Makemake (deity)

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Makemake with two birdmen, carved from red scoria
For other uses, see Makemake (disambiguation).

Makemake (also written as Make-make or MakeMake; pronounced [ˈmakeˈmake] in Rapa Nui[1]) in the Rapa Nui mythology of Easter Island, is the creator of humanity, the god of fertility and the chief god of the "Tangata manu" or bird-man cult (this cult succeeded the island's more famous Moai era). Make-Make was also god of an infamous cult called the tea cult (dawn cult). The tea cult went out only at dawn to pray.

He is a frequent subject of the Rapanui's petroglyphs and other similar carnifex.

In astronomy[edit]

The trans-Neptunian dwarf planet, originally designated 2005 FY9, is named Makemake in an allusion to the shared connection of the dwarf planet and Easter Island with Easter. (The dwarf planet was discovered shortly after Easter 2005; the first European contact with Easter Island was on Easter Sunday 1722.)[2][3] The dwarf planet's code name was "Easterbunny".

Petroglyphs on rocks at Orongo. Makemake at base and two birdmen higher up


  1. ^ Robert D. Craig (2004). "Handbook of Polynesian Mythology". ABC-CLIO. p. 63. ISBN 978-1-57607-894-5. 
  2. ^ Blue, Jennifer (July 14, 2008). "(136472) 2005 FY9 Named Makemake". Retrieved 2008-07-15. 
  3. ^ Mike Brown (2008). "Mike Brown's Planets: What's in a name? [part 2]". CalTech. Retrieved 2008-07-14. 
  • Alfred Métraux. [1940] 1971. Ethnology of Easter Island. Bernice P. Bishop Museum Bulletin 160. Honolulu: Bishop Museum Press.
  • Katherine Routledge The Mystery of Easter Island 1919 ISBN 0-932813-48-8
  • VAN TILBURG, Jo Anne. 1994. Easter Island: Archaeology, Ecology and Culture. Washington D.C.: Smithsonian Institution Press.