Hawaiian Folk Tales - A Collection of Native Legends
Author: Various
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But the instincts of a farmer were even stronger in the breast of Kaopele than the bonds of matrimony. In the middle of the night he arose, and, leaving the sleeping form of his bride, passed out into the darkness. He went mauka until he came upon an extensive upland plain, where he set to work clearing and making ready for planting. This done, he collected from various quarters shoots and roots of potato (kalo), banana (waoke), awa, and other plants, and before day the whole plain was a plantation. After his departure his wife awoke with a start and found her husband was gone. She went into the next house, where her parents were sleeping, and, waking them, made known her loss; but they knew nothing of his whereabouts. Much perplexed, they were still debating the cause of his departure, when he suddenly returned, and to his wife's questioning, answered that he had been at work.

She gently reproved him for interrupting their bridal night with agriculture, and told him there would be time enough for that when they had lived together a while and had completed their honeymoon. "And besides," said she, "if you wish to turn your hand to agriculture, here is the plat of ground at hand in which my father works, and you need not go up to that plain where only wild hogs roam."

To this he replied: "My hand constrains me to plant; I crave work; does idleness bring in anything? There is profit only when a man turns the palm of his hand to the soil: that brings in food for family and friends. If one were indeed the son of a king he could sleep until the sun was high in the heavens, and then rise and find the bundles of cooked food ready for him. But for a plain man, the only thing to do is to cultivate the soil and plant, and when he returns from his work let him light his oven, and when the food is cooked let the husband and the wife crouch about the hearth and eat together."

Again, very early on the following morning, while his wife slept, Kaopele rose, and going to the house of a neighbor, borrowed a fishhook with its tackle. Then, supplying himself with bait, he went a-fishing in the ocean and took an enormous quantity of fish. On his way home he stopped at the house where he had borrowed the tackle and returned it, giving the man also half of the fish. Arrived at home, he threw the load of fish onto the ground with a thud which waked his wife and parents.

"So you have been a-fishing," said his wife. "Thinking you had again gone to work in the field, I went up there, but you were not there. But what an immense plantation you have set out! Why, the whole plain is covered."

His father-in-law said, "A fine lot of fish, my boy."

Thus went life with them until the crops were ripe, when one day Kaopele said to his wife, who was now evidently with child, "If the child to be born is a boy, name it Kalelealuaka; but if it be a girl, name it as you will, from your side of the family."

From his manner she felt uneasy and suspicious of him, and said, "Alas! do you intend to desert me?"

Then Kaopele explained to his wife that he was not really going to leave her, as men are wont to forsake their wives, but he foresaw that that was soon to happen which was habitual to him, and he felt that on the night of the morrow a deep sleep would fall upon him (puni ka hiamoe), which would last for six months. Therefore, she was not to fear.

"Do not cast me out nor bury me in the ground," said he. Then he explained to her how he happened to be taken from Oahu to Kauai and how he came to be her husband, and he commanded her to listen attentively to him and to obey him implicitly. Then they pledged their love to each other, talking and not sleeping all that night.

On the following day all the friends and neighbors assembled, and as they sat about, remarks were made among them in an undertone, like this, "So this is the man who was placed on the altar of the heiau at Wailua." And as evening fell he bade them all aloha, and said that he should be separated from them for six months, but that his body would remain with them if they obeyed his commands. And, having kissed his wife, he fell into the dreamful, sacred sleep of Niolo-kapu.

On the sixth day the father-in-law said: "Let us bury your husband, lest he stink. I thought it was to be only a natural sleep, but it is ordinary death. Look, his body is rigid, his flesh is cold, and he does not breathe; these are the signs of death."

But Makalani protested, "I will not let him be buried; let him lie here, and I will watch over him as he commanded; you also heard his words." But in spite of the wife's earnest protests, the hard-hearted father-in-law gathered strong vines of the koali (convolvulus), tied them about Kaopele's feet, and attaching to them heavy stones, caused his body to be conveyed in a canoe and sunk in the dark waters of the ocean midway between Kauai and Oahu.

Makalani lived in sorrow for her husband until the birth of her child, and as it was a boy, she called his name Kalelealuaka.


When the child was about two months old the sky became overcast and there came up a mighty storm, with lightning and an earthquake. Kaopele awoke in his dark, watery couch, unbound the cords that held his feet, and by three powerful strokes raised himself to the surface of the water. He looked toward Kauai and Oahu, but love for his wife and child prevailed and drew him to Kauai.

In the darkness of night he stood by his wife's bed and, feeling for her, touched her forehead with his clammy hand. She awoke with a start, and on his making himself known she screamed with fright, "Ghost of Kaopele!" and ran to her parents. Not until a candle was lighted would she believe it to be her husband. The step-parents, in fear and shame at their heartless conduct, fled away, and never returned. From this time forth Kaopele was never again visited by a trance; his virtue had gone out from him to the boy Kalelealuaka.

When Kalelealuaka was ten years old Kaopele began to train the lad in athletic sports and to teach him all the arts of war and combat practised throughout the islands, until he had attained great proficiency in them. He also taught him the arts of running and jumping, so that he could jump either up or down a high pali, or run, like a waterfowl on the surface of the water. After this, one day Kalelealuaka went over to Wailua, where he witnessed the games of the chiefs. The youth spoke contemptuously of their performances as mere child's play; and when his remark was reported to the King he challenged the young man to meet him in a boxing encounter. When Kalelealuaka came into the presence of the King his royal adversary asked him what wager he brought. As the youth had nothing with him, he seriously proposed that each one should wager his own body against that of the other one. The proposal was readily accepted. The herald sounded the signal of attack, and both contestants rushed at each other. Kalelealuaka warily avoided the attack by the King, and hastened to deliver a blow which left his opponent at his mercy; and thereupon, using his privilege, he robbed the King of his life, and to the astonishment of all, carried away the body to lay as a sacrifice on the altar of the temple, hitherto unconsecrated by human sacrifice, which he and his father Kaopele had recently built in honor of their deity.

After a time there reached the ear of Kalelealuaka a report of the great strength of a certain chief who lived in Hanalei. Accordingly, without saying anything about his intention, he went over to the valley of Hanalei. He found the men engaged in the game of throwing heavy spears at the trunk of a cocoanut-tree. As on the previous occasion, he invited a challenge by belittling their exploits, and when challenged by the chief, fearlessly proposed, as a wager, the life of one against the other. This was accepted, and the chief had the first trial. His spear hit the stem of the huge tree and made its lofty crest nod in response to the blow. It was now the turn of Kalelealuaka to hurl the spear. In anticipation of the failure of the youth and his own success, the chief took the precaution to station his guards about Kalelealuaka, to be ready to seize him on the instant. In a tone of command our hero bade the guards fall back, and brandishing his spear, stroked and polished it with his hands from end to end; then he poised and hurled it, and to the astonishment of all, lo! the tree was shivered to pieces. On this the people raised a shout of admiration at the prowess of the youth, and declared he must be the same hero who had slain the chief at Wailua. In this way Kalelealuaka obtained a second royal sacrifice with which to grace the altar of his temple.

One clear, calm evening, as Kalelealuaka looked out to sea, he descried the island of Oahu, which is often clearly visible from Kauai, and asked his father what land that was that stood out against them. Kaopele told the youth it was Oahu; that the cape that swam out into the ocean like a waterfowl was Kaena; that the retreating contour of the coast beyond was Waianae. Thus he described the land to his son. The result was that the adventurous spirit of Kalelealuaka was fired to explore this new island for himself, and he expressed this wish to his father. Everything that Kalelealuaka said or did was good in the eye of his father, Kaopele. Accordingly, he immediately set to work and soon had a canoe completely fitted out, in which Kalelealuaka might start on his travels. Kalelealuaka took with him, as travelling companion, a mere lad named Kaluhe, and embarked in his canoe. With two strokes of the paddle his prow grated on the sands of Waianae.

Before leaving Kauai his father had imparted to Kalelealuaka something of the topography of Oahu, and had described to him the site of his former plantation at Keahumoe. At Waianae the two travellers were treated affably by the people of the district. In reply to the questions put them, they said they were going sight-seeing. As they went along they met a party of boys amusing themselves with darting arrows; one of them asked permission to join their party. This was given, and the three turned inland and journeyed till they reached a plain of soft, whitish rock, where they all refreshed themselves with food. Then they kept on ascending, until Keahumoe lay before them, dripping with hoary moisture from the mist of the mountain, yet as if smiling through its tears. Here were standing bananas with ripened, yellow fruit, upland kalo, and sugar cane, rusty and crooked with age, while the sweet potatoes had crawled out of the earth and were cracked and dry. It was the very place where Kaopele, the father of Kalelealuaka, had years before set out the plants from which these were descended.

