All About Kẹdụ

There’s a common misconception that Kẹdụ means Hello.

Nothing could be further from the truth.

Kẹdụ does not mean Hello.

In fact, Hello doesn’t really exist in Igbo because Hello is an English word, and an English concept.

So, what then is Kẹdụ?


Kẹdụ is a questioning particle.

This means that Kẹdụ doesn’t really mean anything on its own, but rather, is short for any number of questions that can be formed with Kẹdụ.

Kẹdụ as What / Who / Which / When / How

Kẹdụ + ịfẹ (thing) = What?

e.g. Kẹdụ ịfẹ bụ ịfẹ a? – What is this / that? (Lit. What thing is this thing?)

Kẹdụ + onye (person) = Who?

e.g. Kẹdụ onye bụ onye a? – Who is this / that? (Lit. Which person is this person?)

Kẹdụ + ndị (people) = Who?

e.g. Kẹdụ ndị bụ ndị a? – Who are these / those? (Lit. Which people are these people?)

Kẹdụ + mbọsị (when as in day) = When?

e.g. Kẹdụ mbọsị Chịnẹdụ na ẹmẹ anwụlị? – When is Chịnẹdụ having a party? (Lit. What day is Chịnẹdụ having the party?)

Kẹdụ + oge (when as in time) = When?

e.g. Kẹdụ oge Chịnẹdụ ga abịa? – When will Chịnẹdụ come? (Lit. What time will Chịnẹdụ come?)

Kẹdụ + etu (manner) = How?

e.g. Kẹdụ etu Chịnẹdụ bịa? – How did Chịnẹdụ come? (Lit. By what manner did Chịnẹdụ come/ arrive?)

Kẹdụ + ka (as / like) = How?

e.g. Kẹdụ ka Chịnẹdụ si bịa?How did Chịnẹdụ come / arrive?

Note: When people meet and say Kedu? It’s short for the following question:

Kẹdụ ka Chịnẹdụ dị? How is Chịnẹdụ?

Using Kẹdụ on its own

Kẹdụ afa gị?What is your name?

Kẹdụ Chịnẹdụ?Where is Chịnẹdụ?

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9 thoughts on “All About Kẹdụ

  1. Eze says:

    Awesome! This is splendid!??????

    Being Igbo born and bred, and having a deep understanding of about 85% of the 40 or so dialects of the beautiful Igbo language, I say that this is top notch work.

    Nkea bụ Igbo izugbe (this is Central Igbo), slightly leaning towards Anambra enunciation, which I think is the best bet for anyone seeking to learn the language.

    Chukwu goziere m gị nke ukwuu, nwaada Lotanna!

    Observation: I like that you are fastidious in your written Igbo. Now if you’d find a keyboard that renders the alphabets: ‘ị’, ‘ọ’, ‘ụ’, and ‘ñ’; that’d be perfect.

    I’ll definitely be recommending this to all of my friends and acquaintances who are avid about learning Igbo (as I am almost always preoccupied and thus, unable to make out sufficient time to coach them on a regular basis).

    Once again, great job. ??

    • Lotanna Igwe-Odunze says:

      Thank you.
      Actually, everything on Sexy Igbo is in Anambra Igbo, specifically, Onitsha Igbo.
      You will not find anything in Igbo Izugbe here.
      That is a deliberate choice.

      We believe in teaching Igbo in its purest form, and Central Igbo corrupts that, so we omit it entirely.

  2. ojagu says:

    “Well this is probably all wrong because I know it can be asked differently but… kedu afọ ole gi?

    If it is wrong, can someone tell me why? Are there more rules (lol)?”

    • Sexy Igbo says:

      “Are you trying to say How old are you?

      That’s Aro one k’i di?

      A rule to remember: just because a question begins or contains How, What, etc in English does not necessarily mean that question is structured the same way in Igbo.

      What-questions are most likely to have a similar structure but even what-questions in Igbo can be quite different from what you’re used to in English.”

      • ojagu says:

        Ah so ‘afo ole ka i di’ is Central.

        Out of curiosity, what does it translate to literally?

        I was confused enough when I saw kedu and gini being used for English ‘what/how’ questions… Then the age question has neither? Is there a way of knowing or is it just trial and error?”

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