Story: Māori architecture – whare Māori

Wharepuni, Northland

Wharepuni, Northland

This wharepuni (sleeping house), in a Northland community, was painted by Augustus Earle in 1827. Although so low to the ground that the door must be entered on all fours, the building has been ornamented with a tekoteko (carved figure) above the entrance and an elaborate door frame, indicating that the occupants are of chiefly status.

Using this item

National Library of Australia, Rex Nan Kivell Collection
Reference: NK12/78
Artwork by Augustus Earle

Permission of the National Library of Australia must be obtained before any re-use of this image.

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How to cite this page:

Deidre Brown, 'Māori architecture – whare Māori - First Māori buildings', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, (accessed 11 December 2023)

Story by Deidre Brown, published 22 Oct 2014