Story: Cook Islanders

Haircutting ceremony, Porirua

Haircutting ceremony, Porirua

The haircutting ceremony is a rite of passage for young boys. At these large gatherings the boy sits on a chair draped with tīvaevae (quilts). As his hair is cut, members of the community plaster the boy with money or other gifts. The custom serves to maintain reciprocal ties within the extended family and community.

Using this item

Alexander Turnbull Library, Dominion Post Collection (PAColl-7327)
Reference: EP/1979/3832/34
Photograph by Ian Mackley

Permission of the Alexander Turnbull Library, National Library of New Zealand, Te Puna Mātauranga o Aotearoa, must be obtained before any re-use of this image.

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How to cite this page:

Carl Walrond, 'Cook Islanders - Settlement', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, http://www.TeAra.govt.nz/en/photograph/856/haircutting-ceremony-porirua (accessed 5 June 2020)

Story by Carl Walrond, published 8 Feb 2005, updated 1 Mar 2015