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The Federated States of Micronesia’s Engagement with the Outside World

Glossary of Mortlockese Terms

Afaker

belonging to one’s father’s clan as secondary to one’s mother clan in the Mortlockese–Chuukese matrilineal clanship system

Afeliel

metaphoric speech to hide the real meanings or motives

Aiku

distribution of, especially food provided by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) after natural disasters

Ainang

the clanship system

Aipwa

following the foot steps

Alislis fengan

caring for each other

Allik

laws

Amwinimwin

psychological punishment aimed towards relatives who have upset you, particularly teenage/young adult reaction to scolding by their elders. This could lead to self-inflicted injury or suicide.

Angangen fanou

community work

Anukis

the lesser gods

Anulap

the supreme god

Anun

ghosts of

Apupulu

wedding or getting married

Apwarik

a traditional open community dance where young people came together to establish future relationship

Aterenges

relatives from both sides of the parents

Awosiwos

the art of creating confusion

Eaea fengan

sharing of resources

Eoranei

traditions

Faal

clan meeting house

Failifel

tattoo

Fal

carving something into shape

Fanou

land

Fash

pandanus tree

Fauko

fish trap used for the deep side of the lagoon

Fel

sacred

Inepwinou

the first unity in the family system as in the parents and their children

Ioshol

Mortlockese canoe design

Itang

master orator

Kachaw

an extended clan system in Micronesian history that covered parts of the Marshall Islands, Pohnpei, Kosrae, and Chuuk

Kapas apiliwek

reverse psychology to hide the true meanings of words in conversation. Also known as ‘kapasan’ on Satowan Island.

Kapasan uruo

historical narratives

Koap

cooperative store

Kolin fanou

indigenous songs of the land

Lamelamen eoranei

traditional religion

Lang

the sky

Lefang

the windy season, normally from September to April

Lenien maur

sleeping place or quarters

Leoo

ancestors

Lerek

the summer season when food is in abundance, normally associated with the breadfruit season from May to August

Leset

fishing sometimes referred to as the sea depending on the context of the conversation

Lofor

traditional body lotion or perfume

Maisuuk

Sailing canoe known throughout Yap and Chuuk for its elaborate design

Maniman

spiritual power

Melimel

strong storms leading to typhoon

Mongo

eat or food

Mosoro

cooking house

Mwalo

a unit in sub-clan

Mwanmei

first picking of the breadfruit season to honour the ancestors

Mwaremwar

flower leis

Mweishen

meeting of or group of

Ngorongor

chants

Otoul

first picking of the coconut season to honour the ancestors

Oushamw

belonging to a clan meeting house

Palou

navigator

Paut

sorcery

Pawrik

dances

Pei lap

main estate for the extended family

Peshe seset

‘salty feet from the different seas’ or not indigenous to a place

Pisaken eoranei

cultural materials

Pwau

restriction from

Pwera

brave

Rakish

the sea oak tree

Remataw

term referring to people of the sea. Used in the outer islands of Yap and the northwest part of Chuuk.

Roong

life science

Saat

the sea

Safei

medicines

Salei

protein

Shell

display of coconut fronds or a big branch indicating complete restriction of public access to a given area on the land or the reef

Shia

the mangrove tree

Shon ainang

members of a clan

Shon fanuash

people of our island

Shon liken

outsiders

Shon Maikronesia

people of the Federated States of Micronesia

Shon mataw

people of the sea, in reference to the people of the Mortlocks

Shoon wok

rewards given to the great spear after war

Shullapan allik

the supreme law or the Constitution

Sofa

my father’s clan in Chuuk

Sor

my mother’s clan in Chuuk

Sou

an expert in a given traditional profession

Sou uro

expert historian

Souariras

a legendary figure in the Chuuk lagoon

Taek

turmeric used for body decoration, especially during traditional dances to enhance one’s beauty to attract the opposite sex

Titilap

stories and legends

Tokkie

traditional war stick dances

Toor

traditional dress wrapped around the waist

Tukumaun

magic potion

Unupwel

first harvest of the taro season to honour the ancestors

Uruo

history

Uruon ainang

a clan’s history

Uruon fanou

history of the land

Urupow

elaborate feathers worn during community dances to attract the opposite sex

Waa

canoe

Waa serek

sailing canoe

Waitawa

communication between the ancestors and the living through channelling

Wiieo

celebration after the completion of a canoe


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