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Fishhook Bone Pendant
Fishhook Bone Pendant
This pendant is in the shape of a stylised Maori fish hook known as the hei-matau (pronounced hay-may-tow), matau meaning hook.

The Fish Hook (matau) was very important to the Maori. Fishing provided a large part of their Kai Moana or 'Food from the sea'. However it was also important for trade and making the tribe wealthy. Today's fish hook's do not have the practical application they once did, they are now decorative versions and strictly for wearing. It is believed that the hei-matau and many other fish-like amulets, more common in the south, may have been worn as talismans during fishing expeditions.

The Hei Matau sigifies Abundance and plenty, strength and determination, it brings peace, prosperity and good health. It is a device for catching good luck and positive energy and provides a safe journey over water.

Bone was an important material for the Maori. It was hard, durable and simple to work. It was used for fish hooks, chisels, spear points and many other useful tools. Moa bone, seal ivory and human bone were the main sources. It has been said that once you wear a piece of bone next to your skin, some of you passes into the pendant and the pendant becomes one with you.






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