Eastern African Names

Eastern African names include those from Burundi, Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Madagascar, Mozambique, Rwanda, Somalia, South Sudan, Tanzania, and Uganda. See also about African names.
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ABEBA   f   Eastern African, Amharic
Means "flower" in Amharic.
ABERASH   f   Eastern African, Amharic
Possibly means "giving off light, shining" in Amharic.
ACHIENG   f   Eastern African, Luo
Feminine form of OCHIENG.
ADHIAMBO   f   Eastern African, Luo
Feminine form of ODHIAMBO.
AKINYI   f   Eastern African, Luo
Means "born in the morning" in Luo.
ALEMAYEHU   m & f   Eastern African, Amharic
Means "I have seen the world" in Amharic.
AMONDI   f   Eastern African, Luo
Feminine form of OMONDI.
ASHA (2)   f   Eastern African, Swahili
Means "life" in Swahili, related to AISHA.
ATIENO   f   Eastern African, Luo
Feminine form of OTIENO.
AWITI   f   Eastern African, Luo
Means "thrown away" in Luo, possibly used for a child born prematurely.
BABIRYE   f   Eastern African, Ganda
Means "first of twins" in Luganda.
BERHANE   m & f   Eastern African, Amharic
Means "light" in Amharic.
BERHANU   m   Eastern African, Amharic
Means "his light" in Amharic.
BONTU   f   Eastern African, Oromo
Means "proud" in Oromo.
BUSINGE   m & f   Eastern African, Kiga
Means "peace" in Rukiga.
CHAUSIKU   f   Eastern African, Swahili
Means "born at night" in Swahili.
CHIMWALA   m & f   Eastern African, Yao
Means "stone" in Yao.
CHIUMBO   m   Eastern African, Mwera
Means "small" in Mwera.
DEJEN   m   Eastern African, Amharic
Means "foundation, support" in Amharic.
DESTA   f & m   Eastern African, Amharic
Means "joy" in Amharic.
ESHE   f   Eastern African, Swahili
Variant of ASHA (2).
ESKENDER   m   Eastern African, Amharic
Amharic form of ALEXANDER.
FARAJI   m   Eastern African, Swahili
Means "consolation" in Swahili.
FILBERT   m   Eastern African
Variant of FILIBERT. It is particularly used in Tanzania due to track star Filbert Bayi (1953-), who set a world record running the 1500 meter in 1974.
FURAHA   f   Eastern African, Swahili
Means "joy, happiness" in Swahili.
GADISA   m   Eastern African, Oromo
From Oromo gaaddisa meaning "shade".
GADISE   f   Eastern African, Oromo
Feminine form of GADISA.
GUDINA   m   Eastern African, Oromo
Means "growth, advancement" in Oromo.
GWANDOYA   m   Eastern African, Ganda
Means "met with misery" in Luganda.
HAREGEWOIN   f   Eastern African, Amharic
Means "vine tree" in Amharic.
HIWOT   f   Eastern African, Amharic
From Amharic həywät meaning "life".
IFA   m   Eastern African, Oromo
Means "light" in Oromo.
IMAMU   m   Eastern African, Swahili
Means "spiritual leader" in Swahili, ultimately from Arabic إمام (Imam).
IMANI   f & m   Eastern African, Swahili, African American
Means "faith" in Swahili, ultimately of Arabic origin.
ISINGOMA   m   Eastern African, Ganda
Means "first of twins" in Luganda.
JELANI   m   Eastern African, Swahili
Means "mighty" in Swahili.
JENGO   m   Eastern African, Swahili
Means "building" in Swahili.
JUMAANE   m   Eastern African, Swahili
Means "born on Tuesday" in Swahili.
KAMARIA   f   Eastern African, Swahili
Swahili name, likely related to QAMAR.
KAMAU   m   Eastern African, Kikuyu
Possibly means "quiet warrior" in Kikuyu.
KARIUKI   m   Eastern African, Kikuyu
Means "reincarnated one" in Kikuyu.
KATO   m   Eastern African, Ganda
Means "second of twins" in Luganda.
KHAMISI   m   Eastern African, Swahili
Means "born on Thursday" in Swahili.
KIBWE   m   Eastern African, Swahili
Means "blessed" in Swahili.
KIDIST   f   Eastern African, Amharic
Means "blessed" in Amharic.
