A dictionary of Teanu (Vanikoro, Solomon Islands)
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teanu dictionary
Index w
waiero peini vono
waluko ote
~wamu piene
~wate tepapa
we i-kae?
~wene moli
~wene moli
~wene teve
~wete mama
~wete otovo
~woi okoro
wa  [wa] -.
~wabe  [(i·)waᵐbe] transitive verb. fill up. remplir.

~sabisi ‘pour’

Dapa gete le-wabe, le-lui tev' dapa li-anu.
The young men fill up (the cups) and give them to (the elders) for them to drink.
wabeiu  [waᵐbeiu] -.
wablei  [waᵐblei] -.
waga  [waᵑga] -.
wai  [wai] -.
~wai1   [(i·)wai] intransitive verb. paddle, row, go on a canoe. pagayer.

U-wai u-mabui!
Paddle slowly!
~wai2   [(i·)wai] intransitive verb. ⟨earth⟩  quake, shake.

~ekili ‘tremble’

Ni-lengi tanoe pe i-wai.
I felt the ground shake.
~wai2   transitive verb. ⟨s.o.,⟩  shake ‹›.

U-wai ebele u-ka pon etapu!
Don't shake your body like that!

Li-wai elela vongoro pon.
We shake the branch of the almond tree (to knock the nuts down).

Nobwogo miko i-la i-wai moe ne.
Last night an earthquake shook the houses here.
waiero  [wajero] noun. <Sea> wave, surf of the sea.

revo ‘sea’

waiero peini vono  -. lit. “wave on land” : tidal wave.


waini  [waini] -.
waivo  [waivo] -.
waka  [waka] -.
wako  [wako] -.
wali  [wali] -.
waluko   [waluko] noun, obligatorily possessed. <Anat> side of ‹›.

(1) ⟨leg⟩  side of the waist, hip.


waluko aele

(2) ⟨river⟩  side, bank.

Li-le li-te teta-vene pon, ne waluko ero.
They went to stay uphill over there, along the river.
waluko   noun. <Anat> side of the waist, hip.

I-la puro kula i-vio ne waluko.
He had a few arrows tied around his waist.
waluko ote  [waluko ote] noun. <Mus> a membranophone drum, not native from Vanikoro, but found in islands further West. Etym.. The body of the drum is made out of a sago tree, hence the name ote ‘sago tree’.

wamabo  [wamaᵐbo] -.
wamitaka  [wamitaka] -.
wamtake  [wamtake] -.
~wamu   [(i·)wamu] voi. hide ‹› (from s.o., mina). cacher.

Ka a-wamu labaro 'none vele?
Where did you hide my shoes?
~wamu   vrfl. ⟨s.o.⟩  hide ‹oneself›, hide.

Li-le li-wamu dapa ne pwa moe.
They went to hide [lit. hide themselves] beside a house.
~wamu piene  -. lit. “hide speech” : talk using cryptic words, in order to keep o.'s speech hard to understand for the casual hearer.

Le-wamu piene mina dapa.
Let's keep our discussion secret from them.
wapio  [wapio] -.
wapono  [wapono] -.
wasi  [wasi] -.
~wasu  [(i·)wasu] transitive verb.

(1) make ‹things› come back in order: tidy, straighten, fix ‹›. arranger.

Ne-wasu ngaten' enaka i-vio.
I'll tidy up my stuff.

(2) correct ‹mistakes›.

U-wasu piene 'none.
[fix my words] Please correct my mistakes.

(3) sort out ‹issues›, settle ‹conflict›.

(4) arrange, organise ‹›.

U-wasu kuo re u-min' ene.
Please could you arrange for me a trip on that boat?

(5) (slg) fix ‹a girl›: arrange a romantic relationship with ‹a girl› on behalf of s.o..

