75 Maori Baby Boy Names With Meanings


Maori baby boy names reflect the historical, cultural, and traditional values of the indigenous people of New Zealand. The Maori people of Polynesian descent, are the indigenous population of mainland New Zealand, known as Aotearoa. Maori ancestry can be traced back to early settlers from East Polynesia, who made their way to New Zealand through multiple canoe journeys that took place approximately between 1320 and 1350. Maori baby boys are given names connecting them to their ancestors, land, and spirituality, preserving their cultural identity and heritage.

Before the 1800s, Māori infants would typically be given a single given name, either a simple name or a combination of names. This is because significant occurrences often inspired these names during the time of the child's birth. However, individuals might receive a new name reflecting notable events or experiences as they age.

Names in Maori culture also have deep spiritual significance. Many names are associated with deities, natural elements, or ancestral guardians. For example, the name Tāne Mahuta derives from the God Tāne Mahuta, the deity of forests and birds. Similarly, the name Tangaroa represents the God of the sea, emphasizing the importance of the ocean in Maori mythology and culture.

Maori names also highlight the connection to the natural environment and geographical landmarks. For example, the name Nikau is the ‘name of a palm tree found in New Zealand’, or the name Rangi refers to ‘sky’ in the Maori language. By naming their children after nature, Maori parents aim to foster a strong sense of belonging and attachment to their ancestral lands.

Maori baby boy names often reflect the beauty and melodic qualities of the language. For instance, Aroha means ‘love’ in Maori, Whakapono means ‘faith,’ and Manaaki means ’to cherish, conserve and sustain.’ They not only sound lyrical but also carry deep cultural values.

Naming practices for Maori baby boys encompass historical, cultural, and traditional values and serve as a link to ancestral lineage, spirituality, and the natural environment. They reflect the rich mythology, deep-rooted connections to the land, and the aspiration to maintain a strong cultural identity within the Maori community. By bestowing meaningful names upon their children, Maori parents honor their heritage, ensuring the preservation and transmission of their cultural traditions to future generations.

heart image Ari Baby Boy Sign Boy Lion; Eagle; Sunlike; Clear
heart image Ihaia Baby Boy Sign Boy God is salvation
heart image Kai Baby Boy Sign Boy Sea; Keeper of the keys; Shell; Pier
heart image Kauri Baby Boy Sign Boy Tree found in New Zealand
heart image Manaaki Baby Boy Sign Boy To cherish, conserve and sustain
heart image Mikaere Baby Boy Sign Boy Who is like God?
heart image Nikau Baby Boy Sign Boy Name of a palm tree found in New Zealand
heart image Rawiri Baby Boy Sign Boy Beloved; One who is loved by everyone
heart image Tia Unisex Baby Sign Unisex Goddess of light; Aunt
heart image Wiremu Baby Boy Sign Boy A form of William; Helmet; Protection
heart image Aata Baby Boy Sign Boy Bear or stone in the Maori language
heart image Ahika Baby Boy Sign Boy Sustaining and enhancing our place or communities; Wero or challenge
heart image Akahata Baby Boy Sign Boy Supreme
heart image Amahau Baby Boy Sign Boy To gather
heart image Anewa Baby Boy Sign Boy To fall
heart image Apera Baby Boy Sign Boy Breath
heart image Aperahama Baby Boy Sign Boy Father of a mighty nation
heart image Arapeta Baby Boy Sign Boy Noble; Famous
heart image Atama Baby Boy Sign Boy Soul of a person; expressive and versatile
heart image Atawhai Unisex Baby Sign Unisex A person who is kind and caring
heart image Eruera Baby Boy Sign Boy Rich and happy guardian; Maori form of Edward
heart image Etera Baby Boy Sign Boy Aid; Help
heart image Hahona Baby Boy Sign Boy Healer
heart image Haimona Baby Boy Sign Boy Listening
heart image Harata Unisex Baby Sign Unisex Freeman
heart image Hau Unisex Baby Sign Unisex Wind
heart image Hehu Baby Boy Sign Boy God rescues
heart image Heketoro Baby Boy Sign Boy Fairy spirit
heart image Henare Baby Boy Sign Boy Home ruler; Estate ruler
heart image Hohepa Baby Boy Sign Boy He will enlarge
heart image Huatare Baby Boy Sign Boy A famous chief.
heart image Hunapo Unisex Baby Sign Unisex Hidden darkness
heart image Hunu Unisex Baby Sign Unisex Sunray or sun
heart image Iarere Baby Boy Sign Boy To descend; The descendant
heart image Iehohapata Baby Boy Sign Boy The Lord judges
heart image Ieni Baby Boy Sign Boy God is gracious and merciful
heart image Ietepere Baby Boy Sign Boy Chaste or unmarried
heart image Ietoro Baby Boy Sign Boy Pre-eminence
heart image Ihaka Baby Boy Sign Boy He will laugh
heart image Ihu Baby Boy Sign Boy God rescues
heart image Ikaroa Unisex Baby Sign Unisex The long part of a fish
heart image Iorama Baby Boy Sign Boy God is exalted
heart image Iorangi Unisex Baby Sign Unisex The cirrus cloud
heart image Iotama Baby Boy Sign Boy God is perfect
heart image Iraia Unisex Baby Sign Unisex The God wrestler
heart image Irirangi Unisex Baby Sign Unisex The spirit voice
heart image Iwi Unisex Baby Sign Unisex Nation; Tribe; Realm
heart image Kaihautu Unisex Baby Sign Unisex Leader; A man or woman with leadership qualities
heart image Kamaka Unisex Baby Sign Unisex Rock in the Maori language
heart image Kiritopa Baby Boy Sign Boy Variant of Christopher; Bearer of Christ
heart image Kiwi Unisex Baby Sign Unisex A flightless bird native to New Zealand; A type of fruit, also known as Chinese gooseberry
heart image Koraka Baby Boy Sign Boy Koraka means A South Island Chief
heart image Maaka Baby Boy Sign Boy Version of Mark; Consecrated to the God Mars
heart image Mahaka Baby Boy Sign Boy A Ngati Kahungunu Chief
heart image Makareta Unisex Baby Sign Unisex A form of Margareta; Pearl
heart image Maori Unisex Baby Sign Unisex Indigenous people of New Zealand
heart image Marae Unisex Baby Sign Unisex A communal or sacred place that serves as a venue for meetings and ceremonies in Polynesian societies
heart image Marcellin Baby Boy Sign Boy A form of Marc; From Marcus; Refers to the Roman god of war
heart image Marcellino Baby Boy Sign Boy From Marcus
heart image Matiu Baby Boy Sign Boy God's gift
heart image Mere Baby Boy Sign Boy Bitter
heart image Nikora Unisex Baby Sign Unisex People
heart image Purta Baby Boy Sign Boy A person who is mythical
heart image Puta Baby Boy Sign Boy A mythological person
heart image Rangi Baby Boy Sign Boy Sky; God of the sky
heart image Rapata Baby Boy Sign Boy Bright fame
heart image Rongo Unisex Baby Sign Unisex Peace, Peace-loving people
heart image Ropata Baby Boy Sign Boy Bright fame; A variant of Rapata
heart image Ruru Baby Boy Sign Boy Maori word for morepork; New Zealand's native owl
heart image Tanemahuta Baby Boy Sign Boy Man, or god of the forests
heart image Tangaroa Baby Boy Sign Boy God of the sea; God of fire
heart image Tawera Baby Boy Sign Boy A morning star
heart image Tayn Baby Boy Sign Boy The God of light
heart image Tipene Baby Boy Sign Boy Maori version of Stephen; Crown
heart image Tui Unisex Baby Sign Unisex A kind of bird that eats honey as food

