Keawemauhili (c.1729 - c.1790)

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Nicknames: "Keawewililua"
Death: Died in East Hilo, Hawaii
Cause of death: Battle of Alae, Keouakuahuula
Managed by: Jeffrey K. Renaud
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About Keawemauhili

known wives & children:

ULULANI: Keaweokahikona (k), La'akeaelelule (k), Kapiolani (w) KALANIKAULELEIAIWI II: Koakanu (k) KEKIKIPA'A: Kalaipa'iahala (k) KALOLA: Pi'imaiwa'a (k) Pi'ipi'iahialapalapa (w) KALANIWAHINEULI Kuaiolaloa (k) KALAMANAMANA: Kekuialono (k) PI'IPI'IAHIALAPALAPA: Kahalaupilo / Kahalauhale (k) KEAHIKUNIA'ALAPALAPA: Kamehamehakauoko'a (k) _____________________________________________________________________________

The Ali'i Nui Kapu (Sacred High Chief) Keawe whose tabu (wili la pu'u i ke kapu) high rank on both sides, was doubly twisted (wili lua), twisted into knots, woven in and out, broken from the topmost branch of the expanding I family with the Mahi and the Ahu under his feet. Whose genealogy was doubled and multiplied (in the bloodlines) of Hawaii. He had the right to walk on the banks (kuauna) (of sacred patches), on the sacred platform (paepae) of Liloa, and to the nioi wood of Kahoukapu that was streaked and darkened at Paka'alana.

whose blazing hereditary kapus were intertwined and magnified through birth and therefore produced a rare twice tabued chief, who was called iwiiapuu and iwilakee due to this unusual intertwined kapu

He first married ʻUlulani, the Aliʻi Nui of Hilo, and then Kekikipaʻa. With his first wife he had sons Keawe-o-kahikiona and Elelule Laʻakeaelelulu, and with his second wife, daughter Kapiʻolani (c. 1791) and son Koakanu.

His half-brother Kalaniʻōpuʻu died in 1781. He joined with his nephew Keōua Kuahuʻula in the Battle of Mokuʻōhai to fight Kamehameha I. He escaped the defeat and returned to Hilo. After joining Kamehameha in 1790, he was killed by Keōua Kuahuʻula in 1790. __________________________________________________________________________

married Ululani (Ululani I, Ululani Nui) (Ali'i-o-Hilo).

   Other marriages:
       Kalanikauleleiawi (Kalanikauleleiawi II),
       Kekikipa'a (Kekikipa'a-a-Kameeiamoku, Nowelo-Kauhi-Kiki-a-Pa'a),
   Keawemauhili was joint chief of Hilo with his wife, first wife 'Ululani.


This chief was the product of a father/daughter "naha" marriage, with the same daughter already being the product of a full brother-full sister "niau pio" marriage. By marrying his own daughter from his own sister, Kalaninuiamamao passed to his son a very high kapu rank, based on his "multiple" or "entwined" kapus. His name means "entwined", referring to his compound lineage and his subsequent high status. The noted genealogist, S.L.K. Peleioholani says Keawemauhili was "iwiiapuu and iwilakee due to his kapu". He was said to be the sacred one of the twisting, turning and doubling back.

(NOTE: We see the same twisting, turning and doubling back in the Maui royal family genealogy occurring at the same time as this same generation. See the lineage of Kamehamehanui Ailuau-to- Kalanikauiokikilo-to-Kalaniulumoku I-to-Kalaniulumoku II and his brothers. By noticing and considering this similarity, we understand why we see the kapu chiefess Kalanikauiokikilo mating with Keawemauhili's son Keaweokahikona. This is also why we see her son Kalaniulumoku II mating with I-kanaka, her daughter of from Keawekahikona. It is a merging and amplification of the two powerful iwiiapuu and iwilakee kapu bloodlines of the chiefs. - Dean P. Kekoolani, Feb. 12, 2010) _________________________________________________________________________

From the "Ancestry of John Liwai Ena":

HAWAIIAN: Kalaninuiamamao (k) hoao i kana kaikamahine ponoi, Kekaulikeikawekiuonaiani (w) hanau o Keawemauhili, iwiiapuu, iwilakee i ke kapu.

