T Dictionary



taa #1

(from PPN ^taa).

[vt]  to hit, to kick; taa ki mate, ‘beat to death’.

ps: taia.


taa #2

[vi]  to turn direction in a canoe.


ttaa (tataa)

1.[vt]  to bail out water.

2.[na]  the bailer in a boat.


tae #1

(from PPN ^ta’e).

[no]  feces, excrement.  (Archaic).

sa: tuutae.


tae #2

[vi]  to hit the water with a flying fish net in order to make the fish jump.

sa: tae ssave.


tae kulu

[np]  the sap of the breadfruit tree {kulu}.


tae namu

(from namu ‘mosquito’)

[no]  mosquito net.  Traditionally made with the loom {mea tau}; at present all are bought in stores.


tae paku

[na]  a recipe; a pudding made from pandanus fruit {paku}.


tae pau

[np]  the sap of the hetau tree.  The tae pau is heated and the carbon residue was formerly used for tatooing.


tae sakaki

see sakaki.


tae sali

(from? sali ‘melt’).

[vs]  to have diarrhea.


tae ssave (tae sasave)

[nv]  fishing for flying fish with a long hand held net from an outrigger canoe.  Formerly popular, from 1980-83 never done because there are no outrigger canoes.

ge: haanota,

sa: hakaloulou, taetae, mooea, moena#2, tili#1.


tae sii

[vs]  to defecate without being aware of it, especially after eating a certain fish named lavena.


tae vii

1.[no]  the smell of flatulence without any noise.  (Restricted).

sa: pakisuu.

2.[nf]  a plant species, smells bad.


ttae (tatae)

(from PPN ^tae).

1.[vp]  to arrive, to reach a place.

ca: hakataetae <[vi]  to travel to several different places>,

ps: taaea.

2.[vp]  to achieve, to equal, to accomplish. Te ata o toku tamaahine e he taaea e he tamataane, ‘the beauty of my womanhood has not been reached by any young man; (no young man can convince me to love him) (MS)’; koe e he ttae ki te ata o too tamana, ‘you are not equal to the beauty of your father (you are not as handsome as your father’ (TS).

ps: taaea.



[na]  the diamond suit in a card game.



[no]  the net used for catching flying fish {tae ssave}.



1.[np]  the residue from fermented coconut toddy {kaleve} which can be mixed with fresh sap in order to shorten the time for fermentation.

2.[n]  powerful, strong.  (Figurative).

3.[np]  the residue of coconut oil {lolo}; the white creamy substance found adhering to the seed {kanauto} of a mature coconut {kamatuu somo}.



[n, location]  to the side, away; haele ki taha, ‘go away’.

do: ki taha.


ttaha (tataha)

[vt]  to circumcise.  Not practiced on Sikaiana.



[nf]  a fish species of the trevally family, small.

sa: matapuku.


tahallo (tahalolo)

[na]  a glass bottle.


tahallo hai ioio

[na]  a four cornered glass bottle.



[n, location]  the distance at sea where one can still see the island, but it is very small and no details can be seen.

sa: kunaatua, laulalo, hati na peau, lilo.



1.[vi]  to play, as in playing games.

2.[vi]  to sing and dance at festivities.

3.[vi]  to make a series of competitive exchanges as during brideprice payments {penupenu}, the mautolotolo, and making a custom friend {soa}.

For all senses:

pl: tahhao,

do: tahaonna.


tahaonna (tahaolana)

(from taahao ‘play’).

[n]  a game, festivity; a match, as in a football match.



[n]  a small promontory.



[n, time]   the early morning before sunrise, from the first cock cry until the earliest rays of sunlight are seen.

wh: aho#1.


tahataha #1

[nf]  a shell species.


tahataha #2

[vt]  to cut hair around the shoulders only but not on the top of the head.  A popular method for cutting the hair of women.

cn: tahi#2.

pl: ttahattaha.



(from PPN ^tafe).

[np]  a current.



[vt]  for a current in the sea, to carry an object.



(from ttahe ‘drift’).

[ps]  to drift, to be carried by a current.

pl: tahhea.



[n]  a flood or overflow of water, a flow of water.


tahi #1 (tasi)

(from PPN ^tasi).

1.[cardinal number]  the counting number one, for all counting types except fathoms; hoko tahi, ‘only one of something’.

2.[vq]  directly, straight in direction.  Te vaka e hano tahi ki Sikaiana; e he tuu i Auki, ‘the boat is going directly to Sikaiana, it will not stop at Auki’.

3.[vq]  continuously, all the time, eternally. Te maatua laa ni noho tahi i Sikaiana, ‘that old person lived all the time on Sikaiana’.

syn: taukono.


tahi #2

[vt]  to cut hair all over the head.

cn: tahataha #2.



[nq + article + noun; short for te tahi]  very large: ttahi te ika, ‘a very large fish’; ttahi te manava, ‘a big belly’; ttahi te hale, ‘a very large house’.


tahi pohoulu

[na]  scissors.



(from PPN ^tafito).

[no]  the base, origin, source, underlying cause: te tahito o te kanohale, ‘the origin of the family’; te tahito o te laakau, ‘the base of a tree’; te tahito o te talatala, ‘the origin of some speech; the true meaning of some speech’.



[nf]  a whale.



[nf]  a shell species, oyster species.



(from PPN ^tafu).

[vt]  to add fuel to a fire to keep it burning.



[n]  the stick used for striking the turtle during the ritual event, honu.  (PCR).



(from PPN ^tafuli).

[vs]  to be turned over; to be turned over in a canoe.

tr: huli,

ps: hulia.


tahuli te laa

[n, time]  afternoon.

wh: aho#1.



(from PPN ^tahi).

1.[n, direction]  to the direction of saltwater: te hale ki tai, ‘the house towards the seaside’; maatou ni hhao ki tai, ‘we turned through brush towards the sea’.

opp: uta.

2.[n, direction]  in commercial districts such as Auki and Honiara, the direction towards the main commercial section of town; a nau ka hano ki tai, ‘I am going to town’.

3.[n, location]  the sea shore.


tai ao

[n, time]  tomorrow.

wh: aho #1.


tai hale

[n]  the area along the shore near the sea.  (Mostly poetic).


tai hhonu (tai ffonu)

[n, time]  high tide.


tai mmate

(from mate ‘die’).

[n]  a time when the tide is very low.  Fish are trapped in shallow pools in the reef and some die.

syn: liitia.


tai te tua

[nv]  a net fishing technique {haanota kupena}.  A single man goes inside the reef with a hand held net {kautoko} and tries to catch any fish that he sees.

ge: haanota kupena.



[n, location; te tai is shortened to ttai]  sea, saltwater. Te tama laa ni hano ki ttai, ‘that person went to the sea’.

opp: uta.



[no]  same sex sibling, classificatory or true: brother to brother; sister to sister; same sex, same generation lineal and collateral relatives.

sa: haanau.

do: haitaina <in the relationship of same sex sibling>; taina ki taha <classificatory same sex sibling>.



[vs]  to be salty to taste.



1.[no]  footwear: shoes, boots, sandals.

2.[vi]  to travel together; te ulua e taka ma te pakeo, ‘the trevally travels with the shark’.

do: ttaka, taakana, takaana&.


taka hatu

[nv]  a net fishing technique {haanota kupena}.  A large stone in the reef is encircled by a net {tauto}.  Then the blood of a sea slug is squeezed into the stone.  The blood is poisonous and the fish swim out from the stone into the net.

ge: haanota kupena.


ttaka (tataka)

[vt]  to step upon, to tread.

ps: takamia,

rp: takataka.



1.[vi]  to struggle to get free of something.

2.[vi]  to be in death throes.



[no]  a belt woven on the loom {mea tau}; a store bought belt.
See an illustration of a loom takai.



[vn]  the successor to the chief {aliki}.  Normally, the chieftainship alternated between the descendants of the island’s founding heroes, Tehui Atahu and Tehui Luaniua. If one side held the chieftainship, the the other held the position of the takala who was expected to succeed at the death of the chief.

sa: aliki, kape#3, ssau, sao#2.


takalli (takalili)

(from hakalli ‘boil’).

