blood from every crag I had to seize hold of. However, his turn for the struggle had come, up the muddy, clayey, or crumbling cliffs, when his shoes were like glass, and his poor wrung heels and soles were gnawed half-an-inch deep with holes. Nothing, however, could dam up the vein of humour and wit with which all this was met; and he assured me that he did not suffer half so much as I thought he did; and that he now believed what post-boys in England used to say of horses with raws, that they would not feel them when they got hot, and that he wasted a good deal of unnecessary compassion upon them. 'Non si male nunc et olim sic erit', 16 was my motto; but he would not allow it was male at all. His keen sense of the beauty of nature, his painter's eye for a sketch, and thorough enjoyment of the beautiful weather we had had since the first day, and his unceasing flow of quotations from Homer, Milton, and Horace, made the walk comparatively light to me. As to himself, in spite of his heels, he always asserted himself 'Persarum rege beatiorem', 17 and pitied the unhappy folk that rode in railway-carriages. But notwithstanding his making the best of everything, he never incurred himself, or put us in the way of, unnecessary danger. And so, on this evening, when about 4 o'clock, or an hour before sunset, Rota led us up a winding precipice where no path was visible, and the landslips had made all uncertain, and he saw there was every chance of our being benighted on this precipice, and having to pass the cold winter's night on our hind-legs, or else break our necks in the attempt to cross; he marched us back to Waikato River, and there we slept.

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Aug. 4th. We had the usual alternations of ridge-paths and sandy beach to Pukerewa. The people came out to greet us, and made us presents of potatoes. We carried off the population with us to Rangikahu, the last station of any Church Missionary towards Taranaki; so we wished to spend our Sunday there. We found ourselves, accordingly, arrived at our destination by early afternoon.

Such a beautiful spot for a regular native congregation to take root, if they could be persuaded to make a right use of their position. It is an amphitheatre intersected by a stream, which comes down from the distant hills; and would carry all their produce in canoes to the sea, a mile off; and small vessels could come in near enough to take off their produce to Manakau, for the Auckland market. On one side--where the few people now live, and where we encamped--it is all fern land, and the lower portions on both sides [of] the river would grow beautiful crops of wheat and potatoes; while the upper portions, near the sea, would make excellent sheep runs. Then, on the opposite side, there is a forest affording an inexhaustible supply of wood, and bush range for cattle. The Bishop pointed out to the people all their advantages, and urged them to come and live together in closer connexion; so that they might the more easily support themselves, and have the advantages of pastoral visitation more frequently, besides those of education. However, they are intent solely on keeping pigs, which run almost wild in the bush; and give no thought or trouble, besides that of hunting them up with dogs, twice a year, when they wish to drive them 100 miles to market in Auckland. The Bishop always points out to them the different moral effect of the swineherd's and the shepherd's and tiller's mode of life; and illustrated it very happily from the language of Scripture, where all we read of the former is, that after the miracle of the devils entering the herd of swine, the Gadarenes besought him to depart out of their coasts; and the Prodigal Son, who had left his father's home, went to feed swine, and would fain have eaten the husks that the swine left; while, on the other hand, every most tender and winning name and work of Christ, is connected with the life of the shepherd, and the tiller of the earth.

We found a state of things at Rangikahu sadly illustrating some of his words; for the Chapel, by the side of which we pitched our tent, was shamefully neglected and uncared for, and in fact had become a pigsty. The Bishop set himself and us to work to clean it out, and all the churchyard around it; and Rota effected quite a

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metamorphosis of it by strewing it with fresh fern, to the astonishment of the native teacher and his people. After this work was done, we set off to fetch firewood, &c., for our two days' use. I was amused at seeing every evening, immediately on our arrival at our sleeping place, how exactly the Judge's 18 remark was fulfilled about the Bishop unconsciously resembling Paul at Melita, who evidently had gone to fetch wood directly he landed, and from it shook off the viper into the fire.

