Mbo, noun

Forms:
Embo, HambonaShow more Also Embo, Hambona, Imbo, Mambo, Mbu, Umbo.
Plurals:
unchanged, abaMbo, Abambu, Mbos, or (occasionally) aba-s-eMbo, Abasembu, Amabambo.
Origin:
Zulu, XhosaShow more Zulu and Xhosa umuMbo (plural abaMbo). For an explanation of singular and plural forms, see aba- and ma- prefix3
Note:
The Pondo and the Mfengu (see sense 3 below) were originally part of the large Mbo people (sense 2), and retained the name ‘Mbo’ for themselves for a period after they had migrated down the eastern coast of South Africa during the Mfecane.
1. Pondo sense 1 a.
1803 J.T. Van der Kemp in Trans. of Missionary Soc. I. 441They (sc. the Xhosa) use shields of an oblong square form..; whereas the Imbo use circular ones.
1828 W. Shaw in A. Steedman Wanderings (1835) II. 262There are four entirely distinct nations, who all speak the Caffer language, and occupy..the coast from the Colony to Port Natal. The Amakosa, commonly called Caffers; the Amatembo, called Tambookies; the Amabambo, called Mambookies; and the Amaponda.
1832 Graham’s Town Jrnl 8 June 96They entered a nearly depopulated territory, formerly belonging to the Hambona or Amapondo nation, which had been swept by the spear and fire-brand of the Zoolah conqueror.
1971 Beeton & Dorner in Eng. Usage in Sn Afr. Vol.2 No.2, 15Pondos,..tribe of the Xhosa fam[ily].., also known as the Aba-Mbo.
2.
a. In historical contexts. A member of a large Nguni people, dominant in northern Natal from the mid-16th to the early 19th centuries. b. A member of a small Zulu clan, a remnant of the formerly powerful Mbo group. Also attributive.
1857 J. Shooter Kafirs of Natal 377Abasembu or Abambu. Branched from the Quabies. Lived near the junction of Tugela and Umzinyati. Routed by Tshaka.
1902 G.M. Theal Beginning of S. Afr. Hist. 301The Makalapapa..lived about the St. Lucia lagoon. South of them was a tribe termed the Vambe by the Portuguese, which was to a certainty the Abambo of Hlubi, Zizi and other traditions, from whom Natal is still called Embo by the Bantu.
1912 Ayliff & Whiteside Hist. of Abambo 1The Abambo, at one time a numerous and powerful Bantu tribe, living in Natal,..included many clans, each under a well known chief.
1912 Ayliff & Whiteside Hist. of Abambo 3The life of an Umbo..was overshadowed by a dread of witchcraft and death.
1937 N.J. Van Warmelo in I. Schapera Bantu-Speaking Tribes 49Before 1815 one would have classified them into..: (a) the true Nguni or Ntungwa, with perhaps a subdivision for (b) the Mbo; and (c) the Lala tribes. But today..one can say neither which tribes are of Lala stock, nor which were originally Mbo.
1949 A.T. Bryant Zulu People 17The Embos..occupied..the flat country between the southern Lubombo hill-range and the sea. There the abaMbo remained (their country being spoken of as eMbo, and they, as ‘the people of eMbo’ or aba-s-eMbo)...At the end..only one comparatively insignificant clan still retained (and does..today) the ancient tribal-name of aba-s-eMbo (or abaMbo).
1972 A.M. McGregor in Std Encycl. of Sn Afr. VII. 381Mfengu,..Variously described as being of the AbaMbo or the AmaLala section of the South-Eastern Bantu, this tribe was defeated and broken during the wars of Shaka.
1986 P. Maylam Hist. of Afr. People 27Both the Mbo and Ngcolosi chiefdoms soon submitted to Shaka. The ruling lineage of the Ngcobo chiefdom..was forcibly incorporated into the loyal Mbo chiefdom.
3. Mfengu.
1912 Ayliff & Whiteside (title)History of the Abambo Generally Known as Fingoes.
1913 C. Pettman Africanderisms 170Fingos,..As a people they call themselves Aba-Mbo.
Pondo1 a.
A member of a large Nguni people, dominant in northern Natal from the mid-16th to the early 19th centuries. b. A member of a small Zulu clan, a remnant of the formerly powerful Mbo group. Also attributive.
Mfengu.

Visualise Quotations

Quotation summary

Senses

18031986