Spoken in

  • Niger - Congo languages Benue - Congo languages Bantoide languages Bantu languages Lingala




Lingala or Lingala ( Lingala, or Ngala also ) is an African transport and trade language.

It is mainly spoken in the two Congo states where it has the status of a national language. In addition, she slowly spreads out to the South ( including Kikongo language area of the North West of Angola )


Linguistically, it belongs to the Bantu languages ​​, which are spoken in East and Central Africa and in southern Africa. The result is Lingala along the Congo River in the province of Equateur. For the time being was Lingala, originally called Lobangi, the language of the ethnic group of the Bangala. In the heart of the inhabited by these region Ngala, halfway between Leopoldville (now Kinshasa) and Stanleyville (now Kisangani ), the Port Nouvelle Anvers was (re- Antwerpen) built one of the first trading posts of the Congo Free State (since 1966 Makanza ). The three items mentioned were among the first in the lower Congo Basin, which were from 1899 Catholic mission stations. From Lobangi, mixed with other Bantu languages ​​originated in the 19th century, a national transport and trade language.

Translated from the French and from Kiswahili loanwords were taken sporadically. Lingala is one of the Lusengo languages ​​and linguistically closely related to Bangala and Bobangi, with about one-third of the vocabulary has lexical similarity with the latter language from which it originated.


In Congo - Kinshasa 's Lingala, despite the large spread, not the language of instruction in schools. However, very successful literacy classes are conducted by local popular committees with the support of UNESCO inland on a private basis. There are about dictionaries in Spanish, French or English. Since 1970, the Bible is completely translated into Lingala. From the New Testament and the Psalms, there are different editions. Dr. Adolphe Dzokanga by the Institut National des langues et Civilisations Orientales de Paris has written several important works on Lingala.

Lingala is spoken in large parts of the Democratic Republic of Congo and the Republic of Congo and to a lesser extent in the Central African Republic by over ten million people. In the media, the army, the police, official speeches and music, there is a large spread, which has also contributed to the widespread use since the decolonization. Also in northern Angola, particularly in the province of Uige, now many people master next to the in Northern Angola originally spoken Kikongo and Lingala. This is especially true for Kikongo - speakers who have frequent contacts across the border into Congo. It is also spoken in parts of Gabon and Uganda. In the DR Congo has claimed the official language is French and Kikongo addition, Kiswahili and Tshiluba the status of a national language. In the capital Kinshasa, it has overtaken the number of speakers has long been the customary there regional language Kikongo.

Overall, there are more than 10 million speakers, demographic factors strongly increasing.


Niger - Congo, Atlantic - Congo, Volta -Congo, Benue - Congo, Bantoid, Southern Bantu languages ​​, Narrow Bantu, Northwest, C, Bangi - Ntomba (C 40), Lusengo. Lingala LIN language code, one of the eight Lusengo languages.