Jango // Mom Jango

Notes on Jango (Mom Jango)

Ulrich Kleinewillinghöfer, 2015

The Jango, also known as Mom Jango, are a distinct section of the Vere peoples.

jangosú / jango ~ jangoi ~ jangoyi               Jango person / people
ǹdáǹ jango                                                Jango language ('mouth of Jango')
mi ɔɗú ǹdáǹ jango ku                                 I speak Jango

They mainly settle in an area to the south of the Vere Hills stretching from Mayo Ini in the West to Nassarawa Koma in the East, bordering the western foothills of the Alantika Mts in Adamawa State, Nigeria. Jango settlements cited in the interviews are:

Mayo Ini, Nassarwo Koma, Jumɓaare, Mantunaa, Soncha (= Choncha) , Bambu, DanWumba, Tɛkɛrɛ, Korkai, Gawì, Zaari, Gerta, Kaau Pindu, Garau, Giwaare, Jagu suwa, Vam guiti, Gogura, Tondiire, Layinde

Jango people are also part of the population of Beti and occupy a ward in Karlahi and Shigari. According to the speakers interviewed, the Jango were the populace of the Yola area prior to the advent of the Fulɓe and the subsequent establishment of the Emirat. A number of the Jango people fled while others stayed on and adopted the Fulani language and lifestyle. The mother of the late Emir is said to have been a Jango.

The Jango call their more numerous Vere (Kaadam) or Momi neighbours, in the Vere Hills gɛ̀ŋ́ / gɛ̀nì (lit: 'blacksmith')  referring to the fact that traditionally the Jango (as well as the Kobo, Eilu, Nissu, and the various Koma peoples), did not work iron but acquired metal tools from the blacksmith clans of the Vere Kaadam (Momi) people.
The Jango language, henceforth also named Jango, appears to be neither documented, nor studied. The wordlist collected more than a hundred years ago and presented by Strümpell 1910 may have been the only document so far. The "Were" entries in his comparative wordlist are clearly taken from a Jango speaker (examples).
Jango is considerably distinct from the other Vere lects (see the examples for and the comparative wordlist of Vere languages). Although they share a large number of common roots (see the comparative wordlist), they differ considerably in their respective morphosyntax. The excerpt from the comparative wordlist of the Vere languages below also shows that the assertions in the Ethnologue about "Mom Jango" are incorrect. Jango is not spoken by all the Vere; Jango is clearly distinct from the lects of the Vere peoples in the North of the Alantika Mountains and the adjacent Faro Basin (Wɔmmu, Nissim-Eilim, Kobom-Karim-Danəm) in Cameroon.



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