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Subject: Re: The meaning of ''Makhaya"
Author: Anneza   (Authenticated as Anneza)
Date: March 14, 2011 at 2:45:50 AM
Reply to: The meaning of ''Makhaya" by Jimmy James Makhaya Thembakako
The word "kaya", with various spelling possibilities, means a house. In English we form the plural by adding -s to the end of a noun, but in Xhosa and many other African languages the plural is formed by adding a prefix, like Ma- of Ama-, to the beginning of the noun.

I asked my friend, who used to lecture in Nguni languages. This is his reply:

" ... naming techniques in African cultures could vary. The direct translation would be ‘the plural of – home’

"I suppose in this instance it could mean ‘the one who represents’ the entire family, clan, homestead, etc. If born out of polygamous family structure, or from a bigger family – could mean that all eyes were on him to represent the whole family.

"Safe to say these are just my views/opinions with no substance in this particular case, however, I cannot rule out any possibility in this regard."

I hope that helps you. Whatever "Makhaya" means, you have a fine namesake in Makhaya Ntini the cricketer.

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