Family-Related Twi Vocabulary | Kinship and Other Related Twi Terms

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Our last lesson under the Twi vocabulary module taught us the Twi names of some diseases and health terms.

If you’ve ever lived with Ashantis, you’d notice how important the concept of family is to them. Given the chance, the average Ashanti can tell you so much about his/her lineage, from his/her great-great-grandparents all the way down to the last grandchild. It is therefore important that we acquaint ourselves with some family/relationship terms to be able to understand them when they tell us about a relation, and also be able to tell them about ours. This informs our choice of topic today.

Join me, as we tease out a number of Twi terms used to identify the relationships we have with people within and outside the family. If you have more relationship terms that weren’t included in the list, please leave them in the comments section below the post.

Okey-doke, let’s start.

Video Lesson

Family-Related Twi Vocabulary

TwiEnglish
abusuafamily
abusuanifamily member
abusuapanyinfamily head
ɔwofoɔparent
ɔbaawoman
ɔbarimaman
agya/papa/ɔsefather
ɛna/maame/onimother
abɔfra/akwadaababy
onuasibling
onuabaasister
onuabarimabrother
agya/papa/papa nuabarimapaternal uncle
sewaapaternal aunt
wɔfamaternal uncle
maame/maame nuabaamaternal aunt
nana (differentiated by intonation)grandparent/grandchild
nanabarimagrandfather
nanabaagrandmother
nanabarima prenugreat grandfather
nanabaa prenugreat grandmother
awareɛmarriage
ayeforɔwedding
ayefoyerebride
ayefokunubridegroom
okunuhusband
ɔyerewife
asew/asein-law
asebarimafather-in-law
asebaamother-in-law
akontabrother-in-law
akumaasister-in-law
akorafoɔrivals
okunafoɔwidow
abarimaaboy
abaayewagirl
ɔbabarimason
ɔbabaadaughter
abanomaadopted child
agyankaorphan
onua/wɔfa ba/sewaa bacousin
wɔfaaseniece/nephew
ntafoɔtwins
ahenasatriplets
ahenananquadruplets
osigyani barimabachelor
osigyani baaspinster
adamfoɔfriend
mpenatweɛdating
mpenaboyfriend/girlfriend
ɔdehyeɛroyal
ɔdɔfoɔa loved one
akoma mu tɔfesweetheart
akɔkoraold man
aberewaold woman
piesie/abakanfirst-born child
kaakyirelast-born child
aberanteɛyoung man
ababaawayoung woman

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3 Responses
  1. Lucy

    Thank you for the informative video. I really appreciate how slowly and clearly you speak each word. It’s easier to pronounce the words that way.

    I have a question relating to how you go about referring to parents. I know in English it’s common for children to call their parents “Mum” and “Dad”. Is that the same in Twi? Would someone refer to their mother as “Maame”? For example.

    Thank you.

    1. Tikya Yaw

      Medaase pii, Lucy.

      Yes, it’s totally normal and common to hear people refer to their mums as “maame”, and “paapa” for their dads. You’ll not hear this much in Accra and other cities though.

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