"This is our food, and a good place, perhaps, for us to settle down," said Kalelealuaka; "but before we make up our minds to stay here let me dart an arrow; and if it drops soon we shall stay, but if it flies afar we shall not tarry here." Kalelealuaka darted his arrow, while his companions looked on intently. The arrow flew along, passing over many a hill and valley, and finally rested beyond Kekuapoi, while they followed the direction of its wonderful flight. Kalelealuaka sent his companions on to find the arrow, telling them at the same time to go to the villages and get some awa roots for drink, while he would remain there and put up a shelter for them.

On their way the two companions of Kalelealuaka encountered a number of women washing kalo in a stream, and on asking them if they had seen their arrow flying that way they received an impertinent answer; whereupon they called out the name of the arrow, "Pua-ne, Pua-ne," and it came to their hands at once. At this the women ran away, frightened at the marvel.

The two boys then set to gathering awa roots, as they had been bidden. Seeing them picking up worthless fragments, a kind-hearted old man, who turned out to be the konohiki of the land, sent by his servants an abundance of good food to Kalelealuaka.

On their return the boys found, to their astonishment, that during their absence Kalelealuaka had put up a fine, large house, which was all complete but the mats to cover the floors. The kind-hearted konohili remarked this, and immediately sent her servants to fetch mats for the floors and sets of kapa for bedding, adding the command, "And with them bring along some malos" (girdles used by the males). Soon all their wants were supplied, and the three youths were set up in housekeeping. To these services the konohiki, through his attendants, added still others; some chewed and strained the awa, while others cooked and spread for them a bountiful repast. The three youths ate and drank, and under the drowsy influence of the awa they slept until the little birds that peopled the wilderness about them waked them with their morning songs; then they roused and found the sun already climbing the heavens.

Now, Kalelealuaka called to his comrades, and said, "Rouse up and let us go to cultivating." To this they agreed, and each one set to work in his own way, working his own piece of ground. The ground prepared by Kalelealuaka was a strip of great length, reaching from the mountain down toward the ocean. This he cleared and planted the same day. His two companions, however, spent several days in clearing their ground, and then several days more in planting it. While these youths occupied their mountain home, the people of that region were well supplied with food. The only lack of Kalelealuaka and his comrades was animal food (literally, fish), but they supplied its place as well as they could with such herbs as the tender leaves of the popolo, which they cooked like spinach, and with inamona made from the roasted nuts of the kukui tree (Aleurites molluccana).

One day, as they were eking out their frugal meal with a mess of popolo cooked by the lad from Waianae, Kalelealuaka was greatly disgusted at seeing a worm in that portion that the youth was eating, and thereupon nicknamed him Keinohoomanawanui (sloven, or more literally, the persistently unclean). The name ever after stuck to him. This same fellow had the misfortune, one evening, to injure one of his eyes by the explosion of a kukui nut which he was roasting on the fire. As a result, that member was afflicted with soreness, and finally became blinded. But their life agreed with them, and the youths throve and increased in stature, and grew to be stout and lusty young men.

Now, it happened that ever since their stay at their mountain house, Lelepua (arrow flight), they had kept a torch burning all night, which was seen by Kakuhihewa, the King of Oahu, and had caused him uneasiness.

One fine evening, when they had eaten their fill and had gone to bed, Kalelealuaka called to Keinohoomanawanui and said, "Halloo there! are you asleep?"

And he replied, "No; have I drunk awa? I am restless. My eyes will not close."

"Well," said Kalelealuaka, "when you are restless at night, what does your mind find to do?"

"Nothing," said the Sloven.

"I find something to think about," said Kalelealuaka.

"What is that?" said the Sloven.

"Let us wish" (kuko, literally, to lust), said Kalelealuaka.

"What shall we wish?" said the Sloven.

"Whatever our hearts most earnestly desire," said Kalelealuaka. Thereupon they both wished. The Sloven, in accordance with his nature, wished for things to eat,—the eels, from the fish-pond of Hanaloa (in the district of Ewa), to be cooked in an oven together with sweet potatoes, and a bowl of awa.

"Pshaw, what a beggarly wish!" said Kalelealuaka. "I thought you had a real wish. I have a genuine wish. Listen: The beautiful daughters of Kakuhihewa to be my wives; his fatted pigs and dogs to be baked for us; his choice kalo, sugar cane, and bananas to be served up for us; that Kakuhihewa himself send and get timber and build a house for us; that he pull the famous awa of Kahauone; that the King send and fetch us to him; that he chew the awa for us in his own mouth, strain and pour it for us, and give us to drink until we are happy, and then take us to our house."

Trembling with fear at the audacious ambition of his concupiscent companion, the Sloven replied, "If your wish should come to the ears of the King, we shall die; indeed, we should die."

In truth, as they were talking together and uttering their wishes, Kakuhihewa had arrived, and was all the time listening to their conversation from the outside of their house. When the King had heard their conversation he thrust his spear into the ground outside the inclosure about Kalelealuaka's house, and by the spear placed his stone hatchet (pahoa), and immediately returned to his residence at Puuloa. Upon his arrival at home that night King Kakuhihewa commanded his stewards to prepare a feast, and then summoned his chiefs and table companions and said, "Let us sup." When all was ready and they had seated themselves, the King said, "Shall we eat, or shall we talk?"

One of them replied: "If it please the King, perhaps it were better for him to speak first; it may be what he has to say touches a matter of life and death; therefore, let him speak and we will listen."

Then Kakuhihewa told them the whole story of the light seen in the mountains, and of the wishes of Kalelealuaka and the Sloven.

Then up spoke the soldiers, and said: "Death! This man is worthy to be put to death; but as for the other one, let him live."

"Hold," said the King, "not so fast! Before condemning him to death, I will call together the wise men, priests, wizards, and soothsayers; perchance they will find that this is the man to overcome Kualii in battle." Thereupon all the wise men, priests, wizards, and soothsayers were immediately summoned, and after the King had explained the whole story to them they agreed with the opinion of the soldiers. Again the King interposed delay, and said, "Wait until my wise kahuna Napuaikamao comes; if his opinion agrees with yours, then, indeed, let the man be put to death; but if he is wiser than you, the man shall live. But you will have eaten this food in vain."

So the King sent one of his fleetest runners to go and fetch Napuaikamao. To him the King said, "I have sent for you to decide what is just and right in the case of these two men who lived up in the region of Waipio." Then he went on to state the whole case to this wise man.

"In regard to Keinohoomanawanui's wish," said the wise man, "that is an innocent wish, but it is profitless and will bring no blessing." At the narration of Kalelealuaka's wish he inclined his head, as if in thought; then lifting his head, he looked at the King and said: "O King, as for this man's wish, it is an ambition which will bring victory to the government. Now, then, send all your people and fetch house-timber and awa."

As soon as the wise man had given this opinion, the King commanded his chief marshal, Maliuhaaino, to set every one to work to carry out the directions of this counsellor. This was done, and before break of day every man, woman, and child in the district of Ewa, a great multitude, was on the move.

Now, when the Sloven awoke in the morning and went out of doors, he found the stone hatchet (pahoa) of the King, with his spear, standing outside of the house. On seeing this he rushed back into the house and exclaimed to his comrades, "Alas! our wishes have been overheard by the King; here are his hatchet and his spear. I said that if the King heard us we should die, and he has indeed heard us. But yours was the fatal ambition; mine was only an innocent wish."

Even while they were talking, the babble of the multitude drew near, and the Sloven exclaimed, "Our death approaches!"

Kalelealuaka replied, "That is not for our death; it is the people coming to get timber for our houses." But the fear of the Sloven would not be quieted.

The multitude pressed on, and by the time the last of them had reached the mountain the foremost had returned to the sea-coast and had begun to prepare the foundations for the houses, to dig the holes for the posts, to bind on the rafters and the small poles on which they tied the thatch, until the houses were done.

Meantime, some were busy baking the pigs and the poi-fed dogs in ovens; some in bringing the eels of Kanaloa and cooking them with potatoes in an oven by themselves.

The houses are completed, everything is ready, the grand marshal, Maliuhaaino, has just arrived in front of the house of the ambitious youth Kalelealuaka, and calls out "Keinohoomanawanui, come out!" and he comes out, trembling. "Kalelealuaka, come out!" and he first sends out the boy Kaluhe and then comes forth himself and stands outside, a splendid youth. The marshal stands gazing at him in bewilderment and admiration. When he has regained his equanimity he says to him, "Mount on my back and let us go down."

"No," said Kalelealuaka, "I will go by myself, and do you walk ahead. I will follow after; but do not look behind you, lest you die."

As soon as they had started down, Kalelealuaka was transported to Kuaikua, in Helemano. There he plunged into the water and bathed all over; this done, he called on his ancestral shades (Aumakua), who came and performed on him the rite of circumcision while lightning flashed, thunder sounded, and the earth quaked.

Kaopele, on Kauai, heard the commotion and exclaimed, "Ah! my son has received the purifying rite—the offspring of the gods goes to meet the sovereign of the land" (Alii aimoku).

