Xhosa language

▪ African language
Xhosa also spelled  Xosa 

      a Bantu language (Bantu languages) spoken by seven million people in South Africa, especially in Eastern (Eastern Cape) province. Xhosa is a member of the Southeastern, or Nguni, subgroup of the Bantu group of the Benue-Congo branch (Benue-Congo languages) of the Niger-Congo language family. Other Southeastern Bantu languages are Zulu (Zulu language), Swati (Swazi), Sotho, Tswana, Venda, and Ndebele. Although Xhosa and Zulu (Zulu language) are similar enough to be considered dialects of one language, Xhosa and Zulu speakers consider them to be separate languages.

      The sound system of Xhosa contains three types of click sounds borrowed from the neighbouring Khoisan languages. Xhosa uses a system of tones (tone) to distinguish words that would otherwise sound the same.

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Universalium. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

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  • Xhosa calendar — By the traditional Xhosa calendar, the year began in June and ended in May, when Canopus, a large star visible in the Southern Hemisphere, signalled the time for harvesting. In the Xhosa language, there are two ways of naming months: modern and… …   Wikipedia

  • Xhosa — Xho|sa1 [ kousə, kɔsə ] noun 1. ) uncount an African language that people speak in South Africa 2. ) count a member of a Bantu people of South Africa Xhosa Xho|sa 2 [ kousə, kɔsə ] adjective relating to the Xhosa language, culture, or people …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

  • Xhosa — [kō′sä, kō′zä] n. pl. Xhosas or Xhosa 1. a member of a people living mainly in S South Africa 2. the Bantu language of this people, closely related to Zulu adj. of the Xhosas or their language or culture: Also sp. Xosa …   English World dictionary

  • Xhosa — /koh seuh, zeuh, kaw /, n., pl. Xhosas, (esp. collectively) Xhosa for 1. 1. a member of a Nguni people of eastern Cape Province, Republic of South Africa. 2. the Bantu language of the Xhosa. Also, Xosa. * * * People living primarily in East Cape… …   Universalium

  • Xhosa — UK [ˈkɔːsə] / US [ˈkoʊsə] / US [ˈkɔsə] noun Word forms Xhosa : singular Xhosa plural Xhosas or Xhosa 1) [uncountable] an African language that people speak in South Africa 2) [countable] a member of a Bantu people of South Africa Derived word:… …   English dictionary

  • Xhosa — noun Etymology: Xhosa xhosa (as in umXhosa a Xhosa person) Date: 1801 1. a member of a Bantu speaking people of Eastern Cape province 2. a Bantu language of the Xhosas …   New Collegiate Dictionary

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