Clutha is the second largest river in New Zealand, an island state located in the Pacific Ocean. It is also the largest river of the South Island. Its original name in the Maori language is Mata-au, which means "current or eddy in an expanse of water". The term perfectly reflects the speed with which water flows from the Southern Alps to the ocean. In turn, the European name for this river comes from the word "Cluadiah", the Scottish name of the Clyde River in the south of Scotland and was given to it by settlers arriving in the region at the end of the 18th century.