Gikuyu love poem
Kírúrú gíaku gícicioiní,
Ní thimo yakwa thaka.
No wíhíke níyúraga.
Ní yakwa ya múico, "ningwendete"
→ Poem the mirror ←
Translation of my love poem into Kikuyu language (gikuyu, gekoyo), which will be understood by 8 million speakers. This Bantu (Niger-Congolese) vernacular language, which includes several dialectal forms, is spoken in Kenya by the Kikuyu ethnic group (Agıkuyu, Mugıkuyu). The dialects are: in Mt. Kenya (Kırınyaga), North (Nyırı), Center (Murang'a), South (Kıambu), their differences are minimal. Gikuyu is classified in the Thagicu languages of the Bantu family (north center), has borrowed from Maasai, Swahili and English, and is very active in Kenya in the media and publications.
Many books each year are published in the language. The renowned authors Ngugi wa Thiong'o and Gakaara Wanja, give the language an international visibility. In 1947 the spelling was standardized and revised in 84 and 2002. Barlow and Armstrong respectively in 60 and 67 studied this language, while Gecaga and Mugane edited grammars. As for the dictionary it will be the work of Benson in 64.
The kikuyus are the largest tribe in Kenya, they inhabit the highlands. They were traditionally bean and millet growers, and now devote themselves to coffee and tea. Their social organization rested on clans and patrilineal lineages with a great genealogical depth, corresponding to territorial units. The domestic groups were gathered in villages, forming a district governed by a board of elders. They were also structured into initiation age grades, defining a status that covered the whole of the individual life. Age and generation classes were the two essential institutions for the tribal cohesion. The handover from one generation to the next took place during great secret ceremonies (ituika).