The following are a sampling of terms included in the annotated glossary of Conversations with Auntie Carol. Please note that many Hawaiian words have multiple spellings and/or meanings [with or without diacritical marks]. Names, may have ambiguous, layered, or hidden meanings. Words in bold text are defined within this glossary.
Ahahui Ka`ahumanu — Society of Queen Ka`ahumanu. A Hawaiian civic organization of women of Hawaiian heritage, named for Ka`ahumanu, Queen and Kūhina Nui (the most prominent wife of King Kamehameha I). The society was originally founded in 1864 to care for victims of smallpox by three Hawaiian women of royalty: Princess Victoria Kamāmalu (sister of King Kamehameha V and his heir apparent); Princess Lydia Kamaka`eha Dominis (who would be crowned Queen Lili`uokalani in 1891); and Chiefess Bernice Pauahi (who became Princess Bernice Pauahi Bishop). With the abrupt passing of Princess Kamāmalu in 1866, the society disbanded. In 1905, eleven women led by high chiefess Lucy Kaheiheimālie Peabody Henriques who oversaw the organization’s re-chartering. Today, the highly respected society continues in aiding the sick and elderly, as well as promoting Hawaiian culture and celebrating the life of Queen Ka`ahumanu. For numerous events, Carol joined other members in wearing the society’s signature garb of black hat, gloves, and mu`umu`uadorned by a bright yellow lei hulu that are symbolic of the Queen. (Note Carol’s attire on the cover of this book.)
Ali`i — Chief, ruler, officer, aristocrat, commander.
Aloha — Love, affection, compassion, loved one. Traditional term for greeting and farewell, expressing love, friendship and mercy.
Aloha `Oe — May you be loved. Title of the beloved song written by Queen Lili`uokalani.
Archer-Ceran, Marcel René Georges [1906-1976] — Known as Tautu, this Tahitian guitarist and vocalist was a composer of early to mid-twentieth century Hawaiian and Tahitian themed pop music and a performer in films. He and his first wife, Audrey Robinson wrote “Twilight in Hawai`i,” an early theme song of the international radio program Hawai`i Calls. With his group, George Archer and The Pagans, he and Audrey (a hula dancer and vocalist) were frequent performers on the program. The couple met during the filming of movies shot in the Islands which sometimes included their songs and performances. When they married in 1937, their popularity as entertainers yielded radio and film contracts. George eventually returned to Pape`ete, Tahiti, where he died.
Dominis, Lydia Lili`u Loloku Walania Wewehi Kamaka`eha Paki [last queen of Hawai`i, 1838-1917] — Queen Lili`uokalani was the last monarch and only reigning queen of the Kingdom of Hawai`i. Her birth names were Lydia Kamaka'eha Kaola Mali'i Lili'uokalani. Her Hawaiian names are sometimes translated as the scorching pain of the royal chiefess’s eyes, perhaps a reference to a relative’s suffering with eye pain at the time of her birth. With her siblings and other relatives, she was educated at the Royal School. In 1862, Princess Lili`u Loloku married American-born John Owen Dominis, who had risen to prominence in the Hawaiian court early in life. When her brother William Pitt Leleiohoku II (heir apparent to the throne) died in 1877, the princess was named presumptive heir apparent and became known as Princess Lili`uokalani. Ten years later, Princess Lili`uokalani was the official envoy to the Golden Jubilee of Great Britain’s Queen Victoria. The princess was crowned Queen Liliuokalani in 1891. After just two years, her attempt to reshape the Hawaiian Constitution was stopped violently when American businessmen backed by the landing of a few U. S. Marines overthrew her government and established the short-lived Republic of Hawai`i. In 1895, she was forced to abdicate her throne. Two years later, she travelled to Washington D. C., where her impassioned pleas for the restoration of the Hawaiian Kingdom were rejected. Queen Lili`uokalani is noted for authoring many poems, chants, and lyrics, and authoring the book Hawaii's Story by Hawai`i’s Queen. She was also an accomplished musician and the composer of the popular song “Aloha `Oe” (“Farewell to Thee”).
Hānai — Foster or adopted child. Extended or adopted family members.
Haole — Foreigner, of foreign origin. Current usage, an American, Englishman, and/or Caucasian.
