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Did you know the meaning of these Kalenjin names?

Unajua majina gani ya Kikalee?

Kalenjin traditional wedding(antonytrivet)

The Kalenjin community which mostly occupies the Rift Valley region in Kenya is the second largest in terms of numbers. Like most African communities, Kalenjins name their children in regards to events, character, seasons, place of birth, weather, mom’s situation at birth, time of birth among other factors.

As you might already know, most Kalenjin names start with “K” for boys and “Ch” for girls. But there are also a few variations that do not follow this pattern. For instance, names like Birir, Maina, and Tuwei are still Kalenjin although they are not very common.

Another variation is whereby you find some names starting with “J” for girls and “Ch” for boys.


In case you have been wondering what all these “Kips” and “Cheps” mean, we have compiled a list of some of the most common Kalenjin names with their meanings:

1. Kipsang/Chesang – born outside the house

2. Kibet/Chebet – born midday

3. Kiprop/Cherop – born during the rainy season


4. Kipkoech/Chepkoech – born very early in the morning

5. Kiprotich/Cherotich – when cows are coming home

6. Kipkemoi/Chepkemoi – born at night

7. Kiptoo/Cheptoo – born when the visitor arrived

8. Kiprono/Cherono – When goats/sheep are coming from pastures


9. Kiplangat/Cheplangat – born after 7 pm

10. Kipngetich/Chepngetich – born when cows are being takes to pasture

11. Kipchirchir/Chepchirchir – Mom’s labor did not last long

12. Kipchumba/Chepchumba – born when visitors are around


13. Kimutai/Chemutai – mom’s labor lasted longer

14. Kipruto/Cheruto – when mom went for a visit

15. Kipkorir/Chepkorir – born before sunrise

16. Kipngeno/Chepngeno – born when goats were waking up

17. Kiptanui/Cheptanui – born when someone fainted


18. Kipyator/Chepyator – opening the way(firstborn)


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