Te Raukaraka (pounamu mere)

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Te Raukaraka (pounamu mere).


Photo: Auckland Museum

Tribe of origin: Ngaiterangi
Waka: Mataatua
Iwi: Ngaiterangi

Locality: Tauranga
Region: Western Bay of Plenty

Source: Captain Gilbert Mair
Acquisition date: 1890

Material: Pounamu
Measurements: 36.5 x 8.8cm

Museum location: Auckland Museum
Specific location: Ko Tawa Exhibition
Previous collections: Capt Gilbert Mair Collection
Ethnology no: 121

Pathway: This greenstone mere is known by the name of "Te Raukaraka", on account of being made of a rare kind of greenstone resembling in colour the leaves of the karaka tree. It belonged to the Tauranga chief Koraurau, who held the Te Papa Pa (now Cemetery Point). In 1828, he gave the mere to Mr Gilbert Mair snr, father of Gilbert Mair, during a visit to Tauranga in the mission schooner 'Herald'. Mr Mair left the mere for a short time in the care of Koraurau, but on his return found that Te Papa had been taken by assault, and Koraurau killed. Nothing more was heard of the mere until after the battle of Gate Pa in 1864, when some soldiers, who were digging graves for their fallen comrades, unearthed it. The mere was identified and handed over to Koraurau's son Hohepa Te Mea, who gave it to Captain Mair in pursuance of his father's promise.

Catalogue description: This mere pounamu has a series of worn grooves at the butt. There are chips along the edge of the blade, and the surface is worn and polished. The stone is medium green with lighter striations throughout.

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Te Raukaraka (pounamu mere)

Location where this photo was taken:

Latitude and Longitude coordinates: -37.6767462,176.16930849999994

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