"Where is the hot rice?"

Translation:Aia i hea ka laiki wela?

February 22, 2019

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I really can't understand when to use and not use that "i". Does somebody knows the explaination?


i hea / ma hea means at where. We can say in English Where is the hot rice at? or Where is the hot rice? but in Hawaiian, that preposition needs to be there when you are verifying the location of something.


Also looking for clarification here. Wish Duo had a guide to this so we didn't have to rely on the community for it.


From what I can gather, it generally marks the direct object.


Can someone explain to me how "aia" is used? Thank you!


Aia is a word that starts sentences for location. Aia has no meaning in English but if it helps you out, you can consider it to mean "to be located". Shhh - a little secret: it is an optional word, but taking it out means totally rearranging the words in the sentence.

The most common syntax would be - Aia + the noun + the prepositional phrase of location.

When you include the question word for where - hea - then that prepositional phrase can get moved to position 2.

Aia + i hea / ma hea + the noun ?

Aia + the noun + i hea ? is less common but possible. They're flexible.


This isn’t close to what I typed yet it was still market correct. I put “aia ka laiki wela no hea.” It said I had a spelling error and said “no” should be “mo.”

Is that accurate or no?


It should not be mo or no. Mo is definitely not correct. No means from and that would not work for an Aia sentence. It would have to be i or ma.


Are you sure it said "mo" and not "ma"? I refer you to kelii's excellent explanation of how to use "aia". From what I understand talking to long time speakers, "Aia i hea..." is the most common construct, but it's possible to switch order as well as use "ma hea."


Why is it only "aia i hea" and not "aia ma hea"?


See in


They use both interchangeably, and even say for "this question" that "the ʻami “ma” and “i” are interchangeable."

That doesn't mean they always are, though. I have heard some discussions about whether "i" and "ma" are precisely equivalent or not in general. I imagine to a certain extent it depends on the person and their background. They might be used differently in a more complex sentence, where "i" has multiple meanings while "ma" pretty much always means the same thing.

But for this kind of construct, my understanding is "Aia i hea" and "Aia ma hea" are in fact equivalent.

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