[vs]  to be boiled, of water; to be cooked, of birds.

tr: hakalli.



[no]  two people who are always together; tona takaana, ‘the person he is always with’.



[no]  a group that is walking together.



[nf]  a fallen coconut {kamatuu} that is dry inside.

wh: kamatuu.



[vi]  to roll from one side to another.

tr: hakatakatipe <to use a roller for moving a canoe>.



[vs]  to be hanging as clothes hung on a line or a lamp from the ceiling.

syn: tautau.

tr: hakatakatootoo.



[np]  the bottom,*base: takele henua, ‘the base of the island’; takele pao, ‘the base of a house on posts’; takele kapu, ‘the bottom of a cup’; takele o te vaka, ‘the keel of a boat’.  Idiom: Koe e moe takele o te pao, lit., ‘you sleep under the house posts; you had an improper upbringing’ (demeaning).



(from keu ‘turn’)

1.[vs]  to be turned, twisted.

tr: keu.

2.[vi]  to turn and twist the body, especially when sleeping.



1.[vt]  to distribute fermented toddy to drinkers.  Usually, drinking is done in a circular group with each man taking a turn in drinking from one cup.

2.[n]  the person whose role it is to distribute fermented toddy when people are drinking.

3.[v, followed by noun]  to be in a kinship or in‑law rela`tionship: laaua taki haitaina, ‘they are related as same sex siblings’; laaua taki haimaa, ‘they are in the relationship of same generation in‑law’.

4.[v, prefix for numbers]  to amount to in distributions: takitahi, ‘one each’; takilua, ‘two each’; takitolu, ‘three each’.

5.[vt]  to spread, to take from place to place, especially of speech or gossip. Laatou ni taki toku lono i Auki ki Honiara, ‘they took the gossip about me from Auki to Honiara’.

do: taki talatala <gossip>.

6.[vt]  to attach a line from one place to another.

For senses #1, #5, #6.

ps: takina,

rp: takitaki.



[vt]  to pull out, or extract.

ps: taakina.


ttaki (tataki)

(from PPN ^taki).

[vt]  to lead someone, as when someone is incapable of walking.

ps: taakina,

do: hakattaki.



[nq following noun]  to be made from one side only, as a carrying basket that is woven only on one side.



[vt]  to paddle a canoe very slowly in certain kinds of fishing techniques.


takitaki oohana

(from oohana ‘nest’).

[vt]  for birds, to build a nest.



(from PPN ^takoto ‘lie down’).

[vi]  to exist, to remain, to *e at a place.  (Usually, refers to an emotional atmosphere or sweet smell.)  Te laisi e takoto i te stoa, ‘there is rice in the store’; te manoni ku takoto i te luumu, ‘the fragrance is in the room’.

syn: moe.


taku #1

[possessive pronoun, 1st person singular for alienable objects].  my.


taku #2

[nv]  a type of prayer form that involves calling out the names of spirits {aitu, tupua} in exact order.  (PCR).

sa: hakatootonu.



[no]  an axe, both of steel and shell.



[nf]  a large yellow fin tuna that has been washed ashore; a very large yellow fin tuna; the yellow fin tuna when part of the teika lle.

sa: velovelo, ppaa.



1.[n]  an order of the chief {aliki} to the people of the island.  (PCR).


tala #1

1.[vt]  to change the loincloth { }.  (Archaic).

2.[vt]  to change clothes; tala oo leuleu, ‘change your clothes’.  (Rare).


tala #2

[vs]  to be tame, to be unafraid of humans; in courtship, not to be timid or shy.

ca: hakatala.



[nf]  a bird species, a seagull species.


tala #4

(from PPN ^tala).

[na]  a type of story told to children to make them sleep, a fairy tale.  These stories are considered to be false {talatala pio}.

sa: ttani kkai, Sina, Puna.


tala hatu

[nv]  a technique for line fishing.  A line is tied to a weight.  When it reaches bottom, the line is snapped from the weight but  the bait is left at the bottom of the ocean.   This is done inabout 30 to 100 fathoms of water.

ge: maatau.


tala sala

[vi]  to confess sins to a priest.  (CR).


ttala #1 (tatala)

[vs]  to be slightly rough on a sharp surface, as the small serrations or knicks in a knife blade.

ca: hakattala <to sharpen>.


ttala #2 (tatala)

1.[vt]  to untie, to undo a string or knot.

st: matala,

ps: talaaina.

2.[vt]  to end a curse or supernaturally caused illness through supernatural means; absolution in Christian ritual.  (CR, PCR).



1.[no]  a beard.

2.[no]  chin.



[pln]  the site of one of the clan houses {hale henua}at Sokupu and associated with the Saatelua clan.



[vt, vs]  to open; to be opened: taalaki te tootoka, ‘open the door’; te tootoka ku taalaki, ‘the door is open’.

ps: talakina.



[no]  the ventral fin of a fish.



[np]  the base of a traditional fire starter.

sa: sika #2.



1.[vi]  to talk, to speak, to converse, to discuss.  Some idioms and compounds: ao talatala, ‘collect different versions of a narration’; ffana talatala, ‘to investigate a narration’; talatala hakapotopoto, ‘to have a brief discussion’; talatala hakamotumotu, ‘to speak in broken sentences’; talatala hakasolo, ‘to talk slowly’; talatala pio, ‘to tell lies, exaggerate, untrue talk’; talatala maaoni, ‘to tell the truth’; talatala hakavanakaaia, ‘to beat around the bush, not to come to the point of a conversation’; talatala takitaki, ‘to gossip’; talatala hulihulisala, ‘to speak in metaphors’; talatala valevale, ‘to be uncertain about what one is saying’, talatala hakasanosano, ‘to speak in a sug`gestive manner’; talatala tihatiha, ‘to talk evasively’, tanu talatala, ‘to cover up’.

ps: talatalaina <for a speech or word to be spoken>.

ca: hakatalatala.

2.[vp]  to talk about something. A nau e talatala i na mea oku kalemata ni kite koia, ‘I am going to talk about only the things I saw with my own eyes’.

3.[na]  a speech, a discussion, a word, a statement, a story, narration.



[np]  the top fin of a fish.



(from PPN ^tale).

1.[vi]  to cough.

rp: taletale.

2.[no]  the cough.


tale hhuti

[n]  whooping cough.



(from PPN ^lepa).

[vi]  to flap, as a sail flaps in the wind.

ps: taalepalepatia.


tali #1

[np]  string from coconut palm used for tying: tali ika, a string for holding fish that are caught; talihoe, the string used to hold the paddle to the canoe when fishing for flying fish.


tali #2

[vi]  to move, of a group.


ttali (tatali)

(from PPN ^tali).

[vi]  to wait.

ps: taalia <to be awaited>.



[vt]  to chase.

ps: taalikolia.


talina #1

[nf]  a plant species, creeper.


talina #2

[nf]  a fish species, mullet.



[no]  venereal diseases, especially gonorrhea.



[nf]  a fish species that attaches itself to the back of sharks.



(from PPN ^talo).

[nf]  taro; (mostly used in fairy stories {tala}).  (Rare).



[psn]  a star.


ttalo (tatalo)

[vp]  to wish that someone will die, as a man who loves another woman may wish for the death of his wife.

ps: talohia.


tallu (talulu)

[vi]  to make a dull booming noise as the waves do when they break, or the pounding of a hammer.



[na]  a cultivated garden made from a raised mound inside swamp land {keli}. Most often used for growing one species of taro {haahaa}, but may be made for other plants including turmeric, pasai.

sa: vaasao, kaupaa, ppuana, keli#2, hakataaute, uhi#2, tuutuu#2.



(from PPN ^tama).

1.[n]  a person, a human being.  Tama laa, ‘that person’; tama nei, ‘this person’; na tama, ‘the people’.  The stages of growth of a person are: tapaa tama, ‘a baby’; tama likiliki, ‘a child’; tamataane, tamaahine, ‘young unmarried man, young unmarried woman’;  tama matua,’mature person’; tama maatua, ‘old person’.