Meanwhile, the party led by Maliuhaaino was moving slowly down toward the coast, because the marshal himself was lame. Returning from his purification, Kalelealuaka alighted just to the rear of the party, who had not noticed his absence, and becoming impatient at the tedious slowness of the journey,—for the day was waning, and the declining sun was already standing over a peak of the Waianae Mountains called Puukuua,—this marvellous fellow caught up the lame marshal in one hand and his two comrades in the other, and, flying with them, set them down at Puuloa. But the great marvel was, that they knew nothing about being transported, yet they had been carried and set down as from a sheet.

On their arrival at the coast all was ready, and the people were waiting for them. A voice called out, "Here is you house, Keinohoomanawanui!" and the Sloven entered with alacrity and found bundles of his wished-for eels and potatoes already cooked and awaiting his disposal.

But Kalelealuaka proudly declined to enter the house prepared for himself when the invitation came to him, "Come in! this is your house," all because his little friend Kaluhe, whose eyes had often been filled with smoke while cooking luau and roasting kukui nuts for him, had not been included in the invitation, and he saw that no provision had been made for him. When this was satisfactorily arranged Kalelealuaka and his little friend entered and sat down to eat. The King, with his own hand, poured out awa for Kalelealuaka, brought him a gourd of water to rinse his mouth, offered him food, and waited upon him till he had supplied all his wants.

Now, when Kalelealuaka had well drunken, and was beginning to feel drowsy from the awa, the lame marshal came in and led him to the two daughters of Kakuhihewa, and from that time these two lovely girls were his wives.


Thus they lived for perhaps thirty days (he mau anabulu), when a messenger arrived, announcing that Kualii was making war at Moanalua. The soldiers of Kakuhihewa quickly made themselves ready, and among them Keinohoomanawanui went out to battle. The lame marshal had started for the scene the night before.

On the morning of the day of battle, Kalelealuaka said to his wives that he had a great hankering for some shrimps and moss, which must be gathered in a particular way, and that nothing else would please his appetite. Thereupon, they dutifully set out to obtain these things for him. As soon as they had gone from the house Kalelealuaka flew to Waianae and arrayed himself with wreaths of the fine-leaved maile (Maile laulii). which is peculiar to that region. Thence he flew to Napeha, where the lame marshal, Maliuhaaino, was painfully climbing the hill on his way to battle. Kalelealuaka cheerily greeted him, and the following dialogue occurred:

K. "Whither are you trudging, Maliuhaaino?"

M. "What! don't you know about the war?"

K. "Let me carry you."

M. "How fast you travel! Where are you from?"

K. "From Waianae."

M. "So I see from your wreaths. Yes, carry me, and Waianae shall be yours."

At the word Kalelealuaka picked up the cripple and set him down on an eminence mauka of the battlefield, saying, "Remain you here and watch me. If I am killed in the fight, you return by the same way we came and report to the King."

Kalelealuaka then addressed himself to the battle, but before attacking the enemy he revenged himself on those who had mocked and jeered at him for not joining the forces of Kakuhihewa. This done, he turned his hand against the enemy, who at the time were advancing and inflicting severe loss in the King's army.

To what shall we compare the prowess of our hero? A man was plucked and torn in his hand as if he were but a leaf. The commotion in the ranks of the enemy was as when a powerful waterfowl lashes the water with his wings (O haehae ka manu, Ke ale nei ka wai). Kalelealuaka moved forward in his work of destruction until he had slain the captain who stood beside the rebel chief, Kualii. From the fallen captain he took his feather cloak and helmet and cut off his right ear and the little finger of his right hand. Thus ended the slaughter that day.

The enthusiasm of the cripple was roused to the highest pitch on witnessing the achievements of Kalelealuaka, and he determined to return and report that he had never seen his equal on the battlefield.

Kalelealuaka returned to Puuloa, and hid the feather cloak and helmet under the mats of his bed, and having fastened the dead captain's ear and little finger to the side of the house, lay down and slept.

After a while, when the two women, his wives, returned with the moss and shrimps, he complained that the moss was not gathered as he had directed, and that they had been gone such a long time that his appetite had entirely left him, and he would not eat of what they had brought. At this the elder sister said nothing, but the younger one muttered a few words to herself; and as they were all very tired they soon went to sleep.

They had slept a long while when the tramp of the soldiers of Kakuhihewa was heard, returning from the battle. The King immediately asked how the battle had gone. The soldiers answered that the battle had gone well, but that Keinohoomanawanui alone had greatly distinguished himself. To this the King replied he did not believe that the Sloven was a great warrior, but when the cripple returned he would learn the truth.

About midnight the footsteps of the lame marshal were heard outside of the King's house. Kakuhihewa called to him, "Come, how went the battle?"

"Can't you have patience and let me take breath?" said the marshal. Then when he had rested himself he answered, "They fought, but there was one man who excelled all the warriors in the land. He was from Waianae. I gave Waianae to him as a reward for carrying me."

"It shall be his," said the King.

"He tore a man to pieces," said the cripple, "as he would tear a banana-leaf. The champion of Kualii's army he killed, and plundered him of his feather cloak and helmet."

"The soldiers say that Keinohoomanawanui was the hero of the day," said the King.

"What!" said the cripple. "He did nothing. He merely strutted about. But this man—I never saw his equal; he had no spear, his only weapons were his hands; if a spear was hurled at him, he warded it off with his hair. His hair and features, by the way, greatly resemble those of your son-in-law."

Thus they conversed till daybreak.

After a few days, again came a messenger announcing that the rebel Kualii was making war on the plains of Kulaokahua. On hearing this Kakuhihewa immediately collected his soldiers. As usual, the lame marshal set out in advance the evening before the battle.

In the morning, after the army had gone, Kalelealuaka said to his wives, "I am thirsting for some water taken with the snout of the calabash held downward. I shall not relish it if it is taken with the snout turned up." Now, Kalelealuaka knew that they could not fill the calabash if held this way, but he resorted to this artifice to present the two young women from knowing of his miraculous flight to the battle. As soon as the young women had got out of sight he hastened to Waialua and arrayed himself in the rough and shaggy wreaths of uki from the lagoons of Ukoa and of hinahina from Kealia. Thus arrayed, he alighted behind the lame marshal as he climbed the hill at Napeha, slapped him on the back, exchanged greetings with him, and received a compliment on his speed; and when asked whence he came, he answered from Waialua. The shrewd, observant cripple recognized the wreaths as being those of Waialua, but he did not recognize the man, for the wreaths with which Kalelealuaka had decorated himself were of such a color—brownish gray—as to give him the appearance of a man of middle age. He lifted the cripple as before, and set him down on the brow of Puowaina (Punch Bowl Hill), and received from the grateful cripple, as a reward for his service, all the land of Waialua for his own.

This done, Kalelealuaka repeated the performances of the previous battle. The enemy melted away before him, whichever way he turned. He stayed his hand only when he had slain the captain of the host and stripped him of his feather cloak and helmet, taking also his right ear and little finger. The speed with which Kalelealuaka returned to his home at Puuloa was like the flight of a bird. The spoils and trophies of this battle he disposed of as before.

The two young women, Kalelealuaka's wives, turned the nozzle of the water-gourd downward, as they were bidden, and continued to press it into the water, in the vain hope that it might rise and fill their container, until the noonday sun began to pour his rays directly upon their heads; but no water entered their calabash. Then the younger sister proposed to the elder to fill the calabash in the usual way, saying that Kalelealuaka would not know the difference. This they did, and returned home.

Kalelealuaka would not drink of the water, declaring that it had been dipped up. At this the younger wife laughed furtively; the elder broke forth and said: "It is due to the slowness of the way you told us to employ in getting the water. We are not accustomed to the menial office of fetching water; our father treated us delicately, and a man always fetched water for us, and we always used to see him pour the water into the gourd with the nozzle turned up, but you trickily ordered us to turn the nozzle down. Your exactions are heartless."

Thus the women kept complaining until, by and by, the tramp of the returning soldiers was heard, who were boasting of the great deeds of Keinohoomanawanui. The King, however, said: "I do not believe a word of your talk; when my cripple comes he will tell me the truth. I do not believe that Keinohoomanawanui is an athlete. Such is the opinion I have formed of him. But there is a powerful man, Kalelealuaka,—if he were to go into battle I am confident he would perform wonders. Such is the opinion I have formed of him, after careful study."

So the King waited for the return of the cripple until night, and all night until nearly dawn. When finally the lame marshal arrived, the King prudently abstained from questioning him until he had rested a while and taken breath; then he obtained from him the whole story of this new hero from Waialua, whose name he did not know, but who, he declared, resembled the King's son-in-law, Kalelealuaka.

Again, on a certain day, came the report of an attack by Kualii at Kulaokahua, and the battle was to be on the morrow. The cripple, as usual, started off the evening before. In the morning, Kalelealuaka called to his wives, and said: "Where are you? Wake up. I wish you to bake a fowl for me. Do it thus: Pluck it; do not cut it open, but remove the inwards through the opening behind; then stuff it with luau from the same end, and bake it; by no means cut it open, lest you spoil the taste of it."

