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  5. "You have a cute sister."

"You have a cute sister."

Translation:He kaikuahine kiuke kou.

October 16, 2019



I strongly oppose one to one translation of English cognates (e.g. kiuke = "cute" only) because it teaches us to use English thinking when speaking Hawaiian.


Kākoʻo. "Kiuke" seems to be fairly widespread among language learners today, but native speakers consider it a joke. There are already good Hawaiian words that express that thought.


Out of curiosity, what word(s) would a native Hawaiian speaker choose to express the same or similar sentiments? I did see the word ʻauliʻi mentioned as being accepted now - does it have any different connotations or nuances that I should be aware of compared to the English "cute," or is it more or less a direct translation?


I was just about to paste a link to the dictionary as well =)

ʻAuliʻi can mean small, tiny, or dainty. Just FYI, Kumu Hōkūlani Cleeland mentioned in a comment further down this thread that he has not heard ʻauliʻi used for people, but rather for things. I have yet to determine if any native speakers I know might use ʻauliʻi for people in this way. I have found just a few written references of ʻauliʻi being used for people and their bodies/body parts. It may not be a perfect match for the English meaning of "cute".

In English "cute" can also be used to describe someone who is attractive or handsome. For that meaning I would use words like uʻi or possibly nohea in Hawaiian.


After speaking with the native speakers that I know, I would recommend using the word "uʻi" for "cute" if you would rather not use "kiuke".

I'll add that some folks use "pupuka", which literally means "ugly" to call babies cute, in order to prevent jealousy towards the baby, but "uʻi" can also be used in this situation. :)


Why is it "kou" here and not "ou"?


There isn't anything to indicate that we're talking about the sister of a brother, though.


Why is this not accepted? He tita kiuke ou.


"He tita kiuke ou" doesn't work because it's not a complete sentence. It just means "a cute sister of yours." But "He tita kiuke KOU" means "You HAVE a cute sister." Make sense?


I can't feel the sense. It seems like I should say, for example, He iwakāluakūmākahi kou makahiki instead of ou, that I've learned in previous lessons, when I want to say a simple complete sentence? What are the conditions for using o'u/ou/ona?


If you memorize the phrase "ʻEhia ou makahiki?" that could serve as a reminder that after numbers (ʻehia = how many?), the K is dropped in possessive sentences. SO: He tita koʻu, BUT ʻElima ona makahiki (OR ʻElima makahiki o koʻu tita).

Compare: He pāpale kona OR He pāpale ko koʻu tita. (BUT: Hoʻokahi ona pāpale OR Hoʻokahi pāpale o koʻu tita.)

Just remember that including numbers (including ʻehia and ʻaʻohe) changes the rules. Another "rule" is that pronouns have a tendency to move forward (see example above).

Does this help or just make it more confusing?


Or! These two phrases have different meanings?! : Ka lumi o'u - my room (it belongs to me) and he lumi ko'u - I have a room ??


Yes, you are correct. They have different meanings: ka lumi ʻou = koʻu lumi = my room. He lumi koʻu = I have a room (complete sentence).

But don't forget the difference between O-class and A-class. For penikala, you would have to say: ka penikala aʻu = kaʻu penikala = my pencil. He penikala kaʻu = I have a pencil.


'A'ole au e poina i kēia mea, mahalo nui :)


Mahalo nui loa, I'll keep it on mind. But there is one more question about kona/ona. We say: ko'u lumi and ka lumi o'u. Am I right, if I explain o'u by definite article in this case? Would it be he lumi/mea/penikala ko'u because of he?


And how about: 'Ehia āna mo'opuna? A question, a complete sentence, is it?


Complete sentence. See reply to your previous question for explanation.


That made great sense until I got to the exercise "How many grandchildren does she have" which was "ʻEhia āna moʻopuna?" So why is THAT right? (seems to be "how many grandchildren of hers...(what?)")


You have the right idea. "ʻEhia āna moʻopuna" does basically mean "How many grandchildren of hers".

I'll gives some examples that might help to clarify things.

