The baby Māui is brought ashore by his grandfather Tama-nui-ki-te-rangi, still wrapped in his mother's topknot. In one tradition Māui was stillborn, or miscarried, and his mother Taranga wrapped him in her tikitiki (topknot) – this is how he got his name, Māui-tikitiki-a-Taranga. Stillborn children were believed to become malignant spirits (atua kahukahu). Given the circumstances surrounding his birth it is not surprising that Māui was renowned for his supernatural feats.
Using this item
Learning Media Ltd
Reference: Eke Panuku 11. Wellington: Learning Media Ltd, 2004
This material is reproduced by permission of the publishers, Learning Media Ltd, PO Box 3293, Wellington, New Zealand.