Story: Riri – traditional Māori warfare



This weapon is called a hoeroa and is made from the lower jaw of a sperm whale. It was held by a rangatira and symbolised authority. This particular hoeroa was believed to have originally been a gift to Queen Victoria from a Māori chief. It was returned to New Zealand in the middle of the 20th century.

About this item

Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa
Reference: OL000164

Permission of the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa must be obtained before any re-use of this image.

How to cite this page:

Basil Keane. 'Riri – traditional Māori warfare - Rākau Māori – Māori weapons and their uses', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, updated 12-May-16