Mbum language

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West Mbum
Native toCameroon, Central African Republic
Native speakers
(51,000 cited 1982–1996)[1]
  • ? Gbete (Kpere)
Language codes
ISO 639-3mdd

Mbum proper, or West Mbum, is an Adamawa language of Cameroon spoken by about 51,000 people. Speakers are mostly bilingual in Fulfulde. It is also known as Buna, Mboum, Mboumtiba, and Wuna.

The Mbum are considered the original population of the Adamawa Plateau in Cameroon. However, some histories recall that there were a people already in the area when they arrived there centuries ago. They have had a long and close relationship with the neighboring Dii people in the eastern parts of Adamawa Province to the extent that it is frequently difficult to make any distinction between the two. Their relationship with the Fulani, who entered the region in the early-19th century, is more complex. The Fulani are often perceived as a ruling class; nevertheless, the Mbum have historically participated actively in the states set up by the Fulani.

Blench (2006) considers Gbete to be a separate language.


  1. ^ Mbum at Ethnologue (18th ed., 2015)
  2. ^ Hammarström, Harald; Forkel, Robert; Haspelmath, Martin, eds. (2017). "Mbum". Glottolog 3.0. Jena, Germany: Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History.

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