PROTO-POLYNESIAN ETYMOLOGIES
*Maile [Proto Polynesian]
Alyxia spp. , "Maile" (Familyaceae), a group of fragrant vines and shrubs.

Proto Polynesian: *Maile
REFLEXES IN SOME POLYNESIAN LANGUAGES:
Tongan, Niuean: Maile (Alyxia stellata, Apocynaceae).
Tahitian: Maire (Alyxia stellata); also the fragrant fern Polypodium pustulatum, Polypodiaceae.
Hawaiian: Maile (Alyxia olivaeformis).
Marquesan: Mei'e (Alyxia sp.).
Tuamotuan: Maire hau (Phymatosorus grossus, "Maile-scented fern", Polypodiaceae); Monoimaire (Alyxia scandens, Apocynaceae).
Rarotongan: Maire (Alyxia stellata); also a general name for ferns, applied especially to Phymatosorus scolopendria, "Serpent Fern" (Polypodiaceae).
Maori: Maire (Nestegis spp., Oleaceae).

Tapa-Samoa
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(Plant photograph to come)
Tapa-Samoa
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(Plant photograph to come)

RELATED WORDS
Māori: Mairehau (Leionema nudum, "Mairehau", Rutaceae).


The iconic tropical maire (or maile) are the beautifully scented vines of the genus Alyxia, transformed into garlands for visiting dignatories and other honoured guests. By association the name has been transferred to a variety of plants, from vines to ferns and tall trees, sharing some of the Alyxias' salient features, especially the fragrance or the olive-shaped fruit.


Sunset-Tiapapata
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(Reserved for a different picture!)
Kauri+Text
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(Reserved for a different picture!)
Further information : (See the works on Hawaiian plants and other tropical flora listed in the Bibliography).
Photographs: (Te Māra Reo, RB.)

Te Mära Reo, c/o Benton Family Trust, "Tumanako", RD 1, Taupiri, Waikato 3791, Aotearoa / New Zealand. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 3.0 New Zealand License