Friday, April 21, 2017

Names For Days Of The Week In Nine Bantu Languages That Are Spoken In The Nation Of South Africa (Part II)

Edited by Azizi Powell

This is Part II of a two part pancocojams series on the names for the days of the week in nine traditional languages in the nation of South Africa.

Part II of this series provides information about and lists of the days of the week in Tsonga, Tswana, Venda, Xhosa and Zulu languages.

Click for Part I of this series. Part I provides a general overview of South Africa's official languages and provides information about and lists of the days of the week in Ndebele, Northern Sotho, Sotho, and Swazi languages.

Note that the languages featured in this series may also be spoken in other Southern African nations.

This pancocojams series is part of an ongoing series that provides information about and lists of day names in various African languages. Click the "African languages days of the week" tag to find other posts in this ongoing series.

The content of this post is presented for linguistic, cultural, and educational purposes.

All copyrights remain with their owners.

Thanks to all those who are quoted in this post.

(This list is given in alphabetical order.)

"The Tswana language, Setswana, is a language spoken in southern Africa by about five million people.[1] It is a Bantu language belonging to the Niger–Congo language family within the Sotho-Tswana branch of Zone S (S.30), and is closely related to the Northern- and Southern Sotho languages, as well as the Kgalagadi language and the Lozi language.

Tswana is an official language and lingua franca of Botswana. The majority of Tswana speakers are found in the north of South Africa, where four million people speak the language, and where an urbanised variety known as Pretoria Sotho is the principal language of that city. The two South African provinces with largest number of speakers are Gauteng (circa 11%) and North West (over 63%). Until 1994, South African Tswana people were notionally citizens of Bophuthatswana, one of the bantustans of the apartheid regime. Although Tswana language is significantly spoken in South Africa and Botswana, a small number of speakers are also found in Zimbabwe and Namibia, where respectively an unknown number of people and about 10,000 people speak the language.[1]"...

Excerpt #2:
"Days of the week [Setswana]
Sunday - Latshipi
Monday - Mosupologo
Tuesday - Labobedi
Wednesday - Laboraro
Thursday - Labone
Friday - Labotlhano
Saturday - Lamatlhatso"

Tsonga (Xitsonga) is a southern African Bantu language spoken by the Tsonga people. It was officially created in 1875 at the Valdezia Mission Station and Elim/Waterval/ Shirley Mission Stations by two Swiss missionaries, Reverend Paul Berthoud and Reverend Ernest Creux. Prior to the arrival of the Missionaries at Valdezia, the Tsonga people in that region that includes, Bungeni, Chavani, Mbhokota, Shirley, Riverplaats, Elim, Waterval, Nwaxinyamani and adjacent areas did not speak one language, but rather, they spoke a diverse of east coast dialects all related to modern Tsonga language. The Swiss Missionaries combined all these east coast dialects, such as Xigwamba, XiNkuna, Xihlengwe, XiTembe, XiValoyi, XiNyembani, Xitswa, XiRonga, and XiChopi to form a new unified superlanguage which they called 'Thonga', but they later modified it and renamed Xitsonga or simply Tsonga.


Official status
Tsonga is an official language in South Africa. It has been suggested to be made official in Zimbabwe according to the new constitution. All Tswa-Ronga languages are recognised in Mozambique. It is not official in Swaziland.

Excerpt #2:
"Days of the week [Tsonga]
Sunday - Sonto
Monday - Musumbunuku
Tuesday - Ravumbirhi
Wednesday - Ravurharhu
Thursday - Ravumune
Friday - Ravunthlanu
Saturday – Muqivela"


"Venda, also known as Tshivenḓa or Luvenḓa, is a Bantu language and an official language of South Africa. It is mainly spoken by the Venda people in the northern part of South Africa's Limpopo Province, as well as by some Lemba people in Zimbabwe. The Venda language is related to Kalanga (Western Shona, different from Shona, official language of Zimbabwe) which is spoken in Botswana and Zimbabwe. During the Apartheid era of South Africa, the bantustan of Venda was set up to cover the Venda speakers of South Africa."...

