Te Kupenga a Te Huki

The Network of Te Huki

by Ross Himona, "Te Putatara", 20 February 1989

 

Source:

1944, J.H.Mitchell (Tiaki Hikawera Mitira), Takitimu: a History of the Ngati Kahungunu People, A.H.& A.W.Reed Ltd, Wellington.

  

 

Te Huki

Taraia and Te Huki - a Carved Poupou

This carved wall post (poupou) is in Te Whare O Rangi (Rangi's House) which is the ancestral meeting house at Te Aute College at Pukehou, Hawke's Bay. The upper figure is Taraia, great grandson of Kahungunu. Taraia established the tribe of Ngati Kahungunu in Hawke's Bay. The lower figure is Te Huki.

 

 

Taraia's Whakapapa

 

Ko Tamatea-Ariki-Nui
ko Rongokako
ko Tamatea-Pokai-Whenua
ko Kahungunu
ko Kahukuranui = Ruatapuwahine (1st wife)
ko Rakaihikuroa
     1. ko Tupurupuru
     2. ko TARAIA
     3. ko Te-Ao-Matarahi
     4. ko Hine-te-Raraku

 

Te Huki's Whakapapa

 

Ko Tamatea-Ariki-Nui = Toto
ko Rongokako = Muriwhenua
ko Tamatea-pokai-whenua = (2nd wife) Iwipupu
ko Kahungunu = Rongomaiwahine
ko Kahukuranui = Tu-teihonga
ko Rakaipaka = Turumakina
       |_________________
       |                 |
ko Hauiti                |
ko Rongotipare           |
ko Mawete =========== Kaukohea
       |
ko Tu-te-kanao = Tama-te-ahirau
ko Tureia = Hinekimihanga
       |
ko TE HUKI = Te Rangi-tohumare (1st wife)
                1.   Puruaute
                2.   Mataitai
                3.   Hine-raru
                4.   Te Hauwai-tanoa

           = Te Ropuhina (2nd wife)
                1.   Te Rakato
                2.   Tureia (2)
                3.   Te Rehu

           =  Rewanga (3rd wife)
                1.   Te Kai-nui
                2.   Te Umu-papa
Ko Te Rakato = Ika-atahua
ko Meke
ko Tuhene
ko Maata-te-kai
ko Rawinia
ko Keita
ko J.H.Mitchell

 

 

The Story of Te Huki

 

Te Huki, a celebrated ancestor of Te Wairoa district of the Ngati Kahungunu tribe, descended in an unblemished line from our ancestor Kahungunu, and his greatest achievement was to create unity through networking.

With diplomacy, foresight and dedication, he created a network by intermarrying himself, his sons and his daughters into many tribes covering a wide area. This became known as "the setting of the net of Te Huki". It is the ancient way of networking.

In his youth Te Huki lived in the Mohaka area. He was not a warrior and like his sister Te Rauhina (wife of the chief Tapuwae), was more interested in peace and love. Te Huki set about his virtuous task by marrying the daughters of influential chiefs. His first wife was Te Rangi-tohumare, granddaughter of Te Whatuiapiti, eponymous ancestor of the Ngai Te Whatuiapiti tribe of Heretaunga. Next he married Te Ropuhina, a chief of Nuhaka, and finally Rewanga who was the daughter of Te Aringa-i-waho, chief of Titirangi at Gisborne.

In order to maintain his network Te Huki did not take his wives to his home or settle permanently himself. Instead he attended to his wives by visiting each in turn, and thus maintained his network over the then vast area from Turanganui to Heretaunga.

With Te Rangi-tohumare their first son was Purua-aute who settled in the Wairoa district and married Te Mata-kainga-ite-tihi, who was the daughter of the chief, Tapuwae. Purua-aute became the centre float of the spreading net of Te Huki, and from Purua-aute descended many of the chiefs of Te Wairoa and Heretaunga.

The second son of Te Huki and Te Rangi-tohumare was Mataitai who was placed at Mahia and from whom descended Chief Ihaka Whaanga and others.

The next was a daughter. Hine-raru, whom Te Huki took to Porangahau to marry Hopara. From this union came the grandson Ngarangi-whakaupoko who became at Te Poroporo near Porangahau the post at the southern end of Te Huki's Net. From the southern post sprang many chiefs, among them Tipene Matua, Henare Te Atua, Te Ropiha and Te Kuru.

With Te Ropuhina at Nuhaka Te Huki had three sons. They were Te Ra-ka-to who lived at Mahia and became the eponymous ancestor of the Ngai Te Ra-ka-to tribe, Tureia who lived at Nuhaka, and Te Rehu also of Nuhaka and who became the eponymous ancestor of Ngai Te Rehu tribe.

At Turanganui, Te Huki and Rewanga had a daughter named Te Umu-papa who married Marukawiti, son of Kanohi. From this union came Ngawhaka-tatare who was the eastern post of Te Huki's Net. From Nawhaka-tatare descended the famous chief Te Kani-a-takirau and others.

Te Kupenga-a-Te Huki is a network which to this day, more than twelve generations later, still serves to unite the people.

Te Huki personally created his network over three generations. This must surely have been his life's work. Today with modern technology, communications and transport we are able to build upon and reinforce the ancient networks. It is so much easier, yet so often neglected.