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The Daily Volcano Quote: a missionary’s view of Tongariro 8 March 2012

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It will perhaps at first sight be thought by some of your readers that an article on volcanoes has little to do with missionary work; and so it has, and I only entitle the contribution I am sending you ‘Tongariro Volcano’ because of the close connection that mountain has with the Maori superstition of ‘Tapu’. If any spot was considered tapu, or sacred, by New Zealanders it was the Volcano Tongariro … The volcanic fires of Tongariro were kindled by no hand of man, but by supernatural agency; its various natural phenomena, so mysterious and awful, were accepted by them as auguries and omens, and foretold future destinies by the periods of its rumbling and activity; war and calamity were supposed to be predicted; and when it was silent and its fires at rest, peace and prosperity.

T. S. Grace, Jr., ‘Tongariro Volcano’, Church Missionary Gleaner, 1 October 1874, p. 110.

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Comments

1. JimmyJames - 9 March 2012

It’s sure great to have your unique historic perspectives back on the air, appeasing the Māori gods’ (and other deities’) wrath.


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