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Kikuyu Language Facts and Information

Information About Kikuyu Language

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Kikuyu speakers in the Phrasebase community
Extinct: no
Family: Niger-Congo
Branch: Bantu
Continent: Africa
Country: Kenya
Region: West central Kenya, in Kiambu, Murang"a, Nyeri, and Kirinyaga districts, Central Province.
Countries Where Spoken: 5,347,000 (1994 I. Larsen BTL) or 19.8% of the population (1987).
Countries Where Official: Kenya
Native Speakers: 5,347,000
Speakers Total: 5,347,000
Phrasebase members who speak Kikuyu at a native level: 0
Phrasebase members who speak Kikuyu at a conversational level: 0
Phrasebase members primary language they are trying to learn is Kikuyu: 0
Phrasebase members secondary language they are trying to learn is Kikuyu: 0
Three Letter Code: KIU
Summary: 73% lexical similarity with Embu, 70% with Chuka, 67% with Kamba, 63% with Meru. Bilingualism in Swahili, English. The first consonant of the name "Gikuyu" or "Gekoyo" is a voiced velar fricative; the vowels are mid. Grammar. Literacy rate in first language: 30% to 60%. Literacy rate in second language: 75% to 100%. 95% of the children are in school. Mountain slope, hills, plains. Agriculturalists: sorghum, millet, beans, sweet potatoes, maize, potatoes, cassava, bananas, sugar cane, yams, fruit, tobacco, coffee, castor oil, tea, pyrethium, peas; animal husbandry: goats, sheep, cattle. Christian, traditional religion. Bible 1951-1965.

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