As soon as they had left the house he flew to Kahuku and adorned his neck with wreaths of the pandanus fruit and his head with the flowers of the sugar cane, thus entirely changing his appearance and making him look like a gray-haired old man. As on previous days, he paused behind the cripple and greeted him with a friendly slap on the back. Then he kindly lifted the lame man and set him down at Puowaina. In return for this act of kindness the cripple gave him the district of Koolau.

In this battle he first slew those soldiers in Kakuhihewa's army who had spoken ill of him. Then he turned his hand against the warriors of Kualii, smiting them as with the stroke of lightning, and displaying miraculous powers. When he had reached the captain of Kualii's force, he killed him and despoiled his body of his feather cloak and helmet, taking also a little finger and toe. With these he flew to the cripple, whom he lifted and bore in his flight as far as Waipio, and there dropped him at a point just below where the water bursts forth at Waipahu.

Arrived at his house, Kalelealuaka, after disposing of his spoils, lay down and slept. After he had slept several hours, his wives came along in none too pleased a mood and awoke him, saying his meat was cooked. Kalelealuaka merely answered that it was so late his appetite had gone, and he did not care to eat.

At this slight his wives said: "Well, now, do you think we are accustomed to work? We ought to live without work, like a king's daughters, and when the men have prepared the food then we should go and eat it."

The women were still muttering over their grievance, when along came the soldiers, boasting of the powers of Keinohoomanawanui, and as they passed Kalelealuaka's door they said it were well if the two wives of this fellow, who lounges at home in time of war, were given to such a brave and noble warrior as Keinohoomanawanui.

The sun was just sinking below the ocean when the footsteps of the cripple were heard at the King's door, which he entered, sitting down within. After a short time the King asked him about the battle. "The valor and prowess of this third man were even greater than those of the previous ones; yet all three resemble each other. This day, however, he first avenged himself by slaying those who had spoken ill of him. He killed the captain of Kualii's army and took his feather cloak and helmet. On my return he lifted me as far as Waipahu."

In a few days again came a report that Kualii had an army at a place called Kahapaakai, in Nuuanu. Maliuhaaino immediately marshalled his forces and started for the scene of battle the same evening.

Early the next morning Kalelealuaka awakened his wives, and said to them: "Let us breakfast, but do you two eat quietly in your own house, and I in my house with the dogs; and do not come until I call you." So they did, and the two women went and breakfasted by themselves. At his own house Kalelealuaka ordered Kaluhe to stir up the dogs and keep them barking until his return. Then he sprang away and lighted at Kapakakolea, where he overtook the cripple, whom, after the usual interchange of greetings, he lifted, and set down at a place called Waolani.

On this day his first action was to smite and slay those who had reviled him at his own door. That done, he made a great slaughter among the soldiers of Kualii; then, turning, he seized Keinohoomanawanui, threw him down and asked him how he became blinded in one eye.

"It was lost," said the Sloven, "from the thrust of a spear, in a combat with Olopana."

"Yes, to be sure," said Kalelealuaka, "while you and I were living together at Wailuku, you being on one side of the stream and I on the other, a kukui nut burst in the fire, and that was the spear that put out your eye."

When the Sloven heard this, he hung his head. Then Kalelealuaka seized him to put him to death, when the spear of the Sloven pierced the fleshy part of Kalelealuaka's left arm, and in plucking it out the spear-head remained in the wound.

Kalelealuaka killed Keinohoomanawanui and beheaded him, and, running to the cripple, laid the trophy at his feet with the words: "I present you, Maliuhaaino, with the head of Keinohoomanawanui." This done, he returned to the battle, and went on slaying until he had advanced to the captain of Kualii's forces, whom he killed and spoiled of his feather cloak and helmet.

When Kualii saw that his chief captain, the bulwark of his power, was slain, he retreated and fled up Nuuanu Valley, pursued by Kalelealuaka, who overtook him at the head of the valley. Here Kualii surrendered himself, saying: "Spare my life. The land shall all go to Kakuhihewa, and I will dwell on it as a loyal subject under him and create no disturbance as long as I live."

To this the hero replied: "Well said! I spare your life on these terms. But if you at any time foment a rebellion, I will take your life! So, then, return, and live quietly at home and do not stir up any war in Koolau." Thus warned, Kaulii set out to return to the "deep blue palis of Koolau."

While the lame marshal was trudging homeward, bearing the head of the Sloven, Kalelealuaka alighted from his flight at his house, and having disposed in his usual manner of his spoils, immediately called to his wives to rejoin him at his own house.

The next morning, after the sun was warm, the cripple arrived at the house of the King in a state of great excitement, and was immediately questioned by him as to the issue of the battle, "The battle was altogether successful," said the marshal, "but Keinohoomanawanui was killed. I brought his head along with me and placed it on the altar mauka of Kalawao. But I would advise you to send at once your fleetest runners through Kona and Koolau, commanding everybody to assemble in one place, that I may review them and pick out and vaunt as the bravest that one whom I shall recognize by certain marks—for I have noted him well: he is wounded in the left arm."

Now, Kakuhihewa's two swiftest runners (kukini) were Keakealani and Kuhelemoana. They were so fleet that they could compass Oahu six times in a forenoon, or twelve times in a whole day. These two were sent to call together all the men of the King's domain. The men of Waianae came that same day and stood in review on the sandy plains of Puuloa. But among them all was not one who bore the marks sought for. Then came the men of Kona, of Waialua, and of Koolau, but the man was not found.

Then the lame marshal came and stood before the King and said: "Your bones shall rest in peace, Kalani. You had better send now and summon your son-in-law to come and stand before me; for he is the man." Then Kakuhihewa arose and went himself to the house of his son-in-law, and called to his daughters that he had come to get their husband to go and stand before Maliuhaaino.

Then Kalelealuaka lifted up the mats of his bed and took out the feather cloaks and the helmets and arrayed his two wives, and Kaluhe, and himself. Putting them in line, he stationed the elder of his wives first, next to her the younger, and third Kaluhe, and placing himself at the rear of the file, he gave the order to march, and thus accompanied he went forth to obey the King's command.

The lame marshal saw them coming, and in ecstasy he prostrated himself and rolled over in the dust, "The feather cloak and the helmet on your elder daughter are the ones taken from the captain of Kualii's army in the first day's fight; those on your second daughter from the captain of the second day's fight; while those on Kalelealuaka himself are from the captain killed in the battle on the fourth day. You will live, but perhaps I shall die, since he is weary of carrying me."

The lame marshal went on praising and eulogizing Kalelealuaka as he drew near. Then addressing the hero, he said: "I recognize you, having met you before. Now show your left arm to the King and to this whole assembly, that they may see where you were wounded by the spear."

Then Kalelealuaka bared his left arm and displayed his wound to the astonished multitude. Thereupon Kakuhihewa said: "Kalelealuaka and my daughters, do you take charge of the kingdom, and I will pass into the ranks of the common people under you."

After this a new arrangement of the lands was made, and the country had peace until the death of Kakuhihewa; Kalelealuaka also lived peacefully until death took him.




Thos. G. Thrum

Students of Hawaiian folk-lore find much of coincident interest with traditional or more historic beliefs of other and older lands. The same applies, in a measure, to some of the ancient customs of the people. This is difficult to account for, more especially since the Hawaiians possessed no written language by which such knowledge could be preserved or transmitted. Fornander and others discovered in the legends of this people traces of the story of the Flood, the standing still of the sun, and other narratives of Bible history, which some savants accept as evidence of their Aryan origin. This claim we are not disposed to dispute, but desire to present another line of tradition that has been neglected hitherto, yet has promise of much interest.

It will doubtless interest some readers to learn that Hawaii is the real home of the Brownies, or was; and that this adventurous nomadic tribe were known to the Hawaiians long before Swift's satirical mind conceived his Lilliputians.

It would be unreasonable to expect so great a range of nationalities and peculiar characteristics among the pygmies of Hawaii as among the Brownies of story. Tradition naturally represents them as of one race, and all nimble workers; not a gentleman dude, or policeman in the whole lot. Unlike the inquisitive and mischievous athletes of present fame, the original and genuine Brownies, known as the Menehunes, are referred to as an industrious race. In fact, it was their alleged power to perform a marvellous amount of labor in a short space of time that has fixed them in the minds of Hawaiians, many of whom point to certain traces of their work in various parts of the islands to substantiate the traditional claim of their existence.

Meeting thus with occasional references to this active race, but mostly in a vague way, it has been a matter of interesting inquiry among Hawaiians, some of whom were noted kaao, or legend-bearers, for further knowledge on the subject. Very naturally their ideas differ respecting the Menehunes. Some treat the subject with gravity and respect, and express the belief that they were the original inhabitants of these islands, but gradually gave way to the heavier-bodied ancestors of the present race; others consider that the history of the race has been forgotten through the lapse of ages; while the more intelligent and better educated look upon the Menehunes as a mythical class of gnomes or dwarfs, and the account of their exploits as having been handed down by tradition for social entertainment, as other peoples relate fairy stories.

