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Chapter Contents:


The landscape of Ha‘ena, like many places in the Hawaiian Islands, is adorned with place names that hold stories about historical events and legendary feats. Modern geographers talk about place names as "humanizing" the landscape--transforming the physical environment into a cultural world meaningful to human society. Hawaiians, Carlos tells us, went further and embedded important information into the landscape. Stories about places and place names contain lessons about pono(proper, correct, or moral) behavior: "They provide lessons, examples, through the words and through the eyes of the stories and of our ancestors. Place names themselves are messages from the ancestors that contain warnings, or urgings to look at something important there. They're stories about how to live."

This chapter has been entitled "Footprints" to emphasize that such stories and names are the marks left on the landscape, not only by those who came before, but in some cases by gods and supernatural beings, as they travelled this land.




Ha‘ena is famous for three caves associated with Pele's journeys. Each has place names and other stories associated with it. Carlos tells a story about Pele's visit to a cave further down the coast


A family of three stones rolled across the ocean to Ha‘ena. After an enormous effort, one now sits atop the ridge where he can keep an eye on things. This is their story.


Story of Nou
A young man wanted the opportunity to throw a firebrand from the top of Makana.


One of the two mo‘o sisters from the story of Lohi‘au, Kilioe became a stone beside the sea. Chipper tells the Ha‘ena version of the naupaka story, associated here with Kilioe.

Piliwale Sisters

The Piliwale Sisters, and other tales
The Piliwale sisters came to Kaua‘i to eat everything in sight. But at Ha‘ena they were outwitted by Lohi‘au and his sister Kahua. Also includes other fragments of tales collected by Frederick Wichman.


Terms relating to stories and storytelling, morality, and supernatural beings.


Sources & Links
Links to related web sites
Bibliography and Sources

Caves |  Pohaku-o-Kane |  Story of Nou |  Kilioe |  Piliwale Sisters |  Language |  Sources & Links
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