Did You Know Some Cuban People Speak Yoruba, They Are Called The Lucumi people!


Lucumi people are an Afro-Cuban group of Yoruba ancestry. The people who speak Lucumi are the Lucumi people–the descendants of individuals removed from Nigeria by Badagry to earth. 

But Cuba isn’t the sole place with those who speak Yoruba within the world. The Nagô people of Brazil and Aku people of the Republic of Sierra Leone are the descendants of Yoruba slaves. Between the 1400s and 1800s, over 3.5 million slaves were shipped from Nigeria to the Americas. This number accounted for over 30% of all slaves traded. 


While the country Parliament abolished the traffic in 1807, slaves called the Saros began returning to Nigeria from Cuba and Brazil in 1830, while several of them settled in Ghana. African slaves reaching Nigeria from Brazil were more commonly called Agudas. But a serious percentage of them remained in Brazil, Cuba, and America. 

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But this difference isn’t a serious deviation from the language. Thanks to an absence of documentation of the written Yoruba language, pre-colonial masters, and a significant Spanish influence, Lucumi is its own language now. Yoruba, as compared to Spanish, doesn’t have the letters: c, ch, ll, ñ, q, v, x, z. Òrìṣà, a sort of god, is pronounced Orichá in Lucumi. 


An absence of “sh” within the Spanish language is replaced with “ch”. Yoruba is modern and presents some additional language features compared to the old one. The presence of Lucumi and also the closeness of the language to Yoruba may be a marvel. 

After decades, there is a land with a shared origin and shared language living in several parts of the globe. So similar and yet so different. Lucumi speakers everywhere in Cuba and other areas of the globe speak the language besides any Yoruba speaker would. Watch the video below to grasp better.

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