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1<html><head><title>The naming of Ngunguru</title></head><body><h2>The naming of Ngunguru</h2><p>Ngunguru was given its name many years ago, at a time when there was a tiny lake with a lovely name Waiwhakamaroro. </p><p><br /><br />One day in those distant times, a large canoe of warriors was traveling up the East coast. They were weak and almost dying for lack of water. Moreover, only one of them, a tall, well built man knew the coast. This warrior was called Hau, and it is thought that he was a spy, for, as was later made clear, he was hostile to the rest of the crew. Nevertheless at this stage, he kept urging them on, weak as they were, with the promise of fresh water a little farther up the coast. &quot;Keep paddling just a little longer and I will show you where to find water&quot;, was the spur he used to keep up their flagging spirits and make their weary arms go on working.</p><p><br />But although Hau's words were encouraging and friendly, he was secretly formulating a wicked plan. He guided the party into the Ngunguru River, up as far as the little Lake Waiwhakamaroro. Then he leapt out of the canoe and ran to the edge of the lake, as if he wished to lead his companions to it, but in fact, he secretly and silently put a deadly makutu (curse) on its waters.</p><p><br /><br />Unaware of danger, the desperately thirsty men staggered after Hau to the lake shore, lay flat on their stomachs and drank long and deeply. At once the makutu did its wicked work and the unfortunate warriors groaned in the throes of an agonising death. The word 'Ngunguru' represents the sound of the death rattles and groans of these ill-fated warriors.</p><p> </p><p>(From <em>Tai Tokerau</em> by Florence Keene, Northland Room, Whangarei Central Library)<br /> </p></body></html>
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