Story: Traditional Māori games – ngā tākaro

Hōne Heke with Te Ruki Kawiti and Hāriata Rongo

Hōne Heke with Te Ruki Kawiti and Hāriata Rongo

The chants in games had many meanings and uses. In a famous incident at Waiaruhe in the northern war of 1845, the Ngāpuhi chief Hōne Heke recited a tutukai (guessing game) chant to the chief Tāmati Wāka Nene. It was a warning to Nene that Heke would attack him. This image shows Hōne Heke (centre) with his wife Hāriata Rongo and another great Ngāpuhi chief, Te Ruki Kawiti.

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Alexander Turnbull Library
Reference: C-012-019
Watercolour by Joseph Jenner Merrett

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.

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How to cite this page:

Ross Calman, 'Traditional Māori games – ngā tākaro - Sports and games in traditional Māori society', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, http://www.TeAra.govt.nz/en/artwork/39336/hone-heke-with-te-ruki-kawiti-and-hariata-rongo (accessed 19 March 2019)

Story by Ross Calman, published 5 Sep 2013