The hawaiian language consists of 8 consonants and 5 vowels. You will never find 2 consonants together, a vowel always follows a consonant or the vowel stands alone (eg. a lo ha). The 'okina ('), diacritical mark or glottal stop is considered a consonant (eg. ho'olaule'a), note that a vowel follows every consonant. There is also another kind of mark that you will normally see on many Hawaiian words. This is a MACRON or KAHAKO, it is a vowel that has a line over it. Unfortuantely our database is unable to support this type of special font.(see disclaimer) We understand the importance of these marks and apologize for not being able to use these. The macron is used to show where the vowels are stressed and are somewhat longer than other vowels. (eg. the word 'aina WITHOUT the MACRON over the first "a" would mean: "a meal". 'aina WITH the MACRON over the first "a" would mean: "land".)
Consonantsp, k are pronounced about the same as in English but with less aspiration h, l, m, n are pronounced about the same as in English w - after i and e, sounds like a v; after uand o, it sounds like w; after an a it is either w or v. ' or 'okina is a glottal stop, similar to the sound between the oh's in oh-oh.
VowelsUnstressed a like a in above e like e in set i like y in city o like o in mole u like oo in soon Stressed a, a(with kahako) like a in above e like e in set e(with kahako) like ay in play i, i(with kahako) like ee in fee o, o(with kahako) like o in mole u, u(with kahako) like oo in soon
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