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The Adzes from the Huahine Excavations
*****While there are a good number of Hane artifact types that are exactly paralleled to those recovered from the Huahine excavations (particularly the shield shaped pendants), the adzes appear to show a lack of similarity. The most obvious difference being the total lack of small 2A (2Aa) adzes such as that illustrated in Diagram 18.1. These adzes, the most common early form at Hane appear to have never been popular in Huahine.
*****There are a good number of Huahine adzes in the reserve and we managed to examine some of the more important, excavated specimens. Helen was of the impression that a direct relationship could be demonstrated between these and the early New Zealand adzes, especially in the quadrangular types, where true quadrilateral flaking could be detected. Similarly I think that there are some very close parallels between the early Tubuai adzes and those from the Huahine excavations. It can be shown that not only the Huahine adzes but those of the Leeward Islands in general may derive from traditions very similar to those of Tubuai. Nearly identical parallels are seen in the early 4A adzes, these adzes evolve over a long period to develop into a highly sophisticated form. The evolved form with longitudinally concave back, exaggerated poll and shoulder horns, is seen to be identical in the Raiatean and Tubuai collections. Duff assigns this form to his Late Transitional (fourteenth century) and It will be difficult to explain the simultaneous presence of this form, without prolonged and frequent exchange between these Islands. The fact that there was exchange between the Australs and the Leeward Islands in the pre-contact period was confirmed by Tupaia, the Raiatean Priest who served as Cooks Navigator and is quoted to have said that, "Fine hatchets (adzes) come from thence (Raivavae) to Raiatea", (J. Forster 1778, 522 and Corney, 1913, 177). However the classic 4A form mentioned above is not now evident in the present limited Raivavae collection. More disturbing is the lack of a similar parallel in the Rurutu adzes where any sort of type 4 adze appears rare. In Diagram 18.3 I have illustrated a Huahine 4A which may be an early example although there appears to be already a considerable amount of longitudinal concavity in the back. I think that it can now be shown that this particular form evolved from adzes similar to the Samoan Type VII (4E after Duff). The early forms then should be straight in the back and without any sort of tang.
*****In Diagram 18.4, I have illustrated a thick quadrangular adze from Vaiootia, this adze is somewhat larger than a Tubuai example (illustrated in Volume 15, Diagram 15.15 see Appendix A of this Volume) however the two are very similar in manufacture. The longitudinal anterior butt margins being slightly bruised down in both cases to produce an incipient tang. The mid-bevel cross-sections are identical, as well as bevel angle. These adzes, with their larger size and weighty proportions obviously where made to meet different needs than the smaller all purpose models. In Tubuai we find (very rarely) untanged models (Volume 7, 62, Figure 18 and Appendix A) these already show a movement towards a more triangular section, and are laterally found with very angular well developed tangs. The more triangular of these are classified as 3Ab while those remaining quadrangular are found in the 3H sub-varieties. If untanged they correspond with the Duff type 1G and can be distinguished from 1F by the lack of longitudinal concavity in the back. In size and weight these adzes correspond with certain of the Samoan Type IIb adzes, the latter however are a far cry from being quadrangular.