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[in-dah-bah] /ɪnˈdɑ bɑ/
a conference or consultation between or with native peoples of South Africa.
Origin of indaba
1890-95; < Zulu indaba, izindaba (with implosive b) matter for discussion, affair, account Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for indaba
Historical Examples
  • Well take the grog in and smoke a final pipe or two over our indaba.

    A Secret of the Lebombo Bertram Mitford
  • Cronje stopped and cantered back again, seeming to hold an indaba with his petty officers.

    The Siege of Mafeking (1900) J. Angus Hamilton.
  • Bowls of tywala were handed round, and then, sitting in a half circle in front of him, the indaba commenced.

    The Induna's Wife Bertram Mitford
  • The nature of that errand stood revealed in the indaba then being held between the two opposing parties.

  • The indaba had dropped; but now Pandulu, who had spoken but little before, seemed anxious to revive it.

    Forging the Blades Bertram Mitford
  • The indaba began upon small matters, a recent dispute or two as to the ownership of cattle, or of land commonage, and so forth.

    Forging the Blades Bertram Mitford
  • The ears of the outside attendants were by no means deaf, however, and now they came crowding up around the scene of the indaba.

    Forging the Blades Bertram Mitford
  • As it was, we sat down, had an indaba and a friendly smoke, and parted on the best of terms.

    'Tween Snow and Fire Bertram Mitford
  • And no one was more emphatic than a man who had said very little during the indaba.

    Forging the Blades Bertram Mitford
  • These men,' and I pointed to the Wakwafi, who had retired a little way during our 'indaba' (talk), 'say they will not come.'

    Allan Quatermain H. Rider Haggard
British Dictionary definitions for indaba


(anthropol, history) (among Bantu peoples of southern Africa) a meeting to discuss a serious topic
(South African, informal) a matter of concern or for discussion
Word Origin
C19: from Zulu: topic
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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