Learn Bukusu language with us, the home of everything Mulembe. Bukusu language or Lubukusu is the tongue of Babukusu, the largest of the 18 houses of Mulembe Nation. Kick off your journey with these 130+ common Bukusu words. Learn their meaning, find translation into English and get started on getting pronunciations right.
Learn Bukusu language
Go To: Resources on learning Bukusu language. | Common Bukusu words for greetings |Introducing yourself in Bukusu language and other conversation starters in Lubukusu |Learn Bukusu language: Keep the conversation flowing with these common Bukusu words|Numbers in Bukusu Language |Learn Bukusu Language: Places in Lubukusu | Bukusu words relating to travel |Learn Bukusu language: Common Bukusu words and phrases relating to food, dining cutlery and eating |Go shopping? Find your way in the market with these Bukusu words and phrases |Bukusu words for everyday stuff |Speak Lubukusu: Time of day and related vocabulary.
Enjoy our growing library of
Resources on learning Bukusu language
Before we get started, our growing Luhya-English dictionary and Thesaurus is a must have as you embark on this journey of learning Luhya. In the dictionary you will find meaning, synonyms, variations of common Luhya words from across the 18 dialects and links to stories that provide context and examples of everyday use of common Luhya words.
In addition, in this article, you will find contextual links to our other resources on learning Bukusu language. We promise you that they are worth the while as they are detailed and exhaustive on the topics they cover:
- Emojis in Bukusu;
- the Bukusu folk song Nacha nacha nacha which introduces us to Bukusu words for tortoise and other animals;
- not to mention our detailed coverage on everyday conversation in kinship terms and words for relatives and relations in Bukusu.
Finally, follow our new blog sibukusu that covers everything Bukusu in Lubukusu. This blog is growing to be a great resource that conserves the Bukusu language by challenging and deepening our reader’s Bukusu language skills.
Don’t forget to bookmark our comprehensive repository of Bukusu proverbs and sayings for they will be useful in spicing up your Lubukusu, so that you speak Lubukusu like a real Bukusu.
Let’s get started.
Learn Bukusu language: Common Bukusu words for greetings
Being it that Bukusu are the largest house of mulembe, it goes without saying that spreading the spirit of mulembe through greetings is at the heart of our way of life. Little wonder then that we have different ways of greeting each other for every situation. Start growing your vocabulary of Bukusu words and phrases for greetings here.
Kamakhuwa ke silo!
Kamakhuwa ke ekoloba!
Learn Bukusu language: Keep the conversation flowing with these common Bukusu words
He or she
Want to learn synonyms, uses, meaning and of this word? See the dictionary meaning
Thank you very much
Welcome or you’re welcome!
Used in the context of a conversation when you need someone to repeat what they have said as you didn’t quite catch them the first time.
The same word said twice means something different.
Leave that or stop doing something.
Take a picture of me
Sendi nabio ta
I don’t have
I don’t have
We don’t have
There is no
Enough, you have done it.
Learn Bukusu language: Introducing yourself, and other conversation starters in Lubukusu
Ewe bali nanu?
Who are you?/What is your name?
Lisina liange bali
My name (lisina) is…
I am from …
Ndi ne kimiaka
I am … years old.
Ese mundukho twa
I am not married.
The call one makes when they knock at the door
Just a moment please.
Sengendile seng’ene ta
I’m not traveling alone.
I’m traveling with….
Do you speak Bukusu?
Semanyile Lubukusu ta
I don’t speak any Bukusu.
Niko olomile koosi kambirirekho busa
All that you have spoken flew by me. I didn’t understand what you said.
Onyala welelamo lundi?
Could you please repeat that?
Khuli no mundu ano onyala khuloma
Does anyone here speak …?
Onyala waandika ako asi
Could you write that down please
Learn Bukusu language: Numbers in Bukusu Language
Learn numbers in Bukusu. Watch our video on numbers in Bukusu and get to know how to count 1-10 in Lubukusu. In this article, we also cover common rules of language when counting in Bukusu language. Get started with the pronunciation.
Kumi na mocha
In everyday speak, Bukusu words for numbers twelve to nineteen are borrowed from Kiswahili words. The only difference is how they are pronounced. Take the example below for number nineteen which in both Kiswahili and Lubukusu is ‘kumi na tisa’. Note the difference in pronounciation.
Kumi na tisa
Learn Bukusu Language: Places in Lubukusu
Learn Bukusu language: Bukusu words relating to travel
Learn Bukusu language: Common Bukusu words and phrases relating to food, dining cutlery and eating
I am hungry
I am thirsty
Ugali. Or simply busuma. You know what they say Mluhya and his ugali. But I bet you may not know that there are rules to cooking busuma the Luhya way. Or that there are rules to serving busuma; and if you thought you knew ugali, our take on ‘know ugali as only a Luhya can‘ packs plenty of surprises.
Or engoho is chicken
Bird. Get to know names of birds in Bukusu, including names of edible birds.
Vegetables, in particular leafy vegetables. Though the meaning is often expanded to include any other accompaniments to busuma such as engoko, en’geni and even the simsim sauce kamasikhishki. Get to know the Bukusu names of traditional vegetables enjoyed by Mbukusu; and also the special names given to vegetables that are the first fruits of a farm.
Sweet. There is a common contemporary Bukusu saying (not food related) that goes ‘bunulu njire’ which means ‘sweetness kill me’. Guess what? We even have an emoji for this saying.
Go shopping? Find your way in the market with these Bukusu words and phrases
I don’t want
Learn Bukusu language: Bukusu words for everyday stuff
Beer, or generally any kind of alcoholic drink.
Whiskey, alcoholic spirits, vodkas, rum, gin or liqueurs.
Mbekho nibio mayi kakhuwa
Give me what your mama gave you. As you might have imagined, they are a host of ways to ask for sex in Bukusu language. And if talking dirty is your thing, from shipoto to khulia bindu, we’ve got your covered.
Professions, people and relations in Bukusu
Want to know who senje is? Or maybe if all relations uncle are known as kocha in Bukusu langauge? This exhaustive piece on relations in Bukusu has you covered.
Khalinjola is the title to a popular song by the king of Luhya pop Steve Kay. Appreciate the use of the word in this song by reading our review of Khalinjola by Steve Kay.
Example in phrase: Nenya khubona takitari. It means, I want to see a doctor.
Musician/ poet or verse composer.
Learn Bukusu langauge: Time of day and related vocabulary in Lubukusu
For full list of common Bukusu words and vocabulary relating to time of day, you may want to read our detailed article on time of day in Bukusu. If interested, grow your Lubukusu vocabulary by learning days of the week in Bukusu; how to say today, tomorrow and yesterday in Bukusu; and the weather in Bukusu.
Chili saa ngapi?
What is the time?
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3 thoughts on “Learn Bukusu Language, speak Lubukusu just like that! 130+ common Bukusu words translations, meaning and pronunciation”
I want a lugha story book so that I can learn more
Eeh baye! Kamakhuwa malala ke luswahili, sekali ke lubukusu tawe!
echoo = esibakala
eosipito = lilwalilo
epanka = libikhilo
emutoka = simocha lukongo
chang’aa = enguli
takitari = omusilikhi
chili saa ngapi? = chili chinyanga chinga?
Nasima lukali omwami! Okhoya walama