U-le u-wasu emele re u-min' ene!
[Go fix this girl for me] Please go and connect me with that girl!
~wate1   [(i·)wate] voi. <Ethn> lit. “bang on boards” : stomp on the dancing boards (see tepapa): perform the main dance at the ngapiene festival. frapper.

~pinoe ‘perform traditional dance’

Li-wate tepapa, li-viane tepapa ponu; ka li-pinoe pon ta ka li-mako.
They were hitting the boards, stomping on the boards: such was their dance.
~wate2   [(i·)wate] transitive verb. point at ‹, s.o.›, indicate.

~wate tepapa  ~ ~viane tepapa  -.
waviliro  [waviliro] noun. <Fish> Lined Surgeonfish. Acanthurus lineatus.

[ POc *[qa]paliRAcanthurus’. ]

wavilo  [wavilo] -.
wañaka  [waɲaka] -.
we2   [we] pos. PosFood


we i-kae?  -. ⦗question tag⦘ lit. “or how?” : …or what? …or something?.


Mata ini i-ledi, we i-kae?
Was he hungry or something?
webwe  [weᵐbʷe] noun. <Zool> troca
wele  [wele] -.
welero  [welero] noun. <Ornith> Whimbrel. Numenius Phaeopus.

~wene  [(i·)wene] intransitive verb.

(1) ⟨s.o.⟩  lie down, be lying.

~mokoiu ‘sleep’

Ka i-mamei ponu ka i-maliawo ka i-wene teve.
As she was feeling cold, she lit a fire and lied down beside it.

Van' ni-wene ni-botongo nara kape le-punuo ñi.
I sleep on (my money) so nobody can steal it.

Nga mwaliko i-bu, le-iu ebele ini i-wene ne kie ini.
When somebody dies, their body is buried [and lies] in a grave.

(2) ⟨⟩  be located somewhere, in whatever position. Animate subjects take ~te3.

basa re po i-wen' iu re
that mountain that's lying over there

Okoro 'naka pon i-wene vele?
So where's my knife?

Uña ngaten' enaka i-wene tev' iu re.
My stuff (bags+) is up over there.

Kie dapa i-wene Paiu.
Their graves are in Paiou.

(3) (esp) ⦗resultative serialisation⦘ ⟨⟩  be located somewhere after having be displaced. Usually not translated.

U-re i-wene!
Leave that alone. [lit. you drop it, it lies]

La-wamu ne bonge iote i-wene pon.
They hid (the treasure) in a cave. [lit. they hid it in a cave it's ‘lying’ there]

(4) (gen) ⟨⟩  exist, be there.

(5) (hence) ⦗combined with possessed NP⦘ forms possessive predicates similar to Eng. ‘have’.

Monon' enaka iote pine i-wene.
[one big box of mine is there…] I've got a huge wooden trunk.

[ POc *qenop. ]

~wene moli  -. lit. “lie unconstrained” : be easy.
~wene moli  [(i·)wene moli] intransitive verb. lit. “be-there unconstrained” : be easy (to s.o., teve). facile.

Ant: ~aiae

Piene adapa i-wen' moli, i-aiae tae!
Their language is easy, it's not difficult.

Matapiene pon, i-wene moli teve dapa.
That life was so easy for them.

Nganae le-ko l-ajau, i-wene moli teve dapa.
Whatever they wanted to do, was easy to them.
~wene teve  [(i·)wene teve] vti. lit. “be-there with” : belong to ‹s.o.›. Forms possessive predicates equivalent to Eng. ‘have’.

Nganae awa dapa i-viaene, na, i-wen' teve dapa.
Whatever they wanted, they could have it. [lit. it was there with them]

Sitoa iote i-wene tev' ai' one.
My father had a shop.
~wete  [(i·)wete] voi. <Techn> Lvn: ~vele violently push a long, hard object into ‹s.o.,›: pierce, spear, stab, pound+. harponner.

Syn: ~woi

~tobo ‘poke, pierce’

(1) spear ‹fish+›.

li-wete namuko
go fishing using a spear

(2) shoot ‹s.o.,› with arrow.

