BASIC ANCESTRY

Rongokako

Tamatea Arikinui’s son was Rongokako, a tohunga who could take giant strides. In the contest with Pāoa to win the hand of Muriwhenua, he strode across land and sea, leaving footprints at Kahurānaki in the Heretaunga area, Kirihaehae at Māhia, and Te Tapuwae o Rongokako near Whāngārā.

Rongokako and Muriwhenua had a son, Tamatea Ure Haea (Tamatea the circumcised). He was also known as Tamatea-pōkai-whenua-pōkai-moana (Tamatea who travelled over land, over sea) because he circumnavigated New Zealand. This version of his name is incorporated in one of the world’s longest place names:

Taumatawhakatangihangakōauauatamateaturipukakapiki maungahoronukupokaiwhenuakitānatahu.

The birth of Kahungunu

Tamatea Ure Haea had three wives, who were sisters: Te Onoono-i-waho, Iwipūpū and Te Moana-i-kauia, the daughters of Ira and Tokerauwahine. With Iwipūpū he had a son, whom they named Kahungunu. The marriage of Kahungunu’s daughter The principal pā of Kahungunu and Rongomaiwahine was Maunga-a-Kāhia (Maungakāhia), which was built by Kahungunu on the Nukutaurua tableland. They had five children: Kahukuranui (son), Rongomaipāpā (daughter), Tamatea-kōtā (son), Mahakinui (son) and Tauheikurī (daughter). There is only one remembered instance when Maungakāhia came under serious attack. Tūtāmure and Tamataipūnoa (sons of Kahungunu’s cousin Haumanga) had set out from Ōpōtiki with 500 warriors and engaged in a series of battles on their way to the Māhia Peninsula. Maungakāhia was a very high and well-fortified pā, but the brothers and their war party laid siege to it. When the situation was beginning to look serious, Kahungunu sent Tauheikurī, his youngest daughter, to find out who was leading the attack. Tūtāmure came forward and pronounced: Ranga ranga te muri, ka tutū te ngaru o te moana ko au tenei ko Tūtāmure. When the north wind blows, up rise the waves of the ocean. It is I, Tūtāmure.

The marriage of Kahungunu’s daughter

The principal pā of Kahungunu and Rongomaiwahine was Maunga-a-Kāhia (Maungakāhia), which was built by Kahungunu on the Nukutaurua tableland. They had five children: Kahukuranui (son), Rongomaipāpā (daughter), Tamatea-kōtā (son), Mahakinui (son) and Tauheikurī (daughter).

There is only one remembered instance when Maungakāhia came under serious attack. Tūtāmure and Tamataipūnoa (sons of Kahungunu’s cousin Haumanga) had set out from Ōpōtiki with 500 warriors and engaged in a series of battles on their way to the Māhia Peninsula. Maungakāhia was a very high and well-fortified pā, but the brothers and their war party laid siege to it. When the situation was beginning to look serious, Kahungunu sent Tauheikurī, his youngest daughter, to find out who was leading the attack. Tūtāmure came forward and Kahungunu knew then that it was his cousin’s son, and sent Tauheikurī, with her consent, to offer herself as his wife.

Not knowing which was Tūtāmure, she knelt in front of his handsome younger brother, Tamataipūnoa, and offered him the stone weapon called Titingāpua. On learning this, Tūtāmure went to look in a small pool of water in the reef in front of Maungakāhia, and acknowledged that he was indeed not as good looking as his brother. That pool has ever since been called Te Wai Whakaata a Tūtāmure (the reflecting water of Tūtāmure). Tūtāmure told his brother to accept the peace offerings – the weapon and marriage to Tauheikurī. Some time later, Tauheikurī and Tamataipūnoa went to live in the Tūranga area. They had two children, Tawhiwhi and Māhaki. Māhaki became the ancestor of Te Aitanga a Māhaki.

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