“Legend - Origin of Mana of Thames Tribes”. GNZMMSS 7, Sir George Grey Special Collections, Auckland City Libraries

“Legend - Origin of Mana of Thames Tribes”. GNZMMSS 7, Sir George Grey Special Collections, Auckland City Libraries

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“Legend - Origin of Mana of Thames Tribes”. GNZMMSS 7, Sir George Grey Special Collections, Auckland City Libraries

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“Legend - Origin of Mana of Thames Tribes”

Ref No: GNZMMSS 7

Patupaiarehe or tūrehu – rendered ‘fairy folk’ have a privileged presence amongst storytellers, enabling renditions to be cloaked with mythical and mystical fog – ‘"Origin of mana of Thames tribes" - is such an example located in the Hauraki region amidst the citadel of Moehau, Cape Colville on the Coromandel Peninsula.

Within this rendition the tale is designated to the Ngāti Paoa hapū of Ngāti Rongou or Ngati Rongai as the people involved, and continues with the story about the ‘kōrau nui whakaharahara’ – fern tree that marks the burial place of Tamatekapua, which annoyed the Patupaiarehe because they considered Moehau summit as a sacred dwelling place for them alone. In the time of Mātātahi’s leadership enmity was inflamed when five members of Ngāti Rongou [Ngāti Rongoi] violated a sacred place while pig hunting which infuriated them and there forth sought readdress.

Margret Orbell’s translation of the, "Origin of mana of Thames tribes", in Te Ao Hou as ‘The Fairies of Moehau’ (no. 63. June – August 1968. p.4.) concludes with, "My friend, do not imagine that Moehau is now free from tapu – no, the peak is still tapu. No man since Tamatekapua has ever attained the peak, though it may be that Governor Grey will do so".  

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