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Shungwaya (also Singwaya) is an origin myth of the Mijikenda peoples.[1] Traditions known collectively as the Shungwaya Myth describe a series of migrations of Bantu peoples dating to the 16th-17th centuries from a region to the north of the Tana River. These Bantu migrants were held to have been speakers of Sabaki Bantu languages.[2] Other Bantu ethnic groups, smaller in number, are also suggested to been part of the migration.[3] From Shungwaya, the Mount Kenya Bantu (Kamba, Kikuyu, Meru, Embu, and Mbeere) are then proposed to have migrated to the west of where they presently reside.[4]


  1. ^ Morton, R. F. (1977). "New Evidence regarding the Shungwaya Myth of Miji Kenda Origins". The International Journal of African Historical Studies 10 (4): 628–643. 
  2. ^ Robert W. Preucel, Stephen A. Mrozowski (2011). Contemporary Archaeology in Theory: The New Pragmatism. John Wiley & Sons. p. 411. ISBN 1444358510. 
  3. ^ Pouwels 2002, p. 11.
  4. ^ Muchanga, p. 24.

Further reading[edit]

  • De Vere Allen, James (1993). Swahili Origins: Swahili Culture & the Shungwaya Phenomenon