In the Hawaiian legend of Kumuhonua, Fornander states that the Polynesians were designated as "the people, descendants from Menehune, son of Lua Nuu, etc. It disappeared as a national name so long ago, however, that subsequent legends have changed it to a term of reproach, representing them at times as a separate race, and sometimes as a race of dwarfs, skilful laborers, but artful and cunning."

In the following account and selection of stories gathered from various native sources, as literal a rendition as possible has been observed by the translators for the better insight it gives of Hawaiian thought and character.


The Menehunes were supposed to have been a wonderful people, small of stature and of great activity. They were always united in doing any service required of them. It was their rule that any work undertaken must be completed in one night, otherwise it would be left unfinished, as they did not labor twice on the same work; hence the origin of the saying: "He po hookahi, a ao ua pau,"—in one night, and by dawn it is finished.

There is no reliable history of the Menehunes. No one knows whence they came, though tradition says they were the original people of the Hawaiian Islands. They are thought to have been supernatural beings, governed by some one higher in rank than themselves, whom they recognized as having power and authority over them, that assigned them to the mountains and hills where they lived permanently. They were said to be the only inhabitants of the islands up to the time of Papa and Wakea, and were invisible to every one but their own descendants, or those connected with them in some way. Many persons could hear the noise and hum of their voices, but the gift of seeing them with the naked eye was denied to those not akin to them. They were always willing to do the bidding of their descendants, and their supernatural powers enabled them to perform some wonderful works.


Pi was an ordinary man living in Waimea, Kauai, who wanted to construct a mano, or dam, across the Waimea River and a watercourse therefrom to a point near Kikiaola. Having settled upon the best locations for his proposed work, he went up to the mountains and ordered all the Menehunes that were living near Puukapele to prepare stones for the dam and watercourse. The Menehunes were portioned off for the work; some to gather stones, and others to cut them. All the material was ready in no time (manawa ole), and Pi settled upon the night when the work was to be done. When the time came he went to the point where the dam was to be built, and waited. At the dead of night he heard the noise and hum of the voices of the Menehunes on their way to Kikiaola, each of whom was carrying a stone. The dam was duly constructed, every stone fitting in its proper place, and the stone auwai, or watercourse, also laid around the bend of Kikiaola. Before the break of day the work was completed, and the water of the Waimea River was turned by the dam into the watercourse on the flat lands of Waimea.

When the work was finished Pi served out food for the Menehunes, which consisted of shrimps (opae), this being the only kind to be had in sufficient quantity to supply each with a fish to himself. They were well supplied and satisfied, and at dawn returned to the mountains of Puukapele rejoicing, and the hum of their voices gave rise to the saying, "Wawa ka Menehune i Puukapele, ma Kauai, puoho ka manu o ka loko o Kawainui ma Koolaupoko, Oahu"—the hum of the voices of the Menehunes at Puukapele, Kauai, startled the birds of the pond of Kawainui, at Koolaupoko Oahu.

The auwai, or watercourse, of Pi is still to be seen at Kikiaola.

At one time Pi also told the Menehunes to wall in a fish-pond at the bend of the Huleia River. They commenced work toward midnight, but at dawn the walls of the pond were not sufficiently finished to meet, so it was left incomplete, and has remained so to this day.


Wahieloa, a chief, lived at Kalaikoi, Kipahulu, Maui. He took to him a wife named Hinahawea. In due time a boy was born to them, whom Hinahowana, the mother of Hinahawea, brought up under her own care at Alaenui. She called him Laka-a-wahieloa. He was greatly petted by his parents. One day his father went to Hawaii in search of the Ala-Koiula a Kane for a toy for his son, landing at Punaluu, Kau, Hawaii, where he was killed in a cave called Keana-a-Kaualehu.

After a long absence Laka asked for his father, and his mother referred him to his grandmother, who, on being questioned, told him that his father went to Hawaii, and was supposed to be dead. Laka then asked for means by which he could search for his father.

His grandmother replied: "Go to the mountains and look for the tree that has leaves shaped like the moon on the night of Hilo, or Hoaka; such is the tree for a canoe."

Laka followed this advice, and went to the mountains to find the tree for his canoe. Finding a suitable one, he commenced to cut in the morning, and by sundown he had felled it to the ground. This accomplished, he went home. Returning the next day, to his surprise he could not find his fallen tree, so he cut down another, with the same result. Laka was thus tricked for several days, and in his perplexity consulted again with his grandmother, who sent him off with the same advice as before, to look for the crescent-shaped leaf.

He went to the mountains again and found the desired tree, but before cutting it he dug a big hole on the side where the Kalala-Kamahele would fall. Upon cutting the tree it fell right into the hole or trench, as designed; then he jumped into it and lay in waiting for the person or persons who were reerecting the trees he had cut down for his canoe.

While thus waiting, he heard some one talking about raising the tree and returning it to its former position, followed by someone chanting as follows:

E ka mano o ke Akua, Ke kini o ke Akua, Ka lehu o ke Akua, Ka lalani Akua, Ka pukui Akua! E na Akua o ke kuahiwi nei, I ka mauna, I ke kualono, I ka manowai la-e, E-iho! [7]

When this appeal ended there was a hum and noise, and in a short time (manawa ole) the place was filled with a band of people, who endeavored to lift the tree; but it would not move. Laka then jumped out from his place of hiding and caught hold of two of the men, Mokuhalii and Kapaaikee, and threatened to kill them for raising again the trees he had cut for his canoe. Mokuhalii then told Laka that if they were killed, nobody would be able to make a canoe for him, nor would anybody pull it to the beach, but if they were spared they would willingly do it for him, provided Laka would first build a big and long shed (halau) of sufficient size to hold the canoe, and prepare sufficient food for the men. Laka gladly consenting, released them and returned to his home and built a shed on the level ground of Puhikau. Then he went up to the woods and saw the canoe, ready and complete. The Menehunes told Laka that it would be brought to the halau that night. At the dead of night the hum of the voices of the Menehunes was heard; this was the commencement of the lifting of the canoe. It was not dragged, but held up by hand. The second hum of voices brought the canoe to Haloamekiei, at Pueo. And at the third hum the canoe was carefully laid down in the halau. Food and fish were there spread out for the workers, the ha of the taro for food, and the opae and oopu for fish. At dawn the Menehunes returned to their home. Kuahalau was the name of the halau, the remains of the foundation of which were to be seen a few years ago, but now it is ploughed over. The hole dug by Laka still exists.


Kakae, a chief, lived at Wahiawa, Kukaniloko, Waialua, Oahu. One day his wife told him that she desired to go in search of her brother, Kahanaiakeakua, who was supposed to be living at Tahiti. Kakae thereupon ordered his man Kekupua to go into the woods and find a suitable tree and make a canoe for his wife for this foreign voyage. Kekupua, with a number of men under him, searched in the forest belt of Wahiawa, Helemano, and Waoala, as also through the woods of Koolau, without success. From Kahana they made a search through the mountains till they came to Kilohana, in Kalihi Valley, and from there to Waolani, in Nuuanu, where they slept in a cave. In the dead of night they heard the hum as of human voices, but were unable to discern any person, though the voices sounded close to them. At dawn silence reigned again, and when the sun arose, lo, and behold! there stood a large mound of stones, the setting of which resembled that of a heiau, or temple, the remains of which are said to be noticeable to this day.

Kekupua and his men returned to their chief and reported their unsuccessful search for a suitable koa (Acacia koa) tree for the desired canoe, and related also the incident at Waolani. Kakae, being a descendant of the Menehunes, knew immediately the authors of the strange occurrence. He therefore instructed Kekupua to proceed to Makaho and Kamakela and to stay there till the night of Kane, then go up to Puunui and wait till hearing the hum and noise of the Menehunes, which would be the signal of their finishing the canoe. And thus it was; the Menehunes, having finished the canoe, were ready to pull it to the sea. He directed them to look sharp, and two men would be noticed holding the ropes at the pu (or head) of the canoe. One of them would leap from one side to the other; he was the director of the work and was called pale. There would be some men farther behind, holding the kawelewele, or guiding-ropes. They were the kahunas that superintended the construction of the canoe. He reminded them to remember these directions, and when they saw these men, to give them orders and show them the course to take in pulling the canoe to the sea.

Kekupua followed all these instructions faithfully. He waited at Puunui till dusk, when he heard a hum as of many voices, and proceeding farther up near the slope of Alewa he saw these wonderful people. They were like ordinary human beings but diminutive. He directed them to pull the canoe along the nae, or farther side of the Puunui stream. By this course the canoe was brought down as far as Kaalaa, near Waikahalulu, where, when daylight came, they left their burden and returned to Waolani. The canoe was left in the ditch, where it remained for many generations, and was called Kawa-a-Kekupua (Kekupua's canoe), in honor of the servant of the chief Kakae.

Thus, even with the help of the Menehunes, the wife of Kakae was not satisfied in her desire.


The Menehunes are credited with the construction of numerous heiaus (ancient temples) in various parts of the islands.

