THE KINGITE REBELLION - By John Robinson Oct 17, 2019 2:58:23 GMT 12
Post by Kiwi Frontline on Oct 17, 2019 2:58:23 GMT 12
Two opposing flags were flown at an 1857 Waikato meeting of Maoris, where those intending to establish a Maori king were challenged by a second group flying the Union Jack.
The proposed "king" was not accepted by all Waikato Maori; there never was consensus or unity. Across the country some Maori came to support this new king but far more were opposed. Chiefs at the Kohimarama conference in 1860, the largest conference of chiefs ever held in New Zealand, voiced their dismay and opposition to the king movement.
An offer of assistance for the Government came from the Ngapuhi in 1863; in 1864 Arawa defeated kingite reinforcements; in 1869 friendly natives, including Ngati Kahungunu, defeated Te Kooti, resulting in the withdrawal of kingites from a possible new rebel coalition.
A key reason for the birth of the king movement had been the failure of the new government to provide universal law and order. The British wanted to bring a new, improved form of colonisation in which many native customs would be respected. But for some years British law was not enforced in back country regions where Maori were predominant.
Consequently Tamihana Te Rauparaha called for a Maori "king" to bring the much-needed, firm government. However, he became opposed to it after kingite supporters joined the Taranaki rebellion. Other leaders had different ideas. Wiremu Tamihana (the "kingmaker"), spoke of having two co-existing sovereigns, which was absurd in law and unworkable in practice. The warlike Rewi Maniapoto attacked Government agents. The old warrior, Te Wherowhero, was a friend to the Government until he was hijacked to become the first king, Potatau. His weak son, Matutaera, became the second king, Tawhiao, and after his defeat took up the new Pai Marire religion.
Their rebellion cost lives and caused widespread disruption, and the divided king movement failed in all its objectives.
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