Object: "Tuhiwai" mere pounamu (nephrite weapon)
This image has All Rights Reserved.
Please follow the Buy or license link under each image to apply to use this image. (Charges may apply)
Why you need to apply for the use of this image
Rights for this work may be:
- controlled by the artist, the artist's estate, or other rights holders; or
- unclear - Te Papa will do a more detailed analysis of the work’s rights history; or
- covered by Te Papa’s Mana Taonga principle which supports the rights of holders of traditional knowledge to determine how the image may be used.
You need to make sure you don’t infringe on the rights of third parties before you use this image. Our image request process helps with this. Te Papa does not authorise the use of this image beyond the uses allowed by the “fair dealing” provisions of the New Zealand Copyright Act, 1994.
More information about copyright
We recommend these resources for more information:
- Copyright in NZ - Ministry of Economic Development
- Copyright guidelines and resource - Lianza
- Enabling use and re-use - Digital NZ
Find more information about Te Papa's rights project on our blog, including how rights types are assigned.
Get in touch
Please contact email@example.com
- if you have any information regarding this work and rights to it, or
- if you wish to contact the rights holder for this work. We will assist where we can.
|Title||"Tuhiwai" mere pounamu (nephrite weapon)|
Unknown (maker/artist), 1500-1800, Otago
|Medium summary||Westland source|
|Classification||clubs, edged weapons, Mere pounamu|
x 119mm (Width)
x 25mm (Depth)
|Credit line||Gift of the Wineera family, 1963|
Tuhiwai is the famous mere-pounamu (greenstone hand club) of Te Rauparaha, the celebrated warrior chief of Ngāi Toa. It was gifted to him in exchange for the waka taua (war canoe) Wai-ka-hua by the Ngāi Tahu chief Te Matenga Taiaroa. As an example of the pre-European mere-pounamu, Tuhiwai remains unsurpassed in its perfection of form and exquisite manufacture.
Tuhiwai means to 'strike the water', and it is in this manner that Te Rauparaha is said to have used Tuhiwai to divine the future and guide him in making decisions during his campaigns. Tuhiwai is considered extremely tapu by the Ngāti Toa, and has been known to change colour on the death of a member of the Wineera family, the descendants of Te Rauparaha.
According to one Ngāti Toa legend, Tuhiwai was also the weapon used by Te Rangihaeata during the execution of Captain Arthur Wakefield in April 1843 at the Wairau Affair. The conflict was precipitated by European encroachment onto Ngāti Toa lands on the Wairau plain and resulted in the accidental shooting of Te Rangihaeata's wife, Te Rongopāmamao. Te Rangihaeata, aggrieved at his wife's death, demanded the customary right to execute the prisoners as compensation.
Tutuira Wineera presented Tuhiwai to Te Papa's predecessor, the Dominion Museum, in 1963 on behalf of the Wineera family.
Results from DigitalNZ
Disclaimer: This information was created from historic documentation, and may not necessarily reflect the best available knowledge about the item. Some collection images are created for identification purposes only and may not be of reproduction quality. Some images are not available due to copyright restrictions. If you have information or questions about objects in the collection, contact us using our enquiry form. You can also find out more about Collections Online.