Kikongo


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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Kikongo

 

(Kongo), the language of the Bakongo people, spoken by some 3.3 million people (1970, estimate). It is the official language of the Republic of Zaire and is also widely used in the People’s Republic of the Congo and in Angola. A Bantu language, Kikongo is divided into a southern branch (Kishikongo and Kikongo) and a northern branch (Kakongo and the Yombe and Vili dialects). Kikongo has vowel harmony and tones performing semantic functions. Its grammatical structure is characterized by nominal classes (15), whose indicators are monosyllabic prefixes. There is a well-developed system of derivative suffixal verb forms, and the word order is subject-predicate-object.

REFERENCES

Doke, C. M. Bantu: Modern Grammatical, Phonetical and Lexicographical Studies Since 1860. London, 1945.
Laman, K. E. Dictionnaire kikongo-français. Brussels, 1936.
Dereau, L. Course de Kikongo. Namur, 1955.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
Kumina is structurally referenced in a language using dialects of eighteenth century Kikongo and nineteenth century British English.
The configuration of their movement appears like an ethno-regional coalition of Congolese immigrants, speaking Lingala, Tshiluba, and Kikongo, against their eastern compatriots mostly the Swahili speakers.
Lagunitas After-hours dance party with Mambo KiKongo at BSP Kingston at 11pm
Some of the songs are their take on traditional folk tunes; others are original creative expressions, not necessarily beholden to any one language (one song, "Dikulusu" is in three languages: Portuguese, Kikongo and Kimbundu).
Since the workshops were held in the local Kikongo language, a translator accompanied us during all field activities.