One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A makeshift Maori shelter of sticks, grass, etc. Now usually: a duckshooter's hide or stand.
Mid 19th century; earliest use found in Samuel Butler (1835–1902), writer and artist. Probably from mia-mia, extended directly from Australian English to New Zealand English. Not a Maori word, although used of a Maori shelter; nor is Maori related to the Australian languages in which the etymon of mia-mia occurs.
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