Te Kooti

 

Te Kooti Arikirangi Te Tūruki was the founder of the Ringatū religion and a renowned Māori prophet who possessed many skills - ingenuity, navigational knowledge and an ability to lead effectively.  Hailed from Rongowhakaata and Ngāti Maru, Te Kooti was imprisoned for being a spy in 1865. Nonetheless, he escaped his imprisonment from the Chatham Islands three years later.


During the wars in 1869, Te Kooti crossed twice into Te Nehenehenui. In July 1869, Te Kooti came looking for reinforcements from within Ngāti Maniapoto as fighting support. When he came again in December, it was thought he had alternative motives surrounding King Tāwhiao.  Instead, Te Kooti came before King Tāwhiao wanting to continue the fight the Pākehā.  He was greeted hospitably,and told by the King that the war was over - that peace was upon them.


Up until 1873, he stayed under their peaceful shelter within the regional borders of Ngāti Maniapoto. During this time, Te Kooti built Te Tokanga-nui-a-noho.  The construction of this house began with Ngāti Haua.  Te Kooti oversaw the carvings and gifted the erected house as a gift to Tāwhiao for the sanctuary he had provided.

 

Ko Te Kooti Arikirangi Te Tūruki te tuatupuna i te Hāhi Ringatū me te poropiti Māori i rongonui ai i ōna tini pūkenga – mātauranga whakatere me te tātaki tangata.  Kāti, nō Rongowhakaata me Ngāti Maru a Te Kooti, heoi, i mauheretia a Te Kooti, i te mea he tūtei ia i te tau, 1865.  Nō muri i ngā tau e toru, i puta mai anō ia i ōna hereherenga i te moutere o Rēkohu, Wharekauri.


I te wā o ngā pakanga whenua i te tau, 1869, e rua ngā wā i  hoki mai ai a Te Kooti ki roto i Te Nehenehenui i te Hūrae, i te tau 1869., i hoki mai ia ki te whai tauā o roto o Ngāti Maniapoto hei taunaki. I tana hokinga mai i te Hakihea, i pōhēhētia he take huna ki a Kīngi Tāwhiao.  Heoi i tana tatūtanga ki a Kīngi Tāwhiao, i hiahiatia kia whawhai tonu ki te Pākehā.  Engari i kī atu te Kīngi, kua takoto kētia te pū, ā, kua houhia te rongo


I noho mai a Te Kooti i raro i te whakamarutanga o Ngāti Maniapoto tae noa ki te tau, 1873.  I tērā wā, i hanga a Te Kooti i te Tokanga-nui-a-noho.  E kī ana, nā Ngāti Hauā i tīmata te hanga te whare nei.  Nā Te Kooti ngā mahi whakairo i whakahaere, ka mutu ka tuku te whare hei koha mō Kīngi Tāwhiao mō āna manaakitanga katoa ki a ia, ki a Te Kooti.

 

References: Judith Binney, Redemption Songs: A Life of Te Kooti Arikirangi Te Tūruki. Auckland: Auckland University Press, 1995, pp. 174-178.

Judith Binney, Stories Without End: Essays 1975-2010. Wellington, New Zealand: Bridget Williams Books Limited, 2010, pp. 134-144.

Tags: Te Kooti Arikirangi Te Tūruki; Ringatū; Prophet; Rongowhakaata; Ngāti Maru; Chatam Islands; Te Nehenehenui; Tāwhiao; Tokangamutu; Te Tokanganui-a-noho; Te Kūiti; Ngāti Hauā;