Beti-Pahuin peoples

Beti-Pahuin Peoples

Beti-Pahuin peoples

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The Beti-Pahuin are a group of related peoples who inhabit the rain forest regions of Cameroon, Republic of the Congo, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, and São Tomé and Príncipe. Though they separate themselves into several individual ethnic groups, they all share a common history and culture. They were numbered at an estimated 3,320,000 individuals in the late 20th century. Their languages, from the Bantu subgroup of the Niger–Congo language family, are mutually intelligible and are thus sometimes considered to be dialects of a single tongue, called Beti.

Group distinctions

The Beti-Pahuin are made up of over 20 individual ethnic groups. Altogether, they inhabit a territory of forests and rolling hills that stretches from the Sanaga River in the north to Equatorial Guinea and the northern halves of Gabon to Congo to the south, and from the Atlantic Ocean to the west to the Dja River in the east. Due to a long shared history and a great deal of intermarriage between the various groups, distinguishing different peoples can often prove difficult. Nevertheless, a northern-southern distinction is sometimes drawn, or the peoples are classified along linguistic lines.


The first grouping, called the Beti, consists of the Ewondo, Bane, Fang, Mbida-Mbane, Mvog-Nyenge, and Eton. The Eton are further subdivided into the Eton-Beti, Eton-Beloua, and Beloua-Eton.

The Ewondo, or Yaunde, are centred on Yaoundé, Cameroon's capital, which was named for them. They also populate the...
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