Taniwha. Taniwha is a mythological creature living in the sea, rivers, pools, swamps and underwater caves. Their habitat was especially located near ominous places.
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Taniwha is a mythological creature living in the sea, rivers, pools, swamps and underwater caves. Their habitat was especially located near ominous places.
One legend, titled “The Taniwha of Kaipara”, illustrates the deceptive nature of the beast. Very briefly summarized: Three sisters, of which one exceptionally beautiful, were chased by a Taniwha when they were picking berries. Finally the Taniwha managed to capture the prettiest sister and took her to his cave. Years later she had given the monster six sons. Three were like their father and the others were human. She taught her human sons to craft weapons and the art of war. One day her sons killed their three taniwha brothers and father and they took her mother home.
From a more spiritual point of view the Taniwha was considered a connection between the human life on earth and the spiritual world of the gods, ancestors and stars. In this matter the mythological creature functioned as a link between common daily life and ancestral heritage.