Badges of Māori units in the First World War

Badges of Māori units in the First World War

Badges of the Maori Contingent (left) and New Zealand Maori (Pioneer) Battalion.

The crest of the Maori Contingent includes two traditional Māori weapons, the taiaha and tewhatewha, crossed through a crown. The motto 'Te Hokowhitu a Tū' signified the 140 warriors of the war god, Tu-mata-uenga. The initials 'NZNC' were used because 'NZMC' would have invited confusion with the Medical Corps.

The Pioneers' badge features a Māori warrior's face above a crossed pick and axe, flanked by fernleaf fronds and the words 'NZ Pioneers'.

Community contributions

3 comments have been posted about Badges of Māori units in the First World War

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Posted: 24 Apr 2015

Kia ora Neil and Mihiata - you are quite correct we have been able to find images of the real badges - I've added these now. Thanks for the prompt! Jamie Mackay


Posted: 23 Apr 2015

Yeh why is there no real picture of the Maori badge...i think thats sad to just have a black and white drawing...wheres the colour i am sure theres one picture in color...could u try and find one may the library has one...i will do a search and post it to you. it would be nice to see the real thing. there is a flag with this badge on it not sure where or what happened to it...


Posted: 06 Nov 2013

Just like to know why there is no real picture of the metals, are they hard to find.