The heiau of Mookini, near Honoipu, Kohala, is pointed out as an instance of their marvellous work. The place selected for the site of the temple was on a grassy plain. The stones in the nearest neighborhood were for some reason not deemed suitable for the work, so those of Pololu Valley, distant some twelve miles, were selected. Tradition says the Menehunes were placed in a line covering the entire distance from Pololu to Honoipu, whereby the stones were passed from hand to hand for the entire work. Work was begun at the quiet of night, and at cock-crow in the morning it was finished. Thus in one night the heiau of Mookini was built.

Another temple of their erection was at Pepeekeo, Hilo, the peculiarity of the work being that the stones had been brought together by the residents of that part of the district, by direction of the chief, but that in one night, the Menehunes gathered together and built it. The chief and his people were surprised on coming the next morning to resume their labors, to find the heiau completed.

There stands on the pali of Waikolu, near Kalaupapa, Molokai, a heiau that Hawaiians believe to have been constructed by no one else than the Menehunes. It is on the top of a ledge in the face of a perpendicular cliff, with a continuous inaccessible cliff behind it reaching hundreds of feet above. No one has ever been able to reach it either from above or from below; and the marvel is how the material, which appears to be seashore stones, was put in place.



Mrs. E. M. Nakuina

Akaaka (laughter) is a projecting spur of the mountain range at the head of Manoa Valley, forming the ridge running back to and above Waiakeakua, "the water of the gods." Akaaka was united in marriage to Nalehuaakaaka, still represented by some lehua (Metrosideros polymorpha) bushes on the very brow of the spur or ridge. They had two children, twins, Kahaukani, a boy, and Kauakuahine, a girl. These children were adopted at birth by a chief, Kolowahi, and chieftainess, Pohakukala, who were brother and sister, and cousins of Akaaka. The brother took charge of the boy, Kahaukani, a synonyme for the Manoa wind; and Pohakukala the girl, Kauakuahine, meaning the famous Manoa rain. When the children were grown up, the foster parents determined that they should be united; and the children, having been brought up separately and in ignorance of their relationship, made no objections. They were accordingly married and a girl was born to them, who was called Kahalaopuna. Thus Kolowahi and Pohakukala, by conspiring to unite the twin brother and sister, made permanent the union of rain and wind for which Manoa Valley is noted; and the fruit of such a union was the most beautiful woman of her time. So the Manoa girls, foster children of the Manoa rains and winds, have generally been supposed to have inherited the beauty of Kahalaopuna.

A house was built for Kahalaopuna at Kahaiamano on the road to Waiakekua, where she lived with a few attendants. The house was surrounded by a fence of auki (dracaena), and a puloulou (sign of kapu) was placed on each side of the gate, indicative of forbidden ground. The puloulou were short, stout poles, each surmounted by a ball of white kapa cloth, and indicated that the person or persons inhabiting the premises so defined were of the highest rank, and sacred.

Kahalaopuna was very beautiful from her earliest childhood. Her cheeks were so red and her face so bright that a glow emanated therefrom which shone through the thatch of her house when she was in; a rosy light seemed to envelop the house, and bright rays seemed to play over it constantly. When she went to bathe in the spring below her house, the rays of light surrounded her like a halo. The natives maintain that this bright light is still occasionally seen at Kahaiamano, indicating that the spirit of Kahalaopuna is revisiting her old home.

She was betrothed in childhood to Kauhi, the young chief of Kailua, in Koolau, whose parents were so sensible of the honor of the contemplated union of their son with the Princess of Manoa, who was deemed of a semi-supernatural descent, that they always sent the poi of Kailua and the fish of Kawainui for the girl's table. She was thus, as it were, brought up entirely on the food of her prospective husband.

When she was grown to young womanhood, she was so exquisitely beautiful that the people of the valley would make visits to the outer puloulou at the sacred precinct of Luaalea, the land adjoining Kahaiamano, just to get a glimpse of the beauty as she went to and from the spring. In this way the fame of her surpassing loveliness was spread all over the valley, and came to the ears of two men, Kumauna and Keawaa, both of whom were disfigured by a contraction of the lower eyelids, and were known as makahelei (drawn eyes). Neither of these men had ever seen Kahalaopuna, but they fell in love with her from hear-say, and not daring to present themselves to her as suitors on account of their disfigurement, they would weave and deck themselves leis (wreaths) of maile (Alyxia olivaeformis), ginger, and ferns and go to Waikiki for surf-bathing. While there they would indulge in boasting of their conquest of the famous beauty, representing the leis with which they were decked as love-gifts from Kahalaopuna. Now, when the surf of Kalehuawehe at Waikiki was in proper condition, it would attract people from all parts of the island to enjoy the delightful sport. Kauhi, the betrothed of Kahalaopuna, was one of these. The time set for his marriage to Kahalaopuna was drawing near, and as yet he had not seen her, when the assertions of the two makahelei men came to his ears. These were repeated so frequently that Kauhi finally came to believe them, and they so filled him with jealous rage of his betrothed that he determined to kill her. He started for Manoa at dawn, and proceeded as far as Mahinauli, in mid-valley, where he rested under a hala (Pandanus odoratissimus) tree that grew in the grove of wiliwili (Erythrina monosperma). He sat there some time, brooding over the fancied injury to himself, and nursing his wrath. Upon resuming his walk he broke off and carried along with him a bunch of hala nuts. It was quite noon when he reached Kahaiamano and presented himself before the house of Kahalaopuna. The latter had just awakened from a sleep, and was lying on a pile of mats facing the door, thinking of going to the spring, her usual bathing-place, when she perceived a stranger at the door.

She looked at him some time and, recognizing him from oft repeated descriptions, asked him to enter; but Kauhi refused, and asked her to come outside. The young girl had been so accustomed from early childhood to consider herself as belonging to Kauhi, and of being indebted to him, as it were, for her daily food, that she obeyed him unhesitatingly.

He perhaps intended to kill her then, but the girl's unhesitating obedience as well as her extreme loveliness made him hesitate for a while; and after looking intently at her for some time he told her to go and bathe and then prepare herself to accompany him in a ramble about the woods.

While Kahalaopuna was bathing, Kauhi remained moodily seated where she had left him, and watched the bright glow, like rainbow rays, playing above the spring. He was alternately filled with jealousy, regret, and longing for the great beauty of the girl; but that did not make him relent in his dreadful purpose. He seemed to resent his betrothed's supposed infidelity the more because she had thrown herself away on such unworthy persons, who were, besides, ugly and disfigured, while he, Kauhi, was not only a person of rank and distinction, but possessed also of considerable manly beauty.

When she was ready he motioned her to follow him, and turned to go without a word. They went across Kumakaha to Hualea, when the girl said, "Why don't you stay and have something to eat before we go?"

He answered rather surlily, "I don't care to eat; I have no appetite."

He looked so sternly at her as he said this that she cried out to him, "Are you annoyed with me? Have I displeased you in any way?"

He only said, "Why, what have you done that would displease me?"

He kept on his way, she following, till they came to a large stone in Aihualama, when he turned abruptly and, facing the young girl, looked at her with an expression of mingled longing and hate. At last, with a deep sigh, he said, "You are beautiful, my betrothed, but, as you have been false, you must die."

The young girl looked up in surprise at these strange words, but saw only hatred and a deadly purpose in Kauhi's eyes; so she said: "If I have to die, why did you not kill me at home, so that my people could have buried my bones; but you brought me to the wild woods, and who will bury me? If you think I have been false to you, why not seek proof before believing it?"

But Kauhi would not listen to her appeal. Perhaps it only served to remind him of what he considered was his great loss. He struck her across the temple with the heavy bunch of hala nuts he had broken off at Mahinauli, and which he had been holding all the time. The blow killed the girl instantly, and Kauhi hastily dug a hole under the side of the rock and buried her; then he started down the valley toward Waikiki.

As soon as he was gone, a large owl, who was a god, and a relative of Kahalaopuna, and had followed her from home, immediately set to digging the body out; which done, it brushed the dirt carefully off with its wings and, breathing into the girl's nostrils, restored her to life. It rubbed its face against the bruise on the temple, and healed it immediately. Kauhi had not advanced very far on his way when he heard the voice of Kahalaopuna singing a lament for his unkindness, and beseeching him to believe her, or, at least, prove his accusation.

