The Southern Districts of New Zealand - Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu

The Southern Districts of New Zealand

$50.00 inc. GST

Author:   Edward Shortland
Print publication: First published in 1851. This publication is 2012.
Pages:   364pp, Paperback
ISBN:    9781139149310

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SKU: SGNT324 Category: Tag:


The physician and ethnographer Edward Shortland (1812–93) first travelled to New Zealand in 1841, a year after the Treaty of Waitangi. He became private secretary to Governor William Hobson, and quickly learned the Maori language. First published in 1851, this book describes Shortland’s experiences on the east coast of New Zealand’s South Island while conducting a census of the local Maori settlements in 1843. It documents Ngāi Tahu myths, traditions and everyday life, and includes genealogical tables and a short word-list of the local dialect. It also describes a French Company agent at Akaroa reporting the successful introduction of French vines, the Scottish settlement at Dunedin, and the productivity of several whaling stations. Shortland reminds prospective settlers of the importance of understanding the ‘ideas and prejudices’ of the Māori, whose many qualities including ‘natural bravery and love of freedom’ guarantee them continuing ‘political weight in their own country’