2.[na]  a playing piece in a board game such as chess, draughts, checkers, or a card in a game of cards.

3.[na]  a true child (as opposed to classificatory child); an adopted child.

4.[no]  a classificatory relative: te nei toku tama, ‘this is my relative’; maaua te tama, ‘we are related’.

ca: hakatama.


tama a te heke

(from heke ‘a sponge‑like plant’).

1.[nf]  a species of clown fish.

2.[n]  a child who constantly stays in one place.  (Figurative).


tama a te kokituu

(from Eng ‘cockatoo’).

[n]  a cat’s eye marble; so named because of its bright colors.  (Archaic).

syn: leli.


tama a te laki

[nf]  a bird species.

ge: kivi #3.


tama a te paakele

[nf]  a species of grasshopper.


tama a Tehui Atahu

[nf]  a lizard species.


tama hulihuli

[n]  a woman who assists the midwife {ssiki} during the birth of a child. (PCR).

sa: haanau, ssiki.


tama kai

(from kai ‘eat’).

[na]  a person who acted as a go between for two secret lovers {hina}. This person delivered the presents sent between the two lovers and arranged meetings.  (PCR).

sa: hina, hakasaosao, kau.


tama likiliki

(from liliki ‘small’).

[nao]  a small child, from about 2 years to puberty.

pl: tama lliki.


tama maa

(from maa ‘white’).

[n]  a white person, a person who is racially European.  Sometimes non‑European, non‑Islander fair‑skinned people are included in this term.

ca: hakatama maa <[vi]  to act like or pretend to be a European; to adopt a life style similar to Europeans>.


tama mmaa

[n]  the culture and language of Europeans.


tama sola

(from sola ‘wander’).

[n]  a person who has no home, a person who moves from place to place, a wanderer.  (Demeaning).


tama too

(from too ‘take’).

[na]  an adopted child.

syn: mokupuna,

sa: tupuna.


tama tootoo

(from tootoo ‘straighten bones’).

[n]  a man who is expert at setting broken bones using traditional knowledge.


tama tootoo hekau

[n]  one of the chief’s assistants whose precise work is no longer well remembered.  The person for the post was selected by the chief {aliki} from his extended family.  (PCR).

sa: aliki.


tama ula

(from ula ‘red’).

[n]  a ‘red’ man; an exceptional man, mostly used sarcastically.  Te tamaahine laa e hilihili ki na tama uli ma na tama mmaa, e ttali ki he tama ula; ‘that girl is not attracted to Solomon Islanders and Europeans, she must be waiting for a red skinned person (a person who does not exist)’.


tama uli

(from uli ‘black’).

1.[n]  any darked skinned person, as opposed to Europeans {tama maa}; Melanesians when contrasted with Polynesians.

2.[n]  store bought black sauce, used in food preparation.  (Figurative).


tamaa tanata

[n]  an illegitimate child.



(from hahine ‘woman’).

1.[nao]  a mature but unmarried woman from the age of about 16 to 30.

2.[vs]  to be a young woman in age.



[vt]  to tie in a special manner that is very tightly.  A Vaeoma ni taamakka tana laakau ki tona lima, ‘Vaeoma tied his club tightly to his arm’.

ps: taamakkalia.



[vs]  many, a lot; taamaki i te tama e nnoho i Honiara, ‘many people live in Honiara’.

ca: hakataamaki <to increase, to multiply.  (Recent)>.



[no]  father; true and classificatory; first ascending generation lineal and collateral males on the paternal side.

do: haitamana <to be in the relationship of father to child>; tamana ki taha <classificatory father; all people father calls taina>.



(from PPN ^ta’ane).

1.[n]  a young unmarried man from about the age of 18 to 30.

2.[na]  a son.

3.[no]  a classificatory son.



[nf]  a plant species, a creeper; sweet smelling.



[vi]  to drip, of water.

ps: tamotilia <to be dripped upon>.


tammu (tamumu)

[vi]  to make a bass booming noise, as the waves make when they break upon the reef or a coconut falling from a tree to the ground.



[vi]  a repeated booming noise but with interruptions, asa l ong burst of thunder.


ttamu (tatamu)

1.[vt]  to chew; to move the jaw up and down; to chew.

ps: tamulia.

rp: tamutamu.

2.[vi]  to eat.   When non‑Sikaiana guests arrive this word is sometimes used instead of kai to discuss feeding the guests. Kai is too widely understood among non‑Sikaiana people.


tana #1

[possessive pronoun, third person singular for singular alienable objects].  his, her.


tana #2

1.[no]  a pocket in clothes.

2.[na]  a bag; a carrying bag, a copra sack.


tana #3

[vs]  to be unrestricted, to be free from sanctity or taboos.  \s I muli o te hakatulou i te ahiahi i te aho tapu, te unu e tana, ‘after church service on Sunday evening, drinking is allowed’.

opp: tapu.

tr: hakatana <to permit, to desanctify>.



[nf]  a species of parrot fish.



[na]  a fish trap made by placing stones in the passages in the reef in such a manner that fish become trapped as the tide lowers.  Formerly, a very popular method for fishing.  In 1980‑1982, only two such traps were built.  The parts of the tanaaika include: tanaaika naniu,soaaki o te tanaaika, tanaaika haanota.

ge: haanota,

cn: hota,

sa: tanaaika naniu, soaaki o te tanaaika, tanaaika haanota, hakauluulu, aasi.


tanaaika haanota

[np]  the last pool in the fish trap {tanaaika}.  After the tide lowers, the fish move from the soaaki o te tanaaika to this part, where they are collected by the owner of the trap.

wh: tanaaika.



[n]  a shooting star.



[pln]  the name of one of the clan houses {hale henua} belonging to the Saatui clan and associated with Tehui Luaniua, one of the founders of Sikaiana.  Also the name of a nearby area now used for church festivities.



1.[n]  a man, male.

pl: taanata.

2.[nq]  male; moa tanata, ‘rooster’.



(from PPN ^tangi).

1.[vi]  to weep, to cry.

tr: hakatani <to make a child cry; in catching bird, to make a hand held bird call to other birds>;

ps: tanisia <to be cried for>,

pl: ttani.

2.[vi]  to play music, as with a radio or a tape cassette; te teipi ku tani, ‘the tape is turned on’.

tr: hakatani <to turn on a tape cassette or radio>.

3.[nao]  a funeral dirge or lament.  Composed during the mourning period {ppali} for a dead relative, the song recounts events from the dead person’s life or death. (PCR)

ge: mako hatu,

sa: ppali.


tani kaka

[vi]  to make a high pitched sound.


tani kiikii

[vi]  to call out during singing with a whooping sound meant to show excitement or generate enthusiasm; to cry out in despair or pain.



(from Eng ‘tank’).

[na]  tank: petrol tank, water tank.


ttani kkai

[np]  the section of a fairy tale {tala} that is sung.

sa: tala#4.


ttano (tatano)

[vt]  to catch a bird with the hands.

ps: tanohia.



[nv]  a net fishing technique {haanota kupena}.  This technique is donewith a hand‑held net {siaa kupena} near the lagoon in the evening.  One man pries up a rock with a crowbar and another catches the fish that swim out with his net.


tanta vale (tanata vale)

[n]  the class of commoners on Sikaiana, who have no right to succeed to the chieftainship.  Includes the following clans {hale akina}: Saapei, Saatelua, Saakava.  Some people include Saatui.

sa: heto aliki, mataaliki, hale akina.



(from PPN ^tanu).

[vt, vs]  to bury underground; to be buried.

ca: hakattanu <[vi]  only for fish, to bury themselves under sand>.

ps: tanumia.



[nf]  a fish species that buries itself under sand.


tao #1

(from PPN ^ta’o).

[vt]  to cook by covering food with earth, sand and stone in an earth oven {umu}.

sa: umu.

ps: taona.


tao #2

(from PPN ^tao).

