Larry's Pretty Good Word of the Day (prettygoodword) wrote in 1word1day,
Larry's Pretty Good Word of the Day
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wahine

wahine (wah-HEE-nee, wah-HEE-nay) - n., (Pacific islands) a woman, esp. a young woman; (sports) a female surfer.


In most of the Polynesian languages, stretching from Māori in the southwest and Hawai'ian in the northeast, wahine means woman -- depending on the language, this can include the connotations of a wife or girlfriend. In this sense, its first known use in English is from 1773 (I'm guessing in Cook's accounts of his voyages, but I haven't confirmed this), and was especially used in narratives about white sailors in the South Seas. The second sense arose specifically in Hawai'i during the 20th revival of surfing, and spread with the culture when it went worldwide.

My old lady is a wahine, always up with the sun to catch some waves.

---L.
Tags: hawaiian, noun, w
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