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Common Pronouns[edit]

In Hawaiian, pronouns are called Papani. Papani, as in English are people, being I, You, We, etc. I suppose the first, and most obvious pronouns that you should learn, would be, I, you (singular) and he/she/it.

English Hawaiian
I Au
You 'Oe
He or She 'O ia

Note how 'O ia is two words and not one; it is never one word.

Aia Sentences[edit]

Most Hawaiian sentences resemble a squid, having three parts; the head- po'o, the connector- piko, and the tentacles- 'awe. The head represents the main idea of that sentence, the connector being the subject, and the tentacles are the rest of the sentence. An aia sentence is a location sentence in Hawaiian. It describes when or where something is. These sentences are so called because they always start with the word, aia. Its closest translation in English would be to be. (am, is, are, etc.)


Aia au ma ke kula. I am at (the) school.
Aia 'oe me ke keiki. You are with the child.
Aia ke luau i kēia lā. The luau is today.

More Pronouns[edit]

The next pronouns that one must learn, are as follows:

English Hawaiian
we kākou
you all 'oukou
they lākou

Note how they all ends in -kou, and we and they both end in -ākou. It is important that the student make these type of connections when studying, so that the information gets permanently located in their memory. Also, all of these pronouns refer to three or more people; Hawaiian has different sets of pronouns that can be used, depending on the situation, but we will explain those later.


Nani lākou. They are pretty.
Nui 'oukou. You all are big.
E Kanani, ma'i kākou. Kanani, we are sick.