Aug. 5th. We had a good attendance at all the services. At the early morning we had the Litany; then, at 10, the rest of the morning service. The Bishop preached on the Gospel of the day--the Parable of the Bad Steward--and applied it with great force to the state of things in the island generally; especially reminding them of their own former zeal and attention to religion, when he was there some years back, as contrasted with their present slackness in all matters of religion; and their activity in acquiring money, yet at the least possible cost of care and industry; all this, of course, based on the verse about 'the children of this world being in their generation wiser than the children of light'. But talking with the people about this sad change that has come over them, we got the invariable answer, 'E tika ana', 'It is true what you say'; which at first used to please me to find that they so readily acknowledged what was wrong in themselves, and what would be the right thing. But since I see that this goes no further than words, and does not the least imply that they intend or wish to remedy their faults, I fear the acknowledgement falls under the head of that son's answer, who said, 'I go, Sir', and went not; and perhaps it would be more hopeful if they did not so easily acquiesce in what you say, but afterwards 'repented and went'. At school, in the afternoon, the Bishop took the children; Rota, the non-readers; and I, the readers. They were all more than usually ignorant; but when the Bishop catechised all on his sermon, they one and all showed how thoroughly they had caught the gist of the matter. In the evening I preached on the Epistle for the day. Altogether we spent a very quiet and peaceful day, and were refreshed for the week's walk that awaited us.

Aug. 6th. We crossed over the ridge-paths to the beach, which we called Hardbake--it looked so like that well-known confection--and reached Whangaroa 19 by noon. There we found one of our

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College scholars of yore, Wiclif by name; he was looking as pleasant and amiable as ever, and did not seem to have fallen back at all into Ramya 20 Maori ways. He and his friends were exceedingly hospitable to us; and after having given us a good dinner on potatoes and shellfish, they launched their canoe, and paddled us five miles up the river to our road. The old chief came down to accompany us, dressed in a large military cloak, given him by Governor Wynyard, and a white hat, holding in his hand his sceptre, or insignia of chieftainship--the meri 21 a large flat piece of green stone, handed down, like Agamemnon's of old, from generation to generation. He was delighted at the Bishop's salutation, 'Haere mai, Kawana', 'Come hither, Governor of Whangaroa'; thus recognising in him a sort of English office, as well as his native chieftainship. For, strange to say, this old chief is most anxious to sell parts of his land to the English, and to get them to settle amongst his people, and become one with them; and he actually took us all the way in his canoe, begging the Bishop to write down certain words he had used about the two races dove-tailing into one another like, 22 that he might show them to his own people and the neighbouring chiefs that oppose him. I say, strange to say; for this was no other than the notorious old Kiwi, who had written to the Attorney-General 23 six months before, to threaten he would fling over the cliff any Englishman that passed his way, unless the Englishman who killed the native (one of his tribe) on Christmas-day last, was hung. 24 However, the old man was ashamed of his letter before the day of the trial, and came to the judge to make a sort of apology, and offered to accompany the judge on the day of trial to court, which of course the judge declined. The old man afterwards told the judge that he was quite satisfied with the trial by jury, in all points but one; and that was that he had expected to see gentlemen and educated men on the jury, instead of an Iwi to-carto (a set of men that drove carts). However, I should say that no great reliance can ever be placed on these wayward creatures holding to any notions they have taken up, or adhering to their peaceable intentions; for this same old gentleman, Te Kiwi, on the same day after the trial, came into Major Nugent's 25 house as wild as

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Walk from Auckland to Taranaki

a tiger, and with evident intention of mischief. He held his meri behind his back, and danced about the room in a towering rage, threatening vengeance. Major Nugent kept his eye fixed on him, and got a table or chair or something always between him and the chief, till at last another native came into the room in a state of great excitement, and forced old Kiwi out. Major Nugent thoroughly understands the people, and deals with them as a parent would deal with a wayward, wilful child. Instead of making a fuss about old Kiwi's antics, he persuaded him that no man of rank ought to go about without shoes and stockings; accordingly he got the old man in the stocks by inducing him to wear a pair of tight boots, which made him limp about instead of being able to dance and flourish his tomahawk round men's heads. He has quite succeeded in subduing the dangerous activity of the old man. Major Nugent has learned these sensible lessons of managing the Maories, as a mother of a family would manage her troublesome fractious children, from Sir George Grey, to whom he was private secretary for some time, and who always gained his objects with the native chiefs by some such simple process of 'nursery' government; as, for instance, when he got Rangihaeata 26 to make a road by giving him a gig--the immediate consequence of which was that the old warrior set all his slaves and free people to work at making a road, on which he could drive his new toy.

We found some English settlers in the open spaces, formerly cleared by natives, as we walked through the forest: one family of the name of McArthur, another Phillips from Bath, another Day. All seemed pleased with the land, which, though small in quantity, was very good in quality. We stopped half-an-hour after sunset at one of these 'saltus', 27 called Mata, where Rota and our lads had proceeded; and pitched our tent in a beautiful spot, where I expect to see, in five years' time, a fair population, and perhaps a church.

