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Puʻuhonua O Hōnaunau National Historical Park - The City of Refuge


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Stone Carvings in The Palace Grounds
Papamu Game Stone and Konane Hawaiian Checkers

Papamu (gamestone) for Konane (Hawaiian checkers)

Photo by John Fischer, licensed to About.com

As you walk through the Palace Grounds you will see an original gamestone (papamu) that was used in the game of Hawaiian checkers (konane). Game pieces were made out of white coral and black lava for the opposing players. The object of the game was not to take all of the other players' pieces like the common checkers game, but to be the player who could make the last move.

Nearby are bowls carved right into the huge stone, which were used to extract salt from seawater. To your right as you proceed is Keoneʻele Cove, the site of the royal canoe landing area and thus strictly kapu (forbidden) to all commoners. A kiʻi (small wooden statue) in the water warned all others to stay away.

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