David’s Hawaiian/Pidgin Dictionary

Hawai‘i is a place filled with mixed cultures and has been for a long time. In order to communicate between cultures, Hawaiian pidgin/Pidgin-English was developed.

Here’s a couple of words in Pidgin and Hawaiian I’ll be using every so often, sorted alphabetically by word.

Note: In Hawaiian, vowels are long.
A = ah like awful
E = eh like empty
I = ee like illegal
O = oh like Ohio
U = oo like flu

So for example, ukulele is pronouned oo-koo-leh-leh NOT you-kah-lay-lee/ook-koo-lay-lee/anything else.

Also, each vowel ends a syllable within the word. For example, Aiea - a city on O‘ahu that’s the only city made up of vowels - is pronounced ah-ee-eh-ah. Although, the "Ai" can be pronounced "eye" to be "eye-eh-ah".

Another rule is that if a w is in the middle of a word, it’s pronounced with a v-sound. If it’s in the beginning of a word, the w-sound remains. So, Hawai‘i would be hah-vaee-ee and wahine would be wah-hee-neh

word - (pronounciation) [if its Hawaiian or not] definition (see REFERENCE to another word)

any kine - (any kine) Literally: any kind; anything
auwe/aue -
(ah-oo-eh) [Hawaiian] an expression of something bad/sad/surprising like “Oh man!”

braddah - (brah-dah) brother, term of endearment
brah - (brah) short for braddah/brother, term of endearment

chillax - (chill-acks) relax and chill, calm down, take it easy
choice - (choice) good, excellent
choke -
(choke) a lot, excess 
cuz - (cuhz) short for cousin, term of endearment for a friend - don’t have to be related

da kine - (dah kine) Literally: the kind; used vaguely as a person, place or thing; that thing, that person, that place

eh - (ay/eh) Literally: hey; Attention getter or starts a sentence
e komo mai
-  (eh koh-moh my-ee) [Hawaiian] Welcome/Come in

fast kine - (fast kine) Literally: fast kind; fast, quickly
fo’/for - (fo/for) usually means for, but can also replace “to”
funny kine - (funny kine) funny, weird, strange, different

get - (get) used in place of have, to exist
grind - (grind) to eat
grindz - (grinds) food

hana hou -
(hah-nah ho-oo) [Hawaiian] again, one more time
 - (hah-oh-leh) [Hawaiian] In Hawaiian, it literally means foreigner. Modern meaning leans more towards those of Caucasian ethnicity. May or may not be used derogatorily 
hapa - (hah-pah) [Hawaiian] half
hele - (heh-leh) [Hawaiian] come, move, go
hemmajang -
(hem-mah-jang) messed up
ho - (hoh) usually used to start a sentence that describes something of great prominence
holoholo - (hoh-loh-hoh-loh) to go out, especially for leisure
howzit -
(howzit) Literally: “how is it?”; used in place of “Hello/Hi/Hey/Aloha/How are you?” Rhetorical. 
humbug - (hum-bug) bothersome, nuisance

ice shave - (ice shave) How locals of the Big Island call shave ice (see SHAVE ICE.)

junk - (junk) no good, not worth it, broken

kanak attack - (kah-nack attack) the feeling of being tired/sluggish/sleepy after eating
kapu - (kah-poo) [Hawaiian] taboo, forbidden, off-limits
kine - (kind, minus the d) Literally: kind/kind of; used as a noun, usually paired with an adjective.
kolohe - (koh-loh-heh) [Hawaiian] rascal, mischievous

lanai - (lah-nah-ee/lah-neye) [Hawaiian] porch
latahz - (lay-dahz/lay-tahz) Literally: see you later.
like - (like) to want, prefer
lolo - (loh-loh) crazy, dumb, strange, absent-minded

mahalo - (mah-ah-loh) [Hawaiian] Thanks, Thank you 
mana - (mah-nah) [Hawaiiain] strength, power 
manini - (mah-nee-nee) [Hawaiian] it’s actually the name of a small fish, but it’s used to as an adjective meaning small, minute, stingy
mean - (mean) awesome, great
mo better - (moh bet-tah) Literally: more better; even better

nah - (nah) no, just kidding, really?
niele - (nee-eh-leh) [Hawaiian] nosy, curious in the negative sense
no - (no) no or if in front of a verb: don’t
no can - (no can) not able to do
no like - (no like) to not want, not prefer. (see LIKE.) 
no need - (no need) don’t need

ohana/‘ohana - (oh-hah-nah) [Hawaiian] family 
one - (one) a
ono - (oh-no) [Hawaiian] delicious, tasty

pau - (pow) finished, done, over, through
pau hana - (pow hah-nah) celebration of the work day being over
plenny - (plan-nee) Literally: plenty; a lot  
poke - (poh-keh) cubed raw fish/other seafood that’s flavored and mixed with ingredients like sesame seed oil, green onion, garlic, soy sauce, and limu seaweed



saimin - (sigh-min) what Hawaii locals call Japanese ramen
shave ice - (shave ice) dessert or treat made with shaved ice covered in flavored syrup. May include condensed milk, mochi, or ice cream
- (shoots) okay then, all right, bye
shoots then (shoots den) bye, see you later
stay - (stay) is, is at, to be

try - (try) go ahead, be able to do

uke - (ook) short for ukulele


when - (wen) did, to do, when; if put in front of a verb, the verb is made past tense