- prep. : for, over, by;
- a nei, over here;
- a ruga, above;
- a te tapa, by the side.
- genitive particle, used preceding proper names and singular personal
te poki a Mateo, Mateo's child;
aana te kai, the food is his.
- particle often used before nouns and pronouns, especially when these
are introduced by a preposition such as
i, ki; ki a îa, to him, for him.
- á ,
or also just
a, article often used preceding proper names and used in the
meaning of "son of...":
Hei á Paega, Hei, son of Paenga.
very common abbreviation of the particle
ana, used following verbs:
ku-oti-á= ku-oti-ana; peira-á = peira-ana.
- á, á-á ,
exclamation expressing surprise or joy, which can also be used as a
he-aha-koe, e-á-ana? what's happening with you,that you should
He tu'u au e-tahi raá ki te hare o Eva i Puapae. I-ûi-mai-era ki a
au, he-á-á-mai, he-tagi-mai "ka-ohomai, e repa ê". one day I came to
Eva's house in Puapae. Upon seeing me she exclaimed: "ah,ah" and she said,
crying: "Welcome, lad".
to be flooded; flood, deluge:
ku-a'a-á te hare i te vai, the house is flooded with water;
ku-rere-á te a'a o te henua, water flowed, inundating the land.
- who: interrogative pronoun used in place of
koai te mee...: Aai i-tu'u-mai-nei, e-haúru-ró-ana au? = Koai te
mee i-tu'u-mai-nei, e-haúru-ró-ana au? Who is it who came here when I
- whose: genitive pronoun. See the grammar for the differencebetween
oai, as well as between
aaku, aau, aana and
ooku, oou, oona.
to tell, tale, story:
ka-aamu-mai e-tahi aamu potopoto, tell me a short story.
width, breadth (of an object).
to spit, spittle.
(iterative) to spit continuously.
to grasp, to grip, to grab, to hold:
ka-aaru hiohio i te ura, hold the lobster firmly.
- to throw with both hands, to catch with both hands:
ka-aau e-tahi maaga, throw a share (of food).
- epidemic, contagion:
he-tomo te aau o te miro, epidemics come with boats.
race, run, to run in a race.
thin string dangling from the
tau (from which hangs the
ature fishing-net) into the inside of the net
(kupega ature) and is used for tying the bait.
- aga, agaga,
work; to work, to make, to build, to create:
O te atua i-aga-ai i te ragi, i te henua. God made heaven and earth.
to fidget, to be worried, fidgety, to move about worriedly suspecting
that others are gossiping about oneself.
when? (in the past):
agahé te miro i tu'u-mai-ai? when did the boat arrive?
- i aganirá, earlier today, today (past)earlier today, today
- i aganirá he-tu'u au ki tai here koreha, today I went to the
sea to catch eels. For "today" in the future, that is, "later today," use
anirá; e-turu-ró au anirá ki tai, I'll go down to the sea
- apógara ,
the night before last.
i agataiahi, yesterday.
particle sometimes used with the imperative of
oho, turu, iri to express the idea of going somewhere
ka-turu-age koe ki tai, go down to the sea now;
ka-iri-age koe ki taaku me'e to'o-mai, be sure to go up and
bring my things. Nowadays it is only used with those three
verbs, but its
use seems to have been more general once, as ancient chant has these
Ka-iri-age Rano Kau te ga atua hami regarega, Ka-oka-age Ha'w koka
te korotea a Kava te ruruti, Ka-hi-age Hatehate te kahi-riva a tumu.
- agi, agiagi,
to know, to make sure of something, to become acquainted with;
he agi-á, that is sure;
ku-agiagi au, I know for sure;
mo agiagi i a îa, in order to get to know him.
emaciated, wasted away (from hunger);
manava agoago, sunken stomach.
what? which? to do, to be what?
He aha koe? what are you?
E-aha-á koe? what are you doing?
Ku-aha-á koe? what have you done?
Kahu aha? what, which garment?
E-aha-mai-á ki a koe? what does that do you, whatharm does it
do you, what is it to you?
