Glossary of Amharic and Oromiffa Words

In: Locating Politics in Ethiopia's Irreecha Ritual
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Glossary of Amharic and Oromiffa WordsAmharic Words (Also Written in the Geez Script)
Akerari (አክራሪ)

fanatical

Ameleko (አምልኮ)

an act of worship

Ashända (አሸንዳ)

annual festival celebrated in August in Amhara and Tigray regions

Araqé (አረቄ)

home-made hard liquor

Awäleia (አዎልያ)

name of a spirit

Balä (ባለ)

owner

Bäad (በአድ)

alien/not belonging

Ch’at (ጫት)

Catha edulis, a leaf chewed as a stimulant

Därg (ደርግ)

literally ‘committee’ but mainly used to describe the regime (1974–91)

Ihadig (ኢሃዲግ)

EPRDF/the current ruling party

Ethiopiawinet (ኢትዮጵያዊነት)

Ethiopian-ness

Faras (ፈረስ)

horse

Fat’no därash (ፈጥኖ ደራሽ)

a squad assigned to act swiftly when needed

Fiché Chämbälala (ፍቼ ጨምበላላ)

New Year of the Sidama People of Ethiopia

Hadra mäsab (ሃድራ መሳብ)

Singing to invoke spirits

Kärama (ከራማ)

Name of spirit

Lej (ልጅ)

Title for royal families

Mäseqal (መስቀል)

cross

Mäskäräm (መስከረም)

September

Megeb läsera (ምግብ ለስራ)

work for food

P’énté (ጴንጤ)

evangelical/P’éntécostal Christian

Qäsis (ቀሲስ)

Priest

Tabot (ታቦት)

copy of the arc of covenant

T’äla (ጠላ)

locally prepared beverage

T’eq’emet (ጥቅምት)

October

Wäyané (ወያኔ)

rebel

Weq’abi (ውቃቢ)

a kind of spirit

Yäkatit (የካቲት)

February

Zar (ዛር)

a kind of spirit

Oromiffa Words
Aba

owner, father

Aba Gada

head of the Gada institution

Aba Malka

father/overseer of the sacred lake/river

Attete

ritual of fertility performed by women

Ayyana

guardian/benevolent spirit of Waaqa

Conni

Oromo traditional cloth

Delega

trance state

Dhalcha

grey

Dhibayu

libation

Dhichasa

singing and dancing together

Dire

open field

Faji

emblem/symbol/flag

Ferso

a home-prepared beverage

Galma

temple

Gada

Oromo traditional institution of administration

Hora

lake

Irreecha

Thanksgiving rituals

Irrefachu

the action of performing Irreecha

Jila

pilgrimage

Kusa/Fole

child of previous Aba Gada

Malka

lake/river

Malka saquu

opening the lake with prayer and rituals

Mana

house

Mecca

Oromo sub-group

Muda

anointment

Oda

sacred tree

Qallu

male spirit medium

Qalliti

female spirit medium

Qeerro

tiger

Qubbee

Oromiffa alphabets

Sida

sacred stone

Siqqe

sacred stick women carry

Saquu

a ritual of opening the Melka

Tulema

Oromo sub-group

Tullu

hilltop

Ulfa

sacred object

Waaqa

Sky God

Waqqeffana

worshipping/following Waaqa

Waqqeffata

worshipper/follower of Waaqa