Aug. 7th. Walked off towards Aotea harbour; passed through a village of Wesleyan natives, called Makaka, very kind and hospitable. They had had a marriage the day before, and we came in for

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the remains of the feast. Certainly, we found no difference of treatment from these people all the way down; their hospitality perhaps exceeded what we met with from our own, till we came to Taranaki; and here the Wesleyans have been very zealously endeavouring to make out that Katatore and his party are all Churchmen and bad people, while Adam Clarke and his Te Ninia Pa are all good Wesleyans. 28 Unluckily for this argument, Katatore's baptized name is Waitere, the name of the leading Wesleyan Missionary in these parts, Mr. Whitely. We got down to the entrance of the Aotea harbour, where the canoes generally cross, but the wind was so high, and the waves so rough, that no one would venture to come and fetch us across; so in vain we lighted fires and made signals--we lost the whole day, and no one came till 7 o'clock at night, when the wind lulled. This loss of a day was a serious one; not only for itself, but because it threw us out of the low tide sand-walking all the rest of the week.

Aug. 8th. Walked off early to Kawhia, nearly seven miles, intending to be there to breakfast with Mr. Mitford, the Custom-house officer. Finding him in small quarters, and his wife not well, the Bishop only stayed with him, though he was very pressing to me. I went with Rota and our lads to the inn, where we were most hospitably treated by Mr. Charlton's married daughter, who refused all payment for our hearty breakfast. We bought fresh provisions for our journey, and she gratuitously added a large supply of dough she had made up, which fed us for the rest of the week.

At Kawhia we found great excitement, in consequence of a letter from Mr. Turton, the Wesleyan missionary at Taranaki, summoning them to the number of 400, to come with guns and help 'the friendly natives', as he chooses to call Adam Clarke's party. These Kawhia people had the good sense to say that they would not stir at the bidding of a tangatoa noa, 29 who had no business to interfere in such a point; but if the Governor sent for them, they would come. Curiously enough, another Wesleyan catechist, the schoolmaster there, told us that it was a most dangerous experiment sending for

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these natives at all, as it was by no means certain what side they would take when they got there.

A couple of Englishmen, named Westmacott and Peter, took us in Mr. Mitford's boat across Kawhia harbour, five miles to Maiha. Thence we passed by the tomb of the two great chiefs, Pihopa and Te Manihere, that have lately died, who would have interfered with effect to settle this unhappy quarrel. 'Atawhaitia te Pakeha,' 'Be kind to the English', was the burden of all their talk in former days. I should have said that at Kawhia, near Mr. Mitford's house, the natives point out the spot where the first native canoe (the Tainui) from Hawaiki, landed 500 years ago. There is a rock, something like a canoe, on the beach, which the Maories believe to be that identical Tainui petrified. A full account of this canoe and her voyage is given in Dr. Shortland's interesting second volume On the Manners of the New Zealanders. 30

The view from the mountain top between 31 Pihopa's tomb, is perhaps the grandest I have seen in New Zealand. Looking northwards, you have Kawhia harbour, surrounded with richly-wooded hills, Whangaroa promontory, and the sea; and a distant view reaching to Manakau and Auckland. To the south, the two pretty landlocked lakes of Taharoa lying below us, in the midst of the wooded hills; just beyond them, the great hill called Mocatoa, 32 and Tapiri Moko cliff; and Taranaki's snowy top in the far distance, out to seaward. I wished for my wife's pencil. The Bishop could have sketched these grand views, but he never has used his opportunities for drawing like his brother Bishop of Tasmania, not for lack of interest and pleasure in it, but for lack of time; because generally when he is travelling through the country, wherever he stops, he has to talk to the natives, instead of indulging his own keen taste for the beauties of nature.

After some indifferent beach-walking, we reached Hari-hari, and found the place empty, but plenty of potatoes stored up on the top of the house, which we took the liberty of helping ourselves to, and next day met the owner, to whom we acknowledged our debt. It is not unusual to help yourself in this way, and write up on the door that you have done so, and hang up a shilling or so in payment.

