Maori King Monument

Morrinsville-Kiwitahi Road, Rukumoana Marae, Kiwitahi

  • Maori King Monument, Kiwitahi.
    Copyright: NZ Historic Places Trust.

List Entry Information

List Entry Status Listed List Entry Type Historic Place Category 1 Public Access Private/No Public Access
List Number 4156 Date Entered 21st September 1989


City/District Council

Matamata-Piako District


Waikato Region

Assessment criteriaopen/close

Historical Significance or Value

The Maori King movement was established in April 1857. Potatau was the first king, succeeded by his son Tawhiao who was in turn succeeded by his son Mahuta whom this monument commemorates with a life-size sculpture. The genealogies on each face of the monument trace the descent of the Maori Kings from the leaders of the founding canoes.


A more elaborate structure than is common for memorials or monuments. The whole, it is thought, may have been imported from Italy with Bouskill responsible only for designing the sculpture and applying the lettering.


A monument which relates well to the environment and surrounding marae structures.


Construction Professionalsopen/close

Bouskill, Jo

No biography is currently available for this construction professional

Additional informationopen/close

Physical Description


Classical Italianate structure with four columns featuring stiff-leaf composite capitals resting on a double plinth with cavetto moulding and supporting four stilted arches with decorated abutments. The entablature is composed of dentils which are below acanthus leaf modillions underneath a pavilion roof-shaped slab. The whole has inlaid hammered lead lettering on four faces below the arches and between the columns, with more lettering on the upper plinth. Canoes rendered by outline in lead feature on both the upper and lower plinths, as does the maker's name. The whole is surmounted by a life sized statue of Mahuta.


In 1984 the statue was removed from its base and holding-down lugs were replaced with bronze bolts and angles, grouted in position and sealed. The cracks were filled with epoxy resin. Lead lettering was replaced and repaired and the plinth was sealed with Aquellux before the statue was replaced and bolted down and the concrete base replastered.

Notable Features

Lead lettering of genealogies. Italian marble.

Construction Dates

Original Construction
1917 -

Construction Details

Italian marble with bronze reinforcing on a reinforced concrete base.

Other Information

This historic place was registered under the Historic Places Act 1980. This report includes the text from the original Building Classification Committee report considered by the NZHPT Board at the time of registration.

Please note that entry on the New Zealand Heritage List/Rarangi Korero identifies only the heritage values of the property concerned, and should not be construed as advice on the state of the property, or as a comment of its soundness or safety, including in regard to earthquake risk, safety in the event of fire, or insanitary conditions.