Matariki is the Māori name for the cluster of stars known as Pleiades (the seven daughters).
Matariki (Alcyone), Eyes of Tāwhirimātea
Tupu-ā-rangi (Atlas), Sky Tohunga
Waipuna-ā-rangi (Electra), Sky Spring
Waiti (Taygeta), Sweet Water
Tupu-ā-nuku (Pleione), Earth Tohunga
Ururangi (Merope), Entry to the Heavens
Waitā (Maia), Sprinkle of Water
Te Reo Māori
I a te wae mauī o te tipua e piki ake ane ki tana karaone, ka whanau mai te marama niko tuatahi hei whakaatu ana a Matariki me āna tamāhine e ono, mai i ngā ātārangi a Tama nui te rā.
Ko ngā rā tekau mā tahi hei tohu o te marama me te whakakotahitanga, e tuku koha aroha ana ki a tātou katoa o te ao marama. Ka tuku mihi mātou ki a Papatūānuku mō tō tātou oranga, mō ngā whakahere katoa hoki kia rite ki te rangi, ki te whenua.
As the left leg of the giant rises swiftly to its crown, the birth of the first crescent moon reveals Matariki & her six daughters from the shadow of the sun.
Eleven days gesture lunar synchronicity, presenting many gifts lovingly bestowed on all of creation. — We thank our mother for the ultimate gift of life, & for all you sacrifice; as above, so below.
Māori New Year
The Matariki cluster has played a significant role throughout Aotearoa, marking both when to harvest crops as it dips from our view in Autumn; and when to sow, after the first new moon when the cluster rises again. The first new moon following Matariki's rise is celebrated as Māori New Year; a time of reflection, a time to celebrate together with friends and whānau, and a time of planning and preparing the land for bountiful harvests ahead.