Ana Rupene and Child


Ngāti Maru (? – 18?)


Watch an interview with descendant Toko Renata.

The life dates of Ana Rupene - also known as Ana Reupene Whetuki and Heeni Phillips - are not known at this time. However, we know she lived and died at Manaia on the Coromandel. Named Ana Rupene in Lindauer's portrait, she was a woman of mana derived from her Ngāti Maru whakapapa.

Ngāti Maru, Ngāti Paoa, Ngāti Tamatera and Ngāti Whanaunga trace their whakapapa to an ancestor named Marutuahu, who was the son of Hotunui of Tainui.  Relationship ties between Marutuahu descendants stretch from Tainui to Hauraki. They were such that when the Kīngitanga or Māori King movement was established in the late 1850s,1 tribes pledged their sacred mountains to the Kingitanga cause to symbolise their support for the unification of Māori under the leadership of Tainui. In Hauraki, Kohukohunui (Wharekawa) was offered on behalf of Ngāti Whanaunga and Rātāroa on behalf of Ngāti Pāoa. Maunga Te Aroha was given by Ngāti Maru and Moehau by Ngāti Tamaterā.2 This pepeha acknowledges the shared whakapapa of Pare Hauraki iwi.

Ko Moehau kei waho - Moehau stands in the distance
Ko Te Aroha kei roto - Te Aroha stands inland
Ko Tikapa te Moana - Tikapa is the waterway
Ko Hauraki te whenua - Hauraki is the land
Ko Marutuahu te tangāta - Marutuahu is the man

Lindauer's 1878 painting won a gold medal when displayed at the St Louis World's Fair3 of 1904 and the medal was conferred on Lindauer's patron Henry Partridge, rather than the artist. This portrait of Ana Rupene and child is one of Lindauer's most popular works. The number of portraits in existence is unknown, although historians have estimated Lindauer created up to 30 versions.

The child on her back is remembered to have lived to be about 14 - 18 years old. It is said he had a supernumerary congenital condition meaning he had an extra toe on each foot.4


  1. Te Ahukaramū Charles Royal, 'Waikato - The King movement', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, updated 4 March 2009, accessed 28 January 2010.
  2. Te Ahukaramū Charles Royal, 'Marutūahu tribes - Resources of the Hauraki region', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, updated 4 March 2009, accessed 28 January 2010.
  3. ‘Louisiana Purchase Exposition’, Wikipedia – the Free Encyclopedia, accessed 28 January 2010.
  4. Personal communication with Toko Renata, 11 December 2009.
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