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Top 20 Māori boys’ and girls’ names released

3 July 2013

Top 20 Māori boys’ and girls’ names released

The Department of Internal Affairs has released a list of the top 20 Māori baby names for 2012 in association with Māori Language Week 2013, Te Wiki o te Reo Māori.

The five most popular baby names for Māori girls in 2012 were Maia, Aria, Manaia, Anahera and Ataahua. For boys, the top five Māori names were Nikau, Wiremu, Kahurangi, Kauri and Nikora, says Registrar-General of Births Deaths and Marriages, Jeff Montgomery.

“New Zealanders are always interested in names and this week is a great opportunity to release the top 20 Māori boys’ and girls’ names. Names carry memories, they link back to your history your whakapapa. Māori names are unique in the world and it is not just Māori who are choosing Māori names for new additions to their whānau.

It’s also really important for new parents to register the names of their newborns with Births Deaths and Marriages. Birth registrations are the first step to creating a record for your child and their entitlement to the benefits of living in New Zealand.”

Te Taura Whiri i te Reo Māori Chief Executive (CE) Glenis Philip-Barbara welcomes the release of the names for Te Wiki o te Reo Māori, whose theme is Ngā ingoa Māori, or Māori names.

“It’s great that Māori names were given to so many babies last year,” says Glenis Philip-Barbara.

“Names connect people to place, and we’d like all New Zealanders to consider the wealth of connection that Māori names offer.”



Te Taura Whiri i te Reo Māori says that Māori names are unique in the world and it is pleasing to see that they are becoming a popular choice for a range of whānau and families.

A smaller number of iwi specific names were identified such as Mahinarangi (originally from the East Coast, and also Waikato) and Waimirirangi (from the far north).

“Many of our tipuna names will not feature on the list as they are names that are personal to whānau and hapū.”

The more popular names show that a new generation of mokopuna continue to be gifted names that are often unique to their own whānau, hapū and iwi.

Top 20 Māori names for babies in 2012


Girls

Boys

1

Maia

Nikau

2

Aria

Wiremu

3

Manaia

Kahurangi

4

Anahera

Kauri

5

Ataahua

Nikora

6

Aroha

Tane

7

Tia

Tamati

8

Ariana

Rawiri

9

Kaia

Anaru

10

Kahurangi

Tai

11

Maraea

Manaia

12

Waimarie

Tama

13

Tui

Mikaere

14

Amaia

Te Ariki

15

Miriama

Ariki

16

Awhina

Te Koha

17

Hana

Hoani

18

Anika

Manawa

19

Huia

Tiare

20

Mareikura

Hemi

Note: the names for Māori babies are sourced from data provided by Births, Deaths and Marriages of the Department of Internal Affairs. The results are for the first name given to nineteen thousand Māori babies (by descent) registered in 2012. The analysis found that Māori girls are more likely to be given Māori names.

ends

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