1.[na]  a spear.

2.[n]  a post used by spirit mediums that could be used to summon

their familiars {aitu mate}.  (PCR).

sa: aitu mate.


ttao #1 (tatao)

[np]  a sprout of a coconut tree that grows above a cluster of coconuts {hui}.  When the ttao is large, the coconuts underneath may be harvested.


ttao #2 (tatao)

[vt]  to soak in water before washing.

ps: taaona.


ttao #3

[vt]  to smother, to hold down a person or object.

ps: taotaona,

do: taotao, taotaona.



[vs]  to be dry tasting, as with unripe bananas or other unripe fruit.



1.[vt]  to hold in the hand.

pl: ttaaohi,

ps: taohia.

2.[vt]  to hold a person back, to keep a person from leaving. Toku tupuna ni taaohi a nau i Honiara, a nau poki hano ki Sikaiana i te vaka nei, ‘my guardian kept me in Honiara; otherwise, I would go to Sikaiana on this ship’.

3.[vt]  to hold an event: taaohi te koti, ‘to hold a court hearing’; taaohi te penupenu, ‘to hold a marriage payment’.



(from tao ‘cook’).

[vt]  to cook overnight by leaving in an earth oven.



(from Eng ‘towel’).

[no]  towel.



1.[vt, rp. Of taotao] see ttao.

2.[vt]  for a hen, to sit on eggs.

3.[vt]  for a cat, to play with a rat that it has captured before killing it.



(from ttao ‘smother’).

[ps]  to try to wake up while sleeping but to be unable.  A person may feel he is aware of events going on in the room but unable to wake up.



[vp]  to call out to.

ps: tapaaina, tapaalia <to be called>.



[nq preceeds noun]  small, little.  Tapaa tama, ‘the baby’; tapaa talatala, ‘the short talk’; tapaa teipi, ‘the small tape cassette’.



(from PPN ^tapakau).

[na]  a mat made from coconut leaf {paakele} used for sitting and floor covering.

sa: kaapiti, tauheunu.



[nf]  a species of stingray, very large.



[nf]  a variety of swamp taro {haahaa} with a reddish‑black root.

ge: haahaa #1.



1.[vq]  a little bit, of short duration: maatou ni nnoho tapaamea, ‘we stayed for a short time’; maatou ni kkai tapaamea, ‘we ate a little bit’.

2.[n]  a small portion, a little bit of something.


tapatai ao

[n, time]  morning time.

wh: aho #1.



[nf]  a crayfish species, sometimes found in fish traps.



[nf]  a small barracuda {ono}.

ge: ono#2.



[vi]  to stutter.



[n]  the person who protects a child from the person who is acting the part of a spirit in the children’s game, haitupua.


tapoto (tapiko)

[np]  any place the reef curves in towards the lagoon away from the open sea.



(from PPN ^tapu).

1.[vs]  to be forbidden, to be socially or ritually prohibited. E tapu ki muna ki too maa, ‘it is forbidden to swear at your in‑law’; i mua e tapu ki hakatuu na hale i te ahana o te hale henua, ‘in the past it was forbidden to build houses on the path leading to the clan house’; e tapu ki unu te kaleve i te aho ono, ‘it is forbidden to drink toddy on Saturday’; i teika lle, maatou haahine ni he olo ki te ika laa, e tapu, ‘during the teika lle, we, the women, did not go to the fish, it was forbidden’; toku hale e tapu, e he uluhia, ‘my house is forbidden, it is not to be entered’.

opp: tana#3.

2.[vs]  to be sacred in Christian teachings: Laumea Tapu, ‘the Bible’; Kai Tapu, ‘Holy Communion’; hale tapu, ‘church’; aho tapu, ‘Sunday’.  (CR).

tr: hakatapu,

cp: hakatapulia.



1.[no]  foot of man, paw of animal.

2.[no]  foot print, the tracks of an animal.



1.[psn]  the name of a spirit {tupua} and the area believed to have been inhabited by him.

2.[pln]  the name of the elementary school at Sikaiana located at the above place.



[vs]  for a bird, to be marked so that it is identified as tame.



[vi]  to kick the legs while swimming.



see tahi#1.


ttasi (tatasi)

(from PPN ^tasi).

[vt]  to level off anything that is rough, to make smooth.



[vp]  to scan an area with the eyes, to search in a crowd.



[vi]  to struggle, to move one’s arms and legs all about.



[vt]  to jerk a line, as in jerking a trap.

rp: tattata.



1.[vt]  to cut wood with an adze, as in shaping a canoe.

2.[vt]  to write.

3.[vt]  to tattoo.

4.[no]  a tattoo.  Traditionally placed on a woman’s thighs, stomach {taataa manava}, and arm {taataa kapakau} and a man’s arm {taataa kapakau}. PCR).



[np]  the string used to hang bottles.



[nv]  a children’s game.  A leaf ball {tikitiki} is batted in the air.  If one child drops his ball then he must sit down.  In other versions, he or must tell the others the name of the boy or girl she/he loves.



[vp]  to beckon another from a distance with the paddle of a canoe.



[personal pronoun, 1st person plural]  we.



[nv]  a net fishing {haanota kupena} technique.  A long net {tauto} is set up in an area where fish are known to be and men encircle the fish driving them into the net.

ge: haanota kupena.


tau #1

[nq, preceding noun]  a group of birds or fish, especially fish that swim near the shore: tau manu, a group of birds; tau na lupo, a group of small fish (lupo); tau na ika, a group of fish.

sa: manavali, kunaaika#2, inaho.


tau #2

[vt]  to wear around the neck or on the head; tau too hau, ‘wear your garland’.


tau #3

[vs]  to be fitted together, in place, as the floor tiles of a house.

tr: hakatau #2.


tau #4

[n]  a type of song that was performed in the clan houses {hale henua} during the kunaaika and perhaps other ceremonies.  No longer sung on Sikaiana.


tau #5

[vs]  for a fish, to be caught in a net.

cn: mau.


tau #6

[vt]  to weave on the backstrap loom {mea tau}.

cn: llana,

sa: mea tau.


tau #7

(from PPN ^tau).

[possessive pronoun, 2nd person singular for singular alienable objects] your.


tau #8

[vt]  to hit a target with a rock.

cn: tuu#3.


tau #9

1.[vs]  to be sufficient, enough: ku tau, ‘that is enough’; a taaua talatala ku tau, ‘we agree in our discussion, or, we have talked enough’;  na ika ku tau ki te kai o te poo nei, ‘there are enough fish for the feast tonight’.

2.[vs]  to be capable enough; a nau e he tau i te kake o na niu, ‘I am not capable enough to climb coconut trees’.


tau #10

[vt]  to beach, to bring ashore, to carry ashore, usually referring to canoes.

do: tau na vaka.


tau ama

[np]  a rope on the outrigger canoe {vaka hai ama} that runs from the mast {kautuu} of the ship to the boom {kiato} and then back to the stern of the canoe {muli vaka}.

sa: laa#1.


tau na vaka

[n]  a place on the beach reserved for taking ashore canoes.


tau namo

[nv]  a line fishing technique {maatau} inside the reef where the bottom of the ocean can still be seen {mmana}.  A line is dropped with hermit crab as bait.

ge: maatau.


tau palu

[nv]  a line fishing technique, performed outside the reef at about 100 fathoms depth.


tau pouli

see maatau halepouli.



[vt]  to squeeze and twist, as in wringing out a rag, or making coconut oil from grated coconut.

do: ttauana.



[vt]  to throw with an overhand motion, to throw hard.

ps: tauatia.



[personal pronoun, 1st person inclusive dual] we (you and me).



[n]  a battle, a war, a fight.

ca: hakausu ttaua <[vp]  to cause a fight>.



[na]  the cloth used for squeezing grated coconut to make oil.



[na]  the extra leaf of coconut branch {paakele} that is woven into mats {kapanni, tapakau} to fill in space; extra strands of warp string material used in the loom weaving.



