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Used as a form of respectful address in parts of Africa.

[Swahili, from Arabic 'abūnā, our father : 'abū, bound form of 'ab, father; see ʔb in Semitic roots + -nā, our.]


(in E Africa) a master, often used as a respectful form of address corresponding to sir
[Swahili, from Arabic abūna our father]


(ˈbwɑ nə)

n., pl. -nas.
(in Africa) master; boss.
[1875–80; < Swahili < Arabic abūnā our father]
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References in periodicals archive ?
Hemingway observes that Garrick alone is uncomfortable, writing, "For all his khaki clothes and his letter from B'wana Simba, I believe these Masai (sic) frightened him in a very old place.
We didn't come up the Clyde, Forth and Don on a banana boat, b'wana.
at Iwo Jima, B'wana fending off Mau Mau's, drums in the
Barney, still in his baggy b'wana shorts and baseball cap, is his usual phlegmatic, occasionally very droll self.