Aha is preceded by the article
te when introduced by a preposition:
te: o te aha, why, what for;
mo te aha, ki te aha, what for, with what purpose?
ahani koe i nei... if you had been here.
interjection which,when followed by
ka-ta'e and a verb, expresses the idea of "ah, indeed that is
why..., no wonder that...".
Ahara-ka-tu'u-mai tou hope era, he umu tonei. no wonder this
lad has turned up, there's food cooking here.
Ahara-ka-ta'e hoki-mai kinei, he riri-ó. ah, that's why he
hasn't come back, he is angry .
dizzy spell; to black out.
through where? (adv. del lugar). When followed by
ka , it means "when?" referring to the future:
ahé ka-tu'u-mai te miro? when will the boat arrive?
he-tutu i te ahi to light a fire.
ahiahi-ata, the last moments of light before nightfall.
change of government, in ancient times, when the command (ao)
passed from one tribe to another:
ki ea te ahirega , upon the command passing on.
ancient name of the sturdy fishing-line made from the fibers of the
hauhau (Triumfetta semitriloba).
- funerary monument with niches holding the skeletons of the dead.
- generic term for a grave, a tomb merely enclosed with stones.
- stone platform, with or without graves.
- elevated seat, throne.
- swollen; to swell up:
ku-ahu-á tooku va'e, my foot is swollen;
ananake te raá e-tagi-era te ûka riva mo toona matu'a ka-ahu ahu-ró
te mata, every day the daughter cried for her parents until her eyes
were quite swollen.
- copulation, to copulate (of animals).
- there is, there are; e-ai-ró-á, there is.
This verb is of limited use and is
avoided when not necessary:
ai te vai toe? any water left? But:
te ahi no te Atua, there is only one God
[translator's note: te
ahi is probably a misprint for te tahi].
- ai ka, expression used with a verb in the sense of "then one must":
he-ra'e ana-kai, ai ka-unu i te raau, first eat, then
you must drink the medicine.
- so, this big, this much:
ai te nuinui o te pú, the hole is this big (lit. here is the
size of the hole,with accompanying gesture).
- ai nará, there is, here is;
ai nará te kurí i tooku hare , there's my cat (lit.: the cat
in my house);
ai nará te kumara i roto i te kete , there are sweet potatoes
in the basket.
existence, stay, sojourn.
he-hoa te aka, to drop anchor.
- root of certain plants (banana tree, taro, sugar-cane).
- to be paralyzed by surprise.
to do something haltingly, ineptly, to bungle, to mangle:
he-áka-áka-nó au i te vânaga
rapanui, te poki nei he-áka-áka-nó te kupu, kai ma'a rivariva i te rutu,
this child reads with difficulty, he cannot read well.
stake, thick pole.
stake, thick pole (same as akaûe).
- to carry on one's back, hanging from one's neck
- basket thus carried.
- fingernail (also: maikuku);
to sing, to recite:
he-ako i te kaikai ,to recite the [text accomanying a] string
kaikai; he-ako i te rîu. to sing
to recite hymns in honour of a deity.
spirit of the otherworld (good or evil).
Ki a au te ákuáku oga apó. I have a dream of bad omen last night.
to smear, to anoint.
to slander, to cast aspersions, to gossip:
tagata amiami i te me'erakerake, malicious gossip (person).
to carry on one's shoulders:
O Yetú i-amo-ai te tatauró ki ruga ki-te maúga Kalvario. Jesus
carried his cross up to the Calvary.
- to clean, to clean oneself:
he-âmo i te umu, to clean the earth oven;
ka-âmo te hare , ka haka-maitaki, clean the house, make it
he-âmo i te ariga, to clean one's face wetting it with one's
- clear; ku-âmo-á te ragi, the sky is clear;
- to slip, to slide, to glide (see pei-âmo).
to lick up, to lap up, to dry; to slap one's body dry (after swimming
he-âmoâmo i te vaihai rima.
bundle; to tie in a bundle:
he-amoga i te hukahuka, to tie a bundle of wood.
unreliable, untrustworthy person; scoundrel.
- a mu'a,
ahead, in front.
glutton; someone who will eat anything, such as unripe or
- verbal prefix:
he-ra'e ana-unu au i te raau, first I drank the medicine.
all without exception (see
- useless (for work); anako koe mo te aga, you are useless;
- ugly; anako te ariga oona, his face is ugly.
all; also used reduplicated:
today, now, then, a little later (also:
aanu, to spit continuously.