Hawai`i — Fiftieth state of the United States of America; name of the largest Hawaiian island [known as the orchid Isle or The Big Island], and the largest island in the United States. The Kingdom of Hawai`i was established by King Kamehameha I between 1795 and 1810. In a coup d`état between 1893 and 1894, the Kingdom was overthrown by resident foreigners—largely United States citizens—who established the short-lived Republic of Hawai`i. In 1898, the United States annexed Hawai`i by passage of the Newlands Resolution. The Organic Act of 1900 authorized the election of a single non-voting delegate to the Congress of the United States. Statehood was granted by the U.S. Congress in 1959.
Honolulu — Protected Bay. Located on the island of O`ahu, it is the largest city in and capital of the state of Hawai`i.
Hula — Traditional dance of Hawai`i.
Kahakō — Macron. A diacritical mark [a dash] placed over a vowel to extend pronunciation of the vowel’s sound.
Kailua — Two seas. Bay, beach and town on the northeast end of the Windward side of O`ahu.
Kaimukī — The oven of the kī [ti plant, Scientific name, Cordyline terminalis] A neighborhood in east Honolulu.
Kalo — Taro. A staple of the traditional Hawaiian diet used to make poi. [Colocasia esculenta]
Kālua — From kā [indicating a process] lua [pit]. To bake in an imu [underground oven].
Kamehameha — Hushed silence. Dynasty of Hawaiian Kings, founded by King Kamehameha the First [1758-1819] of the island of Hawai`i. After conquering the islands one at a time, he fully unified the kingdom of Hawai`i by 1810. He is noted for making alliances with European nations to ensure the independence and economic growth of his kingdom. Another hallmark of his reign was the unification of the legal system, including the Māmalahoe Kānāwai [Law of the Splintered Paddle], which provided human rights to non-combatants in wartime.
Kāne`ohe — Man of Bamboo. Town in Windward O`ahu, west of Kailua.
Kapa — Cloth made from bark of māmaki or wauke.
Kauai — From the garden island. The fourth largest island in the Hawaiian island chain.
Keiki — Child, offspring.
Keiki hānai — Foster or adopted child.
Kī — The ti plant [cordyline terminalis].
Koa — Acacia tree. An endangered species known for its fine grained wood. [Acacia koa]
Ko`olau — Windward. One of two volcanic mountain ranges that divide the island of O`ahu.
Kumu hula — Master teacher of hula.
Lānai — Porch, balcony.
Lanikai — Community on the southern edge of Kailua in Windward O`ahu.
Lei — Garland of flowers, leaves, shells, candy, or other decorations.
Lū`au — Kalo [taro] tops. Modern name for a Hawaiian feast.
Mahalo — Thank you. Often printed on public garbage cans to encourage respect for keeping the environment clean.
Maile — Flowering dogbane tree shrub. Its fragrant leaves are used for making a long open lei. [Lyxia oliviformis]
Maui — Second largest Hawaiian Island, named for the demi-god Māui.
Mauka — Inland, toward the mountain.
Mu`umu`u — Cut short;maimed; or, amputated. A dress adapted from the style of nineteenth-century Protestant Christian missionary women, often featuring short sleeves and no yoke.
Nu`uanu — Cool heights. Valley, stream and neighborhood north of downtown Honolulu.
O`ahu — The Gathering place. The third largest Hawaiian island; location of Honolulu, the state capital.
`Okina — Glottal stop. A diacritical mark [`] used to indicate a break in sounding consonantal sounds, like that separating an interjection’s syllables, like “oh-oh.”
Pā`ina — Ancient word for feast. Now used for a meal or dinner party.
Pali — Cliff, craggy hill.
Pīkake — Peacock. An Asian jasmine shrub or vine in the evergreen olive family that produces fragrant white flowers [Jasminum sambac].
Plumeria — Flowering and fragrant tropical tree including the frangipani, a genus of flowering tree in the dogbane family. [Plumeria]
Pūpū — Marine and land shell. Today it means an appetizer.
`Ukulele — Flea. Small Portuguese guitar made popular by a lively British army officer nicknamed `ukulele.
Wahine — Girl, woman, lady. Something reflecting femininity.
Waikīkī — Spouting water. The name of a Hawaiian chiefess; a famous beach on the island of O`ahu.
Wauke — Paper mulberry tree [Broussonetia papyrifera].
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