Story: Tā moko – Māori tattooing

Māori tattoo designs, 1820s (2nd of 2)

During his 1820s voyage through the South Pacific, French explorer Dumont d'Urville's official artist Louis de Sainson drew detailed portraits of Māori, such as this group from the Cape Rēinga and Whangārei areas. The man at lower left is Pako, a chief of Te Rēinga with a full-face moko. His thigh and buttock design is shown at centre.

Using this item

Alexander Turnbull Library
Reference: C-010-025
Hand-coloured lithograph by Louis Auguste de Sainson

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:

Rawinia Higgins, 'Tā moko – Māori tattooing - Origins of tā moko', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, (accessed 21 April 2024)

Story by Rawinia Higgins, published 5 Sep 2013