He Mele Lāhui Hawaiʻi

"He Mele Lāhui Hawaiʻi" ("Song of the Hawaiian Nation") was composed by Liliʻuokalani in November 1866 at the request of Kamehameha V, who wanted a national anthem to replace the British anthem "God Save the King". It replaced Lunalilo's composition "E Ola Ke Aliʻi Ke Akua" as the national anthem. Liliʻuokalani wrote: "The king was present for the purpose of Criticising my new composition of both words and music, and was liberal in his commendations to me on my success. He admired not only the beauty of the music but spoke enthusiastically of the appropriate words, so well adapted to the air and to the purpose for which they were written. This remained in use as our national anthem for some twenty years or more when my brother composed the words Hawaiʻi Ponoʻī."[1]

He Mele Lāhui Hawaiʻi
English: Song of the Hawaiian Nation

National anthem of the Kingdom of Hawaii
LyricsLydia Kamakaʻeha Dominis
MusicLydia Kamakaʻeha Dominis
Lydia Kamakaʻeha in 1865

Liliʻuokalani's memoir, Hawaii's Story by Hawaii's Queen, stated: "In the early years of the reign of Kamehameha V. he brought to my notice the fact that the Hawaiian people had no national air. Each nation, he said, but ours had its statement of patriotism and love of country in its own music; but we were using for that purpose on state occasions the time-honored British anthem, "God save the Queen." [2]

An advertisement for the He Mele Lahui Hawaii that appeared in the Pacific Commercial Advertiser on June 8, 1867

By July 1867, the song was printed and was available for purchase in Honolulu, becoming the first of her compositions ever published. This decidedly Christian song served as the national anthem for ten years until her brother, by that time reigning as King Kalākaua, set it aside in favor of his own composition, "Hawaiʻi Ponoʻī", in 1876.[3]



See also



  1. ^ Na Mele O Hawaiʻi Nei: 101 Hawaiian Songs by Samuel H. Elbert, Noelani Mahoe.Page 47
  2. ^ Hawaii's Story by Hawaii's Queen
  3. ^ [1][dead link]
  4. ^ Mele Lahui Hawaii
Preceded by National Anthem of the Kingdom of Hawaii
Succeeded by