Pouwhenua; 2003/121



About this object

Found in the Tongapurutu Awa. Has signs of dried areas, where wood is split. A highly effective weapon in the hands of a skilled user.

Belonging to the same class of weaponry as the Tewhatewha and Taiaha, Pouwhenua are usually made of wood and have a large, broad blade known as rau at one end and a pointed, sharp tip at the other end.
Usually a human head motif was carved on the shaft to form a boundary between the shaft and the long spear point. Pouwhenua were used for attacking an opponent with short sharp strikes or stabbing thrusts with quick footwork on the part of the wielder. A single blow with the broad blade could easily result in death.

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