1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: Swahili
  4. >
  5. "Bibi ni Mtanzania"

"Bibi ni Mtanzania"

Translation:Grandmother is a Tanzanian

February 24, 2017

31 Comments
This discussion is locked.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Phoebe735

It sounds like Bibi means different things depending on the region you're in. When I was living in Kenya, I was occasionally referred to as Bibi, although I was in my early 20's, unmarried, and very clearly not a grandma. I was told it was sort of like "lady." I've also heard nyanya for grandmother before as well.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/F4gVSkHp

bibi is a married wife. nyanya is a grandma


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/katherineliew

Bibi is 'lady' or 'ma'am' in Kenya, similar usage to the male word 'bwana'


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JeSuisMK

Consider the fact that bibi means wife in Kenya.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/BaThel01

Can 'bibi' also mean wife?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/the3lusive

Only in Kenya as far as I know.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/rr19034369

BIBI IS CALLED WIFE I AM FROM EAST AFRICA AND SPOKE AND SPEAK THE LANGUAGE


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/LordMansaMusa

Given grandmother is a familial term, is this a naturally occurring sentence? Will we need to infer whose grandmother this is, or by just saying "grandmother", does this imply that it is "my grandmother"?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ngwarai

In Bantu languages , when we talk about relations like aunt, grandma , sister and brother you don't qualify it with "my" if it refers to your relative. It is implied. When you talk with someone close to you , even when you are talking about their father, sister or mother etc, you avoid qualifying it with "your" since it may be considered rude and distancing yourself from them. In some circumstances it is even considered rude to say "your mother" in some languages. Swahili may be different but this is good to know.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Will068

I think it still needs to translate smoothly to english. It needs to be qualified or else it's bad english


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Maike207809

I'd prefer the "bad English" variety if that makes it clearer, or maybe put (my) in brackets.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ngwarai

I agree with you on that. The English is better when qualified in this particular case. What I was referring to as better when not qualified were the Bantu languages and not their English translations.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DouglasKin9

Bibi does not necessarily translate as grandmother. Lady or wife are valid translations.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Duolindua

How do you say: grandmother is from Tanzania?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/the3lusive

Bibi ni kutoka Tanzania.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/machieng

'bibi' means both wife and grandmother. The latter is used more in Tanzania, but both are accepted


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/shrikrishna1

Bibi is Grandmother then what is wife?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/John M.

I think it's wrong, in Kenya we say "nyanya" when referring to grandmothers.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JanetV

According to "Simplified Swahili" where I originally learned the language, "nyanya" means both grandmother and tomato. "Bibi" meant "wife" and in Nairobi we referred to a bride as "bibi harusi."


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/the3lusive

LO000ooL in Tanzania that means tomato


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/shrikrishna1

I asked this because in Hindi Urdu and Punjabi and probably in some Iranian languages Bibi/ bivi means ' a wife'


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/the3lusive

mke means wife


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/John M.

Mke means "woman" or "female". When saying the words "my wife" or "my husband", you're really saying, "my woman" or "my man". Though these are perfectly acceptable ways of referring to one's husband or wife in Kiswahili.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Elin.7-1

As in German.... ;o)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JoeRoution

Swahili is a Bantu language, part of the Niger-Congo language family. Hindi, Urdu, and Punjabi are all part of the Indo-European language family, which also includes English.

So they're most likely just false cognates.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/hazzin13

Actually, they are cognates. Swahili has many loanwords from Arabic and Farsi. Bibi is of Farsi origin; the meaning just changed slightly.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JoeRoution

I forgot about that. You're right.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Bree93799

Wow i didn't know that thank you so much I was reading and thinking "but this is Swahili" lol


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Elin.7-1

Why is this question in the greetings section?

Learn Swahili in just 5 minutes a day. For free.