Shore Whaler's Wahine

amidships: the middle of a boat

Aotearoa: the Māori name for New Zealand. Translation: “The long white cloud”

bow: the front of a boat

dart the fish: to heave (pitch or toss) the harpoon at a whale. The word throw was never used

double-ended: a boat which is sharp at both ends

fast: a boat attached by a line to a running whale

gunwale: a piece of timber that is located above the top plank running from bow to stern

harpoon: an iron or steel instrument with an arrow or barbed head used for fastening a line to whales. It was mounted on a wooden pole and referred to as an “iron” by the whalers

hapū: grouping of related whānau or a sub-tribe

Iwi: tribe

kaumātua: elder

lay it on: to turn the whaleboat into the whale at a right angle so that the harpooner can strike, or to bring the boat onto the whale’s back

pā: fortified village

Pākehā: a non-Māori

rakatira: chief or leader. Spelt rangatira in the North Island

rohe: boundary or territory

rūnaka: marae (meeting house complex) or based council. Spelt rūnanga in the North Island

tupuna (pl tūpuna): ancestor

sheer: The upward curve of the gunwale from amidships towards the bow and stern

stern: the end of a boat

stroke or pull: row

upoko ariki: paramount hereditary chief with authority amongst the whole tribe

wahine: women

whānau: extended family

whānui: broad or wide. The origins of modern Kāi Tahu lie in the shared genealogy of Waitaha, Kāti Māmoe and Kāi Tahu. The word whānui is used to embrace these three historic Iwi. I have also used the term Southern Māori to collectively refer to these people

whakapapa: genealogy, descent

Although this web site includes other specialised words they do not require any further explanation because their meaning has been incorporated into the text.