ENGLISH: Kalaninuiamamao (k) married his own daughter, Kekaulikeikawekiuonaiani (w), born was Keawemauhili, who was iwiiapuu and iwilakee due to his kapu.

Keawemauhili was reknown because he possessed many intertwined kapus. His name means "intertwined or knotted". His wife's father Mokulani was a ninau-pio chief (the highest god-like rank for a sacred chief because his mother and father were full-blooded brother and sister).

This is why his son Keaweokahikona was of judged to be of sufficiently high rank to marry and sire children with the great chiefess Kalanikauiokikilo of Maui, the highest ranking sacred ninau-pio chief alive, and the last ever of that rank to live. The next closest ranking chief was her niece Keopulani, wife of Kamehameha the Conqueror and mother of Kamehameha II and Kamehameha III.



(From JOHN ENA genealogy) Kalanikumaikiekie (w) niaupio married her brother Keaweikekahimakaoi; born was Mokulanl (k), high chief governing Hilo; Mokulani married Papaikaniaunui (w), wife of Kaulahea. King of Maui; born was Ululaninui (w), who married Keawemauhili (k); born was Keaweokahikona (k), grandfather of S. L. K. Peleioholani, first son.



(From JOHN ENA genealogy) Look at the chief Kalaniopuu (k), he is the own grandson of Umiulaikaahumanu (w) (true chiefly class) and Kuanuuanu (k) of Waianae, Oahu. Look closely at Kalaninuiiamamao, the own father of Kalaniopuu (k). A high chief. And here are the chiefly descendants that are seen in the broad daylight.

Look at Kalaniopuu (k) and his 2. Younger brother Keoua (k), father of Kamehameha I. 3. Sister Kekaulikeikawekiuonalani (w), grandmother of L. M. kekupuohi. 4. Sister Kahiwaokalani (w). Grandmother of the Princes. 5. Sister Ahia (w). Here is the (wohi) son of Kalaninuiiamamao (k), namely 6. Keawema'uhili (k), he is the own grandfather of 7. S. L. Kalaniomaiheuila Peleioholani (k), own father of 8. A. Kahalelehua Kaonohiulaokalani Notley.***

  • * (nee Annie Kahalelehua Peleioholani, daughter of Solomon Peleioholani and Elizabeth Kekumano)



FORNANDER: "Certain it is that during the summer of this year (1790), Kamehameha, assuming the style of " Moi" of Hawaii, sent to Keawemauhili of Hilo and Keoua-Kuahuula of Kau to furnish him with canoes and troops for a contemplated invasion of Maui. Keawemauhili complied with the summons of Karnehameha, and sent a large force of men and canoes under command of his



FORNANDER: "The result of the battle of Mokuohai was virtually to rend the island of Hawaii into three independent and hostile factions. The district of Kona, Kohala, and portions of Hamakua acknowledged Kamehameha as their sovereign. The remaining portion of Hamakua, the district of Hilo, and a part of Puna, remained true to and acknowledged Keawemauhili as their Moi ; while the lower part of Puna and the district of Kau, the patrimonial estate of Kiwalao, ungrudgingly and cheerfully supported Keoun Kuahuula against the mounting ambition of Kamehameha.

In order to properly understand the political relations and rival pretensions of these three chiefs, and to disillusion oneself from certain impressions obtained from those who in the earlier days wove the history of Kamehameha into legend and song, or from those who in after years kept up the illusion from force of habit or from interested motives, it may be well to " take stock," as it were, of the political capital with which each one supported his claim to supremacy.

