The name of God spoken in various Nigerian languages shows that Nigeria as a country has many ethnic groups, cultures and traditions. These groups are heterogeneous and they have different names that they call God, people and creatures. In this article, we’ll outline the different names Nigerian tribes call their God and the respective meanings.
Its no new trend that Nigeria is a multi-ethnic nation with over five hundred local dialects spoken across these ethnic groups. These tribes have their own native language and in it they have their own way of calling God. These names represents how they view God in their language. The names given to God by each tribe or language is not unmeaningful, but rather it has an underlying meaning, usually in regarding the magnificence of God, and also how they view their supreme being.
NAMES OF GOD AND MEANINGS IN DIFFERENT NIGERIAN LANGUAGES
A close look at the different ethnic groups in the country, it is crystal clear that this concept of having a supreme name for God is very common in these tribes. The Hausa speaking ethnic groups largely refer to God as ‘Allah’. But this name though is extensively used by the tribe, it is not originated from the ethnic group, that is why the name ‘Ubangidi’ is the traditional form of God’s name in Hausa. Another prominent ethnic group, the Igbos, take advantage of the title “Chukwu’’ to identify their God. This name means that God is the first being and the originator of all that exists. Also, the Yoruba speaking ethnic group call their God “Olodumare’’ which underlies the fact that God is forever mighty in every circumstance. However, lets know the specific names Nigerian tribes call their God, and their corresponding meanings in English.
Below are the different names of God in Nigerian tribes, and what they stand for;
NAMES OF GOD IN HAUSA LANGUAGE
Hausa language is the most populous tribe in the country, and as such the language is widely spoken by a mojority of people. Though there are many names for God in Hausa, a lot of the language speakers call God “Ubangidi’’ which semantically transforms into English as “the only supreme being’’.
Here are the names of God in Hausa language and their meaning:
- Allah(also Arabic) – God
- Ubangiji – Supreme Being
- Sariki n Salama – Prince of Peace
- Ubanjidi n Dunia – Master of the World
- Mai Taimako – the Helper
- Ruhun Hikima – Spirit of Wisdom
- Allah Mai Iko – Powerful God
- Allah Mai Girma – Great God
- Tushen Rai – author of Life
NAMES FOR GOD IN IGBO LANGUAGE
The Igbo speaking ethnic group is a prominent tribe found in the south-eastern region of the country. These are names they call their God and the respective meaning in English:
- Uba Madu Kaki – Father of Glory
- Chineke – creator of the world
- Ebube dike – strong and powerful God
- Oje na Mmuo – the God that works in the Spirit
- Oputa Obie – one who is the beginning and the end
- Odogwu Akataka – fearless warrior
- Ejide obi esike – God is my confidence
- Echeta Echezo nkpa – he that takes away pain and worries
- Di nwanyi isi mpe – God is the husband of the widow
- Dike na’ gba – mighty man in battle
- Onye gara ije na enu mmiri – he that walked upon the sea
- Obata obie – the God that put ends every trouble
- Akwakwuru – the unmovable God
- Agu n’eche mba – the Lion that guards the city
- Odu ebo Judea – the lion of the tribe of Judah
- Dike na’gha – mighty Warrior
- Chi ne cherem – the God that thinks for me
- Eze ndi Eze – the King of kings
- Oku n’ere ere – God is a consuming fire
- Ebube mbekumbe – Forever glorious
NAMES OF GOD IN YORUBA LANGUAGE
Yoruba is another populous tribe in Nigeria which has a large number of the language speakers. Yoruba indigenes live within the South-Western region of the country. Though the ethnic group has different names for God, but the most popular is ‘Oluwa’ which translates to God in English.
Below are the names Yorubas refer to their God, with their respective meanings in English language;
- Olorun – Lord
- Oluwa – God
- Olodumare or Eledumare – the Almighty
- Adagba ma paaro oye – the God who does not change no matter how old he is
- Alagbawi Eda – the defender of man
- Atorise – the God who can turn bad situations to good
- Atererekariaye – the one that spreads out across the earth
- Atofarati – the God you can lean on
- Awimayehun – the one that speaks and does not change his words
- Asoromaye – the God that speaks and does not fail to bring it to pass
- Awamaridi – the unsearchable God
- Arugbo ojo – the Ancient of Days
- Atogbojule – the one that is dependable
- Kabiyeesi – King
- Metalokan – the three in one God (Trinity)
- Oba awon Oba – the Kings of Kings
- Ologojulo – the most glorious God
- Olorun Awon Olorun – the Lords of Lords
- Olugbala – the Saviour Oludariji – the one that forgives our sins.
NAMES OF GOD IN IBIBIO DIALECT
The Ibibio-Efik speaking tribe is another ethnic group in Nigeria. They are found in the coastal south-western part of the country. This ethnic sect have a long history of existence, and they speak the Ibibio and Efik languages.
Here are what the Ibibio-Efik give their God’s name with meanings:
- Abasi – God; the director of the universe
- Ete – Father
- Abasi Afid Abuk – God of All Flesh
- Abasi Mbom Mmi – God of my Mercy
- Osa Nudazi – the impregnable
- Obot – the Creator.
NAMES OF GOD IN IJAW DIALECT
The Ijaw ethnic group is another one in the southern coastal part of the country. This tribe speaks variants of languages still under Ijaw. Here are the names they call their God with meanings:
- Woyengi-momoemi – God is with me
- Tamarapreye – God’s gift
- Ayiba tari – God’s Love
- Beinmonyo – Fulfilled
- Ayebatari – God’s love
- Ayebabomote – God’s praise
- Ayebaidobamo – God has made me great
- Nengimote – Above all.
NAMES OF GOD IN EDO
Here are the names of God among the Edo and Benin speaking tribe and the meaning:
- Osanobwa – the one who carries and sustains the world
NAMES OF GOD IN NUPE
The Nupes is a Northern ethnic group in Nigeria. Here are what they call God in their language;
- Soko – the creator or supreme deity that resides in heaven
NAME OF GOD IN BIROM
Here is what God is referred to in this language;
- Dagwi– the source of being.
NAME OF GOD IN URHOBO
The Urhobos is a prominent ethnic group in Delta state. Here is what they call God in their language;
- Oghene – the almighty God
Just as there are different ethnic groups in Nigeria, the names of God in these sects differs with respect to the languages they speak. We’ve so far outline the names that some popular ethnic groups in the country call God. We hope we have been able to give you the different names of God in Nigerian languages and their meanings.
6 CommentsAdd a Comment
Ọlọrun means Owner of Heaven (Almighty God)
Oluwa means Lord , in Yoruba Language
A human being can be referred to as lord in Yoruba, eg Oluwa mi = my lord.
However no one can be referred to as Ọlọrun in Yoruba.
What’s of egbesu
Supreme being of idoms
Supreme being of junkun
Supreme being of ebira
What of tapa language