Events In History


Māori King movement origins

  • Māori King movement origins

    In May 2008 Māori gathered at Ngāruawāhia to celebrate the 150th anniversary of the formation of the Kīngitanga, or Māori King Movement. The current king, Te Arikinui Tūheitia Paki, was crowned in August 2006 following the death of his mother, Dame Te Atairangikaahu.

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  • Page 2 – Overview

    On 23 May 2006 the Māori Queen, Te Arikinui Dame Te Atairangikaahu, celebrated the 40th jubilee of her coronation. She was the sixth Māori monarch and the longest-serving.

  • Page 3 – The land issue

    Pressure to sell land was a key factor in the creation of the Kīngitanga. Before European settlement Māori had no concept of selling land and few chiefs had the authority to

  • Page 4 – In search of a king

    The Kīngitanga has often been described as a Waikato initiative, yet its origins can be traced to Ōtaki on the Kāpiti Coast.

  • Page 5 – Pōtatau Te Wherowhero

    In April 1857, at Rangiriri, Pōtatau agreed to become king. He was crowned and anointed at Ngāruawāhia in June 1858.

  • Page 6 – A challenge to European authority?

    Pōtatau established a boundary between the territory in which his authority held sway and that of the governor: 'Let Maungatautari [River] be our boundary. Do not encroach on

  • Page 7 – Further information

    This web feature was written by Steve Watters and produced by the NZHistory team.LinksThe King movement (Te Ara)Waikato (Te Ara)Mātene Te Whiwhi biography (DNZB)Pōtatau Te

Māori King movement - 1860-94

  • Māori King movement - 1860-94

    King Tāwhiao's reign was dominated by the Waikato War and the fallout from it.

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  • Page 2 – Build-up to war

    Like his father, King Tāwhiao had no intention of becoming involved in the war in Taranaki. The government, however, remained unconvinced of this. In July 1860 Governor Gore

  • Page 3 – Response to war

    The invasion of Waikato unified the factions within the Kīngitanga, whose forces won some victories despite being at an overwhelming disadvantage in terms of manpower and

  • Page 4 – Raupatu

    Under the terms of the New Zealand Settlements Act 1863 the government confiscated huge areas of Māori land in late 1864.

  • Page 5 – Maintaining Te Kīngitanga

    By the early 1870s, the Kīngitanga was struggling. Living conditions within the Rohe Potae (the Māori King's territory) were poor. Allies such as Ngāti Hauā had resumed selling

  • Page 6 – Tensions ease

    It was clear by the 1870s that the Kīngitanga could no longer fight a war. Attempts were made to ease relations between the king and the colonial government.

  • Page 7 – The death of Tāwhiao

    Tāwhiao died on 26 August 1894. He was buried at Taupiri after a tangihanga attended by thousands.

  • Page 8 – Further information

    This web feature was written by Steve Watters and produced by the team.LinksDonald McLean biographyGeorge Grey biographyJohn Gorst biographyRewi Maniapoto

War in Waikato

  • War in Waikato

    After fighting broke out again in Taranaki in early 1863, Governor George Grey turned his attention to the region he saw as the root of his problems with Māori: Waikato, the heartland of the anti-landselling King Movement. Grey vowed to ‘dig around’ the Kīngitanga until it fell.

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  • Page 2 – Invasion plans

    Governor Gore Browne demanded that the Kīngitanga submit ‘without reserve’ to the British Queen and began planning an invasion of Waikato shortly before his reassignment to

  • Page 6 – The Battle of Ōrākau

    James Belich argues that the British victory at Ōrākau was also their ‘cruellest disappointment of the entire war’. Chris Pugsley, on the other hand, sees Ōrākau as the ‘

The Treaty in practice

  • The Treaty in practice

    Amalgamating Māori into colonial settler society was a key part of British policy in New Zealand after 1840. Economic and social change, along with land-purchase programmes, were central to this process.

