Kuria in Kenya





Largest Religion

Main Language


Introduction / History

The Kurias live in southwest Kenya where they have the Maasai, the Luo and the Maragoli as their neighbors. More than half of the Kuria people live across the border in Tanzania. Their language is one of the Bantu languages that they call Igikuria. Historically, the Kuria people were pastoralists, keeping very large herds of cattle and growing subsistence crops like cassava, millet, finger millet and sweet potatoes.

Like most African tribes, the Kuria people have historically lived in homesteads made of circular grass thatched huts. The homesteads vary in size, the bigger ones belonging to the polygamists. Having many wives and a large homestead are signs of prestige. Today, the general lifestyle of the Kuria people is changing. They are now involved in cash crop farming, concentrating on tobacco. They keep fewer and fewer animals, as many farmers are selling them to educate their children. With increased population, land is becoming too limited to keep many animals. Cattle rustling in the 1970s contributed to the decreased role of animal herding.

In the past, education was not well received among the Kurias despite the great educational efforts of early mission groups including the Catholic mission of Isibania, the Seventh-day Adventist (SDA) mission of Nyabikaye, the PEFA mission of Taranganya and the Maranatha mission of Komotobo. This accounts for the low literacy rate among the Kurias and the large number who are animists. Fifty percent (50%) claim to be Christians, but few are evangelical. Fortunately this trend is changing dramatically as more Kurias receive formal education. Hopefully education will speed the development of the Kuria people and the use of their language. There is a great need for the New Testament to be distributed and put to use by the Kuria people.

Profile Source:   Anonymous  

People Name General Kuria
People Name in Country Kuria
Population in Kenya 299,000
World Population 875,000
Countries 2
Progress Scale 3.2
Least-Reached No
Indigenous Yes
Alternate Names Tende
Affinity Bloc Sub-Saharan Peoples
People Cluster Bantu, Central-Lakes
People Name General Kuria
Ethnic Code NAB57d
People ID 12876
Country Kenya
Region East and Southern Africa
Continent Africa
10/40 Window No
Persecution Rank 19  (Open Doors top 50 rank, 1 = highest persecution ranking)
Location in Country First 4 dialects are in Nyanza Province, Kuria District. Last 3 dialects in Tanzania.   Source:  Ethnologue 2010

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Enthologue Language Map

Ethnolinguistic map from University of Texas or other map

Languages & Dialects on file:  1  (up to 20 largest shown)
Kuria (299,000)
Languages & Dialects (speakers if known) - up to 20 shown
Kuria 299,000
For Primary Language: Kuria

Bible Translation Status  (Years)
Bible Portions Yes   (1969-1975)
New Testament Yes   (1996)
Complete Bible No
Resource Format
Audio Bible teaching (GRN) Audio Recordings
Jesus Film: view in Kuria Film / Video
Primary Religion: Christianity
Religion Subdivision: Protestant

Major Religion Percent
0.00 %
Christianity  (Evangelical 36.00 %)
75.00 %
Ethnic Religions
25.00 %
0.00 %
0.00 %
0.00 %
Other / Small
0.00 %
0.00 %

Christian Segments Percent
0.0 %
15.0 %
0.0 %
Other Christian
0.0 %
70.0 %
Roman Catholic
15.0 %
Photo Source: Anonymous  
Profile Source: Anonymous  
Data Sources: Data is compiled from various sources. Read more

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