updated: 3/23/2019

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ʻŌlelo Noʻeau - Concordance


1. nvs.
  • heap, pile, collection, mound, mass;
  • altar, shrine, cairn;
  • a traplike stone enclosure made by fishermen for fish to enter;
  • laid, as the earth oven.

2. v. To gather or collect together. Kin. 43:11. Ahu iho la i kahakai, hu ae la ka lolo, they gathered them together (dead bodies) on the sea shore, the brains flowed; to collect one's food where there is little.
3. Ahu iho ka hoka i ka pakai,
4. Ku i ka pakai ka mea haku ole,
5. Lele ae no ka manu i Houa,
6. Hapapa wale iho no ka hokahoka.
7. To collect but gain little; ahu wale iho no, aole wahi kapa; ahu wale iho, aole ai; ahu wale iho no i ka oneanea.
8. To lay up, as in a store-house; to lay up for future use, as goods. Mat. 6:19. To store in the memory.
9. To lie strewed over the ground. Puk. 16:3.
10. Hoo. To collect what is scattered.
11. To fall together, as men slain in battle.
12. To keep; treasure up, as anger; hooahu iho la i ka huhu maluna o kela poe, he kept in reserve his anger for that company.
13. To pile up, as stones. Ios. 8:29. To gather up; glean, as a field. Rut. 2:7.
14. s. see aha. An assemblage or collection of things; ahu ai, a place for storing food; a collection of provisions. 2 Oihl. 11:11. Wahi ahu, a place for something, Iob. 28:1. Ahu pohaku, a pavement; a heap, as of stones. Kin. 31:46.
15. A heap of stones as a way mark. Ier. 31:21.
16. As a memorial. Ios. 7:26.
17. adj. Storing; collecting; hale ahu, a store-house. Iob. 38:22.
18. To cover one with a cloak; to be merely covered. Iob. 26:6. To clothe.
19. s. A fine mat; a coarse one is moena; a mat for covering a canoe; o ka uhi ana i ka ahu, ea, oia ka mea e pale aku i kekahi ale, the spreading over a mat, that is what will keep off some of the waves; ahuao, ahu mokoloa.
20. To bring condemnation upon.
21. To reply to; to object to something said. Rom. 9:20.


12Ahu a lālā kukui.The kukui branches lay about in heaps.
 [Strewn about in every direction. An expression that refers to an untidy place or the strewing of dead bodies after a battle.]
13Ahu ka ʻalaʻala palu.A heap of relish made of octopus liver.
 [Nothing worth troubling about. Octopus liver (ʻalaʻala) was not a choice food. It was mashed and used as bait.]
14Ahu ka hoka i Kapākai.A heap of disappointment at Kapākai.
 [Fooled and left stranded. In ancient times, two fishermen sailed from Kapākai, a small canoe landing between ʻUpolu Point and the heiau of Moʻokini in Kohala. As they were about to leave for Maui, a stranger asked permission to accompany them, and it was granted. Late that night one of the fishermen signaled to the other to toss the passenger overboard because he was doing nothing to help with the canoe. The passenger guessed what they were up to and cried, “Oh! I forgot my cowry sinkers at the canoe landing.” Cowry sinkers were valuable, so they turned about and retumed to Kapākai. Upon landing, the passenger leaped ashore. When asked where the sinkers were, he pointed to two half-buried rocks nearby. The fishermen were disappointed (hoka) in not obtaining the coveted cowry sinkers. In another version the saying originated at the birth of Kamehameha I on a canoe. At the landing at Kapākai his mother pretended illness, whieh drew attention to herself and gave Naeʻole the opportunity to seize the newborn baby and flee with him into hiding.]
15Ahu ka pala naio.A heap of excretal residue where pinworms are found.
 [A rude remark. Said of something unworthy of attention or to show disbelief in a statement.]
16Ahu kāpeku i ka nalu o Puhili.Much thrashing about in the surf of Puhili.
 [Signifying an abundance of food. Thrashing about in the water drives fish into the nets.]
17Ahu ke pilo.A heap of stinks.
18Ahu kupanaha ka lā i Mānā.Peculiar is the action of the sun in Mānā.
 [Said of a delusion. Mānā, Kauaʻi, is a place where mirages were once seen.]
730Hele akula a ahu, hoʻi mai nō e omo i ka waiū o ka makua.He goes away and, gaining nothing by it, returns to nurse at his mother’s breast.
 [Said of a grown son or daughter who, after going away, returns home for support.]
1243ʻIno ka moana ke ahu mōkākī nei ka puna i uka.The sea is rough, for the corals are strewn on the beach.
 [Here are all the indications that there is trouble yonder.]
1545Ka puhi o ka ale, ahu ke ʻolo.An eel of the sea caverns, the chin sags.
 [When an eel of the deep sea grows large, the upper part of its neck sags with fat. Said of one who is prosperous — his pockets sag with money. Also said of a person with a double chin. Also, the scrotum.]
1670Ke ahu a Kaunuohua i kaulu pali.The heap of Kaunuohua on the slope of the cliff.
 [A humorous reference to the scrotum.]
1782Ke pau ka moa, kākā i ka nuku; ke pau ka ʻiole, ahu kūkae; ke pau ka manō, lanaō i ke kai.When a chicken finishes [eating] he cleans his beak; when a rat finishes, he leaves a heap of excreta; when a shark finishes, he rises to the surface of the sea.
 [A description of the table manners of people. Some are clean like the chicken; others are unclean and careless, like the rat; and still others, like the shark, loll around without offering to help.]
1802Kinikini kauhale liʻiliʻi o lalo lilo e. "He Ahu au no Kaʻū"; "He ʻIo au no Hilo."A multitude are the small houses way down helow. [The inhabitants claim,] “I am an Ahu of Kaʻu’ and “I am an ʻIo of Hilo.”
 [This saying is used in anger or to make fun of those who are low in rank yet claim relationship with the high chiefs. A play on ahu (a heap of nothing), ʻū (a grunt of contempt) in Kaʻū, and ʻio, the mighty hawk that sits on any branch it chooses.]
2768Ua ahu ka imu, e lāwalu ka iʻa.The oven is ready, let the fish wrapped in ti leaves be cooked.
 [All preparations have been made; now let us proceed with the work.]

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