from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
- n. A member of any of a large number of linguistically related peoples of central and southern Africa.
- n. A group of over 400 closely related languages spoken in central, east-central, and southern Africa, belonging to the South Central subgroup of the Niger-Congo language family and including Swahili, Kinyarwanda, Kirundi, Zulu, and Xhosa.
from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- proper n. The largest African language family of the Niger-Congo group, spoken in much of Sub-Saharan Africa.
- proper n. General term for African ethnic groups speaking a Bantu language and their members.
- proper n. A black South African.
from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English
- proper n. A member of one of the great family of Negroid tribes occupying equatorial and southern Africa. These tribes include, as important divisions, the Kafirs, Damaras, Bechuanas, and many tribes whose names begin with Aba-, Ama-, Ba-, Ma-, Wa-, variants of the Bantu plural personal prefix Aba-, as in Ba-ntu, or Aba-ntu, itself a combination of this prefix with the syllable -ntu, a person; or as in Watusi.
- proper n. the family of languages spoken by the Bantu people (definition 1).
- adj. Of or pertaining to the Bantu language group Bantu (definition 2).
- adj. of or pertaining to the Bantu people (definition 1).
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. A name sometimes applied to the South African family of tongues.
from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.
- n. a member of any of a large number of linguistically related peoples of Central and South Africa
- n. a family of languages widely spoken in the southern half of the African continent
- adj. of or relating to the African people who speak one of the Bantoid languages or to their culture
We knew there were White police officers, superintendents, pass office officials and others who daily insist on being spoken to in Afrikaans by any Bantu coming before them, regardless of the fact that the Bantu is able to speak this language or not; that there are even policemen who, rather than take a statement from a Bantu in English, chooses rather that the Bantu should give the statement to a Bantu interpreter in a Bantu language who will then interpret the statement to the White officer in Afrikaans, a strange thing which happens daily in Soweto police stations.
I still cant believe that Bantu is really dead … it so breaks my heart for Bantu was the rarest of species, a free spirit that roamed the world freely and he touched a number of hearts.
Eventually, however, the last arriving of those early Southern-Nyanza-Basin Bantu groups, those who are now referred to as proto-Northeast-Coastal-Bantu-speaking populations, came to predominate in the central-east Tanzania region.
As in Bantu history, we see that in the Muslim cultural sphere there was a schism between theory and applied medicine wherein most locally trained healers attached the deepest levels of affliction to ethereal forces.
It is that frontier people were not ordinarily creators of wholly new or reinvented societies in Bantu history.
The derived noun is traceable well back in Bantu history as a word to name a hunting trap, but it seems that its medicinal meanings may have emerged in the proto-Kaskazi period of the later part of the last millennium BCE. 152 Among the Zaramo, for instance, it was a trap placed on farmed land.
In the first place, the mwana nya nhiti ( "child of wood") incorporates an aspect of ancient Bantu ideas of wood as having medicinal properties, which in Bantu contexts did not preclude the power or "medicine" of ancestors.
It is through this word's history that we access the conceptual reasoning behind the widespread understanding in Bantu societies that witchcraft could be actively placed on another body.
Their data have been important for learning about the health-related and "ritual" practices associated with pregnancy in Bantu-speaking communities, among others.
And we have recognized that in Bantu worldviews ancestry and spirituality were reservoirs of potential power. 49 But in Ruvu societies more specifically, the matrilineal line commanded the most influence and power.