Kinyarwanda 101

Kinyarwanda Word List

The purpose of this list is to give a rough idea of the Kinyarwanda language. The words listed below are not the most common words, but a broad sampling of words. See the Word Lists page for more details.

English

Kinyarwanda
I

jye, jyewe, jyeweho
you *(sing)*

wowe
he

we
we

twebwe
you *(pl)*

mwebwe
they

bo, ba-
this

aha, aka, iki, iri, ubu, uku, uru, uyu, aya, iyi
that

aho, ako, icyo, iryo, uko, urwo, uwo
here

aha, hano, ino
there

aho, -yo, -ri, -ho, -mo
who

nde?
what

iki?,-ki?
where

-he? -hehe? aho
when

ryari? ubwô
how

-te? uko, ukuntu
not

nta, si
all

-ose, -se
many

-inshi iînshi
some

-mye, -mwe
few

-ke, -keya
other

-ndi
one

limwe
two

kabili
three

gatatu, -hatu
four

kane, yine
five

-tanu, -hanu
big

-nini
long

-re-re
wide

-gari
thick

-nini
heavy

-kuremera, -kuremerwa
small

-to, -toya
short

-gufi
narrow

-gufungana
thin

-to, -toya
woman

umugore [umugorê]
man

umugabo
human

umuntu [umuuntu]
child

umwana [umwâana]
wife

muka [mukâa]
husband

umugabo
mother

mama [maamâ]
father

data [daatâ]
animal

inyamaswa [inyamâaswa]
fish

ifi [ifî]
bird

inyoni
dog

imbwa [imbwâ]
louse

inda [indâ]
snake

inzoka [inzôka]
worm

inzoka, umunyorogoto *(earthworm)*, urunyo *(maggot)*
tree

igiti [igitî]
forest

ishyamba [ishyaamba]
stick

inkoni
fruit

imbuto [imbûto]
seed

imbuto [imbûto]
leaf

ikibabi
root

umuzi
bark *(tree)*

ikirere [ikireere]
flower

indabyo, ururabyo [ururâbyo]
grass

icyatsi [icyaâtsi], ubwatsi *(pasture)*
rope

umugozi
skin

uruhu
meat

inyama
blood

amaraso [amarâso]
bone

igufwa [igûfwa]
fat *(n.)*

amavuta [amavûta], ikinure
egg

igi
horn

ihembe
tail

umurizo
feather

iryorya
hair

umusatsi
head

umutwe [umutwê]
ear

ugutwi [ugutwî]
eye

ijisho [ijîisho]
nose

izuru [izûuru]
mouth

akanwa
tooth

iryinyo [iryîinyo]
tongue

ururimi
fingernail

urwara
foot

ikirenge [ikireenge]
leg

ukuguru
knee

ivi [ivî]
hand

ikiganza [ikigaanza]
wing

ibaba [ibabâ]
belly

inda, igifu, ibondo [iboondo] *(potbelly)*
guts

amara *(intestines)*
neck

ishingo, ijosi *(front of neck)*
back

umugongo [umugôongo]
breast

ibere
heart

umutima [umutîma]
liver

umwijima
to drink

kunywa [kunywâ], -nywa
to eat

kurya
to bite

gushuna, kuruma
to suck

kunyunguta, kunyunyuza
to spit

gucira
to vomit

kuruka
to blow

guhuha
to breathe

guhumeka
to laugh

guseka
to see

kubona [kubôna]
to hear

kumva
to know

kumenya, -zi
to think

gutekereza, kwibwira
to smell

guhumuza [guhûumura]
to fear

gutinya
to sleep

gusinzira [gusiinziira]
to live

-baho, kubana, kuba [kubâ] *(to be)*
to die

gupfa
to kill

kwica
to fight

kurwana
to hunt

guhiga
to hit

gukubita
to cut

guca, gukata
to split

gutanya
to scratch

gushima
to dig

gucukura
to swim

koga
to fly

kuguruka
to walk

kugenda [kugeenda]
to come

kuza [kuuza]
to lie *(bed)*

kwisegura
to sit

kwicara [kwiicara]
to stand

guhagarara
to turn

guhindukiza
to fall

kugwa
to give

guha, guhana, gutanga
to hold

gufata
to squeeze

gukamura
to rub

guhanagura, gusiga *(anoint)*
to wash

koza
to wipe

guhanagura
to pull

gukurura
to push

gusunika
to throw

gutera
to tie

kuboha, gupfundika
to sew

kudoda
to count

kubara
to say

kuvuga, -ti *(saying)*
to sing

kuririmba
to play

gukina
to float

kureremba [kurêreemba]
to flow

gutemba
to swell

kubyimba
sun

izuba [izûuba]
moon

ukwezi [ukwêezi]
star

inyenyeri [inyênyeerî]
water

amazi [amâazi]
rain

imvura [imvûra]]
river

uruzi
lake

ikiyaga
sea

inyanja
salt

umunyu [umûunyu]
stone

ibuye
sand

umusenyi
dust

ivumbi, umukungugu [umukuûngugu]
earth

igitaka, isi [isî]
cloud

igicu
fog

igihu
sky

ikirere, ijuru *(heaven)*
wind

umuyaga
snow

amasimbi
ice

barafu, urubura
smoke

umwotsi
fire

umuriro
ash

ivu [ivû]
to burn

gushya, kwaka [kwaaka]
road

umuhanda [umuhaânda]
mountain

umusozi [umusôzi]
red

gutukura
green

icyatsi kibisi
yellow

umuhondo
white

-era
black

umukara
night

ijoro
day

umunsi [umuûnsi]
year

umwaka [umwâaka]
warm

-ota
cold

-konja, -beho
full

-zura
new

-shya
old

-saza
good

-iza [iizâ]]
bad

-bi
rotten

-bora
dirty

-anda, -ico
straight

-gororoka, -eguka
round

-viringa
sharp *(knife)*

-tyara
blunt *(knife)*

-tiga
wet

-bisi [bîsi]
dry

-uma
correct

-hana
near

bugufi, hafi
far

kure
right

-ryo

View other word lists here