Letter: Legend may be real

23:00, Feb 27 2013

The article on the Maeroero (February 26) is too wrong to ignore.

The Maeroero were legendary men - not beasts - said to have inhabited a number of areas including the Tautuku forest in the Catlins.

According to Maori mythology the first inhabitants of the South Island were the Eroero people, who predated the Rapuwai.

Were the Maeroero the last of the Eroero people? The Tautuku Maeroero were apparently able to make fires and stone tools have been found in Mokoreta which have been confirmed as being not of Maori origin.

The Maeroero may well have been real because 500 years is plenty of time for the memory of an ancient family remnant to become the stuff of legend.

GEORGE TAYLOR
Mokoreta

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The Southland Times