birth of Kamehameha.jpg

Keoua Kalanikupuapaikalaninui handing his new born, Kamehameha to be hidden 

The famous chief known in his time during the reign of King Kalaniopuu, his half brother, over the Island of Hawaii, as Keoua-nui, or Kalanikupuapaikalani-nui-Keoua. Keoua-nui was the son of Keeaumoku-nui, second son of Keaweikekahialiiokamoku, King of Hawaii, by his second wife, Princess Kalanikauleleieiwi, granddaughter of Iwikauikaua (whose celebrated kapu was the torchlight burnt at midday) and daughter of high chiefess Keakealani-wahine. Keoua's mother was Kamakaimoku, of the renowned family of chiefs of Kau, the I's.


This child was reared carefully with the utmost dignity due to his birth, for his father was a "Pio", which was considered among royalties as the highest rank in the realm. The blood running through his veins had come from Liloa and Umi in a direct line both on the father's and mother's side, connecting also with the royal families of Maui, Oahu and Kauai. Keoua Nui was the father of Kamehameha the Great, he also had other children by his other wives:   Kalokuokamaile by Keoua Nui's first wife Kahikikala of Maui royalty, Kealiimaikai by Keoua Nui's second wife Kekuiapoiwa II, Kalaimamahu by Keoua Nui's third wife Kamakaeheikuli. Kekuiapoiwa Liliha by Keoua Nui's fourth wife, Kalola.  All his children, grandchildren and great grandchildren portrayed a great part of Kamehamehas reign... Keoua-nui is the progenitor of the Royal Family of Hawaii.  


Sadly, the royal bloodline of Keoua's children are gone, except for one line. Today, the only surviving line of Keoua's children is the royal line of his first son, the High Chief Kalokuokamaile. 

Pu'uhonua O Honaunau   


Hale O Keawe

Pu'uhonua o Honaunau, "Place of Refuge" is located in the ahupua'a of Honaunau, in South Kona, on the west coast of the Island of Hawai'i.

Wicker Caskets of Kings Liloa and Lonoikamakahiki. The braid has been woven around their skulls; the torso holds the rest of the skeleton. Mother-of-pearl are used as accent.

A ruling chief declared the tongue of black lava flow extending out into the ocean southwest of the bay a sanctuary protected by the gods. There, kapu breakers, defeated warriors, and criminals could find safety when their lives were threatened if they could reach the enclosure before their pursuers caught them. A massive stone wall around the sanctuary marked the boundary, while the heiau within the walls afforded spiritual protection. Later a temple was built at the north end of the wall to hold the sacred bones of the ruling dynasty, the guardians of the pu'uhonua.


The refuge site today consists of an area partially surrounded by a thousand-foot-long wall of pahoehoe lava about seventeen feet thick and ten feet high. The north side of the structure is open to the bay and the west side to the sea. Within is the Hale-o-Keawe, the 'Ale'ale'a Heiau, the "Old Heiau," and the Hale-o-Papa (Women's Heiau). Also a konane stone (papamu), a fisherman's shrine, and two large stones, one serving as a hiding place for Queen Ka'ahumanu during a quarrel with her husband King Kamehameha and the other used by High Chief Keoua Nui as a resting spot.


Hale-o-Keawe contains two fishponds used for royalty. The Hale-o-Keawe housed the bones of the paramount chiefs descended from 'Umi and Liloa, placed in wicker caskets.

Keoua Stone

On the north side of 'Ale'ale'a Heiau lies a large stone,13-1/2 feet long and 2-1/2 feet wide.  It is the Keoua Stone of the high chief Keoua Nui where he slept while his men were out fishing.  The concavity at one end is said to be where his head rested, while his feet almost reached the other end, making him almost equal to the stone length


Keouanui's brother, Kalaniopu'u was in the district of Ka'u, and moved forward with war against Alapainui, afterwards war was waged upon the son of Alapainui, and he died near Kawaihae, and all of Hawaii Island became ruled by Kalaniopu'u. The ruler Kalaniopu'u gave the war god Kuka'ilimoku to Keouanui's son Kamehameha and he became King of all Hawai'i.

Kukailimoku is the most famous of the Ku gods of battle inherited by Kamehameha.  A small wooden figure, roughly carved, with a headdress of red/yellow feathers. This god was said to utter cries during a battle which could be heard above the sounds of the fight. It was to represent the god Kaili of Liloa, which was given to Umi at the time when the rule over the land was given to Hakau, to have been carefully preserved and worshiped by Umi, and to have descended to Keawenui-a-Umi and from him to his son Lonoika-makahiki and then to Kalaniopu‘u who gave it to his nephew, Kamehameha.

When Kamehameha grew of age, his father, Keouanui, died, it is believed he was fed koheoheo by Alapainui in Hilo and was poisoned. Keoua Nui's bones are hidden in a secret cave at the cliffs overlooking Kealakekua Bay. The cliffs are named

 "Pali Kapu O Keoua" (The Forbidden Cliffs of Keoua).

Sacred Ali`i
Keoua Kalanikupuapa`ikalaninui

Founder of the Kamehameha Dynasty