Source information

About the major sources of the terms and usage examples collected in the dictionary and corpus.

Major sources

It is not surprising that the Crown produced a large proportion of the source texts for this dictionary, across the entire time period. Major sources in the Corpus include:

  • land deeds
  • the Kāhiti (the Māori language gazette produced until 1932)
  • Native Affairs Committee reports on petitions (from 1872–1962)
  • speeches of Māori members of Parliament (1881–1906, and from 2000)
  • Māori language translations of Bills and Acts (1881–1910).


A smaller, but no less important, proportion of the source texts was generated by Māori engaging directly with the Crown and each other in legal discourse. Those sources include:

  • proceedings of the Kotahitanga parliaments and petitions
  • submissions and evidence before tribunals and Parliament and correspondence.

The 181 years covered by the source documents that enabled the construction of this dictionary show a great deal of orthographic and lexical change. The list that follows shows that breadth. You can also read a list of major source abbreviations for this dictionary.

Secondary research sources

Extra English-language information provided in dictionary entries are sourced from published books, articles, unpublished papers and other resources. With the exception of the dictionaries, these sources have all been referenced directly in the entries of the printed dictionary He Papakupu Reo Ture—A Dictionary of Māori Legal Terms (LexisNexis, 2013).

Published books


Unpublished papers and other resources

  • New Zealand’s Lost Cases Project


Electronically available dictionaries

Wakareo ā-Ipurangi dictionaries (available to subscribers only):