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Maori/Native New Zealand House Names

Here’s a selection of possible house names, and their meanings, some quite delightful, taken from the Maori language. They come courtesy of Graham Gould’s book ‘House Names of Australia’ (see www.grahamgould.com).

New Zealand is one of Australia’s closest neighbours and people regularly travel between the two countries. There has been a steady stream of New Zealand migrants to Australia over the years and they have taken this flavour of Maori culture with them.

To draw your attention to some of the more interesting and delightful Maori house names, we’ve put some of our favourites in bold. Have a look, they may help you choose your house name.

House name Meaning
Ahuru comfortable
Amari east wind, the wind behind you
Angaanga chief, elder, head
Aniwaniwa rainbow
Aorangi break of day
Aotea white cloud
Aotearoa long white cloud
Aramoana track to the sea
Aratika straight track
Aratoro new track
Arorangi the face of the sky
Ataahua Wahi beautiful place
Atapo shades of the night
Atarau moonlight
Atawhai kindness
Awaiti small river
Awarere running stream
Awatea daylight
Awatere swift flowing river
Awhitu home sickness
Haere ra farewell (said by those staying)
Haere-huka flying spray
Haere-mai! welcome!
Haumoana wind from the ocean
Haunui strong wind
Hauroko sound of the wind
Hikurangi high mountain
Hine-te-awa maiden of the river
Hiwinui big ridge
Hohou Rongo make peace
Hoki to return
Hokitika to return directly
Huapai good fruit
Huarrau fruitful, productive
Hukerenui great waterfall
Humarire peaceful, beautiful
Kahukuri rainbow
Kaiata morning food, breakfast
Kaihini rich food
Kainga home
Kaipo night meal
Karanga welcome
Karetu sweet-scented grass
Karioi to linger
Karoro long beach
Kauati chief, important person
Kei koa to be happy
Kia ora good health
Kikorangi blue sky
Koa happy
Koa Whare happy house
Kohanga nest
Kohu enter
Kohumaru sheltered from the mist
Konei this place; this time
Koputauaki to rest after a feast
Koputiraha restful pose
Korimako bellbird
Kuwaha entrance
Maiki high place
Maioha greet affectionately, welcome
Manako to like
Manapouri anxious heart
Mangaiti little stream
Mangamahu quiet stream
Manganui big stream
Manuhiri guest
Manuka tea-tree
Manukura chief, leader
Maraeroa long open space
Marama moon
Maranga to arise, to get up
Marangai east wind; heavy rain
Mararoa big cultivated field
Marie good omen, peaceful
Marika quiet, carefully
Marino peaceful, calm
Marire quiet, thoroughly, peaceful
Maru gentle, shade, shelter, sheltered
Maruakoa happy valley
Maruia sheltered
Matangi breeze
Mekari close to
Minamina desire
Moe-Ra Maori for sleeping in the sun.
Mohaka dancing place
Momona good, fertile land
Momorangi child of heaven
Muritai sea breeze
Naumai welcome
Ngakinga cultivated ground
Ngapuke the hills
Ngatahi together
Nui Kainga great house
Nui Wahi great place
Oka place of cooking
Okaiawa eating place by the river
Okataina place of laughter
Okau place of swimming
Omahanui place of pleasure
Omaka place where stream flows
Omihi sad place
Onamata of time past
Onehunga meeting place on the beach
Ongaroto place of the lake
Opaki pleasant climate
Opapa flat place
Opara muddy place
Owhata food store
Owhitiangatera where the sun shines
Paiatepukahu fertile, good growing place
Pakihi open grass country
Paoro echo
Papanui big, flat plain
Petapeta all together
Piwari beautiful, pliant
Powhiri welcome
Pukeatua hill of the gods
Pukenui big hill
Pukerangi high hill
Puketitiro look-out
Puri Puri New Zealand tree
Putaputa full of holes
Rahi welcome
Rahiri welcome
Ranganui big group of people
Rangatira chief, noble
Rangauna good fishing
Rangiatea clear skies
Ranui abundant sunshine
Rawhiti sunrise
Rehutai sea spray
Rere waterfall
Rongo peace
Rotoiti little lake
Ruatapu sacred cave
Ruranga guest, stranger
Tahawai edge of the water
Taheke waterfall
Tahuti Mai welcome
Takiroa echo
Tararua with two points or peaks
Tauranga resting place
Taurima hospitality, entertain
Te Kairanga place of plentiful food
Te Maru the shelter
Te Puninga camping place
Te Whanga the harbour
Te Whare the house
Tirohanga sight; view
Tiromoana view of the ocean
Tiroroa extensive view
Titirangi the fringe of heaven
Tomokanga entrance
Turanga stopping place
Turua beautiful
Turuki crowded
Tutoro dreamy
Uruhau happy, pleased
Ururua overgrown
Wahi Huhua place of plenty
Waiareka pleasant water
Waimarie good omen
Waimarino calm water
Waimaru sheltered water
Waiora health
Waiuku place of washing
Whakaemi to gather together
Whakahoa to be friendly with
Whakapono believe, faith
Whakatakoto lay down; place; plan
Whakato to plant
Whakawehi protection
Whare house
Whare Matoro house for social intercourse
Whare Puni sleeping house
Whare Rahia house of pleasure
Whare Taka meeting house
Wharehunga house of people
Whenuapai good country

 

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