Glyph of the word 'i'ava'.


  • (n.) meal
  • (v.) to have a meal

I’ava eino a.
“We’re having a meal.”

Notes: I realized that there aren’t many pictures of me up on the internet (a few, but not many), so here’s one with me:

Me, Erin and Sally Caves.

That’s a picture of me, my wife Erin, and Sally Caves, creator of Teonaht. We were out having lunch at her parents’ just north of where I live.

This word, i’ava, is a kind of…not formal word, but “higher class” word when used as a verb. It’s a fancy way of saying “We’re eating”. I’ve found that a number of languages have a word like this, for some reason. In English, we can use “take” (e.g. “I took my lunch on the veranda”). Arabic has a fancy one, but I’m not actually sure what it means. But to say something like “I took my lunch”, it’d be:

أطناول الغداء

In IPA that’d be something like [ʔa.tˤa.ˈnaː.wal al.ɣi.ˈdaːʔ].

Anyway, so this is the Kamakawi “fancy” word for eating. The word i’ava was certainly a noun first (derived from hava, “to eat”), and while you can use just about any word as a verb or a noun in Kamakawi, social custom dictates what words are commonly used. This is a noun that has been adopted as a verb and is used as often as “fancy” language is required.

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