hau, interjection

Forms:
haau, haoShow more Also haau, hao, hawu, hou.
Origin:
Zulu
Especially among Zulu-speakers: an exclamation expressing any of a range of feelings, from the mildest to the most forceful, encompassing surprise, wonder, admiration, amusement, pleasure, anger, disapproval, disappointment, distress, sympathy, resignation, shock, and fear; au; auk. Cf. mawo, wau.
1898 B. Mitford Induna’s Wife 27I see it all — the angry infuriated countenance of Umzilikazi, the dread anxiety on the faces of the other izinduna, which was as the shrinking before a great and terrible storm about to burst. Hau!
1907 W.C. Scully By Veldt & Kopje 9‘We of the Radebe,’ shouted Mzondo..‘hau — there are none like us..’.
1923 G.H. Nicholls Bayete! 118Hau! I’d like to strangle him.
1936 Williams & May I Am Black 60Lapozo said ‘Hau!’ and put his hand to his mouth looking at Shabala with admiration.
1941 R. Roamer in Bantu World 12 Apr. 4Hawu! They lose their tempers as well?
1960 J. Cope Tame Ox 20They say he is a tame ox. There he is, hau! hau! hau! a black maned lion among the herds!
1961 T. Matshikiza Choc. for my Wife 61Hawu, Joe, you telling me to shut up when you wearing the best clothes from London’s bespoke tailors?
1971 H. Stuart in The 1820 Vol.43 No.12, 29I couldn’t translate R600 into Zulu so I told him 30 cattle. ‘Hau!’ he exclaimed. I can buy ten wives with that.’
1975 S. Sepamla in New Classic No.1, 11One day we heard we would be moved. Hawu! That was a shock to us.
1983 Drum Jan. 40I can only mutter ‘hau’ and shake my woolly head...Citizenship in South Africa is mlungu copyright.
1989 Personality 6 Mar. 34The locals in the valley form an integral part of the race. We heard them cheering for..one canoeist trying to surface after misjudging the weir at Duzi bridge — a loud ‘Hawu shaaame!’
1989 J. Hobbs Thoughts in Makeshift Mortuary 4Hawu, Missie Rose, but you wet, eh?
1994 D. kaNdlovu in Sidelines Dec. 23Hawu! That is our home. How can it be a no-go area? Hawu madoda!
an exclamation expressing any of a range of feelings, from the mildest to the most forceful, encompassing surprise, wonder, admiration, amusement, pleasure, anger, disapproval, disappointment, distress, sympathy, resignation, shock, and fear; au; auk.
Derivatives:
Hence hau noun, the exclamation ‘hau’; as transitive verb (nonce), to exclaim ‘hau’.
1941 R. Roamer in Bantu World 15 Feb. 5It is no use ‘hawu-ing’ me, Mr Roamer.
1968 K. McMagh Dinner of Herbs 22They loved the drum-major. He it was who called forth soft ‘Haus’ from the watching thousands.
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18981994

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