In Maori mythology the super-human trickster Maui fished up the North Island from the sea.
The traditional names for this island group commemmorate this feat:
The North Island is Te Ikaroa-a-Maui (“The Long Fish of Maui”).
The South Island is Te Waka-a-Maui (“The Canoe of Maui”).
Stewart Island in the far south is the legendary anchor of our hero’s canoe: Te Punga-a-Maui, while the Mahia Peninsula in the east is identified as Maui’s fish-hook: Te Matau-a-Maui.
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