DSAE test file

sangoma, noun

Forms:
insangoma, isangomaShow more Also insangoma, isangoma, isongoma, sangome, songoma, umungoma, and with initial capital.
Plurals:
sangomas, ‖izangoma, or (rarely) abangoma.
Origin:
Zulu, Show more Zulu isangoma (plural izangoma) diviner, from -ngoma sacred song; the stem -ngoma is found in some other Sintu (Bantu) languages in the sense of ‘drum’. Forms with umu- and aba- are derived from less-frequently used Zulu forms of the word (see um- and aba-). For notes on the use of singular and plural forms, see isi- and izi-.
Especially among Zulu-speakers: a traditional healer or diviner who employs music, dance, and the throwing of bones to discover evil and diagnose disease; also used as a title. Also attributive, and combination sangomaland nonce, see quotation 1978. See also witchdoctor.
1870 H. Callaway Religious System of Amazulu 280The doctor of divination is called Isanusi, or Ibuda, or Inyanga, or Umungoma: for when people are inquiring of a diviner, they say, ‘True, Umungoma.’ [Note] Umungoma, a diviner, but an epithet of respect. Etymology unknown.
1992 Natal Witness 9 Nov. 11Pretorius..is a sangoma, and woe betide anyone who calls him a witchdoctor.
a traditional healer or diviner who employs music, dance, and the throwing of bones to discover evil and diagnose disease; also used as a title. Also attributive, and combinationsangomalandnonce, see quotation 1978.

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