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Aug. 9th. This was the hardest day's work we had all along, and most thankful were we that the fine weather lasted up to the close of this day; as, if the rain that fell this night had caught us on Thursday, the route would have been almost dangerous, and perhaps not passable. It began with an ascent up a place called Hapuku, where no path was visible; a landslip having left the cliff almost destitute of shrub and clothing. Consequently, we had to dig our way with our hands, and feet, and sticks, along a crumbling slippery goat's path. The Bishop was pioneer, and did the hard work, as usual; and I certainly could not help amusing myself with the thought of some of the good people in England, who have complained of the Bishop not visiting the West Coast oftener, trying the experiment of a Visitation this way. I pictured to myself the complainants holding on by their hands and nails to this crumbling crag, 500 feet overhanging the sea; and when they slipped, catching hold of the grass which cuts your hand like a knife. The fact is, however, that the Bishop has been this route three times in twelve years, and has visited the West Coast by sea on six other occasions. When we complained to one of the old chiefs about this road, he conceived he had given a sufficient reason why he should not try to improve it, by saying that God made the earth, and we must take it as we find it: whereto the Bishop replied that 'God made the potatoes grow, but he doubted whether the old gentleman ate them in their raw state'. The fact is, there might be a beautiful road made, at no very great expense, the whole way to Taranaki, by just skirting round the hills and keeping inland a little. After the slippery ascent of Hapuku, we had to mount Mocatoa by a ridge-path. We were an hour and a half going the one and a half mile of Hapuku, and an hour going up Mocatoa, according to the Bishop's new pedometer. We have tested the instrument now in many ways, and found it pretty correct. The Bishop will probably walk back from Wellington to Auckland before Easter, and test his former measurements of the East Coast, and then publish a full and corrected itinerary in the almanack. The present path up Mocatoa is on a ridge overlooking the old precipitous goat's path of Tapirimoko. It is a frightful-looking place; and I cannot conceive how people used it so long.

The place is like the inside of a brown cup, with a small ledge just inside the rim. We got to Nukukakiri 33 that night, and pitched our

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tent inside a half-finished house. The rain came on at night, loosened the earth in which the tent-pegs were fixed, and brought it about our ears, in the middle of the night, and swamped us. The Bishop assured me that nothing gave you a better night's rest than having been waked up in the middle; an Irish, yet not altogether unfounded view of the matter, as I certainly did sleep sounder afterwards. I find I am not a good hand at sleeping on the hard ground, and seldom got more than four hours sleep at night; though, for lack of candles, we went to our blanket-bags at seven or eight o'clock at night. The great treat was, when you could pitch a tent on the sand, and could dig out a little hole for your hip to lie in. But I was mainly kept awake by cold feet. However, as one has not much time for reflection by day, when walking along a bush path, and keeping your eyes and thoughts intent upon it, lest you break your shins or neck by carelessness, it is no unpleasant thing to lie awake at night, and review the day's work, with the past, present, and future. The Bishop used to laugh at me for saying I had been awake at night; and seemed to think it was like what we charge our wives with at Taurarua, 34 when a book is being read out, and they drop off, and yet never allow it.

We were kindly received by the people of Nuhukahari. Rota has been this way six times; and is so heartily welcomed by the people, that he is sure to attract all kinds of presents of food, even if the Bishop were not with us.

Aug. 10th. One of the native teachers, a relative of Rota's, accompanied us on the road, and helped us up the rope-ladder, which is rather a formidable affair, as it consists merely of flax leaves tied together; and you have to pull yourself up a sheer precipice of rock by it, which, as I said before, my hobnail boots rendered more difficult. This man carried our knapsacks for us up the rock, so that an active man would not make much of it. At Waikawau 35 --the next village--we saw a specimen of an old Maori chief of the best style, a perfect gentleman by nature; very handsome features; quite grey hair. He made us a present of potatoes, and escorted us to the boundary of his estate. The adjoining portion he had sold to the Government; and as he stood under a large puriri tree, which was eighteen feet in circumference, and pointed it out as the border mark of his land, I wished I could have sketched him and his tree, each so noble

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of the kind. We could not get far that afternoon, as we reached Kaiawhi-point too late for the low-tide passage. This is a precipitous rock running out into the sea, and can only be rounded at low water by jumping from stone to stone. Accordingly, we had to wait on the north side till twelve o'clock the next day before we could start.

Aug. 11th. When the tide was half out, we attempted the passage, but were foiled. Papaki tonu 36 is the expressive onomato-poeia to describe a place where the sea beats against a rock, and leaves no space: (it is pronounced like pop-pok-i;) and great would have been Johnny's 37 delight to have seen his papa chasing and playing hide-and-seek with the waves, as he attempted to jump to the first stone, and had to run for it again and again. At last he reached the first block, and there found a reservoir of kupus, 38 which, though pronounced like cuckoos, are not birds, but shell-fish. Immediately that he had discovered this, he gave notice to the Maories, who are so fond of the food, that they made an attempt to reach the place, and got a good ducking thereby. Having no such appetite, and standing in fear of my hobnails, I bided my time. It took us an hour or more to accomplish the half-mile round the point, and the whole process may be described by the old game of 'Hop, step, and a jump'. I suffered severely from scrambling up the rocks, made doubly rough by the small shell-fish which cut my fingers to pieces: but there was no danger, and only the fear of getting thoroughly soused; so that the whole scene was more like a parcel of boys out larking, than a Bishop, Priest, and Deacon on a Visitation. We rounded the point at three-quarters tide, but it must be remembered that they were neap-tides; and probably we could not have done so had it been the spring-tide.

