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Mutu

Mao. Mutu, a god of evil

tude of the observer, and thus, the historical indications of declinations can indicate past locations of observations. This latitude-declination anomaly is repeated in New Zealand, far to the south (f = -36° to -47°), where the name Puanga means both "zenith" and "Rigel." This suggests that there is a common element in at least some Micronesian and Polynesian astronomy and that it originated with a people living near 10° south latitude, probably somewhere between southern New Guinea and northern Peru on a line passing through the Solomons, the Ellice Islands (somewhat south of the Gilberts), Tokelau, and the Marquesas. The importance of Rigel is further attested by the fact that the Moriori of the Chatham Islands, an offshoot of the New Zealand Maoris, began their year with the heliacal rising of Rigel. The first month of the Moriori year was named after Rongo, god of agriculture. Some Maori tribes also marked the year using the rising of Rigel, whereas others used the much more widespread year marker, the Pleiades. This difference was commemorated in Maori myth (Makemson 1941, pp. 78-79):

the task of Puanga [Rigel] is to strive with Matariki [Pleiades] that he may gain possession of the year.

Seasonal divisions were also marked by the Milky Way as in Pukapuka, where the Great Rift, which extends from Cygnus to Scorpius, was called Te Mango, "shark," and it is said that the "shark-of-winter" had its head to the south and the "shark-of-summer" had its head to the north (Makemson 1941, p. 185).

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