HWOTD

Hawaiian Word of the Day: May 29th

May 29, 2019

Kaulana means famous, celebrated, renowned, well-known.

Hawaiian Word of the Day: May 28th

May 28, 2019

Akua has many meanings, but none more common in today's Hawaiian than God. In Hawaiian, there are many different kinds of gods, and akua can mean goddess, spirit, ghost, devil, image, idol, divine, even a corpse.

Hawaiian Word of the Day: May 27th

May 27, 2019

Leo means voice, tone, tune, melody, sound, command, and more. It is most often used today to mean voice and is heard often in describing singers, such as the leo nahenahe, or as the name of the private pre-school Punanaleo, “the voice nest.”

Hawaiian Word of the Day: May 24th

May 24, 2019

Whether you are talking about the place on Maui or a shawl that is draped over your shoulders, it is pronounced Kīhei with a stress on the first vowel. It means a shawl or cape, and is a well-known destination on the Valley Isle.

Hawaiian Word of the Day: May 23rd

May 23, 2019

Our Hawaiian Word of the Day is a place name, Hālawa. It is a well known place on Hawaiʻi, Molokaʻi and on Oʻahu.

Hawaiian Word of the Day: May 22nd

May 22, 2019

Hoʻomau means to continue, keep on, persist, renew, perpetuate, persevere, and last. Be sure to pronounce those glottal stops between the “o,” which is called an ʻokina in Hawaiian.

Hawaiian Word of the Day: May 21st

May 21, 2019

Today's Hawaiian Word of the Day is kāmaʻa; for shoe, sandal, slipper, boot, ti leaf, or tapa sandal, shoes.

Hawaiian Word of the Day: May 20th

May 20, 2019

Keiki is a very well known and often used term for child. It means offspring, child, youngster. But it is also used for animals, such as a colt, kid, cub, or even the young of a taro or banana plant. Say keiki, as in keiki o kā ʻāina – a child of the land.

Hawaiian Word of the Day: May 17th

May 17, 2019

Mokuʻāina means state, as in the United States.

Hawaiian Word of the Day: May 16th

May 16, 2019

Our Hawaiian Word of the Day is mokupuni. It means island, from the word moku which means “cut or severed,” and puni which means “surrounded.” So it's a piece of land cut off and surrounded by water. It is commonly used even in English conversation.

Hawaiian Word of the Day: May 15th

May 15, 2019

We told you about ʻelemakule, which means old man, and today's Hawaiian Word of the Day is luahine, or old woman. It can also mean old lady. Both are proper terms, and it is perfectly all right to describe our older friends as ʻelemakule  and luahine.

Hawaiian Word of the Day: May 14th

May 14, 2019

Makua is a very general term for parent, or any relative of the parent's generation, as in an uncle or aunt. Since the main stock of a plant is thought of as the parent, you can also call it a makua. You can modify it to be more specific, as makua kāne for father.

Hawaiian Word of the Day: May 13th

May 13, 2019

Pāʻani means to play, or a sport, game, or amusement. Pāʻani can also mean to joke.

Hawaiian Word of the Day: May 10th

May 10, 2019

Nui means big, greatest, grand, important, as in aliʻi nui. Hale nui would be a big house, and mea nui would be an important thing. Used as an adjective, it follows the noun. It can also mean “many or a group.”

Hawaiian Word of the Day: May 9th

May 9, 2019

Most of us are familiar with many Hawaiian terms for family members, but don't often use hoahānau, a good Hawaiian word for those born of the same generation. It combines hoa for “companion, friend, partner, or mate,” with hānau for “birth.” Hoahānau can be used for cousin, and comes in pretty handy in Hawaiʻi where we have large families – a nui na hoahānau.

Hawaiian Word of the Day: May 8th

May 8, 2019

Most of use the Hawaiian word kahu when we refer to the pastor of our church, a preacher, or minister. Kahu in its first meanings is an honored attendant, guardian, nurse, keeper of bones, regent, keeper, administrator. It is also a warden, caretaker, master, mistress. Even one who has a dog, cat, pig, or other pet.

Hawaiian Word of the Day: May 7th

May 7, 2019

ʻElemakule means old man or to become an old man. Although ʻelemakula also means “old,” use it only for males – there's another word, luahine, for old women. And don't use ʻelemakule as a general term for old or things that are old – there are other words for that too, such as kahiko. Use ʻelemakule only for old men.