On reaching the southern side we came in sight of a fine headland, like a judge with his full cauliflower wig on. A man put us across the Awakerio 39 River, and we got to Mokau by 4 o'clock. Mr. Schnakenberg, the Wesleyan German missionary, was away at Taranaki. His English wife, a genuine simple woman, cried at seeing the Bishop again, and begged hard for a good chat about England, and wanted to be hospitable to us; but we had been so long on the road that we could not afford to lose an hour or two; and, besides, we were rather

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shy of taxing the old lady to receive so many for two nights and a day, as the morrow was Sunday. She sent us across the Mokau River in her canoe; and we had to run hard to get round the southern head of the river, as the tide was rushing in so fast. We got to a place called Waiki for Sunday.

Aug. 12th. As the place belonged entirely to Wesleyans and Roman Catholics, we contented ourselves with our service from the Prayer-book, which they all attended; and, instead of a sermon, the Bishop catechised the children on the Creed. They fed us, while we stayed, on potatoes; and we nursed a crying baby, and fed it with arrowroot, which the poor little thing relished, and found less griping than its mother's tobacco milk. 40 We left her a supply of arrowroot and sugar, and taught her how to make it.

Aug. 13th, Monday. Starting early, we at length came among our people again at Wai-iti; where the Ngatiawa tribe begin northwards, 41 reaching as they do, all along the coast, with intervals, to Wellington, and over to Nelson, and as far off as the Chatham Isles on the east. The people of Wai-iti immediately recognised the Bishop's shovel-hat, and greeted him warmly. There was nothing remarkable about our walk this day.

From Mokau to Taranaki it is all flat plain sailing, except one spot, called Pari-ninihi (Slanting Cliffs), of white chalk-looking clay. This had been the bugbear of the march. We heard continually of the rope descent, 150 feet perpendicular, and I was prepared for my hands being sacrificed, in going down the rope like a sailor, of which the Bishop, being a skipper, thought little. Like most other apprehended dangers, it turned out a molehill instead of a mountain. A landslip had occurred, and the descent by rope was only twenty feet, and not more difficult than going down the side of a man-of-war into a boat.

Aug. 14th. The natives have so neglected their inland paths, that two of the Wai-iti men who undertook to escort us toward Waitera 42 by the path inland instead of the beach (as it was high-water), altogether lost their way, and dragged us through high fern bush for an hour or two, till at length we reached Onacri. 43 As all the male inhabitants of the Wesleyan villages above Mokau had gone off to

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Taranaki, to aid Arama Karaka, so the men of these parts had gone to aid Katatore and William King. The former belonged to the Ngatimaniapoto tribe, and these to the Ngatiawa. From Oneiro 44 and other places, men accompanied us to Waitera, carrying guns, and we began to feel ourselves in the midst of war. We walked along the beach to Tanawha Cape; 45 which I suppose was worshipped in former days as a god, that being the name of their Nereus, Neptune, or Proteus. It grew dark as we approached Waitera; we saw lights in the distance, and heard loud shouts, which we supposed indicated a military camp, with all its lawlessness and excitement. What was our surprise, then, at finding, when we reached the river, and were carried across in our English cargo boat, that so far from there being any war camp, or any hostility to the English on W. King's part (of which he is accused), that he and all his men had gone out to tow off an English schooner which had got aground at the mouth of the river, and which they were preparing to haul out when the flood-tide came up. Accordingly we saw only one or two men that night, who gave us board and lodging in the pa. I had never been inside a regular pa before, and next morning was struck with its character. Having a high stockade of forest timbers all round, and standing on two or three acres of ground, it is broken up within into small squares, where separate families reside; all strongly fenced and connected by narrow passages, well adapted for defence. Once in the middle, it is like a labyrinth to find the way out, or from one house to another. These men succeeded in getting off the schooner, which was full of potatoes, which a trader had bought of the Maories for 1,000 l.

