“Ẹ kú” or “A kú” is a reoccurring phrase in Yoruba greetings and when it comes to greetings, the Yorùbá go the extra mile! We have greetings for every situation you can think of. In fact, we have greetings for someone who farts – Ẹ kú ìtàdí and for someone messing around – Ẹ kú òṣì or Ẹ kú ìranù!
PEGASUS REPORTERS, LAGOS | NOVEMBER 19, 2023
From time immemorial, the people known as Yorùbá today used to call themselves Ọmọ ilẹ̀ káárọ̀ o jíire (Children of the land where they greet you “Good Morning, Hope you woke up well”). Káárọ̀ is a diminutive of Kú-àárọ̀ (Good morning). For this reason, the Yorùbá are also called The Akú from their salutations.
“Ẹ kú” or “A kú” is a reoccurring phrase in Yoruba greetings and when it comes to greetings, the Yorùbá go the extra mile! We have greetings for every situation you can think of.
In fact, we have greetings for someone who farts – Ẹ kú ìtàdí and for someone messing around – Ẹ kú òṣì or Ẹ kú ìranù!
We have greetings for different time of the day/night:
Ẹ kú àfẹ̀mọ́jú (dawn): 4 a.m to 5 a.m
Ẹ kú ìdájí (very early morning): 5 a.m to 6 a.m
Ẹ kú ìdákọmu (early morning): 6 a.m to 7 a.m
Ẹ kú àárọ̀/òwúrọ̀ (morning): 7 a.m to 10 a.m
Ẹ kú ìyálẹ̀ta (mid-morning): 10 a.m to 12 noon
Ẹ kú ọ̀sán [Ẹ káàsán] (afternoon): 12 noon to 4 p.m
Ẹ kú ìrọl̀ẹ́ (evening): 4 p.m to 6 p.m
Ẹ kú àṣálẹ́ (late evening): 6 p.m to 9 p.m
Ẹ kú alẹ́ [Ẹ káalẹ́] (night): 9 p.m to 11 p.m
We also have the following greetings:
Ẹ kú àbọ̀ [Ẹ káàbọ̀] – Welcome back home
Ẹ kú ilé – Thanks for holding the fort at home (a reply to Ẹ kú àbọ̀)
Ẹ kú ayẹyẹ – Greetings to someone celebrating a happy event.
Ẹ kú ilé dè – Greetings to someone whose close relative has just travelled.
Ẹ kú ìdúró – Greetings to someone standing.
Ẹ kú ìsinmi – Greetings on your well-earned rest. Also, a Sunday greeting.
Ẹ kú ìjoko – I hope you are seated pleasantly and comfortably.
Ẹ kú iṣẹ́ – Greetings to someone working.
Ẹ kú ọdún – Greetings during festive occasions (e.g. Ọṣun, New Year, Easter, Eid, Christmas etc)
Ẹ kù òǹgbẹ – Greetings to someone fasting.
Ẹ kú ẹ̀rín – Greetings to someone laughing.
Ẹ kú afẹ́rẹ́ yi o – Greetings to someone during a cold weather.
Ẹ kú òṣì/Ẹ kú ìranù – Greetings to someone messing around.
Ẹ kú ọwọ́ lómi – Greetings to someone who has just given birth.
Ẹ kú ọ̀rìnrìn – Greetings during the raining season.
Ẹ kú ìgbeyàwó – Greetings to a bridegroom on his wedding day.
Ẹ kú wàhálà – Greetings to someone going through challenges.
Ẹ kú ọjọ́ ìbí – Greetings to wish someone a happy birthday.
Ẹ kú ìtàdí – Greetings to someone who has just farted.
Ẹ kú ìrẹjú – Greetings to someone relaxing or having a nap.
Ẹ kú àlejò – Greetings to someone who has visitors.
Ẹ kú ọjọ́ mẹ́ta – Greetings to someone have not seen for a while.
Ẹ kú ẹwà – Greetings to someone dressing hair.
Ẹ kú ìkalẹ̀ – Greetings to people sitting down deliberating most especially elders or group of persons.
Ẹ kú àfojúbà – Greetings when someone has just arrived from a journey and you want to greet the relatives.
Ẹ kú ara fẹ́ ra kù – Greetings to the bereaved. (My heartfelt condolences)
Ẹ kú ìgbádùn – Greetings to someone that is partying/enjoying.
Ẹ kú àsówópò – Greetings to people collaborating with us.
Ẹ kú àforíjì – Greetings to thank people for forgiving us our wrongdoings.
Ẹ kú ìpalẹ̀mọ́ – Greetings to people preparing for an important event (festival, wedding, new year celebration etc).
Ẹ kú àmúmọ́ra – Greetings to someone showing restraint.
Ẹ kú àdúrótì – Greetings to thank someone for their support.
Ẹ kú àfaradà – Greetings to someone showing endurance.
Ẹ kú sùúrù – Greetings to someone showing patience.
Ẹ kú íkómọ – Greetings to parents during their baby’s naming ceremony.
Ẹ kú ọrọ̀ èèyàn – Greetings to people mourning or in grief.
Ẹ kú ọrọ̀ Ajé – Greetings to encourage a trader.
Ẹ kú ọrọ̀ wa – Greetings to someone for being there for us or in solidarity with us.
Ẹ kú ọrọ̀ ọmọ – Greetings to someone going through a tough time caring for their child.
Ẹ kú àìríni àìbèrè ẹni – A cheeky way of saying “long time no see”. Literally, thanks for not staying in touch and not asking about my welfare.
Ẹ kú ewu ọmọ – Greetings to parents of a new born for safe delivery their baby.
Ẹ kú ireti – Greetings to someone awaiting a good news.
Ẹ kú àtijọ́ – Long time no see.
Ẹ kú ìdárò – I am sorry to see you grieving.
Ẹ kú ìdèlé – so sorry that a member of your household is absent.
Ẹ kú ìgbélé – I am sorry that illness has confined you to the house.
Ẹ kú ìnáwó – Greetings on the money you have spent
Ẹ kú láíláí – Glad to see you after such a long time.
Ẹ kú àbáṣe – Thanks for coming to celebrate with us.
Ẹ kú ìyèdún – Congratulations on your anniversary.
Ẹ kú ijó – Greetings to people dancing.
Ẹ kú ẹrù – May the load you are carrying not be too burdensome to you.
Ẹ kú fàájì – Enjoy your evening leisure.
Ẹ kú títà – I hope your sales are satisfactory.
Ẹ kú ìrìn – Greeting on the journey you have made.
and many more…
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