Saturday, 11 April 2015

What Is In A Name?

Another unstudied source of surnames is ethnonyms or tribe names. Unlike totems and place names, ethnonym surnames, almost as a rule occur in “other” tribes than the bearer’s tribe. There are about 30 of 72 tribe names that occur as surnames in “other” tribes. As homonyms, ethnonyms and surnames are usually related by spelling but usually unrelated in meaning.

Further, since surnames are mostly patrilineal and clan names are mostly matrilineal it means bearers of the same surname are unlikely to be relatives. (I elaborate in another article spirits and tongues.)

M'tonga is not Tonga

Former UPND/PF MP (Henry) Mtonga, (Dr Robert) Mtonga, (Daniel) Tonga (a Chewa) are not Tonga tribe from Southern Province but are either Tumbuka or Senga tribe of Eastern Province. And Tonga does not occur as a surname among the Tonga in Southern Province. Eastern Province reference to Tonga is Tonga of Malawi; Dr Kenneth Kaunda’s Malawian tribe. Similarly, Bemba or Lubemba or Mubemba may be a surname in any tribe other than Bemba.

(Edgar) Lungu together with (Greg) Lungu, (Augustine) Lungu, (Mkhondo) Lungu and son (Muhabi) Lungu, are all from Eastern Province while the Lungu tribe of John Mwanakatwe is from Mbala district, Northern Province. (Mkhondo’s Lungu is a misspelling of the Ngoni name Langa). Mambwe is most likely to be an Easterner, Lamba or Lala or Bemba than Mambwe tribe of Mbala.

Further, (Reuben) Kamanga was an Eastern Province Chewa while Kamanga tribe is in the Northern Province. (Alexander Grey) Zulu is Chewa of Eastern Province while Zulu is another name of the Ngoni tribe. (Mungoni) Liso was a Southern Ila of Namwala district and not Ngoni of Chipata, Eastern.

(Frederick Jacob Titus) Chiluba, was Lunda of Luapula and not Luba tribe of Copperbelt or Kiluba of Congo. Kaluba may either be Bemba or Easterner but not Luba tribe. (Mwansa) Mbulakulima, (Douglas) Syakalima or (Chuulu and Victoria) Kalima or Mulima are not Lima tribe from the Copperbelt. Lunda tribe in North Western may occur as first or surname among Lamba and Easterners. Mbunda tribe in North Western Province may be Mbunda surname among Lamba tribe. Nyika tribe in Northern Province may be (Suzyo) Nyika of the Tumbuka tribe or (Dominic) Chimanyika.

(George) Kunda was Lala tribe of Serenje district not Kunda tribe of Eastern or Chikunda of Lusaka. (Former acting Chief Justice Lombe) Chibesakunda is Bisa and not Kunda. (Jack) Kalala and (Costain) Chilala or any Mulala are not Lala tribe. Chilala is Tonga of Southern; Kalala is Lamba. (I will elaborate in Bantu names and affixes.)

Elizabeth Mulenje Is A Soli Chieftainess

Elizabeth Mulenje (Senior Chieftainess Nkomeshya Mukamambo II) is of the Soli tribe of Lusaka and Chongwe is not Lenje. (Bishop John) Mambo, Mukamambo II and (Christine Eva) Mambo (Chieftainess Chiawa of the Goba) are not Ambo tribe of Patauke or Tambo tribe of Northern. Tambo of Northern may occur elsewhere as first or surname.
(Dr Peter) Matoka a Lunda from Mwinilunga district was not Toka-Leya of Livingstone and Kazungula districts in Southern Province. (Yotam) Muleya was Tonga of ba-Leya clan and not Toka-Leya tribe.
(Dr Christine or Syman) Kaseba is Lala of Serenje or Lenje of Chibombo whereas Museba maybe Bemba and are not Seba tribe of the Copperbelt.
(Teddy) Mulonga is a Kaonde of Solwezi and not Mulonga tribe of Luapula. (Vernon) Mwaanga is Tonga from Southern and not Namwanga tribe. Namwanga uses gender prefixes of Na- for female and Si- for male. Sala or Chisala is the tribe west of Lusaka whereas Chisala may be Tonga or Bemba surname. Musala may be Lenje first or surname.

(Benjamin) Mwila is from Luapula or Bemba, not Muila or Ila from Namwala district, Southern Province. (Daniel) Chisenga surname is usually a Bemba surname and not Senga or Nsenga tribes of the Eastern Province. Lamba as a first and surname, including Kulamba Kubwalo of the Lenje, Kulamba of the Chewa, are not from the Lamba tribe. Lenje, also called Bene Mukuni, bear and share the surname Mukuni with the Lozi and Toka-Leya. Muunga or Maunga may be Tonga or Lozi and not Unga of Bangweulu in Luapula.

(Stanley) Makulu is unlikely to be Mukulu of Luapula. Fr Joe Komakoma from the Northern is most unlikely to be Makoma. Some tribe names to be ascertained as first or surnames are Mulozi and Mwenyi of Western; Kabende, Ng’umbo and Shila of Luapula; Yombe and Fungwe in Eastern bordering Northern Province (or Muchinga Province).

*Kasebamashila Kaseba is a literary and research journalist, presenter of Introspection on Prime Television. This article is a postscript of the book research, “A Concise Dictionary of Common Names of Zambia”. The next article is “Spirits, Demons, Mother and Other Tongues”. Mr Leslie Mbula, a Lamba curriculum reviewer, appraised this article.

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