Glossary of Māori terms

Māori terms used in this Report have the meanings set out below:4

Sub-tribal group.
Tribal group.
The esteem, prestige, authority, status or spiritual power of an individual or collective group.
Marae A communal place associated with a particular iwi or hapū, serving the social role of a gathering place for hui including tangihanga.
Pākehā Non-Māori New Zealander.
Tangi/tangihanga Māori funeral rites, usually taking place at a marae, involving extended family and friends who gather to mourn and farewell the deceased.
Tikanga Māori The body of Māori customary law, values, practices and procedures. Sometimes defined in New Zealand statute law as “Māori customary values and practices”.
Tino rangatiratanga Sovereignty, self-determination.
Tono In relation to burial, the customary process of arguing for the right to the deceased body.
Tūpāpaku The body of the recently deceased person.
Urupā A Māori burial ground.
Wairua The spirit or soul, believed to linger in the human body until departure for Te Pō (world of departed spirits) or to Hawaiki (the ancestral homeland) after death.
Whakapapa Genealogy/ancestral history, including relationships with people and place.
Whānau Family group.
Whānau pani Close family members of the recently deceased who are in mourning.
4For further explanation, see