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Group of some 500 languages belonging to the Benue-Congo language branch of the Niger-Congo language family. They are spoken by more than 200 million people in a very large area, including most of Africa from southern Cameroon eastward to Kenya and southward to the southernmost tip of the continent. Twelve Bantu languages, including Rundi (Kirundi), Rwanda (Kinyarwanda), Shona, Zulu, and Xhosa, are spoken by more than 5 million people.
This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise. For the full entry on Bantu languages, visit Britannica.com.
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