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Zulu/Lesson 4

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Uyazi iGoli?Edit

In this lesson, we learn to talk about people and places we know. In addition to this we learn how to introduce multiple people.

Laba abangane bamiEdit

uNandi: Sawubona Philani!
uPhilani: Yebo sawubona Nandi!
uNandi: Unjani?
uPhilani: Ngisaphila, wena unjani?
uNandi: Nami ngiyaphila.
uPhilani: Laba abangane bami, nguNjabulo noXolani.
uNandi: Ngiyajabula ukunazi!
uNjabulo noXolani: Nathi siyajabula ukukwazi!
uNandi: Sihlalaphi?
uNjabulo: Ngihlala eGoli. Uyazi iGoli?
uNandi: Angiyazi iGoli.
uXolani: Ngihlala eKapa. Uyazi iKapa na?
uNandi: Yebo, ngiyazi iKapa.
uNjabulo noXolani noPhilani: Sala kahle.
uNandi: Hambani kahle.
Zulu English
ukunazi to know you (plural).
Uyazi You know it
Angiyazi You do not know it

We can use a similar form to ask someone if they know other places, for example, "Uyazi iTheweni?", "Uyazi iSoweto?" and even "Uyazi iLondon?". "Na" may be used to indicate a question in spoken language and in writing but when the language is spoken, generally questions are indicated with tone. This form cannot be used to ask if someone knows a person. This is because the of "uyazi" part of the verb. The y refers to the place iGoli basically u+i+azi becomes uyazi. Zulu does not allow vowels to be placed immediately alongside each other. The concept of object being attached to verbs is explained fully in a later lesson. We now introduce how to ask if you know someone.

Umazi uNelson wakwaMandela?Edit


uXolani: Uyamazi uNelson wakwaMandela?
uNjabulo: Hhayi yebo, ubani akamazi? Uyamazi uLucky wakwaDube?
uXolani: Yebo, ngiyamazi.
Zulu English
Uyamazi you know him
akamazi he does not know him
uLucky wakwaDube Lucky Dube

Once again the m in "ngimazi" refers to him/her.

  • Yena uyamazi uDesmond wakwaTutu.
  • uMngane wami uyazi iNew York.


A few days later, Xolani and Njabulo are at the mall when they see someone that they think they know.


uXolani: Uyamazi? (Nodding at her)
uNjabulo: Yebo, kodwa ngilikhohliwe!
uXolani: Igama lakhe uNandi, angithi?
uNjabulo: Hhayi yebo!

Here the li in ngilikhohliwe refers to igama. '-khe' means her/his. It is used like -mi and -kho.


  • We can ask people if they know people. - Umazi uNelson wakwaMandela?
  • We can ask people if they know places. - Uyazi iNaturean?
  • We are able to introduce multiple people. - Laba abangane bami.
  • We can say if we have forgotten someone's name. - Ngilikhohliwe

Next stepEdit

Try the Exercise or go the next Lesson 5. Or alternatively, go back to the Index.