Are you looking to learn how to greet people correctly in the Yoruba language? Or learn how to greet people in Yoruba? This article will highlight the various methods to say hello in Yoruba, which has a similar meaning to “hello.”
In Yoruba culture today, there are no generally agreed-upon translations for the word “hello” in the Yoruba language since it can still be used to greet someone any time of the day(whether in the morning or afternoon, or evening).
There are five Yoruba states in the South-west region in Nigeria’s present-day: Lagos, Ogun, Oyo, Ondo, and Ekiti. The culture of the Yoruba people who speak Yoruba puts much emphasis on greetings, especially when directed to older people.
How To Greet Elders in the Yoruba Language Correctly
- E le o: To welcome the elderly with respect, regardless of gender, orally “E Nle Ma” (or “E Sir, nle.”
- E paleo is a word that means sorry in Yoruba; however, the particular phrase in Yoruba is used widely to greet people who are elderly. It is still possible to differentiate between genders. Say “E pele ma” or “E pele sir”.
- E rora o. means to relax in Yoruba; however, older people could be the form of greeting that is used depending on the circumstance. Use “E RUM MA” and “E ROR sir” to refer to gender.
- E Ku Ishe O: mostly to greet anyone working on something else to draw their attention. For older people, you can use “E Ku she ma” or “E Ku ishe sir” to identify the gender.
- E Ku ikale O: A term used to describe someone who appears relaxed. When surrounded by seniors, you can make use of either “E Ku”ikale ma,” or “E Ku sir” to identify the gender.
Good Morning, Afternoon & Evening in the Yoruba Language
Below are greetings in the Yoruba language used exclusively at particular times in the day. Welcome people:
- E kaaro o: means good morning in Yoruba. You may also use “ma” and “sir” to greet older people. E.g., “E kaaro ma/sir” for males and females, depending on the situation.
- E kaasano means the meaning of good evening in Yoruba. For male elders, use E Kaasan sir, and for females, say E Kaasan Ma.
- E Ku iroleo is an evening of good quality in Yoruba. The best time to use it is between 4-7 pm. For older people, use ma/sir.
- E kaale o is a good evening, but it is used in the evening in darkness, after 7 pm. For elders say “E kaale ma/sir”.
Greetings in Yoruba is a different word than in Igbo country, where hello is “kedu” in the Igbo language. We should learn to recognize and promote our diverse cultural traditions in Nigeria through our language.