Woleai - Settlements

Lineal villages ( gapilamw ) are found along the lagoon shore of each inhabited islet. Most islands are divided into two or three districts ( tabw ) . A village and its district usually share the same name, which is often descriptive of the village's location on the islet, such as, "Ifang," meaning "North," and "Tabwogap," meaning "West District." Some of the larger and more populous districts may have more than one village. Dwellings are located 30 or more meters inland from the Lagoon shore. They are one-room rectangular or hexagonal structures, twice as long as they are wide, with mat-covered earthen floors, plank or plaited-mat walls, and thatched roofs. In some cases (especially on Eauripik and Faraulep) they are built on raised stone platforms up to 1 meter above the surrounding ground. Several such houses may be found on a single named plot or estate ( bwogot ). Each estate has a separate cook house. A main path parallels the lagoon and separates the dwellings from the canoe houses that are located nearer the lagoon. The village or island menstrual house is also located near the beach, but it is removed from the canoe houses. Early in the century each island had a Centrally located men's house. Only Ifaluk and Eauripik retain such structures today.

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