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Kimbundu, or North Mbundu, one of two Bantu languages called Mbundu (see Umbundu), is the second-most-widely spoken Bantu language in Angola. It is concentrated in the north-west of the country, notably in the Luanda Province, Bengo Province, Malanje Province and the Cuanza Norte Province. It is spoken by the Ambundu.
|Region||Luanda Province, Bengo Province , Malanje Province|
|2.1 million (2014)|
Official language in
|Angola ("National language")|
[ɸ] and [β] are allophones of /p/ and /b/, respectively, before /a/ and /u/. The phoneme /l/ is phonetically a flap [ɾ], the plosive [d] or its palatalized version [dʲ] before the front high vowel /i/. In the same way, the alveolars /s/, /z/ and /n/ are palatalized to [ʃ], [ʒ] and [ɲ], respectively, before [i]. There may be an epenthesis of [g] after /ŋ/ in word medial positions, thus creating a phonetic cluster [ŋg] in a process of fortition.
There is long distance nasal harmony, in which /l/ is realized as [n] if the previous morphemes contain /m/ or /n/, but not prenasalized stops.
There are two contrasting tones: a high (á) and a low tone (à). There is also a downstep in cases of tonal sandhi.
There is vowel harmony in two groups (the high vowels /i, u/ and the mid and low vowels /e, o, a/) that applies only for verbal morphology. In some morphemes, vowels may be consistently deleted to avoid a hiatus.
- Hammarström, Harald; Forkel, Robert; Haspelmath, Martin, eds. (2017). "Kimbundu". Glottolog 3.0. Jena, Germany: Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History.
- Jouni Filip Maho, 2009. New Updated Guthrie List Online
- Ambundu is the short form for Akwa Mbundu and 'Akwa' means 'from', or 'of', or more originally 'originally from' and 'belonging to'. In Kimbundu language the particle Akwa is shortened into simply A, so that instead of Akwa Mbndu it becomes Ambundu; similarly the term Akwa Ngola becomes ANgola, then Angola; Ngola was title for kings in Northern Angolan kingdom in the past, before the Portuguese invasion.
- Xavier, Francisco da Silva (2010). Fonologia segmental e supra-segmental do Quimbundo: variedades de Luanda, Bengo, Quanza Norte e Malange (Ph.D. thesis) (in Portuguese). University of São Paulo. doi:10.11606/t.8.2010.tde-20102010-091425.
- The art of the language of Angola, author Father Pedro Dias, published in 1697
- Emuseum article on Kimbundu
- PanAfrican L10n page on Kimbundu
- Kimbundu people
- Ethnic groups of Angola
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