mzungu

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English[edit]

Alternative forms[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From Swahili mzungu.

Noun[edit]

mzungu (plural mzungus or wazungu)

  1. (in some African countries) A white person.
    • 1888, Joseph Thomson, E. Harris-Smith, Ulu: an African romance: Volume 1
      I have given my daughter to an mzungu, and he says he will make her like the wives of the white men.
    • 2004, Dan McNickle, Teaching and Hunting in East Africa
      suspicion about an mzungu wanting a copy of the country's constitution

Swahili[edit]

Etymology[edit]

Proto-Bantu *jungu, *-dungu. Cognate with Bemba musungu, Kikuyu muthungu, Kinyarwanda zungu, Luganda Omuzungu, Shona murungu, Venda mulungu, Zulu lungu.

Pronunciation[edit]

Noun[edit]

mzungu (m-wa class, plural wazungu)

  1. European, white person

Usage notes[edit]

Sometimes considered pejorative; literally translated as "aimless wanderer".

Synonyms[edit]