The Dynastic Evolution and Functional Role of the Tu'i Tonga as Master Shaman

Niel Gunson

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


    When E. E. V. Collocott ('924) published his paper, 'An Experiment in Tongan History', the experiment was successful in giving a chronological framework to traditional history. This paper aims to show that the experiment did not go far enough by arguing that the Tu'i Tonga king lists do not represent a continuous line of succession from father to son. It affirms the statistical improbability of such a succession over 35 or more generations and discusses the nature and problems of king lists in general. After that the case is largely reduced to identifying dynastic sequences in the traditional history. Finally the functional role of the Tu'i Tonga as master shaman is discussed, traces of shamanic origin being shown to have survived up to the reign of Pau.'
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationTonga: Land, Sea and People
    Editors Tangikina Moimoi Steen and Nancy L. Drescher
    Place of PublicationTonga
    PublisherTonga Research Association
    ISBN (Print)9789829806215
    Publication statusPublished - 2011


    Dive into the research topics of 'The Dynastic Evolution and Functional Role of the Tu'i Tonga as Master Shaman'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

    Cite this