Hearing her voice, Kauhi returned, and, seeing the owl flying above her, recognized the means of her resurrection; and, going up to the girl, ordered her to follow him. They went up the side of the ridge which divides Manoa Valley from Nuuanu. It was hard work for the tenderly nurtured maiden to climb the steep mountain ridge, at one time through a thorny tangle of underbrush, and at another clinging against the bare face of the rocks, holding on to swinging vines for support. Kauhi never offered to assist her, but kept on ahead, only looking back occasionally to see that she followed. When they arrived at the summit of the divide she was all scratched and bruised, and her pa-u (skirt) in tatters. Seating herself on a stone to regain her breath, she asked Kauhi where they were going. He never answered, but struck her again with the hala branch, killing her instantly, as before. He then dug a hole near where she lay, and buried her, and started for Waikiki by way of the Kakea ridge. He was no sooner out of sight than the owl again scratched the dirt away and restored the girl, as before. Again she followed and sang a song of love and regret for her lover's anger, and pleaded with him to lay aside his unjust suspicions. On hearing her voice again, Kauhi returned and ordered her to follow him. They descended into Nuuanu Valley, at Kaniakapupu, and crossed over to Waolani ridge, where he again killed and buried the faithful girl, who was again restored by the owl. When he was on his way back, as before, she sang a song, describing the perils and difficulties of the way traversed by them, and ended by pleading for pardon for the unknown fault. The wretched man, on hearing her voice again, was very angry; and his repeated acts of cruelty and the suffering endured by the girl, far from softening his heart, only served to render him more brutal, and to extinguish what little spark of kindly feeling he might have had originally. His only thought was to kill her for good, and thus obtain some satisfaction for his wasted poi and fish. He returned to her and ordered her, as before, to follow him, and started for Kilohana, at the head of Kalihi Valley, where he again killed her. She was again restored by the owl, and made her resurrection known by singing to her cruel lover. He this time took her across gulches, ravines, and plains, until they arrived at Pohakea, on the Ewa slope of the Kaala Mountains, where he killed her and buried her under a large koa (Acacia koa). The faithful owl tried to scrape the dirt away, so as to get at the body of the girl, but his claws became entangled in the numerous roots and rootlets which Kauhi had been careful not to cut away. The more the owl scratched, the more deeply tangled he got, and, finally, with bruised claws and ruffled feathers, he had to give up the idea of rescuing the girl; and perhaps he thought it useless, as she would be sure to make her resurrection known to Kauhi. So the owl left, and followed Kauhi on his return to Waikiki.

There had been another witness to Kauhi's cruelties, and that was Elepaio (Chasiempis sandwichensis), a little green bird, a cousin to Kahalaopuna. As soon as this bird saw that the owl had deserted the body of Kahalaopuna, it flew straight to Kahaukani and Kauakuahine, and told them of all that had happened. The girl had been missed, but, as some of the servants had recognized Kauhi, and had seen them leave together for what they supposed was a ramble in the adjoining woods, no great anxiety had been felt, as yet. But when the little bird told his tale, there was great consternation, and even positive disbelief; for, how could any one in his senses, they argued, be guilty of such cruelty to such a lovely, innocent being, and one, too, belonging entirely to himself.

In the meantime, the spirit of the murdered girl discovered itself to a party who were passing by; and one of them, a young man, moved with compassion, went to the tree indicated by the spirit, and, removing the dirt and roots, found the body, still warm. He wrapped it in his kihei (shoulder scarf), and then covered it entirely with maile, ferns, and ginger, and, making a haawe, or back-load, of it, carried it to his home at Kamoiliili. There, he submitted the body to his elder brother, who called upon two spirit sisters of theirs, with whose aid they finally succeeded in restoring it to life. In the course of the treatment she was frequently taken to an underground water-cave, called Mauoki, for the Kakelekele (hydropathic cure). The water-cave has ever since been known as the "Water of Kahalaopuna."

The young man who had rescued her from the grave naturally wanted her to become his bride; but the girl refused, saying that as long as Kauhi lived she was his, and none other's, as her very body was, as it were, nourished on his food, and was as much his property as the food had been.

The elder brother then counselled the younger to seek, in some way, the death of Kauhi. To this end they conspired with the parents of Kahalaopuna to keep her last resurrection secret. The young man then set to work to learn all the meles Kahalaopuna had sung to her lover during that fatal journey. When he knew these songs well, he sought the kilu (play, or game) houses of the King and high chiefs, where Kauhi was sure to be found.

One day, when Kauhi was playing, this young man placed himself on the opposite side, and as Kauhi ceased, took up the kilu and chanted the first of Kahalaopuna's meles.

Kauhi was very much surprised, and contrary to the etiquette of the game of kilu, stopped him in his play to ask him where he had learned that song. The young man answered he had learned it from Kahalaopuna, the famous Manoa beauty, who was a friend of his sister's and who was now on a visit at their house. Kauhi, knowing the owl had deserted the body of the girl, felt certain that she was really dead, and accused the other of telling a lie. This led to an angry and stormy scene, when the antagonists were parted by orders of the King.

The next night found them both at the kilu house, when the second of Kahalaopuna's songs was sung, and another angry discussion took place. Again they were separated by others. On the third night, the third song having been sung, the dispute between the young men became so violent that Kauhi told the young man that the Kahalaopuna he knew must be an impostor, as the real person of that name was dead, to his certain knowledge. He dared him to produce the young woman whom he had been representing as Kahalaopuna; and should she not prove to be the genuine one then his life should be the forfeit, and on the other hand, if it should be the real one, then he, Kauhi, should be declared the liar and pay for his insults to the other with his life.

This was just what the young man had been scheming to compass, and he quickly assented to the challenge, calling on the King and chiefs to take notice of the terms of agreement, and to see that they were enforced.

On the appointed day Kahalaopuna went to Waikiki, attended by her parents, relatives, servants, and the two spirit sisters, who had assumed human form for that day so as to accompany their friend and advise her in case of necessity. Akaaka, the grandfather, who had been residing in Waikiki some little time previous to the dispute between the young men, was appointed one of the judges at the approaching trial.

Kauhi had consulted the priests and sorcerers of his family as to the possibility of the murdered girl having assumed human shape for the purpose of working him some injury. Kaea, a famous priest and seer of his family, told him to have the large leaves of the a-pe (Calladium costatum) spread where Kahalaopuna and party were to be seated. If she was a spirit, she would not be able to tear the a-pe leaf on which she would be seated, but if human, the leaf or leaves would be torn. With the permission of the King, this was done. The latter, surrounded by the highest chiefs and a vast assemblage from all parts of the island, was there to witness the test.

When Kahalaopuna and party were on the road to the scene of the test, her spirit friends informed her of the a-pe leaves, and advised her to trample on them so as to tear them as much as possible, as they, being spirits, would be unable to tear the leaves on which they should be seated, and if any one's attention were drawn to them, they would be found out and killed by the poe po-i uhane (spirit catchers).

The young girl faithfully performed what was required of her. Kaea, on seeing the torn leaves, remarked that she was evidently human, but that he felt the presence of spirits, and would watch for them, feeling sure they were in some way connected with the girl. Akaaka then told him to look in a calabash of water, when he would in all probability see the spirits. The seer, in his eagerness to unravel the mystery, forgot his usual caution and ordered a vessel of water to be brought, and, looking in, he saw only his own reflection. Akaaka at that moment caught the reflection of the seer (which was his spirit), and crushed it between his palms, and at that moment the seer dropped down dead. Akaaka now turned around and opened his arms and embraced Kahalaopuna, thus acknowledging her as his own beloved granddaughter.

The King now demanded of the girl and of Kauhi an account of all that had happened between them, and of the reported death of the maiden. They both told their stories, Kauhi ascribing his anger to hearing the assertions of the two disfigured men, Kumauna and Keawaa. These two, on being confronted with the girl, acknowledged never having seen her before, and that all their words had been idle boastings. The King then said: "As your fun has cost this innocent girl so much suffering, it is my will that you two and Kauhi suffer death at once, as a matter of justice; and if your gods are powerful enough to restore you, so much the better for you."

Two large imus (ground ovens) had been heated by the followers of the young men, in anticipation of the possible fate of either, and Kauhi, with the two mischief-makers and such of their respective followers and retainers as preferred to die with their chiefs, were baked therein.

The greater number of Kauhi's people were so incensed with his cruelty to the lovely young girl that they transferred their allegiance to her, offering themselves for her vassals as restitution, in a measure, for the undeserved sufferings borne by her at the hands of their cruel chief.

The King gave her for a bride to the young man who had not only saved her, but had been the means of avenging her wrongs.

The imus in which Kauhi and his companions were baked were on the side of the stream of Apuakehau, in the famous Ulukou grove, and very near the sea. The night following, a great tidal wave, sent in by a powerful old shark god, a relative of Kauhi's, swept over the site of the two ovens, and in the morning it was seen that their contents had disappeared. The bones had been taken by the old shark into the sea. The chiefs, Kumauna and Keawaa, were, through the power of their family gods, transformed into the two mountain peaks on the eastern corner of Manoa Valley, while Kauhi and his followers were turned into sharks.

Kahalaopuna lived happily with her husband for about two years. Her grandfather, knowing of Kauhi's transformation, and aware of his vindictive nature, strictly forbade her from ever going into the sea. She remembered and heeded the warning during those years, but one day, her husband and all their men having gone to Manoa to cultivate kalo (Colocasia antiquorum), she was left alone with her maid servants.

The surf on that day was in fine sporting condition, and a number of young women were surf-riding, and Kahalaopuna longed to be with them. Forgetting the warning, as soon as her mother fell asleep she slipped out with one of her maids and swam out on a surf-board. This was Kauhi's opportunity, and as soon as she was fairly outside the reef he bit her in two and held the upper half of the body up out of the water, so that all the surf-bathers would see and know that he had at last obtained his revenge.

