Where does the Xhosa language come from?
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Xhosa Language


Somebody speaking Xhosa

About 500 AD, some Bantu people moved into South Africa. They spoke Bantu, of course. But after they settled down in South Africa, they learned a lot of new words from the Khoisan people who lived there, who spoke a language called !Kung. So new languages came out of mixing these two languages together. Xhosa is one of those languages, and another one is called Zulu. One famous modern Xhosa speaker is Nelson Mandela.

Xhosa
!Kung
Swahili
Yoruba
African languages and literature
Ancient Africa
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Professor Carr

Karen Eva Carr, PhD.
Assoc. Professor Emerita, History
Portland State University

Professor Carr holds a B.A. with high honors from Cornell University in classics and archaeology, and her M.A. and PhD. from the University of Michigan in Classical Art and Archaeology. She has excavated in Scotland, Cyprus, Greece, Israel, and Tunisia, and she has been teaching history to university students for a very long time.

Professor Carr's PSU page

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