Polynesian Mythology

The Gods and Spirits of Polynesia


Rapa Nui Unknown Spirits

Picture of the Polynesian Unknown Spirits Moai from our Polynesian mythology image library. Illustration by Chas Saunders.

The mysterious statue figures of Easter Island

One of the most evocative images in the entire world, the Moai are ancient brooding figures carved from great slabs of volcanic rock. More than a thousand Moai can be found scattered over the island, most of them standing with their backs to the sea. Hundreds more lie half-completed in a volcanic quarry, mysteriously abandoned after a tribal war (see Tangata-manu).

Opinion is divided regarding their purpose; some people believe they represent tribal leaders or ancient ancestors (see Aku-aku) — and some people don’t. The subject has been ripe with rampant speculation, and Easter Island attracts cranks like you wouldn’t believe.

The mystery is enhanced by the fact that most of the Moai weigh a truly ridiculous amount of tons. How did the primitive Rapanui islanders shift those colossal statues across the landscape without the benefit of computers and cell phones?

Many theories have been proposed, including ingenious block-and-tackle engineering by the natives, and extraterrestrial intervention by space aliens. But we prefer the simple solution, as explained most convincingly by the native islanders: “They just got up and walked by themselves”.

Moai Facts and Figures

Name: Moai
Pronunciation: Coming soon
Alternative names:

Gender: Male
Type: Spirits
Area or people: Rapa Nui people of Easter Island, Polynesia
Celebration or Feast Day: Unknown at present

In charge of: Unknown
Area of expertise: Unknown

Good/Evil Rating: NEUTRAL, may not care
Popularity index: 5177

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Article last revised on April 29, 2019 by the Godchecker data dwarves.
Editors: Peter J. Allen, Chas Saunders

References: Coming soon.

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