• synonyms


noun, plural wa·ka, wa·kas.
  1. Prosody. tanka.
  2. poetry written in Japanese, as distinct from poetry written in Chinese by a Japanese writer, or poetry in other languages.
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Origin of waka

1875–80; < Japanese: literally, Japanese song < Middle Chinese, equivalent to Chinese harmony (as a euphemistic reading of the character for dwarf, an ancient Chinese designation for the Japanese) + song
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for waka

Historical Examples

  • From Te Waka's people he heard the account of the morning's work.

    The adventures of Kimble Bent

    James Cowan

  • Waka then took her from island to island until they were near Oahu.

    Legends of Gods and Ghosts (Hawaiian Mythology)

    W. D. (William Drake) Westervelt

  • Arriving at the cave, he found there Waka and Moo, two kahus of the shark god.

  • He felled the tree, and, lopping off the upper part, began the laborious work of dubbing out the waka.

  • Waka went to Waolani and told Anuenue about Paliula's trouble.

    Legends of Gods and Ghosts (Hawaiian Mythology)

    W. D. (William Drake) Westervelt

British Dictionary definitions for waka


noun NZ
  1. a Māori canoe, usually made from a tree trunk
  2. a tribal group claiming descent from the first Māori settlers in New Zealand
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Word Origin

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012