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Evidence for Mu Torere

1 pieces of evidence found.

Id DLP.Evidence.782
Type Ethnography
Location East Cape
Date 1912-01-01 - 1912-12-31
Rules Play begins with the pieces on the kewai, each player on half of the circle. Players move by moving one piece to an empty adjacent space. Players can only move to the putahi when the piece being moved is next to an opponent's piece. The player that blocks the other from moving is the winner.
Content "Mu torere. This game, known as torere and mu torere, is one of the most interesting items we have to discuss, on account of its resemblance to our game of draughts...Mohi Turei, a well informed and very old man of the Ngati-Porou tribe informs us (1912) that mu torere was the old name for the game...The most disconcerting fact if we view mu torere as an old time game, is that is seems to have been unknown to other tribes than those of the East Cape district, and its vicinity. From no other district have we succeeded in obtaining any information as to a former knowledge of the game....The following is a description of the game of mu torere, as explained by Tyta Nihoniho:— A board is marked with charcoal with a design resembling an eight-pointed star (see diagram). The centre from which the arms radiate is termed the putahi, the radiating arms are termed kawai or tentacles, the design bring compared by the Maori to an octopus, from which the pattern is said to have been derived. Two persons play this game, each having four perepere or 'men,' which are small stones so marked that each player's men may be readily distinguished. One player has his four men on points 1,2,3, and 4, the other player puts his four on points 5, 6, 7, and 8. Let B represent the letter player, and A the one who has numbers 1 to 4. The men can be moved only to the points of the design, or to the putahi, or centre. No jumping over an occupied point is allowed, to move a man from one point to another it must be moved to the next point, which must be unoccupied, or he cannot move it. A player cannot jump a man over an occupied point to put it on a blank one beyond, and there is no taking or crowning of men, it is simply a question of blocking your opponent. A man can be moved to the putahi if it be unoccupied. B cannot open the game by moving either 6 or 7, as they are tapu (prohibited) for the time being. He can move 5 or 8 to the putahi...B is effectually hemmed in and has to capitulate. The player can move a man either way, but only when a point (or kawai) on one side or the other, or the putahi, is open to move into." Best 1925: 60-61.
Confidence 100
Source Best, E. 1925. Games and Pastimes of the Maori. Wellington: Whitcombe and Tombs Limited.

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