It’s no surprise, then that a bunch of South Africanism have made their way into the Oxford Dictionary.
In a post detailing the additions, Oxford explained things like loan words and words that have transformed over the years. It also touches on some other well-known expressions, such as howzit and ja well no fine.
The post notes
In South Africa, a sandwich is a sarmie; a casual greeting of ‘how’s it going?’ is shortened to ‘howzit?’; and a non-committal, resigned, or ironic ‘whatever’ is expressed as ‘ja well no fine’, pronounced quickly, almost as one word. South Africans call an old, dilapidated car a skedonk, probably in imitation of the bangs and splutters such a car makes; and they describe anything that they consider cool as kif—a word that can be traced back to kaif, an Arabic word meaning ‘enjoyment’ or ‘pleasure’ which was later colloquially used in English to refer to a feeling of dreamy intoxication, as well as to the mind-altering substances that cause such feelings.
We include the list below – as well as their meanings – some taken straight from the Oxford Dictionary, others with a little bit of eish.
Full list of 24 South African words added to the Oxford Dictionary
Not just the nickname of struggling soccer team, amakhosi refers to tribal leaders regarded collectively. We’re kinda disappointed Oxford didn’t mention Kaizer Chiefs, but we’re a bit biased.