Wiremu Tamihana


Ngāti Haua (? – 1866)

Iwi map - Wiremu Tamihana Tarapipipi Te WaharoaIWI / HAPU AFFILIATIONS

Tarapipipi was the second son of Te Waharoa of Ngati Haua. His mother was Rangi Te Wiwini. He was born at Tamahere, on the Horotiu plains. Tamihana married Ita, daughter of Pohepohe of Matamata. She died in May 1840 at Te Tapiri. Tamihana later married Pare-te-Kanawa (also called Wikitoria), another daughter of Pohepohe. They had at least three sons, Hotene, Tupu Tainga-kawa, and Tana Tainga-kawa, and a daughter, Te Raumako (Te Reo). Tarapipipi participated in the fighting expeditions of Ngāti Haua and would eventually come under the influence of Christianity, learning to read and write within six months of having access to the written word.1

On 23 June 1839 Tarapipipi was baptised by Reverend A. N. Brown at Tauranga. He was given the name Wiremu Tamihana (William Thompson), and embarked on a life of teaching and preaching in the Tauranga and Matamata districts. Tarapipipi put into practice the Christian teachings he had embraced within a traditional Māori framework, and guided his people to do likewise. The influence of missionaries was important, but qualities of intellect, and leadership, courage, eloquence and diplomacy, were of far greater significance in the life of Wiremu Tamihana.2

He was a leading advocate for a Māori King movement and blessed the first Māori King Te Wherowhero by placing his bible on his head.3 His direct descendants perform this ritual as seen at the coronation of Kingi Tuheitia in 2006. Tamihana is remembered as the Māori King Maker.


  1. Evelyn Stokes, 'Te Waharoa, Wiremu Tamihana Tarapipipi ? - 1866', Dictionary of New Zealand Biography, updated 22 June 2007, accessed 2 March 2010.
  2. Evelyn Stokes, 'Te Waharoa, Wiremu Tamihana Tarapipipi ? - 1866', Dictionary of New Zealand Biography, updated 22 June 2007, accessed 2 March 2010.
  3. Te Ahukaramū Charles Royal, 'Waikato - The King movement', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, updated 4 March 2009, accessed 2 March 2010.
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  • Kathleen Henderson

    At 3pm on 31 May 2012

    Would like to know if there were any more children on the line of Tamihana Tarapipipi ( besides the sons and daughter he already had ) Te Waharoa and if any of his family married Wades from Ngaruwahia or would like to know what the connection is to the name Wade in the kingitanga. I am making an inquiry around the late 1870s or 1880s. Any infomation will be greatly appreciated. Thank you

  • Anonymous

    At 9am on 28 October 2011

    What is the Whakapapa of Te Waharoa Tarapipipi Wives and Children?

  • Anonymous

    At 6pm on 22 August 2011

    Hi amanda Emery, how do you know the whakapapa is incorrect?

  • Amanda Emery - Ngati Haua

    At 10am on 13 June 2011

    The whakapapa given re: Wiremu his wives and his children is incorrect.

  • manu

    At 12pm on 17 April 2011

    i am manu rhind son of matilda rhind who is the duaghter of rama tehoro tamihana rhind whould allso like info on this subject.

  • Myron D'Souza

    At 2pm on 22 January 2011

    awsome art

  • Anonymous

    At 10pm on 16 January 2011

    I am trying to trace wiremu tamihana down to Rama Tehoro Tamihana Rhind. Born 1910. Any and all help greatly appreciated!

  • Anonymous

    At 10am on 27 August 2010

    Would like to learn more about Wiremus sons

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