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  • Page 8 – The Waikato-Tainui claim

    The Waikato-Tainui people and the Crown signed a Deed of Settlement in 1995. It included a formal apology for Crown actions in the wars of the 1860s that had brought

Treaty timeline

War in Taranaki 1860-63

  • War in Taranaki 1860-63

    In March 1860 war broke out between Europeans and Māori in Taranaki following a dispute over the sale of land at Waitara. It was the beginning of a series of conflicts that would dog Taranaki for 21 years, claiming the lives of hundreds of people and leaving deep scars that persist to the present day.

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  • Page 8 – The second Taranaki war

    On 12 March 1863, 300 men of the 57th Regiment evicted Māori from the land they had occupied at Tataraimaka, 20 km south-west of New Plymouth.

Māori and the First World War

The 1920s

  • The 1920s

    The 1920s was the decade that modern New Zealand came of age. Despite political and economic uncertainty, the country shrugged off the gloom of war to embrace the Jazz Age - an era of speed, power and glamour. Explore an overview of the decade and a year-by-year breakdown of key events.

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  • Page 4 - 1921 - key eventsA selection of key New Zealand events from

The 1960s

  • The 1960s

    Five decades ago most Kiwis enjoyed a standard of living that was the envy of other nations. During the 1960s the arrival of TV and jet airliners shrank our world, and New Zealanders began to express themselves on a range of international issues, including opposition to the Vietnam War.

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  • Page 9 - 1966 - key eventsA selection of the key events in New Zealand history from

New Zealand's 19th-century wars

  • New Zealand's 19th-century wars

    War changed the face of New Zealand in the 19th century. Many thousands of Māori died in the intertribal Musket Wars between the 1810s and the 1830s. There were more deaths during the New Zealand Wars of the 1840s to 1870s between some Māori and the Crown, which for many tribes had dire consequences.

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  • Page 6 - NZ Wars flagsMany Maori in the 19th century saw the Union Jack as a potent symbol of Great Britain's power in New Zealand. In the New Zealand Wars, Maori who resisted government forces often


  • Kaihau, Hēnare

    Hēnare Kaihau become deeply interested in Māori politics, and strongly supported the King movement, becoming a principal adviser to Mahuta, the third Māori King.

  • Maniapoto, Rewi Manga

    A famous Ngāti Maniapoto warrior, leader and supporter of the King Movement who's exploits in the Waikato War have been immortalised in book and film.

  • Matua, Hēnare

    Ngāti Kahungunu chief Hēnare Matua was leader of the repudiation movement, which questioned land sales that it believed had been undertaken fraudulently.

  • Tāwhiao, Tukaroto Potatau Matutaera

    Tāwhiao's father Pōtatau was the first Māori King, and on his death in 1860 Tāwhiao inherited the kingship and the spiritual leadership of his people. He was king for the next 34 years, including the most turbulent period in New Zealand's race relations history.

  • Te Wherowhero, Pōtatau

    In the 1850s, a movement was set up to appoint a Māori king who would unite the tribes, protect land from further sales and make laws for Māori to follow. Te Wherowhero became the first Māori king in 1858.

  • Wahanui Huatare

    Ngāti Maniapoto leader, Wahanui Huatare, was a notable tohunga (Māori spiritual expert) and an influential chief.

  • Hērangi, Te Kirihaehae Te Puea (Princess Te Puea)

    Te Puea Hērangi was granddaughter of the second Māori King. She was a staunch opponent of conscription for Waikato during the First World War and a prominent advocate for Tainui.

  • Te Rata Mahuta Tāwhiao Pōtatau Te Wherowhero Korokō

    The fifth Māori King, Korokī Te Rata Mahuta Tāwhiao Pōtatau Te Wherowhero struggled to maintain the dignity of the Kīngitanga and obtain recognition during his reign.

  • Tāwhiao, Mahuta Pōtatau Te Wherowhero

    Mahuta Tāwhiao, of Ngāti Mahuta was the oldest son of Tāwhiao, the second Māori King, who he succeeded in 1894.

  • Gorst, John Eldon

    John Gorst was a Waikato politician who sympathised to some extent with the Kīngitanga and its political aspirations.