DSAE test file

itongo, noun

Forms:
ithongo, itongoShow more singular ithongo; singular and plural itongo; plural amathonga, amathongo, amatonga, amatongo, isitongo.
Plurals:
usually amatongo.
Origin:
Xhosa, ZuluShow more Xhosa and Zulu ithongo (plural amathongo). For notes on plural forms, see ama- and i-.
Among Zulus and Xhosas: an ancestral spirit, venerated as an agent of guidance, protection, and prophecy. See also badimo, idlozi, isituta, izinyanya, umshologu.
1855 J.W. Colenso Ten Weeks in Natal 58All the Kafirs of the Natal district believe in iTongo (plural, ama-Tongo) and amaHlose;..the former may be regarded as having..universal tribal influence...These words are certainly used by them only with reference to the spirits of the dead — not to the Great Being, whom they regard as their Creator.
1987 L. Nkosi Mating Birds 48He prayed to the ancestral spirits, amathonga..for guidance, for prudence in the government of his household, for wisdom in the conduct of his personal affairs.
an ancestral spirit, venerated as an agent of guidance, protection, and prophecy.

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18551987