[np]  the main ridgepole of a house, the central roof beam. Supports the main rafters of the roof {oka naniu}. Tualua o te tauhhu, a smaller beam above the tauhhu that supports the small rafters of the roof {oka likiliki}.

wh: hale,

sa: tualua.



[vs, vq]  continuously, eternally.

syn: tahi#1.



1.[no]   the anchor rope of a boat or canoe.

2.[vs]   to be anchored.



see toolalo.



(from laoi ‘good’).

[vs]  to be very good.



(from PPN ^leka ‘pleasant’).

[vs]  to be beautiful, fancy, good, admirable.

ca: hakataulekaleka <to try to act in a good manner>.



[nv]  a line fishing technique done outside the reef in shallow water at night with coconut‑leaf torches {lama}.  No longer practiced.

ge: maatau.



[possessive pronoun, 2nd person dual possessing singular alienable objects]  your (of two people).



[vt]  to divinate whether one will catch fish or be successful in some other endeavor.  (PCR).

ps: taumataalia.



[np]  the shoot of a coconut branch.



see tautali.



[n]  one of the ritual roles associated with the aliki.  The taumunimuni was selected by the aliki from his extended family and supervised the collection of harvest fruits during the huata.  Some people claim that he served as a ‘guard’ of the aliki.

sa: aliki.



[nf]  a tree species.



1.[vi]  close to or near, in time or space.

2.[v + ki + Verb phrase]  to be close to doing something.



1.[n]  areas at sea where the bottom of the sea looks both dark and light blue from the surface of the water indicating that there is both coral and open areas.

2.[no]  blotchy areas of skin, freckles.



(from soa ‘friend’).

[vi]  to make friends between two groups of people.  Te kanovaka o Tona ni tausoasoa ma na tama o Sikaiana, ‘the crewmen from Tonga each made friends with the people of Sikaiana’.



[n]  a man who is expert at fishing.


tautali (taumuli)

[vp]  to follow another, to walk behind.

ps: tautalia.


tautau #1

[vs]  to hang, as clothes hang on a line, or as a fruit hangs down from a tree.

syn: takatootoo.

tr: hakatautau.


tautau #2

[vi]  a traditional form of wrestling in which two men face each other with arms around each other and try to throw each other to the ground.

sa: sele #1.



[vs]  to be decorated with flowers and plants. I te Kilisimasi, te hale tapu e taaute ki te paakele, ‘during Christmas, the church is decorated with coconut leaf’.

ca: hakataaute,

do: Puna Taautea.



[no]  a long hand‑made fishing net used in certain fishing techniques.  No longer made.

ge: kupena,

sa: uto, kallo, tuu avaava, taka hatu.



[vs]  to be lucky, to be in the right place at the right time by coincidence.



[possessive pronoun, 2nd person plural for plural alienable objects]  your.



1.[no]  a girdle or belt used to hold the stomach in.

2.[no]  the strap used to tie a basket {kete} to one’s back when going fishing.



[n]  a ritual role whose duties are unclear.  Some claim that this man served as a messenger of the takala.  (PCR).

sa: aliki.



[n]  a ritual role.  The tautuku was responsible for certain rituals involving the sea, including the teika lle in which he oversaw the initial bringing of the fish ashore and taking it to the ritual house {hale aitu}. The position was associated with certain patrilineages, Saapei and Saakava.  (PCR).

sa: aliki, sao#2, ssau, kape#3.



(from PPN ^tawa).

[nf]  a fruit that has a hard green skin with a sweet fruit inside. Traditionally the harvest of tava was regulated by the harvest rituals of the huata.  Varieties include: kala too, a reddish tava.  Idiom: tava leu, lit., ‘ripe tava‘; a particular favorite of food or favorite activity.

sa: huata.



[nf]  bird species, tropic bird.



[definite article, singular]  the.

pl: na.


Te Ala i Tua

[psn]  one of the members of the crew of Tehui Atahu who is claimed to have reached down to make a mark in Sikaiana when it was still underwater.  His statue used to stand at Talappa. (Literally, ‘the road in the back’.)


Te Aliki O Muli

see Lapi.


te laa #1

[nq]  other; te laa tama, ‘the other man’.

pl: a laa.


te laa #2

[relative clause conjunction]  which, who; na tama te laa e nnoho i Honiara, ‘the people who live in Honiara’.


te laa ia

[conjunction]  therefore.


Te Lani Hakamalu

[psn]  a male spirit whose statue stood in the ritual house {Hale Aitu}.


Te Lani Hakasele

[psn]  a female spirit whose statue stood in the ritual house {Hale Aitu}.


Te Moni

[psn]  a spirit associated with long distance voyaging {holau}.



[vs]  to be clear, white, pale.



[psn]  a star constellation, two pairs of stars; associated with appearance of large numbers of nanue fish.



[pln]  the name of one of the islands on the western side of Sikaiana.

sa: Muli Akau.


Tehui Atahu

[psn]  one of the founder heroes of Sikaiana; by legend his origin is unknown.  The founder of the Saalupe and Vaka Avusu clans {hale akina} (although each descent group disputes the other’s claim).


Tehui Luaniua

[psn]  one of the founder heroes of Sikaiana; by legend from Luaniua. The founder of the Saatui clan {hale akina} which has the right to assume the position of chief.


Tehui Peilau

[psn]  a male spirit whose statue once stood in the ritual house {Hale Aitu}.


teika lle

(from? ika ‘fish’ + lle ‘fly’).

[n]  a major ritual.  The ceremony started when a large fish washed up on the reef.  After the fish was sighted, a person, often a child, was designated temporary chief and went with a member of the chiefly line {mataaliki} to bring the fish ashore.  When the fish reached shore, a crowd of people waved {luelue} coconut leaves {paakele} at the fish.  It was then cut up and symbolically eaten in an area near the ritual house {Malae}.  The head of the fish was then carried to a ritual house, either Te Laoa or Talihaki and left to rot.  Women were not allowed to go near the fish and participated in a separate ceremony, the puutuna.  After the end of the ritual, the pule prayed tothe spirits {tupua} of the reef before people could go to the sea again.  The ritual of the teika lle seems to have centered on making the fish, which was considered dangerous to the island, into something harmless. The event was a pre-Christian ritual that was no longer performed in 1980-1983. Parts of it were re-enacted to greet important visitors during 1980-3. (PCR)

sa: puutuna, lani#1, kai tae, uui#2, ttala#2, suamele, tonu#1, mahamaha, hakamaumau, pule, aliki, tautuku.



[vp]  to be disobedient, naughty.

ps: tekelia.



(from PPN ^teke).

[vs]  to be out of proportion, to be out of shape.



1.[vs]  to be shocked, scared, jolted by news or fright.

2.[vs]  to have a painful muscle spasm.



[pln]  a traditional house, no longer standing, near Mataapa where fruits from the harvest ceremony {huata} were stored.



(from PPN ^tere ‘sail’).

1.[vi]  to run.

rp: teletele.

2.[vi]  to travel by foot along the reef between the main island {Hale} and the small islands on the western side of the atoll {Muli Akau}; tele i te popolani, ‘go along the reef’.

3.[vi]  to flow, as water flows from a hose, in a current or a river.

4.[vi]  to ride in an automobile; maatou ni tele ki tai, ‘we rode to town’.

5.[vi]  to sail or ride in a boat.


tele hakatukku (tele hakatukuku)

[vi]  to sink straight down to the bottom of the ocean.

cn: apulu.


tele tika

[vi]  to run in a zigzag.



[vi]  to travel fast; a Lanati ni ttele; ‘the Ranadi (the government ship before the Second World War) travelled very fast’.



[pln]  a former island along the north side of the reef that has washed away.  By legend, Vaeoma, the leader of the people from ‘Tona’, stayed on this island during part of his stay on Sikaiana.

sa: Hakatalatala.



[nv]  a line fishing technique {maatau} similar to tau namo but done at night.  A man goes to a fairly shallow area inside the reef and throws some legs of hermit crab to attract the attention of the fish {saepoa}.  Then a line with bait is thrown.

ge: maatau.


