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Matariki Meaning and context to Matariki Motor Lodge


We chose the name for our motel based on our proximity to the Matariki Continuing Care Unit (previously known as Matariki Hospital) which I considered a landmark in Te Awamutu and a useful spot to refer to when giving directions. At the time I was told Matariki meant new beginnings and thought it appropriate for our new venture into the Motel business with a newly built motel complex.

The word Matariki has two meanings, both of which refer to a cluster of stars. Mata Riki means Tiny Eyes, and Mata Ariki means Eyes of God (taken from https://www.kiwifamilies.co.nz/.../matariki-maori-new-year).

This cluster of (7-9) stars are referred in New Zealand as Matariki and the cluster begins to rise in the last few days of May and into June, and is different every year, and this symbolises the coming of the Māori New Year (hence the new beginning reference I was told of earlier). This same group of stars may be known in other parts of the world as Seven Sisters or Pleiades star cluster.

For context: I have decided to create a series of posts/blogs explaining some of the Maori place names commonly referred to in our posts, as I thought it might be of interest to our guests. I am not an authority on Maori language and have taken the information from a number of sources. Please feel free to correct me (politely) in the comments if I have it completely wrong or if you can add more useful information. kind regards Deborah.