List of English words of Niger-Congo origin
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
(Redirected from Bwana)
||It has been suggested that this article be merged with English words of African origin. (Discuss) Proposed since July 2015.|
|This list needs additional citations for verification. (July 2012)|
- azawakh - probably from Fula or Tuareg. A breed of dog from West and North Africa
- banjo – probably Bantu mbanza
- basenji – breed of dog from the Congo
- boma – probably from Swahili
- bwana – from Swahili, meaning an important person or safari leader
- chimpanzee – loaned in the 18th century from a Bantu language, possibly Kivili ci-mpenzi.
- dengue – possibly from Swahili dinga
- gerenuk - from Somali
- gnu – from Bushman !nu through Khoikhoi i-ngu and Dutch gnoe
- goober – possibly from Bantu (Kikongo and Kimbundu nguba)
- gumbo – from Bantu (Kimbundu ngombo meaning "okra")
- impala – from Zulu im-pala
- impi – from Zulu language meaning war, battle or a regiment
- indaba – from Xhosa or Zulu languages – 'stories' or 'news' typically conflated with 'meeting' (often used in South African English)
- jumbo – from Swahili (jambo or jumbe or from Kongo nzamba "elephant")
- Kwanzaa – recent coinage (Maulana Karenga 1965) as the name of a "specifically African-American holiday", abstracted from a Swahili phrase matunda ya kwanza, meaning "first fruits [of the harvest]".
- lapa – from Sotho languages – enclosure or barbecue area (often used in South African English)
- macaque – from Bantu makaku through Portuguese and French
- mamba – from Zulu or Swahili mamba
- marimba – from Bantu (Kimbundu and Swahili marimba, malimba)
- okapi – from a language in the Congo
- safari – from Swahili travel, ultimately from Arabic
- sangoma – from Zulu – traditional healer (often used in South African English)
- Tilapia – Possibly a latinization "thiape", the Tswana word for fish.
- tsetse – from a Bantu language (Tswana tsetse, Luhya tsiisi)
- ubuntu – Nguni term for "mankind; humanity", in South Africa since the 1980s also used capitalized, Ubuntu, as the name of a philosophy or ideology of "human kindness" or "humanism".
- vuvuzela – musical instrument, name of Zulu or Nguni origin
- zebra – of unknown origin, recorded since c. 1600, possibly from a Congolese language, or alternatively from Amharic.
- zombie – likely from West African (compare Kikongo zumbi "fetish", Kimbundu nzambi "god"), but alternatively derived from Spanish sombra "shade, ghost".
Non-Bantu West African origin
- banana – West African, possibly Wolof banana
- bongo – West African boungu
- buckra – "white man or person", from Efik and Ibibio mbakara 
- chigger – possibly from Wolof and Yoruba jiga "insect")
- cola – from West African languages (Temne kola, Mandinka kolo)
- djembe – from West African languages
- jazz – from West African languages (Mandinka jasi, Temne yas)
- jive – possibly from Wolof jev
- juke, jukebox – possibly from Wolof and Bambara dzug through Gullah
- kwashiorkor – from Ga language, Coastal Ghana meaning "swollen stomach"
- Marímbula, plucked musical instrument (lamellophone) of the Caribbean islands
- merengue (dance) possibly from Fulani mererek i meaning to shake or quiver
- mumbo jumbo- from mandigo name Maamajombo, a masked dancer
- mojo – from Fula moco'o "medicine man" through Louisiana Creole French or Gullah
- obeah – from West African (Efik ubio, Twi ebayifo)
- okra – from Igbo ókùrù
- sambo – Fula sambo meaning "uncle"
- tango – probably from Ibibio tamgu
- tote – West African via Gullah
- voodoo – from West African languages (Ewe and Fon vodu "spirit")
- yam – West African (Fula nyami, Twi anyinam)
||This article includes a list of references, but its sources remain unclear because it has insufficient inline citations. (July 2012)|