Story: He Whakaputanga – Declaration of Independence

Baron de Thierry's coat of arms

Baron de Thierry's coat of arms

This coat of arms was created for 'Baron' Charles Philippe Hippolyte de Thierry, who styled himself many things, including king of New Zealand. British Resident James Busby, concerned that Thierry was planning to come to New Zealand and attempt to become sovereign ruler of the country, brought together a number of northern chiefs in 1835 to sign the Declaration of Independence. Thierry's coat of arms shows Māori warriors holding a taiaha and musket, and a crown atop the centrepiece. The motto is 'Tenax, strength and harmony'.

Using this item

Alexander Turnbull Library
Reference: A-320-026

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:

Basil Keane, 'He Whakaputanga – Declaration of Independence - Background to the declaration', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, (accessed 25 June 2024)

Story by Basil Keane, published 20 Jun 2012