Sekele language

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Northern ǃXuun
Native to Namibia, Angola
Region Okavango and Ovamboland Territory
Language codes
ISO 639-3 vaj
Glottolog oung1238[1]

Sekele (Vasekele, the Angolan Bantu name), or Northern ǃXuun (Northern Ju); also known by the outdated term ǃʼOǃKung (ǃʼO ǃuŋ, [ǃˀoːǃʰũ]) "Forest ǃKung" and in one source as Maligo (Sekele Maligo), is the northern variety of the !Kung (ǃXuun) dialect continuum. It was widespread in southern Angola before the civil war,[2] but now is principally spoken among a diaspora in northern Namibia.

A variety currently being investigated is Mangetti Dune !Kung, spoken by a resettled diaspora community of 500–1000 in Namibia and South Africa in the settlements of Mangetti Dune and Omtaku (Omatako?), east of Grootfontein, Namibia, halfway to the Botswana border; and in Schmidtsdrif, west of Kimberley, South Africa.


Mangetti Dune !Kung has clicks with four places of articulation, /ǃ ǀ ǁ ǂ/. (A reported distinction between dental lateral and postalveolar lateral clicks has not been confirmed by further research.)

These come in the same eight series as in Grootfontein !Kung, here represented with the palatal articulation:

Lingual /ǂ ǂʰ ᶢǂ ᵑǂ ᵑ̊ǂʰ/
glottalized /ᵑ̊ǂˀ/
linguo-pulmonic /ǂχ/
linguo-glottalic /ǂ͡kxʼ/

Sample Text[edit]

Following is a sample text in the Sekele language.[3]

Mí má kȍhà hńg gǀȕì ō ǁȁhìn-ā ō hȁ ō gǀè gù ǀxūúnnu.
I must see the hyena to tell it to come catch the crocodile lying there.


  1. ^ Hammarström, Harald; Forkel, Robert; Haspelmath, Martin, eds. (2017). "!O!ung". Glottolog 3.0. Jena, Germany: Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History.
  2. ^ Gordon Jr. & Grimes 2005
  3. ^ Perception and Cognition in Language and Culture. Alexandra Aikhenvald, Anne Storch , 2013


  • Snyman, Jan Winston (1980). "The Relationship Between Angolan ǃXu and Zuǀʼõasi". Bushman and Hottentot Linguistic Studies. Pretoria, South Africa: University of South Africa (UNISA): 1–58.
  • Miller, A.L.; Holliday, J.; Howcroft, D.M.; Phillips, S.; Smith, B.; Tsz-Hum, T.; Scott, A. (2011). "The Phonetics of the Modern-Day Reflexes of the Proto-Palatal Click in Juu Languages". Proceedings of the 4th International Symposium on Khoisan Languages and Linguistics.

External links[edit]