Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Oldest Aboriginal Map of New Zealand

Unfolding the Map, a celebration of the cartography of New Zealand, is on exhibit at the National Library of New Zealand in Wellington. One of the featured maps is a reproduction of Tuki's Map, the oldest known Māori map of New Zealand.
http://natlib.govt.nz/records/22866321
The original map was drawn by Tuki Te Terenui Whare Pirau, a Māori who was captured and imprisoned on Norfolk Island. The map on display is a reproduction drawn by the New Zealand Department of Internal Affairs (circa 1940). The original was circa 1793. Tuki made this map for the lieutenant governor of Norfolk Island who was interested in his language culture.

Tuki was from the peninsula north of Auckland in the far northern part of the North Island. This area is greatly exaggerated in size and detail. He knew little of the much larger South Island so it is drawn as a small island at the bottom.

Bonus Map!
Another nice map from the exhibit is this lighthouse chart from 1900.
http://natlib.govt.nz/records/21624539
Here is the legend and a detailed view.

Unfolding the Map "brings together the fascinating maps of the Library's collections and stunning examples of the state of the art today." The exhibit is on display through August, 2016. If you're in the area check it out.
http://natlib.govt.nz/visiting/wellington/unfolding-the-map


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