Earthquakes information – Pre-European

He KupengaIf you’re looking for information about Earthquakes pre-European times try Te Ara. In the Geology section, Whenua – how the land was shaped, some of the stories are told of how different mountains, rivers and lakes were formed.  Earthquakes and volcanoes also feature.  Te Hoata and Te Pupu brought fire from Hawaiki to warm their brother Ngatoroirangi, and are associated with geothermal areas.

Māori tradition and legends tell many stories about how our land was created and shaped.  Te Ara tells us that Rū whenua, the shaking of the land, was experienced and remembered by Māori long before Europeans arrived.

Rū whenua are associated with Rūaumoko, the god of earthquakes and volcanoes, who creates rumblings as he walks around.  The Earthquakes in Maori Tradition page gives accounts of several pre-European earthquakes including one which closed off a second entrance to Port Nicholson (Wellington Harbour).

Sally Stanley-Boden

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