Story: First peoples in Māori tradition

‘Māui fishing New Zealand out of the ocean’

‘Māui fishing New Zealand out of the ocean’

Many Europeans were fascinated by Māori mythology. One was the German artist Wilhelm Dittmer, who visited New Zealand to collect oral traditions, many of which he illustrated with ink drawings. Here Māui, with his frightened brothers clinging to the canoe, heaves up the fish that is the North Island. The sun, to which Māui and his brothers are linked in another tradition, watches the action.

Using this item

Alexander Turnbull Library
Reference: PUBL-0088-049
Drawing by Wilhelm Dittmer

Permission of the Alexander Turnbull Library, National Library of New Zealand, Te Puna Mātauranga o Aotearoa, must be obtained before any re-use of this image.

All images & media in this story

How to cite this page:

Te Ahukaramū Charles Royal, 'First peoples in Māori tradition - Māui', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, (accessed 18 April 2024)

Story by Te Ahukaramū Charles Royal, published 8 Feb 2005