Story: Traditional Māori religion – ngā karakia a te Māori

Te Rangi Tahau

Te Rangi Tahau

Te Rangi Tahau of Te Arawa sits astride the Rauru meeting house during the ceremony to raise the tapu from the house. Two tohunga were present during the ceremony. Te Rangi Tahau was described as 'a burly warrior in his day ... still a big figure of a man, grim, tattooed of face, hard old eyes that held surface-glitter suggesting the battle-glare of other days.' Tumutara Pio of Ngāti Awa, the other tohunga, was described as 'a small wizened ancient, white-whiskered, almost gnome-like' (Maui Pomare and James Cowan, Legends of the Maori, Auckland: Southern Reprints, 1987 (first published 1930), p. 262). Eight days after the ceremony Te Rangi Tahau passed away, and not long after that Tumutara Pio also died. Some said that each tohunga had come under makutu (bewitchment) of the other.

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How to cite this page:

Basil Keane, 'Traditional Māori religion – ngā karakia a te Māori - Rituals and ceremonies', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, (accessed 6 March 2024)

Story by Basil Keane, published 5 May 2011