Trending: Xhosa

Lookups spiked 8,300% on February 25, 2019

Why are people looking up Xhosa?

Xhosa was among our top lookups on February 25th, 2019, after Trevor Noah employed this language in order to make a joke at the previous night’s Oscars ceremony.

In reality, as a number of outlets have reported, the phrase Noah claimed translates to, “In times like these, we are stronger when we fight together than when we try to fight apart,” actually translates to “White people don’t know that I’m lying.”
— Dan Neilan, The A.V. Club, 25 Feb. 2019

What does Xhosa mean?

Xhosa may be defined as either “a member of a Bantu-speaking people of Eastern Cape province” or “a Bantu language of the Xhosas.” Bantu here refers to “a family of Niger-Congo languages spoken in central and southern Africa.”


Winnie Mandela, 52, who married Nelson in 1958, has two other names that suit her perfectly: Nomzamo, which in Xhosa means “she who strives,” and Mother of the Nation, a title bestowed by the people of South Africa in recognition of her dedication and leadership in the struggle for freedom.
— Susan L. Taylor and Elsie B. Washington, Essence, Jul. 1989

Trend Watch is a data-driven report on words people are looking up at much higher search rates than normal. While most trends can be traced back to the news or popular culture, our focus is on the lookup data rather than the events themselves.

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