Tautoru Neighbourhood - Sold

Tautoru is the Māori name for Orion's Belt

Tautoru or “the three friends”, is the Māori name for Orion’s Belt, a line of three bright stars that rise on the eastern dawn horizon of New Zealand in late May or early June.

Located below and to the right of Puanga (Rigel), Tautoru is one of only a few constellations that straddle the celestial equator and can be equally seen from both hemispheres.

It is also known as “Ngā Tira a Puanga” (The Travelling Companions of Rigel) and “Te Whata o Puanga” (The Store House of Rigel), and was one of the principal stars relied on by Ngāi Tahu forebears in connection with the beginning of the new year and the planting of kūmera.

“When Puanga rises out of the ocean it throws out unmistakable flashes. If these flashes are towards the north, it will be a year of plenty on land and in the sea. If they seem to flash towards the south, then it will be a lean year, and food will be scarcer than usual. This, in the tradition of our people, has always been an unfailing omen (tohu) of conditions in the new year.” (James Cowan; "The Maori: Yesterday and Today” 1930, page 89)

 

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