Mororekai Kaupeka Piripi

Ngāti Wai

1881 - 1965

Mororekai Piripi was the son of Henare Kaupeke Piripi and was a leading rangātira of Ngāti Wai. He was an authority on Māori history and tradition in the Northland area. He lived at Punaruku in the Whangaruru district, died at Whangarei aged 85 and is buried at Mokau Cemetery.

Biographical sources

  • Te Ao Hou 37 (1961): 18.
  • Te Ao Hou 54 (1966): 63.


  • "Ko Te Timatanga Mai O Ngātiwai/History of Ngātiwai." Spoken by M. Piripi onto a tape. Ed. and notes by E. G. Schwimmer. Trans. by Arapera Blank. Te Ao Hou 37 (1961): 18-21.
  • This is the first of four instalments written in Māori with English translations on the history of Ngāti Wai which Morore Piripi recorded on tape with his son Houpeke acting as an interpreter. In this first instalment Piripi describes the origins of Ngāti Wai and recounts various stories demonstrating the supernatural powers of the Ngāti Wai people and particularly of their ancestor Manaia. A patere extolling the powers of Manaia is included in the text.
  • "A History of the Ngāti-Wai." Te Ao Hou 38 (1962): 43+ [second instalment].
  • Piripi recounts the battle between Manaia and Ngapuhi at Mimiwhangata which resulted in the scattering of Manaia’s tribe. He discusses why Manaia introduced sandflies and mosquitoes at Taupiri and describes Puihimoanariki’s journey north from Whakatane in search of a suitable place to settle. Piripi provides background stories to the place-names assigned by Puhi during his survey of the land.
  • "A History of Ngāti Wai." Te Ao Hou 39 (1962): 46-49 [third instalment].
  • In this instalment Piripi writes of the Ngapuhi ancestor Rahiri who was descended from Puhikaiariki [Puhimoanariki of the previous instalment]. Piripi gives a brief account of Rahiri’s whakapapa and tells of his marriages to Ahuaiti, Whakaruru and Moetonga. Piripi includes the Ngapuhi chant "He Pao Mo Te Whiwhionga O Ngapuhi I Nga Maunga Me Nga Wahi O Te Tohe o Ngapuhi/A Song for the Ngapuhi’s Possession of the Hills and Places of the Ngapuhi", which describes the territory of Ngapuhi and he concludes by writing of the Ngāti-Maru and their interaction with Waipu, descendant of Te Arai.
  • "The History of Ngāti Wai." Ed. E. G. Schwimmer and trans. Arapera Blank. Te Ao Hou 54 (1966): 46-47.
  • In this fourth and final instalment of Piripi’s history of Ngāti Wai, he describes the Ngāti Wai introduction and gradual conversion to the Church of the Latter Day Saints.


  • "Haere Ki O Koutou Tipuna." Te Ao Hou 54 (1966): 63.
  • Taylor, C. R. H. A Bibliography of Publications on the New Zealand Māori and the Moriori of the Chatham Islands. Oxford: Clarendon, Oxford UP, 1972. 88.