Aug. 15th. Next morning, before we were up and out of our bags (not beds), two natives put their heads in at the tent-door, and tena koe'd 46 the Bishop. One was a fine old gentleman, with a kindly face and no guile in it. The other, younger, but perhaps sixty years of age, with a broad open, handsome face, somewhat bloated, perhaps, yet not at all unpleasant. They came in, and sat talking for an hour, while we shaved and dressed and ate our breakfast with them. When they went away, I asked who they were, and the Bishop said the first was an old chief of the tribe he had known long ago at Nelson, and the younger of the two was the notorious and much-abused William King, 47 the man who first saved the Government under Sir George

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Grey in 1844, by driving old Rangihaeata out of the country; and then took a decided line against the Governor, who tried to prevent his coming up here to Taranaki, to settle in the inheritance of his forefathers, whence he had been driven by the Waikatos twenty-five years ago, but was now allowed to return in peace to the unoccupied land, when Sir George Grey threatened to prevent his returning, by planting guns at his canoes. He still persevered, and some of his people brandished their tomahawks about the Governor's head; and come they did, in spite of the threats and guns, and most determined are they to retain their lands, and prevent the English getting hold of any; hinc illae lacrymae. Hence all this disturbance we have come to try and settle. Rawiri and his party wanted to sell the disputed land to the English; Katatore shot him down in cool blood, unarmed.

After breakfast, we all went to have Service, and about 200 people assembled in the open air.... 48


for I am sorry to say they have fallen away so far from all their good habits at Waikanae, that instead of having a Church capable of holding 500 people, and attending it daily for Service and school, they have neither Church Service nor school. However, they came in good force to Service this morning; and the Bishop preached a short sermon on some words from the Lesson for the day, in which he reminded them of the happy days they spent at Waikanae of old,--when they and their children met daily for worship and school,--when they and their Clergymen were like children under the eye of a good Father. Then he spoke of the change,--the absolute neglect of all external religion, and the absence of all signs of inward faith; their wars, and rumours of wars, their drinking habits and covetousness. It was a touching scene. The Bishop spoke more energetically and earnestly than ever, and his heart is deeply attached to this people, to whom he ministered personally in [29/30] former days, when Archdeacon Hadfield was ill, and whom he has since seen spread over half the several islands of New Zealand--and all so fallen from their first love! I do hope that if he ordains Levi, their native teacher in former days, who has since been under Mr. Hadfield's and Mr. Kissling's eye, and lately preparing for ordination under the Bishop himself--this excellent man may raise again their tabernacle, and be enabled to revive the dead bones to something like their former state.

We had a conference after Church, and heard their account of their part in this quarrel between Katatoro and Arama Karaka; whose Pas are three or four miles off, between Waitera and Taranaki. W. King said that he did not wish to take a part in it, but Arama Karaka had lately come on some disputed ground nearer Waitera, and he began to be afraid lest he should gradually draw nearer to William King's land at Waitera, and sell it to the English. Proximus ardet Ucalegon was his principle of action. The English here accuse him of duplicity, because he promised the Governor to take no part in it; but things have altered since then, and he found his road tapu-ed by Arama Karaka, and his people prevented from coming into market. If Arana Karaka would retire from Te Ninia (this new fighting Pa), he would retire. All this talk being ended, we marched off with a dozen of them, to Katatore's Pa, Kaipahopaho. It was certainly an exciting scene to see the men dressed like Sir Walter Scott's Highland chiefs, in tartan kilts, with mauds gracefully [30/31] tied across the shoulder; a band of crepe and oilskin, with a feather in it, round the temples, and guns in their hands, with a cartouche-box round the waist. William King' fine handsome face and iron grey hair, and his giant form of six feet three inches, with breadth in proportion, certainly gave one the idea of a warrior chieftain. The dress reminds one of the Highlands; but the face and customs of the Jews--and Wiremu Kingi would not make a bad portrait of Saul, before the evil spirit had settled on his heart, and marked him externally, such as Rembrandt conceives of him in that wonderful picture at Knowsley Hall. We reached Katatore's Pa, and found one hundred men or so within. It had been newly-fenced for war; and inside an earthwork four feet high thrown up, between which and the outer fence was a trench and an embrasure for the men to lie in and attack the besiegers. They are almost impregnable to mere musketry. Within the earthwork are the houses; and all the followers were seated on the ground to hear what the Bishop had to say. After a few minutes a man, dressed like a would-be flash criminal at Newgate, came up to us. It was Katatore; a little, cunning-looking, ill-favoured rascal as I ever saw, dressed in a black patetot, moleskin trousers, boots, and a little hat on the top of an immense bush of hair. He then told us the story of the murder. When he came to it, the Bishop said, "So, then, you killed an unarmed man in cold blood for the matter of land?" "Yes." "Then you repeated the act of Cain towards Abel, [31/32] and in the sight of God and man you are a murderer."

