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Adams, Memoirs of Arii TaimaiIndigenous Histories
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Chapter XVII


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Chapter XVII

Every great name had a sort of legend or title attached to it, to make known in formal oratory or poetry the eminence of the chief. The verses which told the dignity of Marama were these:

Terii o Marama i te tauo o te rai.

Lord Moon of the summit of the sky.

Eimeo and Nuurua bow down to you.

You surpass the heads of Taaroa and Tane.

You are the lord circled by the rainbow,

As you stand on Punaauia

You are the child of Raamaurire

Who was a lord and still a God.

You wear the golden Maro of Maraetefano.

As the land grew, You grew as lord of Eimeo.

Whatever might be meant in Tahiti by the word Arii rahi or Terii, and whether or no the idea of kingship ever existed there, as a complete one for the whole island, there is no kind of doubt that in the island of Moorea and in the case of Marama the idea of supremacy was as complete and exclusive as ever it was with Charlemagne. The districts under him were commanded by fighting chiefs, like Maheine whom Cook knew in 1777 as chief of Opunohu, and Hamau whom he knew as chief of Maatea, and Terii tapunui, chief of Vaiere; but neither Cook nor any of the other foreigners seems to have come in contact with Marama.

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© Derived from the revised Paris edition of 1901 page 172, 2004
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