This compilation of Maori baby boy names showcases many names clad in the distinct cultural heritage and enriched with profound meanings. Pick a beautiful and vibrant name like 'Hau,' meaning 'wind,' to signify how the culture revolves around nature, or a gratifying name like 'Matiu' representing a ‘gift of God.' Choosing a Maori name for your little one connects them to their heritage and gives them a distinct sense of identity for a lifetime. Whether you cherish historical roots or meaningful symbolism, these Maori names will be precious and powerful gifts for your beloved bundle of joy.

Infographic: Powerful Maori Baby Boy Names With Unique Meanings

Maori baby boy names carry deep cultural significance and meanings. These names reflect the beauty of Aotearoa. Some draw inspiration from nature, while others honor legendary ancestors. This infographic presents wonderful Maori names for boys that will undoubtedly resonate with your desire for meaningful names for your little one. Discover the perfect name for your little one and embrace the Maori traditions with pride.

maori baby boy names with a distinctive touch (infographic)

Illustration: Momjunction Design Team

Get high-quality PDF version by clicking below.

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Frequently Asked Questions

1. What are some Māori names that mean 'strong'?

Nīkau is a Māori name that comes from the name of a 'palm tree' and symbolizes strength. Tāne is another Māori name that means 'man' and represents manhood and power. Rangi means 'sky' in Maori. In Māori and Polynesian mythology, Rangi was the god of the sky. Hence, this name can be considered to reflect positive attributes like power, strength, and divinity.

2. Are Māori people Polynesian?

The people belonging to the Māori tribe are the indigenous people of mainland New Zealand. They first came from Eastern Polynesia and settled in New Zealand in the 13th century. Māori people were skilled fishermen and hunters who created gardens and grew vegetables. The early Māori were also trained in stone and wood carvings (1).

3. What baby boy names reflect the culture and traditions of the Māori people?

Rangi is a Māori boy name that means 'sky.' Ranginui, also known as Rangi, was believed to be a God of the sky, according to Māori and other Polynesian mythology. He was also the husband of Papa, the earth goddess. Tane is another name that means 'man' in the Māori language. Tane was the son of Rangi and Papa and the God of light and forests. The existence of such names points to a direction that might suggest that the Māori people were culturally significant and chose names with religious or mythological significance.


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  1. Māori Arrival in Aotearoa.
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