The man started up in great wrath, but the Bishop calmly repeated it. The man started on his feet and left the ring of people, muttering and growling; but his own people did not seem disposed to support him on that point, nor to question the Bishop's judgment or right to express that judgment. The bold plainness of speech the Bishop used towards the murderer, and the abuse that the newspaper writers have lavished on him for holding any intercourse at all with the murderer, &c. &c., seem together exactly to make up the duties required of a Christian minister in the Collect for St. John Baptist's Day:--that he should "boldly rebuke vice, constantly speak the truth, and patiently suffer for the truth's sake." It has been the Bishop's practice for the last thirteen years, during which he has been so attacked by the same person in all the settlements, to "answer him never a word." Still the Bishop has written a Pastoral Letter to his own people and flock, explaining the course and the view he has taken of the native quarrel, and the land disputes existing between the natives with one another, and with the English.

After the conference was over at the Kaipakopako Pa, some of the people escorted us to the stream boundary that separates them from their enemy in the Ninia Pa. The two opposing Pas are about half a mile from one another, and the men that escorted us handed us on to the enemy with cries of [32/33] "Pihopa-ma." There did not seem to be individual enmity between the followers of Katatore on the one hand, and of Arama Karaka on the other. They met on the borders of the Waitaka River, and hailed one another just as the French and English picquets held friendly conversations and made presents of food to one another across a river in Spain during the Peninsular War. We were received, first, by one man perfectly unarmed, then we met two more, with guns, I suspect, under their blankets; and we were conducted to Ninia Pa, and welcomed by Arama Karaka; a fine, courteous old gentlemen, with a pleasant countenance enough--certainly a great contrast to Katatore.

The Bishop made a speech to them as to the Kaipakopako people, recommending them to send away their allies, who had nothing to do with the quarrel, and then go, each to his cultivation for this month or two, till the new Governor should arrive and settle the dispute; leaving the Pas in the hands of a few men on each side while the truce lasted. This advice was not accepted by either party at first, and the Bishop left them to think over it. We walked off at sunset to the town, and reached the parsonage at seven o'clock; where we were heartily greeted by Mr. Govett, the Clergyman, and son of the Vicar of Staines and Laleham, with whose person and ministrations I had been so familiar all the early part of my life. His son is wonderfully like him in appearance, as I knew him thirty and twenty-five years ago

Aug. 16th, 17th, 18th. We rested quietly, and gave our sore feet time to recover, while we thoroughly enjoyed looking over the beautiful scenery of this country. The mountain, in all its glorious diadem of snow, sending down such healthy bracing breezes day and night as speedily restored our strength, and added to the bush appetite that we had brought with us. Instead of the old proverb, 'Good wine needs no bush', the Bishop always reads it, 'Good bush needs no wine'; and certainly its effects are lasting and most exhilarating--I have been quite ashamed of my appetite. I feel as if I have a lee-way of a fortnight's bush-fare to make up, over and above the stimulating effects of this delicious climate. We have completed our walk of 245 miles, as shown by the corrected pedometer.


p. 102, 5. On 25 December 1854 an ex-convict Huntly struck a Maori dead on the streets of Auckland. About this time the death penalty had been exacted from several Maoris who had killed Europeans, and in return they now demanded a life for a life. Some, infuriated by the slow forms of the law, spoke of burning the town. In the midst of this excitement the Ngapuhi chief Patuone's horse, New Zealander, won the maiden plate of £150 at the Auckland races. This acted like a charm, and it was decided to let English law take its course. Huntly was convicted of manslaughter and given life imprisonment, which did not really appease the Maoris. A. S. Thomson, The Story of New Zealand, ii. 178.

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p. 110, 4. This passage on William King is rather highly coloured and inaccurate. After the Wairau massacre in June 1843, when Te Rauparaha and Rangihaeata urged their people at Otaki and Pukerua to forestall reprisals by attacking Wellington, Wiremu Kingi te Rangitake or William King, chief of the Ngati Awa at Waikanae, exerted a powerful influence for peace; and he did so again in 1846, when Rangihaeata promoted fighting over land in the Hutt Valley, and Governor Grey seized Te Rauparaha. Grey certainly desired William King to remain at Waikanae, but no guns were pointed or tomahawks flourished when his people migrated thence to Waitara in April 1848. Also Grey was not governor in 1844. Shortland was acting-governor from September 1842 till December 1843, when FitzRoy arrived, and Grey succeeded FitzRoy in November 1845.

