There are more languages spoken in Africa than you can likely imagine. Nigeria is the world’s third-most linguistically diverse nation, boasting more than 500 languages within a single country, but the expansive linguistic diversity of Africa doesn’t stop there. All throughout the central and southern regions of Africa, we find a myriad of indigenous languages—mostly from the Bantu subfamily—with most countries housing dozens of languages within their borders. Looking at Angola and Zambia specifically, we find 46 and 30 distinct languages, respectively, including languages shared between the two countries, such as Luvale.
Luvale is the indigenous tongue of the Lovale people, who reside in portions of Angola and Zambia. With more than half a million native speakers—640,000, to be exact—Luvale is a prominent language in the area. In fact, in Zambia, where roughly 168,000 Luvale speakers live, it’s recognized as a regional language and is used in education and administration. Unfortunately, in Angola, where more speakers live, Luvale has no official status, though the closely related Chokwe is recognized as a national language. It’s unfortunate that most translation agencies neglect Luvale, as we see it as a precious and important language in central southern Africa—which is why we’re so proud to have our own Luvale translation team.
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Getting better acquainted with the Luvale language
Like many other languages in Africa, Luvale is known under a number of names, including Chiluvale, Lovale, Lubale, Luena, and Lwena. Speakers live primarily in the eastern Angolan province of Moxico, as well as in Zambia’s North-Western Province, where the Lovale people account for 20% of the province’s population, particularly centered in the town of Zambezi. Some Luvale speakers have migrated southward to South Africa, where they’ve unfortunately been known to face discrimination.
Luvale comes from the Bantu subfamily of languages, just like Swahili, Zulu, Xhosa, and other big names within Africa. Luvale distinguishes itself from many of its Bantu cousins in its large quantity of Portuguese loanwords, owing to the language’s historical contact with Portuguese colonizers in Angola, but otherwise, it shares the typical features of Bantu languages, such as the extensive noun class system. Whereas Portuguese features only two grammatical genders, Luvale contains more than a dozen, each associated with its own prefix. Since these prefixes are obligatorily attached to various words in a sentence, including verbs, adjectives, demonstratives, and anything else that might reference the noun in question, a solid grasp of the noun class system is vital to understanding and translating Luvale.
Let us guide you through the complex world of Luvale translation.
Don’t worry—though Luvale’s noun class system may be difficult for speakers of European languages to learn, all our Luvale translators are native speakers of the Bantu tongue and thus can navigate the challenges with ease. They’re eager to help you reach new audiences with Luvale translation services, whether that means translating into Luvale or out of Luvale—we specialize in both.
Sourcing our translators from both Angola and Zambia means we can cover a range of Luvale dialects, perfect for clients with specific translation needs. We can also cater to a diverse array of translation domains—so whether you’re a businessperson, academic, researcher, novelist, software developer, blogger, presenter, or anyone else, we have specialized Luvale translation services for you. And yes, we can even handle technical jargon, since we’ve hired Luvale translators who boast knowledge in additional fields. Informed by their vast translation experience and driven by their burning passion for the Luvale language, our translators are eager to help you with your Luvale translation project—whatever it may be.
Don’t wait to see how professional Luvale translation can transform your project—contact us to get started today!