Anuta - History and Cultural Relations

Archaeological remains show Anuta to have been inhabited by humans for almost 3,000 years. According to Anutan oral traditions, however, the island's present population arrived much more recently—about 300 to 350 years ago—from Tonga and Uvea (most likely East Uvea or Wallis Island). The first chief was the Tongan leader known as Pu Kaurave. The Uvean leader was named Pu Taupare. When Pu Kaurave's son, Ruokimata, left no heir, the chieftainship passed to the Uvean line. Later there were immigrants from Samoa and Rotuma, as well as extensive contact and exchange with Tikopia. Visitors from Tuvalu (formerly the Ellice Islands) and Taumako in the Santa Cruz group made little lasting impact.

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