Vilakazi Clan Names History and Origin

Vilakazi is a surname derived from the Zulu word for laziness. This surname can be found across South Africa but most frequently in Orlando West in Soweto where former President Nelson Mandela resided.

Clan names give African people a sense of identity and belonging; these designations are known as izithakazelo (pronounced it-ha-kazel-o).

Vilakazi Clan Names

  1. Vilakazi
  2. Zulu
  3. Buthelezi
  4. Mthethwa
  5. Ndlovu
  6. Khumalo
  7. Ntuli
  8. Mthembu
  9. Ngcobo
  10. Nxumalo
  11. Cele
  12. Dlamini
  13. Gumede
  14. Shabalala
  15. Zungu
  16. Mkhize
  17. Majozi
  18. Hlongwane
  19. Zwane
  20. Sithole


Ndabezitha was created at a point when there was no sense of meaning, no point where nokufunwa would end and there would be no sense of ukuqhuthwa; therefore no idea was given as to where or why these events happened; rather there was only an indication of where and when. When visiting, Ndabezitha could be found at various places like; Iintambo was infested with Zimbinis; inqwelo had Zesiseko Senqanawa Zesithathu; inqanawa Zesithathu; Iintloko zodwazi Ngenxa Zofuneka; iinqanawa Ezine Ngenxa Zofuneka; Iintloko Zodwazi nGenxa Zofuneka; Iinqanawa Ezine Ngenxa Zoqala; inqanawa Ezine Ngenxa Zofuneka; inqanawa Ezine Ngenxa ZOQala; Ngephambili ngokunyusa Ezikwe.


Dlamini is one of the most frequently seen surnames in Eswatini (formerly Swaziland), often associated with royalty. The term is an abbreviated form of Indlovukati which translates as she-elephant; Dlamini clan has produced notable figures from various fields including politics, business, education, medicine as well as having an impressive cultural legacy and is well known for their warm hospitality.

The Dlamini clan is closely connected with the Mhushu clan, which has long been ruled by Vhasenzi’s kings. Under King Dimbanyika’s reign in 18th-century Vhasenzi was united under one nation called Vhavenda and that united Dlamini and Mhushu clans together under his leadership to form Vhavenda as a nation state.

This period was marked by political instability and war. After Vhazela died, two clans engaged in a power struggle for control between themselves. When Dlamini I won this power struggle he became King of Vhasenzi later that same year.

Many prominent individuals bear the Dlamini name, including former South African President Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma who earned worldwide renown for her efforts in HIV/AIDS, education, and gender equality issues. She was even listed among New African magazine’s list of 100 Most Influential Africans in 2013. Additionally, Swazi history and culture value the clan strongly as it provides home for talented artists and musicians such as Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma herself.


Ndlovu is an extremely popular African surname which translates to elephant in Swahili, one of Africa’s strongest animals. This term has become increasingly prevalent throughout South Africa and Zimbabwe and comes with many variations such as Ndhlovu, Ndlovhu, and Ndlofu.

Clans are an essential element of Zulu culture and society, and no exception exists here. Their society includes numerous clans that help protect their heritage and identify individual ancestors while honoring achievements or warning others of traits which could cause issues in future generations.

Contrary to Western surnames, African clan names typically reflect family relationships and traditions within a tribe. Commonly referred to as izithakazelo names, these unique designations can provide great meaning when distinguishing family members from strangers.

Siphiwe Gloria Ndlovu is a Zimbabwean scholar, writer, and filmmaker specializing in South African women’s history and contemporary politics. Her works has been published in numerous journals and edited anthologies; additionally she taught at Stanford. Ndlovu’s research interests focus on black women in South African history as well as early feminist political activists like Saartjie Baartman (an early South African feminist and political activist). Ngoni is her birthplace.


Benedict Wallet Vilakazi was an award-winning South African writer of novels and poetry who made headlines for addressing colonist exploitation of black South Africans, the polygamous family culture in traditional Zulu society, daily life experiences in traditional Zulu culture, polygamous marriage practices in Zulu culture, as well as daily life within traditional Zulu households in general. Vilakazi Street in Soweto township bears his name to honor him.

Vilakazi clan names are not surnames but rather an honorific system to honour and commemorate one’s ancestors, which span multiple families. A significant component of Zulu culture and heritage, Vilakazi naming systems serve to distinguish individuals within communities by adding prefixes and suffixes to each root word for that name.

These linguistic features serve to differentiate clans, making the language truly distinctive. Understanding morphemes is crucial as they often have meanings different than its root word and may alter pronunciation making words easier to comprehend.

Compound nouns are composed of multiple nouns or noun phrases combined with an adjective to create compound nouns, such as Dlamini (people who eat at midday). According to Nkosi et al (1994:120), all nouns and pronouns in this language are classified as adjectives.

Similar Posts