Pe li-wete telupe, u-avi visone ka u-iui diro i-le i-wete ini.
When you hunt [lt. shoot] pigeons, you bend your bow, and let the arrow fly and hit it.

(3) pound ‹s.o.,› with the end of a long stick, or any similar implement.

Vilisao i-abu i-abu i-wete toñaki ie Laperus pon i-metelu.
The tornado came all the way down and pounded Lapérouse's ship, which sank immediately.

(4) drive ‹digging stick, ekuo› into the ground, to soften it when planting tubers.

ekuo pe li-wete ñe tanoe
a digging stick [stick used to spear the ground]

(5) ⦗in gardening⦘ dig out ‹swamp taro, vivilo› by driving a digging stick into the ground; hence harvest. Techn. Alocasia taros (vioe) are harvested by digging (Cf. ~ae2); whereas Colocasia taros (jebute) are harvested by pulling (Cf. ~au1).

Vivilo li-wete ñe ekuo, li-wete li-kamai.
Cyrtosperma taros, we dig them out with the digging stick, and take them home.

(6) ⦗in cooking⦘ pound ‹taros, almonds+› in a bowl, using a long and heavy pestle.

I-tau jebute moioe ponu, i-loko i-ka i-le ne monone ka i-wete. I-wete awoiu ka i-ejau mama ada.
Once the taro was cooked, she put it in a bowl and began to pound it. When she finished pounding it, she made the pudding.

Li-wete jebute li-wete vongoro awoiu pon, li-ejau mama.
We mash taros, we crush almonds, and thus make the pudding.

(7) grind ‹kava+› using a longish coral stone or a pestle.

Li-wete kava awoiu ka li-vili.
After grinding the kava, we squeeze it.

(8) pin ‹clothes, leaves+› using a needle or a small pointed stick.

~sai ‘sew’

~wete mama  -. lit. “pound pudding” : prepare the mama* pudding, by pounding cooked taros and Canarium almonds in a bowl (monone) with a pestle. This dish is prepared for important social occasions.


Li-wete mama adapa.
They prepared the pudding.
~wete otovo  -. <Techn> lit. “pin sago” : prepare the roofing of a house, by pinning together sago leaves.


Li-wete otovo awoiu pon li-ejau tele moe.
Once the thatch is finished, we make the house walls.

Otovo iupa ka tamwaliko, pi-tabo pi-wete kula motoe.
Our roofing has been damaged, we are making [lt. pinning] a new one.
wido  [wiⁿdo] noun. <Bot> Fish-Poison tree. Barringtonia. Barringtonia asiatica.

[ POc *putun. ]

wik  [wik] -.
wo  [wo] -.
~wo1   [(i·)wo] intransitive verb. run away, escape (from, mina). fuir.

P-aiu pe-wo pe-le ne ngogoro!
Get up and run away to the bush!

Ba-wo etapu!
Don't run away!
~wo2   [(i·)wo] transitive verb. carry ‹basket, net+› on o.'s back, hanging from a strap put around forehead. porter. This way of carrying is typically used when coming back home from the gardens, whether to carry firewood or harvested food.

Ni-wo topola 'none ne die 'ne.
I'm carrying my basket on my back.
~wo3   [(i·)wo] transitive verb.

(1) count.

(2) list, enumerate ‹several things›, mention one by one. énumérer.

Dapa li-wo enga dapa i-ka.
They told out their names, one after the other.

La-tabo la-wo enga temaka.
Let's list all the place names again.

(3) (hence) read.

Ka a-wo awoiu?
Have you read it?
~wo4   [(i·)wo] intransitive verb. ⟨plant⟩  bear fruit. fructifier.

ua ‘fruit’

Udo ono pe a-vo ka i-wo.
The banana trees which you planted have already borne their fruits.

[ (?) POc *puaq. ]

~woi  [(i·)woi] transitive verb.

