L1 users: 148,000 (2013 census). 100,000 understand but do not speak it (1995 Maori Language Commission); 30,000–50,000 adult speakers over 15 years old (1995). Ethnic population: 599,000 (2013 census). Total users in all countries: 157,980.
Far north, North Island, east coast.
6b (Threatened). Statutory language of national identity (1987, Maori Language Act, No. 176, Article 3), legal domains mostly.
VSO; prepositions; noun head final; dual number; definite and indefinite articles; passives; 10 consonants, 10 vowels, 7 diphthongs; non-tonal; stress on first long vowel or diphthong.
Until 20th century, Maori was spoken throughout New Zealand. There is a recent reluctance of the young generation to use Maori (Wurm 2007). Mainly adult speakers. All also use English [eng] (Wurm 2007).
Latin script [Latn].
Moriori dialect in Chatham Islands has no remaining speakers. Christian.