African baby names come from an enormous variety of languages. It has been estimated that there are approximately 1800 languages spoken on the African continent. Given these numbers, our list of baby names of African origin simply aims to give you a sample of the richness and diversity that exists.
In most African cultures, the naming of a baby boy or girl is a very important event. Frequently, events surrounding the birth of the child have a direct influence on the child's name. The day of the week when the child is born is one such influence; others include the time of day; whether it was a market day; what was happening to the family, the community, or even the country; where the child falls in birth order, and so on. If it is twins, is it a boy and a girl? Additionally, a family may wish to express their joy at the birth of a child -- hence an African baby boy name might be Kondwani, meaning "joyful" in the Ngoni language of Malawi, and an African baby girl name might be Folade, meaning "honor arrives" in Yoruban. Religion, of course, is also a major influence on choosing names, as much in African cultures as in most others.
We strive to bring you the most authoritative meanings for the names listed. We have drawn our lists from a variety of sources.
If you know an alternate meaning for any name, please , and we'll check it out.
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