The traditional weapons of Niue as an important part of island life

August 6th, 2015 is glad to inform that Niue Post has prepared for releasing a special set of stamp that depicts the traditional weapons of the island. The issue consisting of four items is already anticipated by collectors and is scheduled to be put on sale on the 7th of August.

Niuean weapons required skill and ingenuity in both creation and use. They were carefully crafted from natural materials found on the island, and required strength and accuracy to be used effectively. The four stamps in this issue look at two types of weapon – katoua (clubs) and tao (spears).

30c and $3.00 – Tao (Spear)

Tao are long, heavy spears, measuring up to two meters in length and usually made from heavy, sturdy wood. The handles and spear points were often made from different materials, so if the spears were thrown but missed their target, the spear point would often break off, preventing the enemy using the spears. The tao on the 30c stamp is made from wood and measures 1.895 meters long, and the the tao on the $3.00 stamp is made from wood, cloth and plant fibre and measures 2.764 meters long.

$1.40 and $4.00 – Katoua (Club)

Katoua are items unique to Niue and are used nowadays in festival and school performances. They’re usually made from sturdy wood, and were more likely to be used in close-combat scenarios, similar to Maori taiaha. The katoua on the $1.40 stamp is made from wood and measures 2.475 meters long, and the katoua on the $4.00 stamp is made from wood and hair and measures 1.045 meters long.

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