Immediately on her death the spirit of the young woman went back and told her sleeping mother of what had befallen her. The latter woke up, and, missing her, gave the alarm. This was soon confirmed by the terrified surf-bathers, who had all fled ashore at seeing the terrible fate of Kahalaopuna. Canoes were launched and manned, and chase given to the shark and his prey, which could be easily tracked by the blood.

He swam just far enough below the surface of the water to be visible, and yet too far to be reached with effect by the fishing-spears of the pursuers. He led them a long chase to Waianae; then, in a sandy opening in the bottom of the sea, where everything was visible to the pursuers, he ate up the young woman, so that she could never again be restored to this life.

Her parents, on hearing of her end, retired to Manoa Valley, and gave up their human life, resolving themselves into their supernatural elements. Kahaukani, the father, is known as the Manoa wind, but his usual and visible form is the grove of ha-u (hibiscus) trees, below Kahaiamano. Kauakuahine, the mother, assumed her rain form, and is very often to be met with about the former home of her beloved child.

The grandparents also gave up their human forms, and returned, the one to his mountain form, and the other into the lehua bushes still to be met with on the very brow of the hill, where they keep watch over the old home of their petted and adored grandchild.



Mrs. E. M. Nakuina

There formerly lived on the Kaala Mountains a chief by the name of Kahaakea. He had two children, a boy and a girl, twins, whose mother had died at their birth. The brother was called Kauawaahila (Waahila Rain), and the girl Kauakiowao (Mountain Mist). Kahaakea was very tenderly attached to his motherless children, and after a while took to himself a wife, thinking thus to provide his children with a mother's care and love. This wife was called Hawea and had a boy by her former husband. This boy was deformed and ugly, while the twins were very beautiful. The stepmother was jealous of their beauty, and resented the universal admiration expressed for them, while no one noticed her boy except with looks of aversion. She was very considerate toward the twins when their father was present, but hated and detested them most violently. When they were about ten years old their father had occasion to go to Hawaii, and had to remain away a long time. He felt perfectly safe in leaving his children with his wife, as she had always feigned great love for them, and had successfully concealed from him her real feelings in regard to them. But as soon as he was fairly away she commenced a series of petty persecutions of the poor children.

It seems the mother of the children had been "uhae ia" at her death. That is, certain prayers, invocations, fasting, and humiliation had been performed by certain relatives of the deceased, and quantities of prepared awa, black, unblemished pig, red fish, and all the customary food of the gods, had been prepared and offered with the object of strengthening the spirit of the departed and of attracting it strongly, as well as giving it a sort of power and control over mundane affairs and events. So when Hawea began to persecute her stepchildren, the spirit of their own mother would assist and protect them.

The persecutions of the stepmother at last became unendurable to the twins. She not only deprived them of food, clothing, and water, but subjected them besides to all sorts of indignities and humiliations. Driven to desperation, they fled to Konahuanui, the mountain peak above the Pali of Nuuanu; but were soon discovered and driven away from there by the cruel Hawea. They then went to the head of Manoa Valley. The stepmother was not at all pleased at their getting out of the way of her daily persecutions, and searched for them everywhere. She finally tracked them by the constant appearance of rainbows at the head of Manoa Valley, those unfailing attendants of rain and mist. The children were again driven away and told to return to Kaala, where they would be constantly under her eye; but they ran and hid themselves in a small cave on the side of the hill of Kukaoo, whose top is crowned by the temple of the Menehunes. Here they lived some time and cultivated a patch of sweet potatoes, their food at this time being grasshoppers and greens. The greens were the leaves and the tender shoots of the popolo, aheahea, pakai, laulele and potato vines, cooked by rolling hot stones around and among them in a covered gourd. This is called the puholoholo.

When their potato tubers were fit to be eaten, the brother (Waahila Rain) made a double imu (oven), having a kapu, or sacred side, for his food and a noa, or free side, for his sister. The little cave that was their dwelling was also divided in two, a sacred and a free part, respectively, for brother and sister. The cave can still be seen, and the wall of stone dividing it in two was still intact a few years ago, as also was the double imu. In olden times it was tabooed to females to appear at any eating-place of the males.

When their crops were fairly ripe, the stepmother found them again, and drove them away from their cave, she appropriating the fruit of their labors. The children fled to the rocky hills just back of Punahou, where they found two small caves, which the brother and sister occupied, respectively, as dwellings. The rolling plains and small ravines of the surrounding country, and of what was later known as the Punahou pasture, were not then covered with manienie grass, but with the indigenous shrubs and bushes, tall limas, aheaheas, popolo, etc., making close thickets, with here and there open spaces covered with manienie-akiaki, the valuable medicinal grass of the olden times. These shrubs and bushes either bore edible fruit or flowers, or the leaves and tender shoots made nourishing and satisfying food when cooked in the way previously described. The poor children lived on these and grasshoppers, and sometimes wild fowl.

One day the sister, Kauakiowao, told her brother that she wanted to bathe, and complained of their having taken up their residence in a place where no water could be found. Her brother hushed her complaint by telling her that it was a safe place, and one where their stepmother would not be likely to look for them, but he would try to get her some water. In his trips around the neighborhood for fruit and greens he had noticed a large rain-water pond to the east of the hill on which they dwelt. This pond was called Kanawai. Here he sometimes came to snare wild ducks. He also had met and knew the Kakea water god, a moo, who had charge of and controlled all the water sources of Manoa and Makiki Valleys. This god was one of the ancestors of the children on the mother's side, and was on the best of terms with Waahila rain. The boy paid him a visit, and asked him to assist him to open a watercourse from the pond of Kanawai to a place he indicated in front of and below the caves inhabited by himself and his sister. The old water god not only consented to help his young relative, but promised to divide the water supply of the neighboring Wailele spring, and let it run into the watercourse that the boy would make, thus insuring its permanence.

Waahila Rain then went to the pond of Kanawai and dived under, the water god causing a passage to open underground to the spot indicated, and swam through the water underground till he came out at the place now known as the Punahou Spring. The force of the rushing waters as they burst through the ground soon sufficed to make a small basin, which the boy proceeded to bank and wall up, leaving a narrow outlet for the surplus waters. With the invisible help of the old water god, he immediately set to work to excavate a good-sized pond for his sister to swim in, and when she awoke from a noonday nap, she was astonished to behold a lovely sheet of water where, in the morning, was only dry land. Her brother was swimming and splashing about in it, and gayly called to his sister to come and try her bathing-place.

Kauawaahila afterward made some kalo patches, and people, attracted by the water and consequent fertility of the place, came and settled about, voluntarily offering themselves as vassals to the twins. More and more kalo patches were excavated, and the place became a thriving settlement. The spring became known as Ka Punahou (the new spring), and gave its name to the surrounding place.

About this time Kahaakea returned, and hearing of the persecutions to which his beloved children had been subjected, killed Hawea and then himself. Rocky Hill, the home of the children, was called after him, and is known by that name to the present day. Hawea has ever since then been a synonyme in the Hawaiian mind for a cruel stepmother.

The Mountain Mist and Waahila Rain afterward returned to the home of their infancy, Kaala, where they would stay a while, occasionally visiting Konahuanui and upper Manoa Valley, and may be met with in these places at the present day.

They also occasionally visited Punahou, which was under their especial care and protection; but when the land and spring passed into the hands of foreigners, who did not pay homage to the twins, and who allowed the springs to be defiled by the washing of unclean articles and by the bathing of unclean persons, the twins indignantly left the place, and retired to the head of Manoa Valley.

They sometimes pass swiftly over their old home on their way to Kaala, or Konahuanui, and on such occasions will sometimes linger sorrowfully for a few minutes about Rocky Hill. The rain-water pond of Kanawai is now always dry, as the shrubs and bushes which supplied the food of the twins favored of the gods have disappeared. Old natives say that there is now no inducement for the gentle rain of the Uakiowao and Uawaahila to visit those bare hills and plains, as they would find no food there.



Mrs. E. M. Nakuina

On the plateau lying between Ewa and Waialua, on the island of Oahu, and about a mile off, and mauka of the Kaukonahua bridge, is the historical place called Kukaniloko. This was the ancient birthplace of the Oahu kings and rulers. It was incumbent on all women of the royal line to retire to this place when about to give birth to a child, on pain of forfeiting the rank, privileges, and prerogatives of her expected offspring, should that event happen in a less sacred place.

The stones were still standing some years ago, and perhaps are yet undisturbed, where the royal accouchements took place. In ancient times this locality was taboo ground, for here the high priest of the island had his headquarters. Himself descended from the chief families, and being, in many instances, an uncle or younger brother of the reigning king, or connected by marriage with those of the royal line, and being also at the head of a numerous, well organized, and powerful priesthood, his influence was hardly second to that of the king, and in some matters his authority was paramount.

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