Lilinoe is among Hawaii’s snow goddesses. She is the younger sister of Poliahu and like her sister, a great rival of volcano goddess Pelé. The sisters are the antithesis of Pelé: spirits of snowy mountains (hence wet mountains) rather than fiery ones. Lilinoe is the spirit of dead and extinguished fires. Her name literally means “fine mist.” She is the spirit of mist and fog, which so often enshroud the mountains with which she is associated.

She serves as Poliahu’s handmaiden and combs out her sister’s long hair daily. Lilinoe married Nana Nu’u, the mortal who survived the primordial flood. He lives in a cave on Mauna Kea, the mountain Lilinoe calls home. She may be venerated alongside her sisters but keep them apart from Pelé or else sparks will fly.




Mauna Kea and Haleakala (East Maui Volcano)




  • Kahoupokane
  • Pelé
  • Poliahu
  • Waiau


Encyclopedia of Spirits: The Ultimate Guide to the Magic of Fairies, Genies, Demons, Ghosts, Gods & Goddesses – Written by : Judika Illes Copyright © 2009 by Judika Illes.

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