Story: Nearshore islands

Cannon, Ruapuke Island

Cannon, Ruapuke Island

This cannon was bought by the southern Ngāi Tahu chief Tūhawaiki on one of his visits to Sydney. Like his great opponent Te Rauparaha at Kāpiti Island, Tūhawaiki based himself on an island – Ruapuke, near Bluff in Foveaux Strait. Tūhawaiki defeated Te Rauparaha on two occasions in the 1830s, and drove the northern chief out of the South Island. He was known as Bloody Jack, not for his ferocity, but because he was said to have picked up the swear word ‘bloody’ from local whalers, and used it frequently in broken English.

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Private collection
Photograph by John Hall-Jones

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How to cite this page:

Eileen McSaveney, 'Nearshore islands - Early inhabitants', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, (accessed 23 September 2021)

Story by Eileen McSaveney, published 24 Sep 2007