(1) stick ‹long object: knife+› into; drive in.

Li-woi okoro ñe utedie ini.
They stuck a knife in his back.

(2) plant ‹manioc+› into the ground.

~wowo [3] ‘plant tuber’

Li-woi elela manioka.
They planted a stock of manioc.

(3) put up, erect ‹post+› by sticking it on ground. dresser.

Syn: ~vo [2]

Blateno ponu li-woi ne mane.
They have put up the ritual posts on the dancing area.

Dapa li-woi nuduro ne touro.
They put up taboo signs (nuduro*) on the seashore.

(4) pound, bang ‹long object› with an impact, e.g. shock or noise.

Syn: ~wete

Ni-woi basa ene li-asai.
I banged by head, and it was stitched up.

li-woi okoro
pound bamboos on the ground, to make music [see ~woi okoro]
~woi okoro  [(i·)woi okoro] voi. <Mus> lit. “stick bamboos” : pound heavy bamboos vertically and repeatedly onto the ground, to mark bass rhythms while singing. Bamboos are especially played that way in a musical genre called Buro bula okoro ‘Songs for bamboos’. A handful of musicians are lined up in the centre of the village area (mane); as they pound the bamboos, they sing songs, to the sound of which the dancers dance around them.

Kape ba-woi okoro, bai-oburo ne mane.
We shall pound the bamboos and sing songs, in the dancing area.
woiote  [woiote] -.
~wokobe  [(i·)wokoᵐbe] transitive verb. welcome ‹traveller› upon their arrival, typic. on the beach.

Teliki iadapa li-abu li-ka, li-wokobe da po la-sai kuo.
The chiefs came down and welcomed them as they landed their canoe (on the beach).
woku  [woku] noun. <Ornith> Red-bellied Fruit Dove. colombe. Ptilinopus greyii.

woloko  [woloko] noun. <Bot> Red Ginger, k.o. plant with bright red flowers (Zingiberaceae). Alpinia purpurata.

wolowolo  [wolowolo] -.
~womanga  [(i·)womaŋa] phr. give food to, feed ‹man, animal›. nourrir.

A-ko bwara kape u-e namuko, ia vana a-womanga dapa nga ponu!
You thought you would eat these fish, but actually you're only feeding them!

[ POc *maŋan. ]

wonone  -. (rare) plural form of none.

wonone pe li-e
the various types of food
wonone  [wonone] -.
wopine  [wopine] -.
woubo  [wouᵐbo] noun. <Bot> k.o. pandanus. pandanus. Pandanus tectorius.

Syn: kie


Dapa noma, li-ovei pe li-loko uie woubo pe le-vei bavede peini.
People before used to weave sails out of pandanus leaves.
wowo1   [wowo] noun, obligatorily possessed. top of ‹tree+›. cime.

wowo iero
the top of the Casuarina tree
~wowo2   [(i·)wowo] intransitive verb. swim. nager.

Dapa kula ka li-bu ne revo, dapa kula li-wowo li-koie ne kulumoe.
Some of them died in the sea, some others swam till they reached the island.

Li-wowo ñe viko iadapa.
They swam with their treasures.
~wowo3   [(i·)wowo] transitive verb. plant ‹tuber, esp. yam› in the ground. planter.


None pon, ini ñepe pe i-ta, pe li-wowo tae.
This kind of yam grows on its own, it is not planted.

~wowo4   [(i·)wowo] transitive verb.

(1) draw ‹water, salt water› in bamboo. puiser.

Emel' iote i-le i-wowo revo i-ka i-sabisi se awene.
A woman went to draw saltwater, and brought it back to pour it above the oven.

(2) bail out ‹water› from a boat.

Ni-wowo revo i-ke mina lema kuo.
I'm bailing out the (sea) water from inside the canoe.
woworo  [woworo] noun. <Bot> k.o. lawyer-cane or rattan. Calamus sp..


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