Hawaiian Word of the Day: May 6th

May 6, 2019

One of the most commonly mispronounced place names in Hawaiʻi nei is Līhuʻe, the name of a city and district on Kauaʻi. It means “a cold chill,” and that's the feeling most Hawaiian speakers feel when they hear this beautiful name mispronounced. Write it out with a kahakō over the first vowel, and an ʻokina before the last one. Then say it.

Hawaiian Word of the Day: May 3rd

May 3, 2019

We often hear haole, meaning white person, in a negative connotation, but it is a perfectly good word, and used often in Hawaiian and English conversation. It means foreign, introduced, of foreign origin, or foreign introduction, as plants, pigs, chickens, yes, even people. So in Hawaiian, anyone or anything that is not native to Hawaiʻi is haole, such as koa haole for the foreign scrub brush koa, or ʻāina haole for a foreign land.

Hawaiian Word of the Day: May 2nd

May 2, 2019

Kōkua is one of the Hawaiian words most frequently used in English conversation, but it's often mispronounced. Write it down and put a kahakō or stress mark over the first vowel, then say it aloud. It means help, aid, assistance, relief, assistant, helper, and more.

Hawaiian Word of the Day: May 1st

May 1, 2019

Since May Day is Lei Day in Hawaiʻi, there are many lei day pageants happening at this time of the year. Most include a royal court, and a hōʻike – a show! Hōʻike means “to show.”

Hawaiian Word of the Day: April 30th

Apr 30, 2019

Our Hawaiian Word of the Day is moku. We often use moku to mean a district, an island, severed portion, or fragment, or as the root for other common words such as mokuahi for steamship, mokuʻāina for state, mokulele for airplane, or a mokuluʻu for a submarine, a diving ship. But the first use of moku means to be cut, severed, amputated, broken in two. There are many opportunities every day to use that common word, moku.

Hawaiian Word of the Day: April 29th

Apr 29, 2019

Our Hawaiian word today is a good example of the importance of putting the right stress on vowel sounds, or leaving them off. Lolo means brains, and it is from that root word that we get such new words as lolo uila: one of the words for computer – an electric brain. If you say it with stress on both vowels it becomes lōlō, and that means paralyzed, numb, feeble-minded, or crazy. Be careful how you pronounce Hawaiian words.

Hawaiian Word of the Day: April 26th

Apr 26, 2019

Māʻili is another one of those commonly used Hawaiian place names that is so often mispronounced, frequently confused with the name of the fragrant vine used as a lei. Today's Hawaiian Word of the Day is Māʻili, name of the community on the Leeward Oʻahu coast . Māʻili is the name of a beach park, surfing area, playground, school, and more.

Hawaiian Word of the Day: April 25th

Apr 25, 2019

Although mahina has several other meanings, the most common usage of the word is for moon, or month, or moonlight. It is also a crescent shaped fishhook, the eye of the snail at the end of its horn, a farm, plantation or patch, a variety of onion, and a variety of sweet potato. You hear it most often as moon or month – it's mahina.

Hawaiian Word of the Day: April 24th

Apr 24, 2019

Everyone is familiar with the word hānau from the popular greeting “hauʻoli lā hānau,” but many mispronounce it and often use it incorrectly. Hānau means to give birth. To say that one was born, requires adding the passive article ʻia, as in, “Hānau ʻia ʻo Kaʻimi Pono” – Kaʻimi Pono was born. In either case, be sure to stress the first vowel.

Hawaiian Word of the Day: April 23rd

Apr 23, 2019

Our Hawaiian Word of the Day is lānai, a term often used, and most often mispronounced or confused with other similar words. It means porch, veranda, balcony, booth or shed. Don't confuse it with lanai which means stiff backed like a chair, or Lānaʻi, the name of the island. Today's word is lānai – say it with a stress on the first vowel.

Hawaiian Word of the Day: April 22nd

Apr 22, 2019

Every evening when we look into the sky, and see the planet Venus, we should remember that the stars and planets have Hawaiian names. And hōkūloa, our Hawaiian Word of the Day, is what we call Venus.

Hawaiian Word of the Day: April 19th

Apr 19, 2019

Hoʻonanea means to relax, kick back, mellow out. It's also the name of a beautiful song and hula. E hoʻonanea kākou – let's all kick back.

Hawaiian Word of the Day: April 18th

Apr 18, 2019

You've all heard the word ipo for sweetheart or lover. Here's another one! Try huapala. Huapala literally means “ripe fruit.” It's another way to say “sweetheart” in Hawaiian.

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