Yor·​u·​ba ˈyȯr-ə-bə How to pronounce Yoruba (audio)
plural Yoruba or Yorubas
: a Niger-Congo language of southwestern Nigeria and parts of Benin and Togo
also : a member of any of the Yoruba-speaking peoples of this region
Yoruban noun or adjective

Examples of Yoruba in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Upon her return, the car, nicknamed Lumi, was donated to the J Randle Center for Yoruba Culture and History. Ronny Maye, Essence, 19 Apr. 2024 Oyelowo executive producers under his Yoruba Saxon banner. Joe Otterson, Variety, 16 Apr. 2024 Practitioners of Santeria trace historical ties to the Yoruba traditional religion, whose people have been reported to perform a chanting ritual during a solar eclipse. Eric Lagatta, USA TODAY, 2 Apr. 2024 Veronica is of Igbo heritage, while Charles is from the Yoruba people. Drake Bentley, Journal Sentinel, 17 Jan. 2024 The Yoruba believe twins share a soul; if one twin dies, the other is in deadly peril. Aatish Taseer, New York Times, 12 Feb. 2024 Despite his relative wealth, the elder James Mohammad enjoyed holding court in these types of restaurants, which served the starchy Yoruba dishes of his youth, as opposed to the Euro-chic restaurants in Lagos that his nephew frequented. Elliot Ackerman, WIRED, 9 Feb. 2024 Polyrhythmic drums keep the connection to the earth while their lyrics rise up in praise of the orishas, the deities of the Yoruba pantheon. Helena Alonso Paisley, Miami Herald, 29 Jan. 2024 The dancing, drumming, elaborate costumes and effigies of the colonial masquerade bands originated in religious festivals of the Igbo and Yoruba tribes of Nigeria. Melissa Noel, Essence, 18 Dec. 2023

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'Yoruba.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Yoruba Yorùbá

First Known Use

1841, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of Yoruba was in 1841

Dictionary Entries Near Yoruba

Cite this Entry

“Yoruba.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/Yoruba. Accessed 13 Jun. 2024.

More from Merriam-Webster on Yoruba

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!