Yosihiko H. Sinoto

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Yosihiko H. Sinoto (born 3 September 1924 in Tokyo, Japan) is a Japanese-born American anthropologist at the Bishop Museum in Honolulu, Hawaii.[1] He is known for his anthropological expeditions throughout the Pacific, in particular Hawaii and French Polynesia.[2]


He graduated as BA at the University of Hawaii in 1958 and he acquired his DSc at the University of Hokkaido in Japan in 1962.

In 1954 he moved to Hawaii where he began his archaeological dig work at South Point on Hawaii. In 1960 he accompanied anthropologist Kenneth Emory to Tahiti. On the island of Huahine, where he worked for 40 years, he helped to restore and preserve the prehistoric village of Maeva with its temple ruins, or marae. In 1977 he discovered the remnants of a deep-sea voyaging canoe. Sinoto's further expeditions led him to the Society Islands, Marquesas, Tuamotus and others, where he studied the settlements, artifacts, migration patterns and Polynesian cultural ties.[2][3]

Yosihiko Sinoto's spouse Kazuko is a historian of Japanese immigration. His son Aki is archaeologist at the Bishop Museum.


Sinoto is honored with a Tahitian knighthood[4] and the Japanese Order of the Rising Sun.[2]

Sinoto's Lorikeet (Vini sinotoi), an extinct parrot species in the Marquesas Islands and Sir Yosihiko Sinoto, a hybrid variety of hibiscus, are both named for him.[5]



  1. ^ "Anthropology Department Staff - Yosihiko Sinoto". The Bishop Museum. Honolulu, HI, USA: Bishop Museum. Retrieved September 22, 2012. 
  2. ^ a b c Ritz, Mary Kaye (April 9, 2006). "Devoted to making discoveries". Honolulu, HI, USA: Honolulu Advertiser. Retrieved September 22, 2012. 
  3. ^ Ferrar, Derek (October–November 2003), photo by Linny Morris Cunningham, "Marae Mysteries", Hana Hou! (Honolulu, HI, USA: Hawaiian Airlines, Inc.) 6 (5), retrieved September 24, 2012 
  4. ^ "Arrêté n° 862 PR du 13/06/2000" [Decree No. 862 of 13.06.2000 PR] (in French). Retrieved September 22, 2012. 
  5. ^ Altonn, Helen (June 3, 2007), "Museum anthropologist's latest honor is a hibiscus - Yosihiko Sinoto has studied ancient Pacific cultures for decades", The Honolulu Star-Bulletin (Honolulu, HI, USA: Oahu Publications) 12 (154), retrieved September 24, 2012 
  • Robert D. Craig, Russell T. Clement: Who's who in Oceania, 1980-1981. Institute for Polynesian Studies, Brigham Young University—Hawaii Campus, 1980 ISBN 978-0-939154-13-5