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Re: Kanak, kanaka (was Re: /nj/ vs. /J/ [was: something else])

From:John Cowan <jcowan@...>
Date:Tuesday, August 17, 2004, 5:47
Roger Mills scripsit:

> I believe the word reached western languages via Australia (and perhaps the > German possessions pre-WW I), when "guest workers" were imported from the > Solomons, Fiji, Samoa et al. Perhaps from nearby N.Caledonia too, but > unlikely from Hawaii.
"Kanaka" was used for "Polynesian" throughout the British Empire (remember that Hawai'i was a British possession for a while, and still uses the Union Jack on its state flag), and may well date to Cook's day. There is still a Kanaka Creek in British Columbia, dating back to the Hawai'ian settlement there in the 1820s. There are still family links between First Nationals in the area and Hawai'i. The Australians probably picked it up from the British. -- "How they ever reached any conclusion at all> is starkly unknowable to the human mind." --"Backstage Lensman", Randall Garrett