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Pounamu hei matau

This beautifully shaped pounamu hei matau lets the beauty of the stone take the lead. Dendritic spots on the back and a slight cream edge at the point add character and charm to this unique piece. Te Tau Ihu pounamu with its mix of minerals means this pounamu hei matau is truly one of a kind and will set you apart from the crowd.
Length 74mm x 25mm max width

The Story
Hei matau are stylised forms of fish hook used by Māori. Aotearoa is an island nation so Māori depended on fish for survival, hence fishing and all its tools were considered tapu items. The fish hooks were often worn as pendants for safe keeping. Furthermore Māori legends also speak of Maui fishing up Te Ika a Maui(the North Island, “The Fish of Maui”) with a hook made from the jaw bone of his grandmother. Hawkes Bay is said to be the hook caught in the side of the fish. For these reasons, hei matau is a taonga that represents the land, as well as prosperity, fertility and safe passage across water.

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