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Te Marae o Hine

Te Marae o Hine is the Māori name for The Square, the 17 acres of open space at the centre of Palmerston North.

The name Te Marae o Hine means the Courtyard of the Daughter of Peace.

This name was not bestowed by the Rangitāne people in pre-Pakeha days, but was chosen by a gathering of all the principal Māori people of the Manawatū district about the year 1878.

The chiefs had come together at the invitation of the Rangitāne people to discuss the selection of a suitable Māori name for the central courtyard (The Square) of the new township of Palmerston North. The name was suggested by Matene Te Whiwhi, the senior representative of Ngati Raukawa, and was unanimously agreed upon by all those present at the meeting.

The original Te Marae o Hine was the home of Ngati Raukawa chieftainess Te Rongorito, who was famous for her activities as a peacemaker. Her home was a place of peace, where no weapons were to be used and where people of all tribes could find sanctuary.

The name was chosen by the Māori people of Manawatū to symbolise their hope that people of all tribes and all races would live together in lasting maungarongo (peace) and aroha (love).