Definition of Motu in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈməʊtuː/

Entry from British & World English dictionary

noun (plural same)

1A member of a Melanesian people of Papua New Guinea inhabiting the area around Port Moresby.
Example sentences
  • Maintaining the distinctiveness of their culture in the face of urbanization and modernization is a challenge for the present-day Motu.
  • The battle was to avenge the death of Kevau Dagora's father, who died in a massacre by the Lakwaharn at Taurama, the ancestral village of the Western Motu.
  • The Motu inhabit a region which now includes the capital city, Port Moresby, and the Hula live about 110 kilometres to the east.
2 [mass noun] The language of the Motu, the base of a pidgin known as Hiri Motu or (formerly) Police Motu, widely used as a lingua franca for administrative purposes.


Relating to the Motu or their language.
Example sentences
  • The choice of language for Motu greetings is the most important aspect of an interaction.
  • The Christian Gospels were translated into the Motu language by 1885.
  • For example, adult Pari villagers politicise language, like most other Motu villages.


The name in Melanesian.

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