Waitangi Day

6 February is considered to be a national day of New Zealand. On this day in 1840 on the banks of the river of Waitangi (translated from Maori — noisy water) between the British and Maori signed the Treaty of Waitangi (Treaty of Waitangi). The agreement will forever sowed tension between Maori and European settlers.

The story goes that in the late 19th century in New Zealand's trade flourished dishonest and illegal sale of land. Serious competition, including, came from the French immigrants.

British Empire has promised to deal with the riots and restore their Maori land, as well as equal rights with the British. In return, the Maori offered to take UK citizenship. The contract, including these proposals was signed February 6, 1840 between William Hobson (William Hobson, 26 September 1792 — 10 September 1842), the first Governor of New Zealand, representing the interests of the British Crown and Maori chiefs. In May 1840 New Zealand officially became part of the British Empire.

At dawn flag-raising ceremony is held (Photo: KIS, Shutterstock) The text of the agreement was written in English and translated into Maori. Inaccuracy of the translation and the absence of a large number of legal and political terms in the Maori language gave rise to large differences in the interpretation of the rights established by the contract. In addition, not all Maori chiefs agreed to sign the treaty, that is, there was a unanimous decision. Today there are a large number of opponents of the celebration of Waitangi, which is considered dishonorable agreement in relation to Maori.

Despite the continuing disputes and friction, Waitangi Day is celebrated throughout the country. The holiday program is full of concerts, presentations of Maori cultural heritage, exhibitions and games in the fresh air. This festival has gained widespread in the 30s of the last century after the Lord Bledislo (Lord Bledisloe), Governor of New Zealand, bought a plot of land on which stood the house of James Busby (place of signature), and in 1934 presented it to the nation as a symbol of the union of all New Zealanders.

most magnificent celebrations are held on the banks of the river Waitangi. At dawn on February 6 is the flag-raising ceremony is held in New Zealand. Act out a scene of signing the contract. Traditional Maori canoes and New Zealand Navy ships gather in Bay of Aylends (Bay of Islands), representatives of the two sides landed on the shore and gather in a clearing near the house J. Busby.

After the opening speeches begin the celebration. You can visit the museum to see the folk dance, listen to music, watch and even take part in a traditional Maori ritual ceremonies.