Story: Traditional Māori warfare – Riri



This weapon is called a hoeroa and is made from the lower jaw of a sperm whale. It was held by a rangatira and symbolised authority. This particular hoeroa was believed to have originally been a gift to Queen Victoria from a Māori chief. It was returned to New Zealand in the middle of the 20th century.

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Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa
Reference: OL000164

Permission of the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa must be obtained before any re-use of this image.

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How to cite this page:

Basil Keane, 'Traditional Māori warfare – Riri - Rākau Māori – Māori weapons and their uses', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, (accessed 21 June 2024)

Story by Basil Keane, published 20 Jun 2012