Population Diversity in New Zealand

Marissa Burgoyne (English 34 1993)

New Zealand was originally settled by Polynesians by 800 AD, who eventually became the Maoris (the Normals). Between this time and the beginning of European colonization, their population grew to between 100,000 to 200,000 people.

After the arrival of Captain James Cook in 1769, the Maori population was significantly reduced by diseases introduced by the Europeans to which they had no resistance. It was reduced even more by the tribal warfare with firearms. By 1896 there were 42,000 Maoris left.

By 1900 there were 772,000 Europeans living in New Zealand, and now Maoris number only 5.6 % of the population,three-quarters of whom are concentrated in the top third of the North Island.

Postcolonial Overview Australia New Zealand