KIRABO   m & f   Eastern African, Ganda
Means "gift" in Luganda.
KISEMBO   m & f   Eastern African, Tooro
Means "gift" in Rutooro.
KONJIT   f   Eastern African, Amharic
Means "beautiful" in Amharic.
LELISA   m   Eastern African, Oromo
From Oromo leellisaa meaning "admirer".
LELISE   f   Eastern African, Oromo
Feminine form of LELISA.
LENCHO   m   Eastern African, Oromo
Means "lion" in Oromo.
LISHAN   f   Eastern African, Amharic
Means "award" in Amharic.
LULIT   f   Eastern African, Amharic
Means "pearl" in Amharic.
MAINA   m   Eastern African, Kikuyu
Means "sing, dance" in Kikuyu. Kikuyu males were traditionally organized into age sets or generations, each lasting about 30 years. The Maina generation occupied the last part of the 19th century.
MAKENA   f & m   Eastern African, Kikuyu
Means "happy one" in Kikuyu.
MARJANI   f   Eastern African, Swahili
Means "coral" in Swahili, originally a borrowing from Arabic.
MASAMBA   m   Eastern African, Yao
Means "leaves, vegetables" in Yao.
MCHUMBA   f   Eastern African, Swahili
Means "sweetheart" in Swahili.
MEKLIT   f   Eastern African, Amharic
Means "gift to God" in Amharic.
METI   f   Eastern African, Oromo
Means "umbrella" in Oromo.
MIREMBE   f   Eastern African, Ganda
Means "peace" in Luganda.
MOSI   m   Eastern African, Swahili
Means "first (child)" in Swahili.
MOTI   m   Eastern African, Oromo
Means "leader" in Oromo.
MUBIRU   m   Eastern African, Ganda
Meaning unknown. This is the name of a figure in Ganda mythology associated with forests and hunting.
MUKAMI   f   Eastern African, Kikuyu
Possibly means "the one who milks the cows" in Kikuyu.
MUMBI   f   Eastern African, Kikuyu
Means "she who shapes" in Kikuyu. In Kikuyu mythology Mumbi was the wife of Gikuyu and the mother of his nine daughters.
MUTHONI   f   Eastern African, Kikuyu
Means "mother-in-law" in Kikuyu.
MWANAJUMA   f   Eastern African, Swahili
Means "born on Friday" in Swahili.
MWANGI   m   Eastern African, Kikuyu
Means "rapid expansion" in Kikuyu. Kikuyu males were traditionally organized into age sets or generations. The Mwangi generation started around the beginning of the 20th century and lasted for about 30 years.
MWENYE   m   Eastern African, Swahili
Means "owner, lord" in Swahili.
NAFULA   f   Eastern African, Luhya
Feminine form of WAFULA.
NAKATO   f   Eastern African, Ganda
Means "second of twins" in Luganda.
NALIAKA   f   Eastern African, Luhya
Means "born during the weeding season", from Luhya liliaka meaning "weeding".
NANJALA   f   Eastern African, Luhya
Feminine form of WANJALA.
NASIMIYU   f   Eastern African, Luhya
Feminine form of SIMIYU.
NEKESA   f   Eastern African, Luhya
Feminine form of WEKESA.
NIA (2)   f   Eastern African, Swahili
Means "purpose" in Swahili.
NJERI   f   Eastern African, Kikuyu
Means "travelling one" in Kikuyu. Njeri (or Wanjeri) is the name of one of the nine daughters of Mumbi in the Kikuyu origin legend.
NURU   f   Eastern African, Swahili
Means "light" in Swahili, ultimately from Arabic نور (nur).
NYAH   f   Eastern African, Swahili
Variant of NIA (2).
NYAMBURA   f   Eastern African, Kikuyu
From Kikuyu mbura meaning "rain". This is the name of one of the nine daughters of Mumbi in the Kikuyu origin legend.
NYONGESA   m   Eastern African, Luhya
Means "born on Saturday" in Luhya.
OCHIENG   m   Eastern African, Luo
Means "born when the sun shines", derived from Luo chieng meaning "sun".
ODHIAMBO   m   Eastern African, Luo
Means "born in the evening" in Luo.
OMONDI   m   Eastern African, Luo
Means "born early in the morning" in Luo.
OTIENO   m   Eastern African, Luo
Means "born at night" in Luo.
SANAA (2)   f   Eastern African, Swahili
Means "artwork" in Swahili.