Venda days of the Week
Musumbuluwo [Monday]
Ḽavhuvhili [Tuesday]
Ḽavhuraru [Wednesday]
Ḽavhuṋa {Thursday]
Ḽavhutanu [Friday]
Mugivhela [Saturday]
Swondaha [Sunday]

Excerpt #1
"The Xhosa people are a Bantu ethnic group of Southern Africa mainly found in the Eastern Cape, South Africa, and in the last two centuries throughout the southern and central-southern parts of the country. There is a small but significant Xhosa (Mfengu) community in South Africa with its language, Xhosa, being a recognized South African national language.[4][5]


Presently approximately 8 million Xhosa are distributed across the country, and the Xhosa language is South Africa's second-most-populous home language, after Zulu, to which Xhosa is closely related. The pre-1994 apartheid system of Bantustans denied Xhosas South African citizenship, but enabled them to have self-governing "homelands" namely; Transkei and Ciskei, now both a part of the Eastern Cape Province where most Xhosa remain. Many Xhosa live in Cape Town (eKapa in Xhosa), East London (eMonti), and Port Elizabeth (eBhayi).


Xhosa is an agglutinative tonal language of the Bantu family. While the Xhosas call their language "isiXhosa", it is usually referred to as "Xhosa" in English. Written Xhosa uses a Latin alphabet–based system. Xhosa is spoken by about 18% of the South African population, and has some mutual intelligibility with Zulu, especially Zulu spoken in urban areas. Many Xhosa speakers, particularly those living in urban areas, also speak Zulu and/or Afrikaans and/or English.

Among its features, the Xhosa language famously has fifteen click sounds, originally borrowed from now extinct Khoisan languages of the region. Xhosa has eighteen click consonants, pronounced at three places in the mouth: a series of dental clicks, written with the letter "c"; a series of alveolar clicks, written with the letter "q"; and a series of lateral clicks, written with the letter "x". "...

Excerpt #2:
"Days of the week [Xhosa]
Sunday - iCawe
Monday - uMvulo
Tuesday - uLwesibini
Wednesday - uLwesithathu
Thursday - uLwesine
Friday - uLwesihlanu
Saturday - uMgqibelo"

Excerpt #1:
"The Zulu (Zulu: amaZulu) are a Bantu ethnic group of Southern Africa and the largest ethnic group in South Africa, with an estimated 10–11 million people living mainly in the province of KwaZulu-Natal. Small numbers also live in Zimbabwe, Zambia, Tanzania and Mozambique.


The language of the Zulu people is "isiZulu", a Bantu language; more specifically, part of the Nguni subgroup. Zulu is the most widely spoken language in South Africa, where it is an official language. More than half of the South African population are able to understand it, with over 9 million first-language and over 15 million second-language speakers.[5] Many Zulu people also speak Afrikaans, English, Portuguese, Xitsonga, Sesotho and others from among South Africa's 11 official languages.


Modern Zulu population
The modern Zulu population is fairly evenly distributed in both urban and rural areas. Although KwaZulu-Natal is still their heartland, large numbers have been attracted to the relative economic prosperity of Gauteng province. Indeed, Zulu is the most widely spoken home language in the province, followed by Sotho."...

Excerpt #2
"Zulu Days of the week:
Monday - uMsombuluko (the day of unfolding)

Tuesday - uLwesibili (the second day - bili = two)

Wednesday - uLwesithathu (the third day - thathu = three)

Thursday - uLwesine (4th)

Friday - uLwesihlanu (5th)

Saturday - uMgqibelo (note the click!)

Sunday - Isonto (which also means 'church' - ie, the day of Church, and 'week' - ie, the period between church days)"

This concludes this two part series on nine South African languages.

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