Mahuika’s fingernail E Toru – Raukaraka pounamu
Carved from a rare golden Raukaraka pounamu this piece is like fire, like the fingernail of fire from Mahuika’s hands. Its chatoyancy means the golden fibres flash and move with the light. As a result, its colours are magic.
This fingernail is number 3 of a 10 set piece, 1 for every fingernail on Mahuika’s hands. You will be one of the lucky few wearing one of these limited edition taonga.
A small chip came off from the taonga edge during carving. So Tim carved a groove along that side to represent the actions of his tupuna who would remove the chipped section and turn it into a small piece of jewellery or perhaps a needle or other small tool. No piece of pounamu was ever wasted. And Tim works hard to ensure he continues that practise today.
A larger toki, this would be the perfect gift for someone who needs a little fire in their life, or to the person that lights you up.
We only have a limited amount of this fiery Raukaraka pounamu. It is a rare find and a very popular stone(for obvious reasons), so if you are keen on a Raukaraka taonga we recommend you get in quick.
80mm length x 45mm max width
Mahuika is the Māori goddess of fire, the essence of the flame. Fire burned from every pore of her body, her hair a ball of flames. Fire even leapt from her fingertips and toenails. This taonga represents one of the toenails of fire gifted to Māui. Like Mahuika who lived in a cave under a firey mountain, this taonga has been forged by incredible heat and pressure, whilst lying underground.
One day Māui began wondering where fire came from, so he set off to find Mahuika. Mahuika gave him one of her fingernails of fire. But Māui was a very curious man and after she had given him her first fingernail of fire he decided he would find out where Mahuika would get her fire from if all her fire was gone. So, over the course of the day, he tricked her into giving him all her fingernails and her toenails of fire.
Finally, Mahuika realised she’d been tricked and threw her last toenail of fire at Māui. It missed Māui and flew into the trees, planting itself in the trees of Mahoe, Totara, Patete, Pukatea and Kaikōmako. These trees cherished and held on to the fire, considering it a great gift. From that time Māori would gather sticks from these trees to rub together, using their friction to create fire.
Read the full version of How Māui Brought Fire To The World
Other Taonga you might be interested in
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