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Shortening of Kwajalein, from German Kwajalein, from Marshallese Kuwajleen.


American English is usually spoken by Kwajalein island's American expatriate population, which has the father-bother merger; for accents without this merger (including Received Pronunciation), /ˈkwɒdʒ/ is a possible realization. This is not technically wrong, because the aforementioned father-bother merger makes this pronunciation indistinguishable from /ˈkwɑːdʒ/. Indeed, the name of the island's primary hotel, the Kwaj Lodge, is a word play on Kwaj and lodge rhyming.

Proper noun[edit]


  1. Kwajalein island, Kwajalein atoll.

Usage notes[edit]

The common casual everyday name for Kwajalein island in Kwajalein atoll, by its American expatriate population. This name usually only applies to the island as part of the atoll, and not to the greater Kwajalein atoll, which is still usually called by the unshortened name Kwajalein.

In locative context, the phrase "on Kwaj" is far more common than "in Kwaj".