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n. pl. Matabele or Ma·ta·be·les

[Sotho Matebele, pl. of Letebele, member of the Zulu warrior contingents entering Sotho territory during upheavals in the 19th century : le-, sing. n. pref. + -tebele (perhaps from teba, to sink down (in reference to a Zulu battle technique in which warriors would sink down or crouch behind their distinctive large shields), or thebe, shield).]


(ˌmætəˈbiːlɪ; -ˈbɛlɪ)
npl -les or -le
1. (Peoples) a member of a formerly warlike people of southern Africa, now living in Zimbabwe: driven out of the Transvaal by the Boers in 1837. Now known as: Ndebele
2. (Languages) the language of this people, belonging to the Bantu group of the Niger-Congo family
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.Matabele - a Bantu language sometimes considered a dialect of Zulu
Nguni - a group of southern Bantu languages
References in classic literature ?
Imagination has been verified by fact; the King Solomon's Mines I dreamed of have been discovered, and are putting out their gold once more, and, according to the latest reports, their diamonds also; the Kukuanas or, rather, the Matabele, have been tamed by the white man's bullets, but still there seem to be many who find pleasure in these simple pages.
Scientists from Wurzburg University in Germany found African Matabele ants carried creatures that had lost limbs in fights with termites home and licked their injuries.
org/wiki/Megaponera_analis) Megaponera analis , also known as the Matabele ant, preys upon termites by hunting them in groups.
Scientists at Wurzburg University in Germany found that after fights with termites, African matabele ants carried soldiers that had lost limbs home and licked their injuries.
The economy is hostage to Chinese State owned companies beholding to Beijing and tribal tensions between the Matabele and Shona people that predate even the arrival of Cecil Rhodes, let alone Ian Smith.
The detailed biographies of the men studied show that conventional Matabele masculinity - kinship responsibilities, fatherhood and camaraderie - swayed some men.
Scientists described the unique rescue behavior of the African Matabele ants, called Megaponera analis, after observing them in Ivory Coast's Comoe National Park, but did not ascribe charitable motives to the insects.
Mayfair is a perennial favourite venue for the shifty anglers from up north, as we hear reports of giant fish and loaded live wells coming from the Matabele contingent, so the turnout of eighty-two anglers was an accurate reflection of our willingness to travel for a good bag.
IF I were to write a thrice weekly letter to the Mail on the habits of baboons or Innuit kayaks, on the inside leg measurements of Matabele tribe dressers, cloud formations in Patagonia or the Fairisle sock knitters of the Shetlands, would the Mail keep on publishing them?
A newspaper reviewer noted of the photographs in Clark's autobiography, 'There is one, by the way, that we could spare: a "close-up" of black spies being hanged at the time of the Matabele rebellion.
Sir John Norton-Griffiths, better known to imperial and Great War contemporaries as 'Empire Jack' or 'Hell-Fire Jack', had served in the Matabele and Second Boer Wars.
a series of events had caused alarm about the rule of the British over the Africans; these events included the number of Africans killed in the Matabele and Bechuanaland Wars; the continued existence of slaves and slave trading in Pemba and Zanzibar; the compound system in use in the mining areas of South Africa; the uprising of Africans in Sierra Leone; and the havoc wrought by a hurricane and sugar crisis to inhabitants of the British West Indies.