- command, power, mandate, reign:
tagata ao, person in power, in command, ruler.
- dusk, nightfall:
- ao nui, midnight;
- ao popohaga, the hours between midnight and dawn.
to serve (food);
ku-âo-á te kai i ruga i te kokohu, the
food is served on a platter.
to move or put things down, having removed them from where they were:
ka-apa te kumara ki roto ki te kete , put the sweet potatoes
inside the basket.
- apapa ,
to take thing which have been arranged in a pile and put them down
again in order somewhere else.
- to cover, to cap;
ka-api toou hakari, cover your body.
- to translate;
ka-api-mai te vânaga rapanui ki te vânaga Tire, translate for
me the Rapanui sentence into Spanish (lit.: Chilean language).
- to make an offering:
i te nohoga tûai-era-á he-api te kai ki a Makemake, in the old
days they made offerings of food to Makemake.
- apó era,
day after tomorrow.
- road, path; ladder.
- to wake up, to concentrate on something;
he-ara te mata, to inspect attentively;
hé-ara, he-ûi a raro o te vai kava,
concentrating, he looked
at the sea-bottom.
to signal, to send signals with the hand (to another person in the
he-haaki-atu hai rima ará-ará.
- a raro,
he-oho a raro, to go on foot.
korua ararua, both of you (also: arurua).
to dig out (e.g. sweet potatoes). Formerly this term only applied to
women, speaking of men one said keri, which term is used nowadays for
both sexes, e.g.
he-keri i te kumara, he digs out sweet potatoes.
- tongue (organ).
he-aha to'u arero e-vânaga ena? what is this language you are
- ariga ora, (lit. "living face") keepsake, memento, memory,
souvenir (of someone). This used to be the name given the
moai (stone statues) carved as memories of the dead;
- ariga ora is also used in the generic sense of a memento, a
he mate te matu'a he ato tepoki i te rîu o toona matu'a; he-ariga
ora o toona matu'a; [when] the father dies, [and] the son sings a
riu for his father, this constitutes an ariga ora of his father.
- king, ruler, member of the nobility,
Ariki henua, king; members of the royal family, descenting
from Hotu Matu'a; noble, nobility, chief.
- divine being, superior being.
- Ariki Paka, certain collateral descendents of Hotu Matu'a,
who exercised religious functions.
today, now, then, a little later (also:
face, front, side (of a figure);
ki te aro o..., to the front of...
(ki) to greet, to take leave:
ka-aroha koe ki to'ou matu'a, say hello to your father;
(i) to sympathize with, to feel sorry for:
me'e aroha (or:
i te poki tama-hahine, hoko-tahi nó, ina he hokorua, [it is]
a thing [that makes you] feel sorry for the girl, [being] still all
alone, without a companion.
aaru: to grab firmly.
both (also: ararua, which see).
- dawn, first light before sunrise;
ku-hamu-á te ata , dawn has broken;
ku-tehe-á te ata, it's already dawn (lit.: the lights have flown).
- particle inserted between the imperative prefix
ka and the verb to signify "well, carefully, intelligently":
ka-ata-hakarivariva, prepare it well. Between the prefix
kahara it expresses "to make sure that, to take good care
e-ata-kahara koe o oona, be careful not to get dirty;
e-ata-kahara koe o kori te moa o te tahi pa, be sure not to
steal chickens of another property.
; ata iti, smaller;
he-ata-ata iti-iti ró, the smallest of all.
he-veveri te poki, ana tikea toona âta, the child is
frightened at seeing his shadow; person's reflection (in mirror, in water):
he âta oou-á, it's your own reflection.
- to be frightened by a shadow:
he-âta te îka, the fish are frightened (and they flee) by
to laugh (also: katakata ).
Rima atakai, generous hands, generosity, munificence.
Te rima atakai o te Atua he avai-mai ki a tâtou i te kai ananake
te raá, the generosity of the Lord gives us food every day.
Tagata rima atakai, selfless, generous person.