SAUDA   f   Eastern African, Swahili
Means "dark complexion" in Swahili.
SEBLE   f   Eastern African, Amharic
Means "harvest" in Amharic.
SEFU   m   Eastern African, Swahili
Means "sword" in Swahili, ultimately from Arabic سيف (sayf).
SIMBA (2)   m   Eastern African, Swahili
Means "lion" in Swahili. This is the name of the main character in the Disney movie 'The Lion King' (1994), about a lion cub who exiles himself after his father is murdered.
SIMIYU   m   Eastern African, Luhya
Means "born during the dry season" in Luhya.
SISAY   m   Eastern African, Amharic
Means "good omen" in Amharic.
SSANYU   f   Eastern African, Ganda
Means "joy" in Luganda.
SUBIRA   f   Eastern African, Swahili
Means "patience" in Swahili.
TADESSE   m   Eastern African, Amharic
Means "revived" in Amharic.
TAFARI   m   Eastern African, Amharic (Rare)
Possibly means "he who inspires awe" in Amharic. This name was borne by Lij Tafari Makonnen (1892-1975), also known as Haile Selassie, the last emperor of Ethiopia. Rastafarians (Ras Tafari meaning "king Tafari") revere him as the earthly incarnation of God.
TAMRAT   m   Eastern African, Amharic
Means "miracle" in Amharic.
TARIKU   m   Eastern African, Amharic
Means "history, story" in Amharic.
TENDAJI   m   Eastern African, Swahili
Means "makes things happen" in Swahili.
TESFAYE   m   Eastern African, Amharic
Means "hope" in Amharic.
TEWODROS   m   Eastern African, Amharic
Amharic form of THEODORE.
WAFULA   m   Eastern African, Luhya
Means "born during the rainy season", from Luhya ifula meaning "rainy season".
WAIRIMU   f   Eastern African, Kikuyu
From Kikuyu irimu meaning "ogre, giant". In the Kikuyu origin legend Wairimu is of one of the nine daughters of Mumbi.
WAMALWA   m   Eastern African, Luhya
Means "born during the brewing season" in Luhya.
WAMBUI   f   Eastern African, Kikuyu
Means "zebra" in Kikuyu. This is one of Mumbi's nine daughters in the Kikuyu origin legend.
WANGARI   f   Eastern African, Kikuyu
From Kikuyu ngarĩ meaning "leopard". In the Kikuyu origin legend this is the name of one of the nine daughters of Mumbi.
WANGUI   f   Eastern African, Kikuyu
From Kikuyu ngũi meaning "song leader". This is one of Mumbi's nine daughters in the Kikuyu origin legend.
WANJALA   m   Eastern African, Luhya
Means "born during famine", from Luhya injala meaning "hunger, famine".
WANJIKU   f   Eastern African, Kikuyu
Meaning unknown. This is one of Mumbi's nine daughters in the Kikuyu origin legend.
WANJIRU   f   Eastern African, Kikuyu
Possibly from Kikuyu njĩra meaning "way, path". In the Kikuyu origin legend this is the name of one of the nine daughters of Mumbi.
WANYONYI   m   Eastern African, Luhya
Means "born during the weeding season", from Luhya enyonyi meaning "weeds".
WASSWA   m   Eastern African, Ganda
Means "first of twins" in Luganda.
WEKESA   m   Eastern African, Luhya
Means "born during harvest" in Luhya.
WERKNESH   f   Eastern African, Amharic
Variant transcription of WORKNESH.
WORKNEH   m   Eastern African, Amharic
Means "you are gold", from Amharic wärk meaning "gold".
WORKNESH   f   Eastern African, Amharic
Feminine form of WORKNEH.
YARED   m   Biblical Hebrew, Eastern African, Ethiopian
Hebrew form of JARED. This form is also used in Ethiopia. It was borne by a semi-legendary 6th-century Ethiopian musician who is considered a saint in the Ethiopian Orthodox Church.
YEWUBDAR   f   Eastern African, Amharic
Means "beautiful beyond limits" from Amharic wub "beautiful" and dar "limit, horizon, frontier".
YOHANNES   m   Eastern African, Amharic
Amharic form of JOHN.
ZUBERI   m   Eastern African, Swahili
Means "strong" in Swahili.
ZURI   f   Eastern African, Swahili
Means "beautiful" in Swahili.
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