(from PPN ^tii).

[nf]  a plant species, cordyline.


tia #1

[vt]  to tie together a net.

cn: onoono, noono, aha.


tia #2

[vt]  to burn or cut a ring around the trunk of a tree to cause it to die.

ps: tialia.



[np]  the rays or halo of the sun or moon.



1.[vt]  to leave behind.

2.[vt]  to divorce, as in divorcing a spouse.

For both senses:

ps: tiaki, tiakilia, tiakina.

3.[v + ki + V phrase]  to permit, to allow: te kammanu he ki tiaki a nau ki hano muli ki Sikaiana, ‘the government has not yet allowed me to go back to Sikaiana’;  ona maatua ni tiaki a ia ki hano ki Sikaiana, ‘her parents allowed her to go to Sikaiana’; ku tiaki, ‘it is permitted’.


tiha #1

(from PPN ^tifa).

[nf]  mother of pearl shell.  Varieties include: nanu helo, ‘yellow lip pearl shell’; nanu maka ‘white lip pearl shell’; nanu takku, ‘black lip pearl shell’.


tiha #2

[vi]  to swerve out of control.  Idiom: talatala tihatiha, ‘to speak evasively’.

tr: hakatiha <to swerve to avoid, to dodge>,

rp: tihatiha <to veer back and forth>.



[na]  a well for water.



(from PPN ^tika).

[na]  a dart made from the base of a coconut stalk {tupallaha}.  Types of darts include: nanu maka, nanu helo, tika kkopi.


tika kkopi

[na]  a dart with a curved body.


tikatika #1

[nv]  a dart game with darts {tika} made from coconut leaf.  The object of the game is to compete to see who can throw his dart the furthest with an underhand throw.  Not played during 1980‑1982.


tike tonu

[vi]  to divine, especially a person’s whereabouts when he is trying to hide.  Technique is associated with Tongans under Vaeoma.  A Vaeoma ni tike tonu tana mukamuka ki a Huti, ‘Vaeoma used a coconut to divine the location of Huti’.  (Archaic).



[vi]  to sit on one’s haunches without any other support, to squat.


tikinne (tikinene)

(from? ^nnee ‘gasp’).

[vt]  to tickle.

ps: tikinnelia.



[na]  a ball for playing made from 4 or 6 strands of coconut leaf.

cn: pooano.



[n]  a strong man, a warrior.  Term refers to the Tongan warriors under Vaeoma who invaded Sikaiana.  (Archaic).


tili #1

[nv]  a competition in catching flying fish {tae ssave}.

sa: tae ssave.


tili #2

[vt]  to bury a person at sea.  Traditionally, some dead people were buried at sea.  (PCR).

ps: tilia.


tili #3

1.[tv]  to hit with a hammer, to bang.

rp: tilitili.

2.[vi]  to have an accident in a motorcar.


tili papaio

[vi]  to splash up and down when travelling across the waves, as a motorboat or a skipping stone.



[nf]  bird species, kingfisher.



[tv]  to knock, as knocking on a door.



(from PPN ^tiro).

1.[vp]  to look down in admiration at something; to admire, especially self admiration with a mirror.

ps: tiloa.

2.[vi]  a form of play in which a man dresses up and mockingly admires his own beauty.



[no]  the part in a person’s hair.


tinaa manu

[n]  a woman with many children.  (Figurative).



see tinana.


tiinai #1

[vt]  to mix a cosmetic scent with coconut oil {lolo}.


tiinai #2

(from PPN ^tinai).

[vt]  to extinguish, to put out, turn off: tiinai te teipi, ‘turn off the tape’; tiinai te ahi; ‘turn off the electric light, put out the fire’.

ps: tinaia.


tinana (tinna)

(from PPN ^tina).

[no]  mother, genetic and classificatory; 1st ascending generation lineal and collateral female relatives.

do: haitinana <to be in relationship of mother to child>; tinna ki taha <a classificatory mother, anyone mother calls taina>.


tinnasue (tina nasue)

(from nasue ‘pulsate’).

[vi]  to fidget.

do: nasue.



[vt]  to choose, select, vote for: tini tonu, ‘to predict, to divine’; tini noa, ‘to guess’; tini tasi, ‘to choose once and for all’.

ps: tinia,

pl: tinitini.



(from PPN ^tino).

1.[np]  body, trunk, main section of some object.

2.[prefix, for cardinal numbers]  counting of humans by tens: tinolua, ‘twenty’; tinotolu, ‘thirty’; tinohaa, ‘forty’; tinolima, ‘fifty’; tinoono, ‘sixty’; tinohitu, ‘seventy’; tinovalu, ‘eighty’; tinosivo, ‘ninety’.


tino haimailona

(from mailona ‘powerful’).

[vs]  to be supernaturally powerful.


Tino Mate

(from mate ‘dead’).

[pln]  a section of the ritual house {hale aitu} in which all the rotted mats and broken statues of spirits were kept after they were replaced.  These materials could never be burned.  (PCR).

sa: Hale Aitu, manea.


tino vaka

[np]  the main body of an outrigger canoe {vaka hai ama}.  The washstrake {hono} is lashed on top of the tino vaka and the boom rods {kiato} are lashed between the tino vaka and the washstrake {hono}.

wh: vaka hai ama.



(from PPN ^tipa).

[vi]  to divert or turn from an original destination. A nau ni tipa ki uta, ‘I turned in towards the land’.

ps: tipaalia,

rp: tipatipa <to weave back and forth, as when drunk>.


tiitii #1

[vt]  to prepare an earth oven {umu} for cooking.

syn: puu #1.


tiitii #2

[vt]  to sprinkle, as in salting food.



[vi]  to dance with a lot of shaking.



[nf]  a plant species.  Traditionally used to wash out tattoo wounds immediately after tattooing.  (PCR).


too #1

1.[vt]  to take.

2.[vt]  to adopt a child: taku tama too, ‘my adopted child’; a nau ni too te tama a toku kave, ‘I adopted the child of my cross‑sex sibling’.

For both senses:

ps: tooa, toolia,

rp: tootoo.


too #2

[vs]  to be sung with enthusiasm, of a song.

ca: hakatoo.


too #3

(from PPN ^too).

[possessive pronoun, 2nd person singular for singular inalienable objects]   your.


too #4

[vi]  to fall, of rain; te uua ku too, ‘the rain is falling’.

sa: sala#2.

ps: tokia <to be wet from being rained upon>.


toa #1

(from PPN ^to’a ‘brave’).

[n]  a very strong and brave warrior.  Term mostly appears in fairy stories {tala} and legends.  Some Sikaiana people claim that their ancestors were all toa.


toa #2

[nf]  a tree species, casuarina.



(from PPN ^toe).

[vs]  left over, remaining.

pl: ttoe.


toetoe #1

[vs]  a few, some.


toetoe #2

[vs]  to be limping; tona vae e toetoe, ‘his leg has a limp’.



[vt]  to break off a piece from hard material.

st: matohi.



[vt]  to wipe off dirt or dust, as in wiping sand off the body.



[vi]  to be abundant, plentiful. Te pani hea tona tohu mai, ‘the decorations are full (TS)’.  (Archaic).



1.[vi]  to fall down.

2.[vi]  to sin in terms of Christian teachings, especially through adultery or premarital sex.



[np]  the part of the reef where coral rocks start to rise from the lagoon side to the platform.




[prefix, for cardinal numbers]   counting humans up to ten: hoko tahi, ‘one’; tokalua, ‘two’; tokatolu, ‘three’; tokahaa, ‘four’; tokalima, ‘five’; tokaono, ‘six’; tokahitu, ‘seven’; tokavalu, ‘eight’; tokasivo, ‘nine’.


ttoka #1 (totoka)

1.[vp]  to watch.  Te tama laa ku ttoka ki te vaka, ‘that person is watching the ship’.

ps: tokaia,

do: tokatoka, tokaatia.

2.[vp]  to look out for, to be on guard; ttoka hakatonu toku taina, a koe poki mea he mea e sala,  ‘watch out, be careful my brother, lest you do any`thing wrong (MS)’.