- liver; more exactly:
ate ánuánu; ate reherehe, lung.
- Fig.: son, boy.
- a certain song,
ate atua, in which are recorded happy, pleasant achievements
of the past.
- áteáte, ateate,
dear, dearly beloved:
e nua ateate ê dear mother!
- to take revenge;
- he-ati ki... to take revenge against (someone);
he-ati te kopeka o te îka ki te to'a, the avenger of the
victim takes revenge against the assassin.
- he-ati i... to avenge (someone);
- to get even, to pay back:
te tagata nei ina kai pu'a-mai te rima, e-ati-ró au ana haga kia
au mote aga, this man did not give me hand, I'll get even with him
when he needs me for some work.
- he-ati, he ora, to win someone's gratitude while saving one's
life; this was the expression used when speaking of someone who took refuge
with afamily of an enemy tribe and served them so wellthat he won their
goodwill and so saved his life.
- half-fathom (i.e. from end of outstretched arm to centre of chest);
(see maroa, kumi, fathom).
to roof, to put a roof on.
particle of meaning opposite to that of
"mai"; it refers to the second or third person, expressing
ka-avai-atu, give it to him:
he-oho-atu au, I am going there, after you;
i-oho-atu-era, when I had gone there.
- lord, God:
te Atua ko Makemake, lord Makemake.
Ki a au te Atua o agapó, I had a dream of good omen last night
(lit. to me the Lord last night)
- gentleman, respectable person;
atua Hiva, foreigner.
- atua hiko-rega, (old) go-between, person who asks for a girl
on another's behalf.
- atua hiko-kura, (old) person who chooses the best when
entrusted with finding or fetching something.
- atua tapa ,
orientation point for fishermen, which is not in
front of the boat, but on the side.
a small, tasty fish.
- me, I. Personal pronoun used in conjunction with verbs; when on its
own, the form used is
au kiokio, thick, pungent smoke (of a fire).
he-haro te vaka i te au , the boat is towed off course in the current.
- bile, gall.
- au moa,
chicken's gall; greenish colour (like that of gall).
- au ra'e, the people first served in a feast where food or
gifts are distributed.
- birthing pains;
matu'a a'u, biological mother (not adoptive);
vi'e hakaa'u, midwife.
- vessel, cup (Tahitian word).
enclosure, ring, circle (Tahitian word).
to rub, to scratch, to scrape;
ina ekó au'au i te mata, don't rub your eyes.
to shout (in pain), to howl;
e-auau-á te mamae , the sick man is howling with pain.
- interjection of pain, of sorrow: ouch, alas.
Aûé, aûé, ku-mamae-á au, ouch, ouch, I hurt
- interjection of salutation;
aûé, e nua é! greetings, mother!
seaweed used for wrapping fish or meat when cooking in the umu.
- au hopu,
- au moa,
chicken's gall; greenish colour (like that of gall).
- au ra'e,
the people first served in a feast where food or
gifts are distributed.
- to remain (of dregs, of very small objects in the water or in a place
which used to be full of water);
he-ava, he-paroparoko, expression, said when small fishes
swarm in the water holes along the coast.
- furrow, rut, groove, crevice, fissure;
he-hahata te ava o te henua, a crevice opened in the ground.
- to strike, to hit; to sound like a blow;
ku-ava-á te poko (see also hatutiri), thunder sounded.
- áva-áva ,
- to lift up.
- to strike, to hit repeatedly;
he-áva-áva i te koreha a ruga a te ma'ea, he struck the eel
several times against a stone (to kill it).
niche, recess in an
ahu, where the skeletons of the dead were deposited
oblong, free-standing monument built for the same purpose.
- a fish (pez cofre: coffer fish?)
- coffer, chest, case (modern term).
to break, to smash something; to separate, to divide.
- to give, to present, to lend (also
- for ever, for good;
he oho-ró-avai au ki Hiva, I am going to the Continent to stay.
- Ina avai emphatic negation: never ever, in no way.
- lobe of fish fin;
e tahi ave o te hiku magó potopoto, e tahi ave roaroa, one
lobe of the caudal fin of the dogfish is short, the other is long.
- hetu'u ave, comet.
kahi aveave, a species of tuna.