Soninke love poem
An gnaxalaxe dugnaredin,
Ke ni ncugi xore gna.
A sobe sad’a ga sankunu,
Xanuyen ndiga lagare xani.
→ French poem ←
Soninke language & people
Soninke love poem, in an important language in Mali, also spoken in Senegal, Mauritania, Gambia, Ivory-Coast, Guinea-Bissau and Guinea-Conakry by 2.5 million speakers.
There are many alternative names to designate this Mande language, Niger-Congo, which come from the names of the surrounding populations ... here are a few: Kwara, Adjer, Sarangkole, Aser, Wakkore, Kinbakka, Giriga, Genger, Aswanek, Azer, Gangara, Sooninke, Sebbe, Geriga, Maraka, Ceddo, Aswanik, Saraxuli, Sarangkolle, Soninkanxanne, Markaajo, Serahule, Cheddo, Marka, Sarakule, Wankara, Sarakulle, Sarakolle, Markakan, Kinxenna, Sarakole, Serecole
The Mande languages are part of one of the important language families of West Africa. Between them, there is the same characteristic that the Romance languages have between them, that is to say, that there are few differences between them, from a grammatical point of view ... however they are not inter comprehensible.
On the other hand, there is mutual understanding between the different dialect variations of Soninke.
Oral tradition and Arab chroniclers tell us that the Soninke, whose first homes were Saharan, would originate from the empire of Ghana. It was at it fall that various clans dispersed throughout West Africa, and this is why we find them in Mali, Mauritania, Senegal, Gambia and Guinea-Bissau.
Markas, Guenguer, Wangaras, Sarakollé (Sarakholés), Marakas, Toubakaïs, Wakorés are some names to designate them, names given by each of the peoples who rub shoulders with them.
Soninke society was very hierarchical and specialized; nobles and chiefs, then marabouts for religious power, and below various classes by profession and slaves.
Today, if of course modernity has modified certain things, endogamy in a society that has remained patrilineal and virilocal, means that hierarchization and specialization are still preserved.
From a religious point of view the Soninkés practice a syncretism which mixes their old beliefs with Islam.
Marka, Wangara, Sarakhole, Maraka, Toubakai, Wakore are just as many names to designate them, names given by the peoples who live around them.