• Currently 3/5 Stars.
You may use the stars on the left to rate and leave feedback for the current article. No registration is required. Waiting for 5 votes 3.0 of 5 stars (2 votes) — Thanks for your vote

Please fill out the following optional information before submitting your rating:

The Pacific island country of Kiribati (formerly the Gilbert Islands) includes the atoll of Abemama, inhabited by the tribe of Abemama, Kuria and Aranuka. The hereditary high chiefs of these people, the uea, rose out of a previously egalitarian society in the early 18th century, when a powerful man named Tetabo arose and established himself as mataniwi-iaon-te-aba, or master on the land. Tetabo's grandson, Tawaia, was proclaimed the first uea, but he had no children. Tawaia adopted the son, Baiteke, of his father's second wife, Teaa, although it was given out that he was actually Tawaia and Teaa's son. Baiteke's son, Binoka (who is mentioned in Travels in the South Seas, by Robert Louis Stevenson, who lived on the atoll for nine months), was also childless, in spite of allegedly having 40 wives and 20 concubines, and so he adopted his nephew, Bauro, son of his younger brother, Timon. Bauro reigned for a short time but also had no children and the succession passed to his nephew, Tokatake, but without him being adopted.

On another atoll in the group, Abaiang, the uea in the middle of the 20th century was Arirei, the niece and adopted daughter of the previous uea, Kaiea III, and the birth daughter of Kaiea III's sister, Kinateo. Arirei is the first known female uea of the I-Kiribati people.


Roberts, R.G. "The Dynasty of Abemama," Journal of the Polynesian Society, 62(3) (September 1953), pp. 267-277


Polynesian, Melanesian
Nationality or Citizenship
Rulers, Nobles, Chiefs, Presidents, Prime Ministers
To Provide Heirs, As Protégés, etc.
Wealthy, Famous, Noble or Divine Adoptive or Foster Families
Customary or Traditional Adoption, Informal and Extra-Legal Care
Parents Married (or Partnered) to Each Other
Visitor Comments (0) - Be the first to comment
Adding your comments contributes to the adoption community. Please keep all comments on topic and civil. Visitors are invited to comment and vote for or flag comments based on appropriateness and helpfulness. All comments must adhere to our commenting rules and are subject to moderation.

To see local Adoption resources, please select a location (U.S. only):

Need a Home Study?
Adoption Photolisting
Ciarra (TX / 15 / F)
Ciarra is a spunky and active youth. She runs track, plays volleyball, and is first chair, playing the French horn, in her school band. Her band teacher reports that she is... [more]
Parent Profiles
I am very excited to become a mom! I am 100% ready to ensure my child will enjoy unconditional love, top class international education, travel opportunities, and financial... [more]
Directory of Adoption Professionals
Find a professional
for all of your adoption needs including:

Note: Our authors are dedicated to honest, engaged, informed, intelligent, and open conversation about adoption. The opinions expressed here may not reflect the views of

Settings Help Feedback
Template Settings
Width: 1024     1280
Choose a Location:
Choose a Theme: