makulu, adjective

Forms:
makhuloo, makhuluShow more Also makhuloo, makhulu, mukulu.
Origin:
Fanakalo, Xhosa, ZuluShow more Fanakalo, from Xhosa and Zulu sentence makhulu they are big, plural subjectival concord ma- + adjectival stem -khulu big.
colloquial
1. Also with initial capital. In the special collocation makulubaas /-ˌbɑːs/ [see baas; probably first used in Fanakalo], ‘big boss’:
a. A male employer; a powerful official in an organization; (occasionally) any white male. Now usually ironical.
[1899 G.H. Russell Under Sjambok 195You will give this letter to the Baas mukulu (manager).]
1953 P. Lanham Blanket Boy’s Moon 121Libe..asked his Makulu Baas for a day’s unpaid leave.
1970 S.E. Natham Informant, Cape TownYou’d better be good all day as the Makulubaas will be coming sometime.
1978 Voice 25 Nov. 16The ‘makhulubaas’ of Black soccer.
1979 Voice 7 Oct. 2For a moment, one of our Makulu baases, Dr Andries Treurnicht, must have wondered what he was all about.
1987 Pace May 4This mlungu..curses the day he decided to settle in this..continent. The bad luck makhulu baas..now walks with a limp because of a mysterious accident.
1991 O. Musi in Drum Dec. 18The driver will..explain to her in terse terms the ‘makhulubaas’ wants his stove back unless she forks out the balance of R500.
1991 S.I. Abrahams Informant, Port ElizabethMakulu baas. The big boss or head of the firm or institution. eg. Did you know that ‘so-and-so’ is the new makulu baas of the factory?
b. As an ironical title for a government minister, especially a head of state; also used as a form of address. Also partial translation of makulu boss.
1982 Voice 21 Mar. 4Makhulubaas Influx Throttle is virtually telling Cape Town’s Black refugees..: don’t starve here, starve in the Sebes’ and Matanzimas’ paradises.
1985 Pace Aug. 4The heads of the..neighbouring states of Venda, Bophutatswana, Transkei and Ciskei have come together to have talks with ‘makhulu baas’ in Pretoria.
1986 Drum Apr. 36It would be..presumptuousness on the part of this scribe to try to interpret makhulubaas PW Botha’s Rubicon II speech.
1987 Drum July 11Makhuloo Baas you must realise that some of our white brothers..have come to realise that their destiny is tied up with our destiny.
1991 P. Slabolepszy Braait Laaities. 8A French Dutchman who became Makulu Boss Prime Minister of South Africa.
2. Big; important; impressive; foremost.
1959 E. Mphahlele Down Second Ave 108Why-for you maker so much makulu troble-troble.
1977 Argus 13 Jan. 10 (advt)Mr McCrae is a makulu manager, and he drives a makulu car.
1981 Voice 18 Feb. 2After the raid which left many mutilated bodies, the Bishop is reported to have smiled: ‘That’s nothing! That’s peanuts! More is coming.’ What words from a cleric! Nogal from a makhulu-mfundisi.
1987 Weekly Mail 11 Sept. 21September is makulu-boy, another way of saying he’s a reliable worker.
1991 G. Hofmeyr on TV1, 24 Apr. (Big Time)You must get Papademos — he’s the makhulu man.
A male employer; a powerful official in an organization; (occasionally) any white male. Now usually ironical.
As an ironical title for a government minister, especially a head of state; also used as a form of address.
Big; important; impressive; foremost.
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18991991