Keawemauhili was undoubtedly the highest chief in rank, according to Hawaiian heraldry, of the three. He was the son of Kalaninuiamamao and Kekaulikelikawekiuokalani, the latter being the half-sister of the former and daughter of Kauhiokaka, one of Keaweikekahialiiokamoku's daughters. Hence he was also called Keawe-Wililua." ______________________________________________________________________________

from Kamehameha and his warrior Kekuhaupio book by reverend Sephen L. Desha originally published in Ka Hoku o Hawaii

pg 271

feather helmet of Kalaninui'Iamamao "Here is Iouli, the 'head of the chief.' This name by which the kapu feather helmet of Keawemauhili was called was its sacred name _______________________________________________________________________________

Old Kingdom of Hawaii (Big Island) - Keawe Lineage (from Chief Keawemauhili) A chart showing descent from King Keawe (Keaweikekahialiimoku) of Hawaii, through his son Kalaninuiiamamao, whose name chant is the famous Kumulipo. This chart also shows descent from his grandson, Keawemauhili whose blazing hereditary kapus were intertwined and magnified through birth and therefore produced a rare twice tabued chief, who was called iwiiapuu and iwilakee due to this unusual intertwined kapu. Observe also the high chiefly descent of Keawe's son Kalaninuiiamamao from the powerful 'I family of Hilo and also the Maui royal family through his mother, the legendary chiefess Lonomaaikanaka, first wife of King Keawe. This chart corrects common errors in the current understanding of how the members of family, this senior Keawe line, were related to one another. ______________________________________________________________________________

Original genealogy manuscript containing The Keepers of the Sacred Fire (Peleioholani, Solomon L.K. c. 1902) (Bishop Museum, Honolulu, Microfilm 232.6 G1.10)

A Chant for the High Chiefs of Hawaii

Transcribed by Solomon L.K. Peleioholani (1902) Translated by Aloha Kekoolani (2004)


In 1902, the ali‘i Solomon L.K. Peleioholani recorded a genealogy of his great grandfathers, the Maui king Kamehameha Ailuau and the niau pio Ali'i, Keawemauhili, the Sacred One, whose intertwined kapus doubled back, twisting and turning into one another. This genealogy includes a chant declaring and explaining the sanctity of Old Hawaii's High Chiefs, especially those of the House of Keawe. The chant The Keepers of the Sacred Fire refers to the mana of the sacred chiefs, as symbolized by the torch of Keawe called “Ahilapalapa” which was the sacred flame of noon-day, insignia of the god Kane and sacred to the ruling house of Hawaii.

The Keepers of the Sacred Fire was originally transcribed in Hawaiian. In 2004, the handwritten manuscript was found in the archives of the Bishop Museum in Honolulu. Two years later, it was rendered into English by Kumu Aloha Kekoolani, who is Peleioholani’s great, great granddaughter. Our family witnessed the translation and believe her work was inspired directly from our kupuna Solomon Peleioholani, who we sensed as being very present with us during the translation process. The resulting poetry captures for us what we believe to be the original sense of awe and solemn reverence felt by the people for the institution of Hawaiian chieftainship during the eras before Contact.

This genealogical chant names and pays homage to, among others, the highly kapu ninaupio chiefess Kalanikauiokikilo and her mother the high chiefess Kalola of the Maui royal family. During his own lifetime Solomon Peleioholani (1843-1916), witnessed the institution of the hereditary Ali‘i Kapu fade into irrelevance. Consequently, by the time it was rendered to written text in 1902, this homage to the chiefs was primarily an exercise in nostalgia, for the Hawaii to which it referred had essentially disappeared..

THE CHANT No laila e ike ia i na Alii a me na Hawaii. Lahui oiai‘o a pau i keia lalani. Alii kiekie loa i waena o ka lahui Kanaka Hawaii

Therefore, it is known within the High Chiefs And together with the entire Kingdom of Hawaii, And, in fact, authentically to all people. This high ranking genealogical verse of poetry of the Chiefly Order Amoungst and between the common people and land of Hawai‘i.

