fundi, noun

Rhodesian English, IsiNdebele, IsiXhosa, IsiZuluShow more Perhaps originally Rhodesian (Zimbabwean) English, from isiNdebele umfundi disciple, learner (plural abafundi), from funda learn, read; or from fundisa teach, educate; or from the identical isiXhosa and isiZulu words. Cf. umfundisi.
1. rare. An academic; a learned person.
[1937 C. Birkby Zulu Journey 281Pondos will call the missionary or the farming lecturer or the doctor ‘Umfundi’ — the learned one.]
1971 P.J. Silva Informant, Grahamstown (now Makhanda, Eastern Cape)He’s not the teacher type — he doesn’t strike one as being a great fundi.
2. An expert or authority on a particular subject. Also attributive.
[1970 J. Taylor Informant, Salisbury (now Harare, Zimbabwe)Fundi — an expert or specialist. Bessie is a fundi at gardening.]
1971 W.R.G. Branford Informant, Grahamstown (now Makhanda, Eastern Cape)Mr A— is a fundi on Dr Johnson’s Dictionary, so I’d like him to come in at this point.
1973 F. Chisholm in Cape Times 3 July 9We have two problems for the language fundis.
1976 Fair Lady 13 Oct. 180 (advt)Actually I don’t know anything about Hi-Fi terms..but my friends think I’m a fundi.
1980 Sunday Times 3 Aug. (Mag. Sect.) 4I’m fed up with food fundis telling me what to eat and what not to eat.
1983 Star 7 June 2Oriental art fundis..examine an 18th century..tea jar.
1985 Sunday Times 13 Jan. (Business Times) 1The slump in the stock market..left some highly paid investment fundis with red faces.
1988 Cape Times 21 Nov. 15Wine fundi Mr John to be called as an expert witness.
1988 R. Sher in Sunday Times 3 Apr. (Mag. Sect.) 44I’m getting used to the pressure of being an Aids fundi.
1989 J. Hobbs Thoughts in Makeshift Mortuary 210He’s a Dickens fundi, you know? More interested in Victorian slums than the ones under his nose.
1990 Weekend Post 30 June 3‘He’s a slippery prop,’ says a rugby fundi.
1991 M. O’Shea Informant, Kokstad, KwaZulu-NatalMichael is a fundi on shell-collecting.
1991 M. Hurt Informant, DorpspruitSusan is a fundi at patchwork and John is quite a fundi with money, so..she makes and he sells.
1992 E. Prov. Herald 3 July 22Natal Parks Board director and turtle fundi, Dr George Hughes.
1994 Sunday Times 2 Oct. (Mag. Sect.) 10They found themselves under the critical eye of fashion fundi Dion Chang.
3. One who shows enthusiasm for a particular subject or pastime, a ‘buff’.
1977 Fair Lady 11 May 102Indispensable items for fashion ‘fundis’.
1978 Sunday Times 19 Feb. 5Long grass holds all sorts of horrors for the sincere South African braai fundi.
1980 Darling 9 June 23For the fitness fundis, Gloria provides yoga, modern dancing, acrobatics, antenatal classes and keep-fit lessons.
1983 City Press 6 Nov. 2‘Buick’ as he was affectionately known to theatre fundis..had amassed a huge business empire.
An academic; a learned person.
An expert or authority on a particular subject. Also attributive.
One who shows enthusiasm for a particular subject or pastime, a ‘buff’.
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