Talk:Tsonga language

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People, it's "Xitsonga", not "Chitsonga". Where does this idea come from? Do not confuse yourselves. User:ZyXoas

Allmost all Google hits for "Chitsonga" are either connected to Wikiped or talk about some Shadreck Chitsonga from Malawi. Is someone willing to expose this fallacy? Unfortuanately I can't -Z

As I edit this page, I refer to myself as a Shangaan person who speaks Xitsonga. All the Shangaan people living in South Africa, Zimbabwe, Lesotho, Swaziland and anywhere else in Southern Africa, the recorded history shows that they came from Gaza Province of Mozambique. The wars and other indigenous reasons are some of the reasons why people find themselves with different dialects different from others. Every language of the world is, in one way or the other affected by this. Take a simple example of American and British English. However one may justify that American English is in its own, the fact remains, England has the origin of the language. Therefore, Gaza Mozambique reflects the true origin of every Shangaan person all over Southern Africa, dialects were/are the results of the geographical dominance. -(I live in the Limpopo Province of South Africa, my father was born in 1929 (was the last born in family of 5) and my grandfather (died in 1972) was born in 1889 in Gaza Mozambique. One may argue that Giyani never existed in 1889 and those who argue may need to review their ancestral clan or read what was recorded by "missionaries". It's a pride to know where you come from. -- Vongani Leonard Nkwinika

"Chitsonga" comes from the Portuguese spelling of the language. There are many differences in spelling between the language as written in South African and in Mozambique. For example, the word "god" has been written as "chicuembu" in Mozambique and "xikwembu" in South Africa. Most publications in Shangaan do seem to come from South Africa and so those spellings are more prevalent. [visitor]

"Chitsonga" is not totally incorrect. One thing to keep in mind is that the "xitsonga" language is a continuum. Therefore, while the South African speakers use "xi" as a suffix as in "Xikwembu", the fact is that in other dialects, esp. in the Hlengwe and Tshwa dialects of Zimbabwe and Mozambique, the word is "Chikwembu", and the Portuguese spelling of the word would thus be "Chicuembu"(even tho Portuguese "ch" = English "sh") Examples: RSA Xikwembu xi rhandza vanhu va xona - God loves his people In Zimbabwe: Chikwembu chirhanda vanhu vachona - God loves his people - Giyani

Clicks section unclear[edit]


I find the section that describes borrowed words with clicks from Zulu and Ndebele confusing. Is it correct to infer that all clicks in such words are merged into a single click phoneme? If so, which one? --babbage 17:05, 18 February 2007 (UTC)

Pronouns table[edit]

I tried to fix the table so that the data went into it neatly; however, if I have inadvertently changed any of it so that it now shows misinformation, please correct it ASAP. 02:25, 11 April 2007 (UTC)


The total speakers number is inconsistent with the text of the article. Lavateraguy 18:34, 9 October 2007 (UTC)

Numbers are available at Ethnologue Lavateraguy 18:36, 9 October 2007 (UTC)

I wonder[edit]

The prefix "Xi", which sounds "sh" in many South African languages comes from the Portuguese phonetic table but it's also important to note how it changes within various contents depending on the vowel before it. For instance, check the English translation of the word "shampoo" into Portuguese and you will find something like "xampu". If Tsonga had to borrow the word Shampoo, how would you spell it? To me the Portuguese version sounds closer to Xitsonga "Xampu". We also call wine "vhinyo" and the Portuguese version is "vino" Spanish "vinho". We borrow words in order to make a language grow. So, Chisonga, Chitsonga, Xitsonga, Gitonga, Tsonga are all correct, but officially we use Xitsonga in South Africa. Nobody is confusing anybody unless you talk Tsonga in the most biased manner. The most influential language to Xitsonga is Portuguese and I'll suggest we drive our discussion towards that in order to find out why words are spelt the way they are in Tsonga. Thanks for the comment below, but you can only discuss language formations if you know your history (19 June 2013).

I dont think Vongani Leonard Nkwinika's quote should be part of the Xitsonga Article. I think it should be moved to this talk page. --Thuvack | talk 16:08, 27 August 2008 (UTC)

Tsonga language template[edit]

If you are a native speaker of Tsonga then you can help translate this template into your own language:

tso Ririmi ra manana ra mutirhisi loyi i XiTsonga.


--Amazonien (talk) 21:15, 20 January 2009 (UTC)

Mother tounge Boiliwa (talk) 20:01, 5 February 2017 (UTC)

Tsonga language - created?[edit]

Is this article saying Tsonga is a conlang? Surely it's a natural language. I would like to see some sources for the first paragraph. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Smashhoof2 (talkcontribs) 20:37, 21 March 2017 (UTC)