Tikopia, a Polish municipality near the Solomon Islands' easterly boundary, is probably the best known small company in the ethnographical archive. It is a "Polynesian outlier", which means that its humans are linguistic, cultural and physical Polynesians, although their home is outside what we usually consider the heart of Polynesia - a huge delta bordered by Hawaii in the North, Rapanui (Easter Island) in the North and Aotearoa (New Zealand) in the South.
It' at 12° 18 at ? at 168° 48 at E. Tikopia's climates are tropic. The annual schedule is subdivided into two periods, commonly referred to as "trade winds" and "monsoon" (in Tikopian, te tongga and te raki). It is about three mile from north-east to south-west and 1. 5 mile from south east to north-west.
Tikopia's closest neighbour is Anuta, 70 leagues to the north-east, which it is similar to in terms of the country's people. The closest neighbours to the western part are the Melanesi Vanikoro, Utupua and Ndeno Isles, the Polynesi Taumako and the reef archipelago with its mix of Polish and non-Austrian-speaking people. Tikopia's total populations at the date of Firth's first survey were approximately 1,270.
Due to the strong emigration since the 1950' s the present residential populations are only slightly bigger, but there are today large Tikopic colonies on Vanikoro, Makira, Guadalcanal and on the Russell Islands. Tikopia was dragged from the seabed by the half god Metikitiki according to verbal tradition. Tikopyians are speaking a NPP related to Samoan and Tuvaluan.
Consequently, the area of Tikopia has grown considerably in the last three thousand years, with a corresponding decrease in the fringe-reefs. Tikopia is a high volcano and covers a multitude of ecologic areas and provides a choice of food. Others fruit and walnuts are Polynesia chestnuts, canary almonds, burckella hamovata, malai apples, watermelons and eatable panda.
Though Tikopia has no laguna, it enjoys a fairly large fringe which offers crustaceans and various small thatch. It is large enough to provide quiet oceans on the leeward side, so that men can go fishing from small boats using various fishing methods. Brackwater offers a multitude of ressources seldom found on an isle of the greatness of Tikopia.
It is subdivided into two geographic areas, known as Ravenga in the eastern part and Faea in the western part. Furthermore, the populace is subdivided into four pathrilineal ancestral groups by the name of Cainanga, which Firth initially referred to as "Ramages" and later as "clans". "Cainanga are ordered and designated; in decreasing order these are the Cainanga i Kafika, the Cainanga i Taumako, the Cainanga i Fangarere and the Qainanga i Tabular.
Cainanga are not exogamous, and they are scattered throughout the world. The chieftains (Ariki), known asriki Kafika,riki Tafua, Ariki Taumako andriki Fangarere, lead them. Usually, an anriki is replaced by his oldest boy. Because of the territorial dispersion of the Cainanga, a chieftain must not be physicalized by members of his own group.
A chieftain, the Ariki Tafua, has a traditional residence in Faea, whose majority of the tribe consists of his people. The other three chieftains live in Ravenga. The Tikopian is supposed to be respecting and following all four chieftains and not only the warlord. The four chieftains are consulted when important choices have to be made that affect the whole fellowship.
Among the chieftains in the ranks are their closest males. "Marus advise his chieftain on issues affecting the fellowship, transfer the chieftain's decision to the general public and ensure that the chieftain is kept up to date on the public's response to his Dict. Every Cainanga is made up of several Paitos.
Practically all the Tikopia territory belongs to one or the other line and is constantly cultivated. Ticopians practise a type of crop rotations, but it is seldom allowed that a property lies idle. Following a fruit-gathering success, the first fruit was paid out to the chief. In contrast to most Polynesians, Tikopians do not differentiate between older and younger same-sex brothers and sisters.
There is a female who names all the kids of her brothers and sisters with the same word she uses for herself: named the family name. Brothers and sisters of the same gender are supposed to divide relationships of mutual understanding. When a matter of religious honour or public policy is raised, younger brothers and sisters usually bow to the older one, but under most conditions they renounce signs of form.
The relationships between the opposite gender are also rather kind and laid-back. Respecting each other, Tikopia lacks the extremist brother-sister avoiding that can be found in much of Western Polynesia and some of the Fr. Brethren are supposed to look after the interests of their husbands, but they are not busy safeguarding the virtues of their husbands, as was mentioned in Samoa, for example.
