How to say “on top of” and “underneath”; and using them with “aia”

In exactly the same way that we have said “in front of” and “behind”, we can say “on top of” and “beneath” (or “underneath”). The two expressions are “i luna o” and “i lalo o”, or “ma luna o” and “ma lalo o”. Remember, “i” and “ma” are interchangeable in this type of sentence. Say them once each after me: i luna o, i lalo o, ma luna o, ma lalo o. Great! So let’s get straight to the fun stuff. Mākaukau?

[mepr-show if=”loggedin”] Disc 6, Track 15
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  • Aia ke keiki ma luna o ka waʻa! – the child is on top of the canoe

(in English, we would say, “in the canoe”; but not in Hawaiian. Hawaiian says “on the canoe”. Once more: “aia ke keiki ma luna o ka waʻa”)

  • Aia ka holoholona ma lalo o ke kaʻa! – the animal is under the car!
  • E kōkua ana nā moʻo i nā kānaka ma luna o ka pali – the guardian spirits are going to help the people on top of the cliffs
  • E ʻōlelo ana nā wāhine ma lalo o nā kukui – the women will be speaking under the kukui nut tree
[mepr-show if=”loggedin”] Disc 6, Track 16
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ʻAe – ua pau! Pau ka haʻawina. That lesson is done. As you can see, it’s essentially the same as in front of and behind. So are you ready to be my translator again? Pretend we’re standing with a group of Hawaiian speaking people who are all your friends, and I come along and say something in your ear, which you have to translate as quickly and accurately as possible. Can you do it? Let’s find out. And don’t worry, the correct answer will come after a short pause, as usual. Hoʻomākaukau! Here we are with your friends…

[mepr-show if=”loggedin”] Disc 6, Track 17
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  • The child is on top of the canoe – Aia ke keiki ma luna o ka waʻa!
  • The animal is under the car! – Aia ka holoholona ma lalo o ke kaʻa!
  • The guardian spirits are going to help the people on top of the cliffs – E kōkua ana nā moʻo i nā kānaka ma luna o ka pali.
  • The women will be speaking under the kukui-nut tree – E ʻōlelo ana nā wāhine ma lalo o nā kukui.
[mepr-show if=”loggedin”] Disc 6, Track 18
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Pehea? How did you do? I hope they understood, for both of our sakes! OK. Letʻs move on to the next lesson, which will allow us to use “ma mua o” and “ma hope o”, in front of, and behind, as the time markers “before” and “after”.

[mepr-show if=”loggedin”] Disc 6, Track 19
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Pane mai

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