1   S. H. Selwyn to Coleridge, 3 June 1852: Selwyn Letters 1842-67, iii. 595 (typescript, Alexander Turnbull Library).
2   Abraham to Coleridge, 13 August 1850: ibid., p. 721.
3   Abraham to Coleridge, 15 March 1855: ibid., p. 749. The remark by Grey must have been made a year or two earlier, for his first term as governor ended in December
4   Abraham to Coleridge, 11 October 1855: ibid., p. 754.
5   A suburb of Auckland, then a separate village.
6   Lt.-Col. Wynyard, acting-governor from January 1854 till September 1855.
7   A suburb of Auckland, on Manukau Harbour.
8   At this period mails were regularly carried on several inland and coastal routes by European or Maori mailmen, sometimes on horseback, often on foot.
9   The Anglican Church missionary from Kaitotehe station, at Taupiri.
10   At the head of the southernmost arm of Manukau Harbour, the point of it farthest from Auckland.
11   Now part of Auckland, then a separate village on Manukau Harbour, on the same inlet as Otahuhu, but nearer Auckland.
12   Playing on the colloquial sense of purl, meaning to tumble, turn head-over-heels. Selwyn could condescend to a pun in English.
13   A tidal stream entering the Waikato a few miles from its mouth, and reaching within a mile or so of Waiuku, the southernmost branch of Manukau Harbour. It is called Aka Aka Stream on some modern maps.
14   A Maori settlement about five miles east of the present Te Awamutu.
15   Stand punkts, i. e. positions, stations, viewpoints. Neander (1789-1850) was a well-known German theologian. Abraham and Selwyn seemed to meet their trials with puns.
16   'Because today the Fates are stern
'Twill not be ever so.... '
. . . Horace, Odes, ii. to. 17-18.
17   'More blessed than the King of the Persians.'
18   William Martin, first chief justice, who had travelled with Selwyn.
19   Whaingaroa, the present-day Raglan Harbour.
20   This remains obscure to the editor; the context suggests, however, that Wiclif had not let the old school down.
21   Mere, short club of greenstone.
22   Unfortunately Abraham, or his printer, has omitted some of these words.
23   William Swainson.
24   See note at end of article, p. 111.
25   An officer of the 58th Regiment, stationed at Auckland. Later in this same month he landed at New Plymouth, with 450 soldiers. In 1850 Charlotte Godley had described him as 'a tall lanky man with a distressed look, and no top to his head, who blushes when you speak to him, at finding himself obliged to perpetrate an answer'. Letters from Early New Zealand, ed. J. R. Godley (Christchurch, 1951), p. 149.
26   A well-known chief of the Ngati Toa tribe, who retired to the swamps of Poroutawhao, near Foxton, opposing all European advances for several years.
27   Glades, woodland pastures.
28   Katatore was a leader of the group opposed to the sale of land in Taranaki. These people had asked Rawiri Waiaua and the would-be land-sellers to desist from cutting the boundary lines, as the land was not theirs to sell. Rawiri refused, and Katatore's party fired, killing seven, including Rawiri, and wounding more--within the sound of New Plymouth's church bells. Arama Karaka (Adam Clarke) succeeded to the leadership of the land-sellers and fortified a pa, Te Ninia, as his stronghold.
29   Tangata noa, man of little account.
30   Edward Shortland, Traditions and Superstitions of the New Zealanders with illustrations of their manners and customs (London, 1854).
31   Presumably a slip for 'beside'.
32   Moeatoa, 1,206 feet, a hill on the coast about five miles north of Tirua Point.
33   Abraham (or his printer) offers another spelling in the next paragraph. The Nukuhakari River is about two miles south of Moeatoa.
34   At Judge's Bay, Auckland, the home of the judge William Martin and his wife, where both the Selwyns and the Abrahams were frequent visitors.
35   Waikawau River about six miles south of Tirua Point (N. Z. Cadastral map, SAK 72).
36   Papaki, 'to slap', or a cliff against which the waves beat; tonu, 'continually'.
37   Selwyn's second son, John Richardson, born 1844.
38   Presumably kuku was intended, a name applied to several species of mussels.
39   Awakino River.
40   Many Maoris of this time, both men and women, smoked as constantly as they could get tobacco: of which habit Abraham clearly disapproved.
41   i. e. the Ngati Awa's northern boundary. It is about three miles north of the Mimi Stream.
42   Waitara.
43   Onaero.
44   Onaero.
45   Taniwha Cape, a promontory just north of Waitara River.
46   'Tena koe'--the usual Maori greeting.
47   See note at end of article, p. 112.
48   Here are omitted several pages on the Maoris' falling-off in religion, and on negotiations with the quarrellers.

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