To say "She has a grandchild" you could say "He moʻopuna kāna." This "he" pattern is used to express that someone has "a something" or "something" in general, but the number is not specified.

But when talking about the number of things someone has the pattern is a little different. To say "She has two grandchildren" you could say "ʻElua āna moʻopuna".

And to ask how many grandchildren she has you could say "ʻEhia āna moʻopuna?" where the word "ʻehia" replaces the number word (ʻehā in the previous example).


"Tita" should be accepted as "sister", as there is no indication of gender of "you" here.


"He tita kiuke kou." is still not being accepted.

I reported it since there is no indication of the gender of the person being spoken to.


You folks are correct. The English sentence given is "You have a cute sister", so I have added "tita" and other possibilities for sister as accepted answers for this exercise. Should be accepted now.


Thanks. Please also add non-cognate possibilities for "cute".


I've added the word ʻauliʻi as an alternate here.

EDIT: If you would like to use a word in place of "kiuke", I would recommend using "uʻi" instead, though.


Aloha kāua e Maui. ʻO wau nō hoʻi, ʻaʻole au makemake iki i kēlā huaʻōlelo ʻo "kiuke," akā, ʻaʻole wau i lohe i ka hoʻohana ʻana iā "ʻauliʻi" no kekahi poʻe; no nā mea (ola ʻole) wale nō.

Iaʻu, e aho ka hoʻohana ʻana iā "uʻi." Loaʻa pū kekahi mau huaʻōlelo ʻē aʻe e like me "nohea," eia naʻe, kūpono loa ʻo "uʻi." He manaʻo wale nō.

Mahalo ka makaʻala ʻana i kēia mau manaʻo a me nā nīnau a ka poʻe haumāna. naʻu


Aloha hou e Hōkūlani! Mahalo nui ka hāpai mai i kēlā manaʻo. ʻOiaʻiʻo, ʻaʻole paha hiki iaʻu ke hoʻomanaʻo i kekahi mānaleo i hoʻohana iā "ʻauliʻi" no kekahi poʻe. Na kekahi kumu ʻōlelo Hawaiʻi i haʻi mai iaʻu he huaʻōlelo maikaʻi ia e hoʻohana ai ma kahi o "kiuke". Ma koʻu huli koke ʻana ma luna o Papakilo, hoʻokahi wale nō mea i loaʻa iaʻu i pili i ka wahine, "Ka Wahine Aulii o Ke Ao Nei. He iwakalua wale no iniha kona kiekie," a ʻaʻole paha i pili ia manaʻo i ka manaʻo o "cute", ʻo "tiny" paha ka manaʻo. Eia ka lou: https://www.papakilodatabase.com/pdnupepa/?a=d&d=KNK19211209-

ʻO ka nui naʻe o nā mea i loaʻa, ua pili i ka lole a i ʻole ke kāmaʻa.

Maikaʻi paha ke kāpae ia huaʻōlelo ʻo ʻauliʻi ma kēia haʻawina. E kūkā au me ke kime Duolingo.

Maikaʻi nō ʻo "uʻi"! E pākuʻi ʻia nō.


In structuring this I thought it should be ‘cute sister of hers’ but could not work out an answer. The answer given I would have read as ‘your cute sister’. Is that not correct? If not then would that need to be ‘kou tita kuike’? Confused. Mahalo.


You're on the right track! "Kou tita kiuke" is the phrase "your cute sister".

It might help to think of it this way: "He tita kiuke kou" -> "a cute sister is yours" -> "You have a cute sister." Does that help at all?

You could also think of it like an ʻaike he sentence, similar to ones we have seen earlier, where the form is "one thing" is a "other thing".

For example, "He kumu ʻo ia" -> "He/She" is a "teacher".

So in this case it's "He tita kiuke kou" -> "Yours is a "cute sister".

In general, the form He ___ koʻu\kou\kona reads as I\You\He\She has a ___.

This pattern is called pepeke nonoʻa.


He...kaikuahine kiuke...kou.

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