3.[v]  to have the opinion or view; a nau e ttoka atu, ‘as I see this, in my view’.


ttoka #2

[na]  a mirror.


ttoka naa

[conjunction, perhaps short for ttoka atu nau]  in my opinion, in my view.



(from? tokatoka ‘look after’).

[ps with I + source]  to have let someone down, to have not fulfilled some trust or responsibility.



[vp]  to look after, to supervise, to command: te tupuna e tokatoka ki tana tama, ‘the guardian looks after her child’; te kammanu e tokatoka ki te henua, ‘the government looks after the island’.


tokelau (tokolau)

[n, direction]  the north.



(from PPN ^toki).

[na]  a shell axe or adze.  No longer used, but still found.

syn: kautoki.



(from Eng ‘doctor’).

[n]  doctor.



(from PPN ^toko).

1.[na]  a pole, staff.

2.[vt]  to punt a canoe.



[vi]  to lean against a support.



see tokelau


tokotoko #1

[np]  the buds of the hau plant.


tokotoko #2

[na]  a walking stick.



[na]  a stick with a branching top for hanging things. This kind of stick could be used by spirit mediums as a place to hang the gifts {hakahuna, tuutuuhuna} of the aitu mate, and used to hang the presents given secret lovers {hina} during the kau.



[n]  the area along the reef closest to the lagoon.



[possessive pronoun, 1st person singular for singular inalienable objects]  my.



[vs]  to be sexually excited, to have an erection.



[vs]   to be fully loaded, of a canoe.


tolo #1

[vt]  to smooth bit by bit.


tolo #2

[vt, plural objects]  to plant a crop or trees.

ot: tootoo#2.


tolo #3

[nf]  sugarcane.


ttolo (totolo)

1.[vi]  to crawl; te tama likiliki e ttolo, ‘the small child is crawling’.

ca: hakattolo <to make a child crawl>,

ps: tolohia <to be crawled upon>.

2.[vp]  to attempt secret seduction at night by entering the house of a woman and attempting to have sex with her while she is sleeping.

ps: tolohia <to be seduced in such a way>.

3.[vi]  to move slowly.



[nf]  a bird species.

ge: kivi.



(from Eng ‘trump’).

[na]  the trump suit in a game of cards.



(from PPN ^tolu).

[v, cardinal number]  three.



[psn]  a star constellation.



[possessive pronoun, 2nd person singular for singular inalienable objects]  his, her.  See Introduction.


tonnaoa (tolunaoa)

[v, cardinal number]  the number six, when counting by twos.



1.[vs]  to change color in patches as a result of mildew.

2.[vs]  to have blotchy skin as a man who has skin cancer.

For both senses:

syn: taupulapula.


tono #1

[na]  a coconut candy made from boiling the sap {kaleve} of the coconut tree and mixing it with coconut {ota}.


tono #2

(from PPN ^tongo).

[nf]  a tree species; mangrove.


tono #3

[nf]  a fish species.


tonu #1

[na]  foreigners that arrived on Sikaiana were said to be te tonu o te aliki, that is they were under the care and protection of the aliki. This term also referred to the fish that washed ashore during the teika lle.  (Archaic).


tonu #2

1.[vs]  to be correct, proper, true.

opp: sala #1.

2.[vs]  to be straight, as in the weaving of a mat or the shape of a canoe.

3.[vq]  to do something in a manner that is correct, proper, true;  talatala tonu, ‘straight or true speech’; tini tonu, ‘correct choice’; hakaauna tonu, ‘a correct gift or transaction’.



[vi]  to feel resentment, as when others receive special consideration but one does not, or when one works on a community project but others do not.



[n]  a game similar to paasui, but in which the object is merely to touch another person during departure.

cn: paasui.



(from PPN ^toto).

[no]  blood.  (Rare).

syn: haeko#1.


tootoo #1

[vt]  to straighten bones using traditional methods.  (Still practiced).

do: tama tootoo.


tootoo #2

[vt, singular objects]  to plant.

pl: tolo #2.



[np]  the door of a house.



[vi]  to act greedily, as when a guest comes and takes all the food brought by another person.  (Demeaning).



[nf]  a species of pandanus.



[possessive pronoun, 2nd person dual for singular inalienable objects]  your (of two people).


tuu #1

(from PPN ^tu’u).

1.[vi]  to stand, to be erect, of a person or structure: te tama laa e tuu i loto hale, ‘that person is standing inside the house’; te hale e tuu,’the house is standing’.

tr: hakatuu <to make stand, to erect>.

2.[vi]  to stop, of a ship or motorcar; to get off a vehicle, of a passenger.

3.[vs]  to be made, finished; te tii e tuu, ‘the tea is ready’.

tr: hakatuu <to prepare>.


tuu #2

[np]  the strap of a back strap loom {mea tau}.

wh: mea tau.


tuu #3

[vt]  to hit with a spear or bullet.

cn: tau#8.

ps: tuulia.


tuu #4

[no]  a type of garden land {keli} from which crops could be collected by the sapai ulu during the teika lle.

sa: puutuna, vulisana, teika lle.


tuu avaava

[nv]  a net fishing technique {haanota kupena}.  In the evening, several men go to passages travelled by fish and set up a long net {tauto}.  When a group of fish move towards the net, they chase the fish into the net. In another method, a long line of pandanus leaves {lau paku} are placed on either side of the net.  The fish are frightened by the pandanus, thinking it is an eel fish and eventually turn to the net.

ge: haanota kupena.


Tuu Kau

[n]  a star constellation, the Big Dipper.


tuu paa

[n]  a ceremony performed after the harvest {huata} in which women placed a small seed in a bowl and left it in front of her house.  Any house that did not have the seed placed in front would be sworn at {sakilikili}.  (PCR).


tuu pou

[vs]  to be shocked by some news.


tuu sao

[nv]  a net fishing technique {haanota kupena}.  Men go in the early morning and place a long net {tauto} in a passage.  Pandanus {paku} leaves are tied together on either end which will frighten the fish.  The fish avoid the leaf and swim into the net.

ge: haanota kupena.


ttuu (tutu)

[vt]  to cut, to split across the width.

sa: hhoo.

ps: tuutia.


tua #1

[vp]  to long for, to love; toku manava e tua ki a koe, ‘my heart longs for you’.  (Archaic).


tua #2

(from PPN ^tu’a).

1.[no]  the back of a person; tona tua ku isu, ‘his back hurts’.

2.[np]  the back of any object: te tua o te teipi, ‘the back of a tape‑cassette’.

3.[n, direction]  towards the open sea in an outrigger canoe.

syn: lalo,

opp: akau, uta.

4.[n, location]  the side of the island facing the open sea.



[n, location; short for te tua]  the open ocean, the ocean outside the lagoon.



[no]  laws, rules, commandments:  te tuaa o te aliki, ‘the laws of the chief’; te tuaa o te kammanu, ‘the laws of the government’; te tuaa o te misoni, ‘the rules or commandments of the church’.


tua lliki

[vs]  to be slender, thin, of girth.


tua nniu

[vs]  to be thick, of girth.


tuaa niu

(from? tua a niu, ‘back of the coconut leaf’?)

[np]  the stems of the leaf of a coconut branch {paakele}.  When the leaf is stripped these may be used to make a broom.


tuaa poo

[n, time]  midnight, the time from about 11:00PM to 2:00AM.

wh: aho#1.


tua sivvalu

[nf]  a turtle species, leatherback turtle.

ge: honu #1.


tua tolo

[nf]  a plant species, a type of creeper; used for decoration, fragrance and certain fishing rituals.


tuaa uka

[na]  a long string of any material including strings made from local materials and western materials such as cotton.


tuaa tika

[np]  the end of a stalk of coconut leaf.



[na]  a recipe; breadfruit {kulu} is skinned, placed in the sun and then baked.  (Kiribati/Gilbertese).



