Xhosa language

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Native to South Africa, Lesotho
Region Eastern Cape, Western Cape
Ethnicity amaXhosa, amaBhaca
Native speakers 7.6 million  (2007)[1]
Language family
Official status
Official language in  South Africa
Language codes
ISO 639-1 xh
ISO 639-2 xho
ISO 639-3 xho
Guthrie code S.41[2]
Linguasphere 99-AUT-fa incl.
varieties 99-AUT-faa
to 99-AUT-faj +
99-AUT-fb (isiHlubi)
South Africa 2011 Xhosa speakers proportion map.svg
Proportion of the South African population that speaks Xhosa at home

     0–20%      20–40%




Xhosa is one of the official languages of South Africa. Xhosa is spoken by 7.6 million people, or about 18% of the South African population. Xhosa is written using a Latin alphabet. Henry Hare Dugmore helped translate the entire Bible in Xhosa language. Xhosa has ten vowels.

Xhosa is well known for its set of three major clicks.

References[change | change source]

  1. Nationalencyklopedin "Världens 100 största språk 2007" The World's 100 Largest Languages in 2007
  2. Jouni Filip Maho, 2009. New Updated Guthrie List Online