Njuzu, Zimbabwean Spirit and

The Njuzu is a water spirit which is responsible for training the N'anga. They are said to have given humans "Ruzivo" or knowledge of medicines a long time ago. There are many stories in Zimbabwe of people being kidnapped by the Njuzu. If one is kidnapped by the Njuzu, their family must not cry for…

Tsumo DzeChiShona – Shona Proverbs- Zimbabwe

1. Aive madziva ava mazambuko.  (What used to be hard is now simple. People that used to be great are now simple). 2. Akuruma nzeve ndewako. (Those that advise you are on your side). 3. Ane benzi ndeane rake, kudzana unopururudza. (When you know the bad traits of someone you will not be offended when…

The Barwe Rebellions / Chimurenga of 1900

  was when the frontier Shona/Karanga peoples united around Mambo Mapondera, Makombe Hanga, and Mwenemutapa Chioko, in a coordinated effort to ‘regain their country and women who had been taken from them’. Makombe Hanga was the last Makombe (or king) of the Barue or Barwe in central Mozambique. He helped unite the various Zambezian tribes…

Mwenemutapa: The Shona Empire 

The Mwenemutapa empire was a great empire which covered both Zimbabwe, central Mozambique, and other parts of neighboring countries. The Mwenemutapa empire was named after its ruler the Mwene-Mutapa, and the name meant "Owner of the Realm" or "Lord of the Realm", similar to Mwenewazvo. It existed from 1430 to 1902, and was about 472…

Mwenemutapa: Economy and Agriculture

The Mwenemutapa empire had a social welfare system. Antonio Bocarro, a Portuguese contemporary, informs us that the Emperor: “shows great charity to the blind and maimed, for these are called the king’s poor, and have land and revenues for their subsistence, and when they wish to pass through the kingdoms, wherever they come food and…

Shona Praise Poetry – Nhetembo

Shona praise poetry is referred to in Shona as nhetembo dzemadzinza, which means clan praise poetry. In the Shona traditional context, it was the medium for expressing genuine and heartfelt sentiments of appreciation, homage and gratitude for any commendable action done by someone to his/her relatives or even non-relatives. Generosity and concern for others are…

CHANGAMIRE – A PRAISE POEM

Bu! bu! bu! Pamusoroi changamire! Pamusoroi chidzima makore,wemutumba wakarera gumi nefararira. Werunyararo nerugare. Hedzo pwere dzenyu dzakotama,chisimudzai chenyu chiso munzwe kuchema kwadzo.... CHANGAMIRE BY NOREEN MUTERA This one! This one! This one! Pamusoroi Changamire! Pamusoroi chidzima makore,wemutumba wakarera gumi nefararira. Werunyararo Nerugare. Here is the one who has been able to do so. Zvamurimi makati…

The Role of cattle in Shona Society

2. A Shona man calculates his wealth in terms of the head of cattle he possesses 3. A man's social status is determined by how many head of cattle he possesses 4. The man with the largest heard occupies the most prominent place at the chief's court 5. The roora cattle are not paid in…

Tracing African Roots: Nyanga Mountain’s untold story

Over the years, sensational stories about supernatural manifestations have been passed from generation to generation. While some believe that there are sacred places infested with spirits and the supernatural that can cause people and objects to disappear, others dismiss this as a fallacy. But African traditionalist Ferdinand Tahwa said disputing that there are scared places…