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The Tuʻi Tonga is a line of Tongan kings, which originated in the tenth century with the mythical ʻAhoʻeitu; withdrew from political power in the fifteenth century by yielding to the Tuʻi Haʻatakalaua; and died out with Laufilitonga in 1865. Today its descendants still live in the chiefly line of Kalaniuvalu.
Tradition names 39 holders of the title, but there is an alternative list with 48 names.
- ʻAhoʻeitu – divine father, around 900 AD, resided first in Popua and then other places of the Hahake district, like Toloa near Fuaʻamotu.
- Maʻuhau – residence in Lavengatonga
- Momo – married with Nua, the daughter of Loʻau, the Tuʻi Haʻamea. The Tongan maritime empire came into existence. Royal court in Heketā near Niutōua.
- Tuʻitātui – around 1100 AD, extended the royal court, built the Haʻamonga; re-established the Fale Fā (house of four), royal counselors and guardians; his cunning stepbrother Fasiʻapule became a governor.
- Talatama – shifted the residence to Lapaha; died without issue
- Tuʻitonganui ko e Tamatou – said to have been a block of wood, standing in as child of Talatama and father of Talaihaʻapepe to keep the dynasty pure
- Talaihaʻapepe – real brother of Talatama and supposed grandson through the woodblock
- Talakaifaiki – around 1250; start of the decline of the Tongan maritime empire, lost Samoa due to his cruelty to the Mālietoa line
- Tuʻitonga Maʻakitoe
- Tuʻitonga Puipui
- Havea I – assassinated by a Fijian
- Havea II – assassinated with an arrow by Tuluvota, a Fijian
- Takalaua – assassinated by Tamasia and Malofafa from ʻUvea and Futuna while taking his bath in the Tolopona stream at Alakifonua; a harsh ruler, start of political upheavals
- Kauʻulufonua I – around 1470, pursued his father's murderers from Tongatapu to ʻEua, Haʻapai, Vavaʻu, both Niuas, then Niue, Fiji, Samoa, finally arresting them at their home island of either ʻUvea or Futuna. Back at home in Muʻa he killed them in a savage spectacle (knocking out their teeth and then letting them chew kava), before he devoured them giving him the nickname fekai. He allowed his younger brother Moʻungāmotuʻ to found a new dynasty, the Tuʻi Haʻatakalaua, named after their father. This new dynasty would carry out the day-to-day duties of the Tuʻi Tonga with the people while the Tuʻi Tonga became sacred, king of kings like a god.
- Vakafuhu – kept away from Tonga by the Tuʻi Haʻatakalaua, lived in Samoa.
- Puipuifatu – lived in Samoa, tried in vain to invade Vavaʻu to restore power to his dynasty
- Kauʻulufonua II – lived in Samoa
- Tapuʻosi – was allowed to return to Muʻa, as apparently the Tuʻi Tonga line was now so weakened as to be of no threat to the Tuʻi Haʻatakalaua. From now on the Tuʻi Tonga functioned as a kind of high priest, taking care of all religious obligations (an honour and a burden), giving him a very elevated status, but no worldly power. But no Tuʻi Tonga was ever murdered anymore either.
- ʻUluakimata I – also known as Teleʻa, builder of the greatest langi on Tongatapu
- Fatafehi – around 1600, married the Tuʻi Haʻatakalaua Moʻunga ʻo Tonga's daughter, a custom which would last for some generations to come forming a permanent alliance between the two houses; his sister married a Fijian, changing the international orientation of Tonga from Samoa to Fiji. Was tattooed in Samoa by master tattooists in two sessions and received the nickname Fakauakimanuka ("Twice to Manuʻa") in commemoration of these rituals.
- Kauʻulufonua III – was met by Abel Tasman in 1643
- ʻUluakimata II
- Tuʻipulotu (I) ʻilangi Tuʻofefafa - from now on the Tuʻi Tonga principal wife (moheofo) became the daughter of the Tuʻi Kanokupolu instead of the Tuʻi Haʻatakalaua, showing which dynasty of the latter two was now the most important
- Tuʻipolutu (II) ʻilangi Tuʻoteau
- Paulaho - Fuanunuiava, was his successor during a grand ceremony in 1777, witnessed by Captain Cook; was defeated and deposed in a following civil war
- Maʻulupekotofa - the older brother of Paulaho, who should have been Tuʻi Tonga in the first place without Paulaho; tried to reduce the burden of religious taboos grown on the Tuʻi Tonga and to increase its political influence
- Fuanunuiava - took the power from his uncle in or around 1795, but continued his policy; joined Fīnau ʻUlukālala in the civil war of 1799; died in 1810
- Laufilitonga - born around 1798 was too young to become Tuʻi Tonga when his father died; by that time the title had so declined as to have lost almost all prestige; tried to opt for power, but lost the final battle during Velata on Lifuka in 1826 against Tāufaʻāhau; was (together with the Tuʻi Kanokupolu) mockingly installed as Tuʻi Tonga in 1827 as a king with neither political nor spiritual power; died in 1865 after which the title was abolished.
- I.C. Campbell; Classical Tongan kingship; 1989
- E. Bott; Tonga society at the time of Captain Cook's visit; 1982
- ʻO. Māhina; Images from the history and culture of Tonga; 2006