Definitions

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • proper noun The Austronesian language of the Marshall Islands; also called Marshall and Ebon.
  • noun An inhabitant of the Marshall Islands.
  • adjective Of or pertaining to the Marshall Islands, its people, or its language.

Etymologies

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Marshall (“Marshall Islands”) +‎ -ese.

Examples

  • In the Marshallese language spoken by the Micronesians of Bikini Atoll, bikini is a compound word formed of pik, meaning “flat surface”—in reference to the low-lying form of the coral reef atoll, as opposed to the mountainous shapes of islands formed by volcanoes—and ni, “coconut.”

    The English Is Coming!

  • Global English iIn a playful folk etymology, speakers of Marshallese have given new meaning as a compound word because it sounds like iia + kwe, “rainbow” and “you.”

    The English Is Coming!

  • What about the inhabitants of Bikini Atoll, where some of the fewer than eighty thousand people speak varieties of Marshallese, languages of the Austronesian family?

    The English Is Coming!

  • A more accurate transliteration of Marshallese might have forgone the b for a p, or spelled the word as the Marshallese do: Pikinni.

    The English Is Coming!

  • Global English iIn a playful folk etymology, speakers of Marshallese have given new meaning as a compound word because it sounds like iia + kwe, “rainbow” and “you.”

    The English Is Coming!

  • In the Marshallese language of Bikini Atoll, iju means “star.”

    The English Is Coming!

  • In the Marshallese language spoken by the Micronesians of Bikini Atoll, bikini is a compound word formed of pik, meaning “flat surface”—in reference to the low-lying form of the coral reef atoll, as opposed to the mountainous shapes of islands formed by volcanoes—and ni, “coconut.”

    The English Is Coming!

  • In Marshallese, the language of Bikini Atoll, hello and bye alike are conveyed in the word kwe, which also means love.i In English, the expression bye was once similarly fulsome: God be with you.

    The English Is Coming!

  • A more accurate transliteration of Marshallese might have forgone the b for a p, or spelled the word as the Marshallese do: Pikinni.

    The English Is Coming!

  • In Marshallese, the language of Bikini Atoll, hello and bye alike are conveyed in the word kwe, which also means love.i In English, the expression bye was once similarly fulsome: God be with you.

    The English Is Coming!

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