Bemba proverb collection online

When Frank Carey died in 2010, he left behind arguably the largest ever Bemba proverb collection, with English translations and explanations in Bemba. Phelim Malumo started the process of digitalising the collection in 2011. Pierre Lafollie and Antoon Oostveen then worked for two years on the collection, continuing the process of digitalisation, filling blanks, correcting translations, and identifying possible sources that Frank Carey used, notably proverbs described by Stephen Mpashi. They also complemented the collection with proverbs gathered by a number of Missionaries of Africa plus the proverbs of the White Father’s Bemba Dictionary, bringing the collection to the size of 1791 Bemba proverbs. Some additional sizable collections are not yet included in this number; the collection of proverbs is a collective ongoing project, spearheaded by our confreres in Kasama.

We are proud to announce that the first test version of the collection is online. You may search for proverbs by using Bemba or English terms, if you follow this link:

Now we have two vast proverb collections on the FENZA website: Frank Carey’s collection of Bemba proverbs, and the large collection of Chewa proverbs of Toon van Kessel (1065 Chewa proverbs with translations, explanations and keywords).

The search engine is easy to use. Amano maambulwa! (Bernhard Udelhoven)

Photo of Fr. Frank Carey, M.Afr.