[vi]  to move slowly, to delay, to dawdle.

ca: hakatuai,

do: he tuai.



see tuuvaka.


tuaki #1

[vt]  to clean fish.


tuaki #2

[vi]  to want to eat a special food, of women when pregnant.



[vs]  to have two layers of something, two layers of clothing; tualua o te tauhhu, a small central roof beam above the main beam;tualua o te akoako, the second akoako in songs that have two separate verses of this type.



[np]  the back part of the stalk {haa} of coconut leaf {paakele}.


tuatua #1

[np]  the coconut flesh left on the inside of the shell after the shell has been scraped.


tuatua #2

[vs]  to be thick, to be double the thickness of another thing. Te uka nei e tuatua ake ma te laa uka, ‘this fishing line is double the thickness of the other line’.



[vt]  to clean inside an enclosure by scraping with a long stick.  This is the method used for cleaning out coconut bottle containers {puputau}.



(from PPN ^tusa).

[vt]  to divide food unevenly.  (Rare).

ps: tuhaina.



1.[n]  a type of song that recounts the sailing adventures of men who sailed great distances over the open sea {holau}.

2.[nv]  to work as the helmsman of a canoe; the helmsman.



(from PPN ^touhuna).

1.[na]  a plane used for smoothing surfaces.

2.[vt]  to plane a surface, to smooth a surface.

3.[n]  an expert at a handicraft skill, especially weaving or making a canoe.  (Archaic).

4.[vi]  to be adept at misleading through speech, or to *deceive others through speech; te tama laa e tuhuna haeko, ‘he really deceives people in the way he talks’.  (Demeaning).


tui somo

[no]  a shell necklace.


ttui (tutui)

(from PPN ^tui).

[vt]  to sew, to stitch, to thread.

ps: tuuia,

ot: tui.



[na]  a sewing needle.


tuitui na kivi

[n]  a group of kivi birds.



[na]  the fibres of coconut husk that is used for making string after they have been placed in salt water for several months.



[na]  the rod used for fishing for bonito {atu}.

sa: ane#2.



[np]  the upright sticks used for walling at the front and back of a house.

wh: hale.


tuke hale

[np]  the walling of a house.


tuke mata

[no]  the eye brows.


tuki #1

[nao] a type of *prayer, sung in the clan houses {hale henua} and to summon the spirit familiars {aitu mate} of spirit mediums.


tuki #2

(from PPN ^tuki ‘strike’).

1.[na]  a hammer, a wooden pounder.

2.[vt]  to hammer, to pound as in softening puddings or strips of pandanus {pookai} to make a mat.

ps: tukia,

rp: tukituki.



[na]  a nail.



[vi]  to stumble.



[vi]  to be slowed down.



(from PPN ^tuku).

[vt]  to place something, to put something.

ps: tukulia,

rp: tukutuku <place one by one>.


tuku mouli

(from mouli ‘senses’).

[vi]  to hiccup.


tuku tai

[pln]  the sea shore, beach.


ttuku (tutuku)

[vp]  to promise to harm someone through a spirit {aitu mate}.  (PCR, Archaic).

ps: tuukua.



[nf]  a species of edible nut, ‘cutnut’.  One of the four fruits whose harvest was restricted during the harvest ceremonies {huata}.  Varieties include: tukuhala maa, t. kiole, t. uli, t. vao.

sa: huata, puna#2.



[np]  the muscle of a shell fish that adheres to a rock.  By legend, one is believed to be underneath the island to hold it in place.


tulana #1 (tuna)

[no]  an expanse of time as opposed to a specific moment of time.

cn: mokoaa.


tulana #2

[np]  the rings around the bark of a coconut tree or sugarcane.


tulana o te sekeseke

[n]  a period in Sikaiana’s history when it is believed that the coconut had not yet been planted and the people were constantly in a famine.



[n]  the edge of the platform of the reef where the ocean waves break.



[vt]  to push away.

do: tuleki.



(from PPN ^tulaki).

[vt]  to push over.

ps: tulekina.



(from PPN ^turi).

[no]  the knee.


ttuli (tutuli)

[vs]  to be unable to hear, to be deaf.

ca: hakatuli <to ignore speech, to disobey>.


ttulu (tutulu)

[vi]  to leak, of a house when it is raining; te hale ku ttulu, ‘the house leaks’.



[na]  a hand carved wooden cyclinder used for storing special items, especially the bonito hooks {paa}.



[np]  the main corner posts of a house.

wh: hale.



[n]  the night of the new moon; on Sikaiana no moon at all is seen on this night.

sa: poo.


tumea (tumee)

[na]  copra.

sa: kamatuu.



[vi]  to nod one’s head in agreement.

opp: luuluu.



[vp]  to trust.

ps: tunakina, tunakilia <to be trusted, to be competent>.



[vt]  to cook by putting over a fire.

ps: tunua.



[na]  a cooking pot.


tunukai paapaa

[na]  a frying pan.



(from PPN ^tupa).

[nf]  a land crab species.  Growth cycle: kalamasi, tupa.



[no]  the shoulder.



[np]  the base of a dried coconut palm {haa, kaulama} where there are no leaves.  Used for making darts.

sa: tika.


tupe #1

[vt]  to braid a rope with four strands of string.

cn: hilo#1, hhili.


tupe #2

[np]  the stomach organ of a chicken.



(from Eng ‘tobacco’).

[nf]  tobacco, both the plant, and the leaf for smoking.


tupetupe #1

[vt]  to criticize another person with the implication that the person is treated well when present but criticized when not present; backbiting.

ps: tupea <to be criticized>.


tupetupe #2

[nv]  a game in which pieces are thrown at a target.  (Kiribati/Gilbertese).



[na]  a recipe; taro mixed with coconut milk.



(from PPN ^tupu).

1.[vi]  to grow, to age, of humans; te kau tama mmaa e tupu vave, ‘all Europeans age rapidly’.

2.[vt, vs]  to bear; to be born;  taku tama ni tupu mai i 1969, ‘my child was born in 1969’.

3.[vi]  to emerge, to change into, of animate beings.


tupu hano

[no]  character, personality, manner of behaving.



(from PPN ^tupu’a).

[n]  a supernatural spirit.  Unlike aitu, tupua are not dead humans who have become supernatural, but have always been supernatural beings.  They are often associated with specific place names either ashore or along the reef.  They assisted aitu mate in their endeavors.

cn: aitu,

sa: aitu mate.



1.[no]  grandparent, both true and classificatory; 2nd ascending generation lineal and collateral relatives.

2.[no]  guardian, adoptive parent.

3.[no]  godparent, as in Christian baptism.  (CR).

do: haitupuna <to be in any of the relationships described above>.



1.[no]  a physical likeness, resemblance, or appearance.

2.[no]  manner, character or personality; te tuputupu o taanata, ‘the character of men’; te tuputupu o haahine, ‘the character of women’; te lautama nei e penapena tuputupu kee, ‘this younger generation has a different character or way of behaving’.



(from PPN ^tusi).

1.[vi]  to point.

2.[vt]  to make lines in a material; to draw them on paper.

3.[np]  the lines on lined paper.



[na]  excrement, feces.  (Restricted).

syn: tae.



[vt]  to tie together.



[nf]  a crab species.



[np]  a type of verse in song composition.  In songs with two akoako,the second is preceded by a tutalua that is sung the first time, but not repeated.



(from PPN ^tutu).

[vt]  to burn down, to set on fire.

ps: tuunia.


tuutuu #1

[vt]  to deal out cards.


tuutuu #2

[np]  the raised ground between swamp gardens; a mound for planting a coconut tree.

syn: kaupaa.


tuutuu haeko

[vs]  to be poor, destitute, without money or food.


tuutuu laoi

[vs]  to be well off, wealthy, with plenty of food.



[vp]  to give a gift to an ancestral spirit {aitu mate} in order to enlist his support in some endeavor, most often to cure an illness or harm another man.  (Archaic, PCR).

sa: hakahuna.


tuuvaka (tuuaka)

[np]  the rim or edge of any object.  (Rare).

syn: launutu #1.


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