Luba-Katanga language

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Not to be confused with Luba-Kasai, a larger Luba language.
Native to Democratic Republic of Congo
Region Katanga Province
Native speakers
1.5 million  (1991)[1]
Language codes
ISO 639-1 lu
ISO 639-2 lub
ISO 639-3 lub
Glottolog luba1250[3]

Luba-Katanga, also known as Luba-Shaba and Kiluba, is one of the two major Bantu languages spoken in the Democratic Republic of the Congo called Luba. For distinction, linguists call the other Luba, which has more speakers, as Luba-Kasai. It is spoken mostly in the south-east area of the country by the Luba people.[4]

Kiluba is spoken in the area around Kabongo, Kamina, Luena, Lubudi, Malemba Nkulu, Mulongo, and Kaniama, mostly in Katanga. Some 500 years ago or more, the Luba Kasai left Katanga and settled in the Kasai; since then, Luba Kasai (Chiluba) has evolved until it is no longer mutually intelligible with Luba Katanga.


  1. ^ Luba at Ethnologue (17th ed., 2013)
  2. ^ Jouni Filip Maho, 2009. New Updated Guthrie List Online
  3. ^ Nordhoff, Sebastian; Hammarström, Harald; Forkel, Robert; Haspelmath, Martin, eds. (2013). "Luba-Katanga". Glottolog 2.2. Leipzig: Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology. 
  4. ^ Batibo, Herman. Language Decline and Death in Africa. Multilingual Matters. p. 74. ISBN 1-85359-808-9. 
  • Samuel Phillips Verner (1899). Mukanda wa Chiluba. Spottiswoode. Retrieved 26 August 2012.