Masarwa, noun

Forms:
Masara, MasaroaShow more Also Masara, Masaroa, Masowar, Mosarwa.
Plurals:
unchanged, or Masarwas.
Origin:
SeTswanaShow more SeTswana; see quotation 1928.
Especially among seTswana-speakers: a derogatory name for a member of the San people living in the northern Kalahari desert. Often attributive, especially in the phrase Masarwa Bushman.
1871 J. Mackenzie Ten Yrs N. of Orange River 128The other subject race is that of the Bushmen, called Barwa by the Bechuanas in the south, and Masarwa by those in the north of the country.
1896 H.A. Bryden Tales of S. Afr. 42You may never..see a Masarwa Bushman..who does not show marks of fireburn upon the nether limbs.
1897 F. Macnab On Veldt & Farm 130For many years the Masowars, Bakalahari and Vaalpens, who were the original owners of the country, have been habituated to live on locusts, roots, bark, berries and any creatures, even reptiles, which they may snare.
1905 G.W. Stow Native Races of S. Afr. 205Bushman speaking peoples as the Masarwa.
1912 A.W. Hodson Trekking Great Thirst 272We had with us an important headman of these Masarwa Bushmen in the person of Inkabiki, quite one of the best native hunters I ever met.
1928 E.H.L. Schwarz Kalahari & its Native Races 172The term Masarwa or Masaroa, Baroa, Abatwe, is used for all Bushmen in the Northern Kalahari.
1928 E.H.L. Schwarz Kalahari & its Native Races 173The word means ‘abandoned’ and was applied originally to the Bechuana by the Bantu, but as they became powerful they transferred the appellation to their slaves as a title of opprobrium.
1928 E.H.L. Schwarz Kalahari & its Native Races 174There were several Masarwa women about the palace precincts.
1930 S.T. Plaatje Mhudi (1975) 64I have never met anyone who could master the clicks and gibberish of the Masarwa.
1931 J. Mockford Khama 60The rich tribute in hides, ivory, and ostrich-feathers which the Masarwa bushmen and other vassals occupying the game-land..brought annually to Shoshong.
1936 C. Birkby Thirstland Treks 315The Bamangwato, the people whom Khama ruled so wisely, have reduced another tribe, the Masarwas, to a state of serfdom.
1943 J. Burger Black Man’s Burden 217Bechuanaland contains a number of tribes...There are also vassal tribes, such as the Masarwa, who are, for practical purposes, slaves.
1971 Sunday Times 28 Mar. (Mag. Sect.) 3The people of Dilepe..are not prepared to receive a Masarwa in their midst.
1974 P. Gibbs Hist. of BSAP II. 74The Masarwa — Bushmen from Bechuanaland.
1981 Voice 11 Oct. 13Margaret was teased and tormented by the Batswana children, because she was a ‘Mosarwa’. Many Batswana people despised the Bushmen.
1982 Drum Sept. 34Although Botswana boasts of a democracy, it still has a hangover of a caste system that discriminates against Masarwa-bushmen. In the past they were treated like India’s Untouchables.
Especially among seTswana-speakers: a derogatory name for a member of the San people living in the northern Kalahari desert. Often attributive, especially in the phrase Masarwa Bushman.
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18711982