Engraved in stone, Yet flowing like the serene waters of unity, From the fire, this sacredness will remain.

This is to affirm, certainly, that a sacred fire burns. A sacred fire has burned from this foundation. In the sacred fire, lies the chiefly body of the people.

In the season of protection Herein lies the sacred dignity and noble bearing of these elder chiefs, Likened to the sweetened unbittered waters, Entitled to Respect and Reverence, Difficult to Access, of High Rank. From these appeased Sacred Chiefs, Peace and Strength

The season emerges And when held upright, is the reflection of these things. Arisen, the entire spiritual body above the earthly body And with a spiritual house Amoungst all these things, clinging together Is the body of the High Chiefs

To verify this truth, the chiefess Kalolapupukaohonokawailani With her daughter Kalanikauiokikilo Kekumanomanokekapu, Certainly this name was previously known In the genealogical chant, the Ko‘ihonua, of the High Chiefs from Kekumanomanokekapu

These names are known throughout Time In the Correct Succession of Chiefs The name of the Highest Chiefs were burned in the sacred fire Above the platform and the alter of Puowaina These Chiefs, their Names, were burned in the fire

There was a Niau Pio high chief, Namely Haakaailani, younger generational sibling of Kaka‘e The offspring of the marriage of a high ranking brother and sister His father's own marriage ranked Ho‘i, the Chief Kahekili of Maui Two of the most prominent chiefs

The Ali‘i Saraiwikahi of Waipi‘o Hawai‘i, For within the bosom of Paka‘alana , a royal birth A royal offspring was born The Niau Pio child of the marriage between High Ranking brother and sister The three of these, exalted Chiefs, were burned in the sacred fire For the foundation of Molokai Thus, this was the beginning of the child

Kamaka ‘o Haloa – a keiki A royal Ali‘i offspring, this Naha child born Between the union of a Chief and his half sister, entitled Kapu Noho Increasing in rank from the descendant of a Chief Kanipahu together with chiefess Ali‘i Kanakoko A royal Chiefess from Hilo A royal union (he pi‘o) A marriage of full brother and sister of Niaupi‘o rank The highest possible rank

And it is from this heated foundation of Fire These High Ranking Chiefs and Chiefesses arose in the past During this period of time, These High Chiefs were greeted and feared

They were together with the people And controlled the entire archipelago of the Hawaiian Islands For there was great strength in the Sacred Kapu of these Native Born, Foundational, High Chiefs

Therefore, it was known and understood The great importance of the royal blood of the Chiefs And their Rank, Positions, Titles, Places, Reputations and Prominence These Supremely High Chiefs and Chiefesses

The Succession of Genealogical Chiefs, Were built with the Sacred Kapu, this Dignity It was known as the Generations of Firmly Planted Genuine Chiefs.

Their Spirits have spoken, their Offspring have arisen They have branched out, these numerous Chiefs Let this knowledge be known, broadcast, circulated, and extended To the numerous common people

This is the Hawaii Lineage of Keawe This is the Hawaii Lineage of Keawe His Highness – S. L.. Peleioholani His Highness – I. K. Peleioholani Her Highness- Governess S. L. Ululani Baker ________________________________________________________________________

22. "With the senseless plundering of the lands and possessions of the common people" (Ke Kumu Aupuni, 105). Kamakau and Desha differ on the circumstances of Keawema‘uhili’s death and the sequence of Keōua’s itinerary. Kamakau reports that Keōua invades Hilo and dispatches Keawe in the battle of ‘Alae (Ke Kumu Aupuni, 105). Desha, however, maintains that Keōua first pillages Kamehameha’s lands in West Hawai‘i before engaging Keawe at Pauka‘a and Wainaku in Hilo. Keawe is killed at Pauka‘a by Mo‘o, one of his own warriors, after which Keōua resumes his plundering of Waipi‘o, Waimea, and Kohala (Kekūhaupi‘o, 270).