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The American Cyclopædia (1879)/Lunalilo, William Charles

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LUNALILO, William Charles, sixth king of the Hawaiian Islands, born in Honolulu, Jan. 31, 1835, died there, Feb. 3, 1874. He was descended from the chieftain Keoua, the father of Kamehameha I., who united the islands under one government. Lunalilo's mother, Kekauluohi, was the daughter of Kaleimamahu, a half brother of Kamehameha I. In Hawaiian descent the maternal rather than the paternal lineage ennobles; and Lunalilo thus inherited from his mother the highest rank among the hereditary chiefs, though his father, Charles Kanaina, the second husband of Kekauluohi, was a commoner. Lunalilo was educated at the royal school established by the American missionaries at Honolulu in 1839. There, in company with Kamehameha IV. and V., and other scions of the chiefs, he became well versed in the common branches of an English education, displaying particular tastes for literature and poetry. In 1860 he visited California with the chiefs Lot and David, who respectively preceded and succeeded him as king. His disposition was amiable. Before his accession to the throne his habits were dissipated, but he became a good and popular ruler. His predecessor, Kamehameha V., died Dec. 11, 1872, without appointing a successor. On Jan. 1, 1873, Lunalilo received the votes of nearly all the electors in the kingdom; on the 8th of the same month the legislature confirmed his election; and on the 9th he was crowned king. He too died without appointing a successor, after a reign of one year and 25 days; and on the 12th of the same month the chief David Kalakaua was appointed king by the legislature.