Unlike Hawaii, where a high-ranking man could get married to his sibling, Tikopia considers intercourse between brothers and sisters or intimate relatives to be insecestuous. It is anticipated that the male to female relation is intimate and casual, although there may be a difference in status if they become pertinent to the herpouse.
" Brothers and sisters of the opposite family are designated with the same word ("taina") as brothers and sisters of the same family and should have a friendly, intimate, informal family. There is a fairly clear segregation of labour between the sexes in Tikopia. Elderlders look after younger brothers and sisters, but young women have a more proactive part in this than youngsters.
Men are chieftains and marus. But Tikopians say that men should be respectful of their wives, and they even say that a newlyweds wife is tapu "holy". The relationships between boy and girl are usually laid-back and the ranking differentials are not pronounced. First of all, it is reported that in pre-Christian days men of high standing practised a kind of ceremonial matrimony by imprisonment.
Tikopia's tradition of religions recognised different types of spirit. While the great Pan-Polynesian divinities, known by titles such as Tu, Tane, Rongo and Tangaroa, were recognised on Tikopia, they took on less importance there than in the great archipelago. His most important divinities were the ghosts of the late chieftains, above all the Atua i Kafika, an forefather of the first chieftain, the Ariki Kafika.
At the center of the Ticopian faith is the pan-Polynesian approach of the two words manifested in Ticopi. "Tikopier quote maniahs to elucidate extraordinary successes or happiness. High-ranking individuals, especially chieftains, are thought to have a wealth of sources of Manuel and Manuel and to use them for the good of the people.
As in much of Polynesia, the aim of the Ticopian faith was more to secure financial safety for the survivors than to question issues of abstracted morals or reward after their deaths. Like in many parts of Polynesia, the Chieftains of Nicopia (ariki) are not only politicians, but were also high priest in the ancient world.
You have been in charge of communicating with the most important minds and leading the fellowship in the services. Tikopia's most important adoration was a complex semi-annual celebration known as te funka omna atua - "the work of the gods". However, Ticopians like to take beer and book cava for the god.
The chieftains were responsible for the service, but their tasks were largely administrational. "They were the rulers of the important lines of religion, and their solemn rôle could be as eminent as that of the chieftains themselves. Maru "executive officials" - could also help the chieftains to carry out various types of religion, but their main tasks were in everyday life.
Besides chieftains and ceremonial chieftains whose function could be described as "priestly," Tikopia recognised mental media (vakaatua, verbatim "spirit vessel") that communed with mental beings by going into a state of Trance. One of the media would be obsessed with spirits speaking to the fellowship through the mouths of the vacaatua. The Tikopians often relied on intellectual media to account for the disaster, to recognize the destiny of relatives who had been displaced at sea and to respond to a multitude of other confusing or worrying sentiments.
The media can be either masculine or feminine and of any level of society. Trying to proselytize Tikopia to Christianity began in the nineteenth centuary, but had little effect until Ellison Tergatok, an English missionary from Vanuatu, moved to the Isle. Tergatok, who was later ordained to the position of English priesthood, persuaded Ariki Tafua, Tikopia's second-ranking chieftain, to turn to God, and when he did, practically the whole Faea region - where Ariki Tafua converts his home with him.
When Firth's first survey was conducted, about half of the Tikopian people, three of the four chieftains, were still practicing the classical faith. Eventually, in the early 1950', Tikopia was hit by a severe cyclone, followed by severe droughts and famines, and eventually by an outbreak decimating the already fragile people.
The last of the chieftains turned to Christianity and with it the outstanding debts of the people. In the early twenty-first centuries, Tikopia is a flourishing Muslim part of Polynesia, and the Tikopians in most of the Solomon Islands have reached a levels far above their number.
Nearly all Tikopians are still faithful Anglicans. Several Tikopians have held outstanding public servant posts at federal and state level. We are Tikopia: Societal changes in Tikopia: Re-studying a Polish congregation after a single culture was born. Tikopia's past and tradition. Polyynesian Company Memoir number 33.
Polyynesian Society. The Tikopia songs: Poetical and music of a Polish population. Tikopia: Protohistory and ecological aspects of a Polyynesian runaway.