Definition of Nuer in English:



  • 1A member of an African people of South Sudan and Ethiopia, traditionally pastoralists and cattle-rearers.

    • ‘These include the Jamala and the Nubians in the north; the Beja in the Red Sea Hills; and several Nilotic peoples in the south, including the Azande, Dinka, Nuer, and Shilluk.’
    • ‘He says, they seem never to be in a rush the way we are and he ends with the words ‘the Nuer are fortunate, the Nuer are fortunate’.’
    • ‘This is as true for an anthropologist studying the Nuer, the Bushmen, or Trobriand Islanders as for a historian who must decide what period to study.’
    • ‘In the example of the Nuer, there is nothing to spend, nor is time passed or counted.’
    • ‘Ethnic conflict had been simmering in Gambella since early December over land and grazing rights between the Anuaks and other ethnic groups, including the Nuers and Majingers.’
    • ‘The ethnic Nuer and Shilluk, who hold sway in the oil-rich Upper Nile province of southern Sudan, are seeking a greater stake in Sudan's new political dispensation.’
    • ‘They both influenced the development of medical anthropology by their abilities to describe and connect the cosmologies, beliefs, and practices of the Nuer, the Azande, and the peoples in Melanesia with those in their home culture.’
    • ‘Oil is the reason the Nuer have become displaced.’
    • ‘The Nuer (or Naath as they call themselves) have suffered greatly from the genocidal conflict in southern Sudan, which alas is different from the recently-reported genocidal conflict in western Sudan.’
    • ‘The south is almost as culpable, wanting leadership, riven by tribal feuding between Dinka, Nuer and others, systematically laying the countryside to waste, and victimising the people they profess to protect.’
    • ‘The Nuer have six parallel lines on the forehead, and the Ja'aliin mark lines on their cheeks.’
    • ‘In chapter two he reviews Evans-Pritchard on the Nuer, Turner on communitas and structure, and Malidoma Patrice Somé on the Dagara.’
    • ‘By its actions after the massacres it has shown its guilt when it went on the media and said that the clashes in Gambela were between the Anuak and Nuer.’
    • ‘Of an early experience with the Nuer tribe he wrote: ‘Strikingly beautiful people, the Nuer were completely naked except for the married women who wore a fringe round their waists.’
    • ‘Rosaldo critiques Evans-Pritchard for ignoring the relationship of ‘imperial domination’ between himself and the Nuer.’
    • ‘A few months later, when fighting with the government displaced thousands of Nuer, they were able to find refuge in Dinka territory thanks to the bonds forged at Wunlit.’
    • ‘The Dinka is the largest black tribe in Sudan, related to the Nuer and to another tribe called the Shilluk, in a group defined as the Nilotic tribes.’
    • ‘Anthropology Professor Dianna Shandy is a specialist on the Nuer, a group entangled in the net of Sudan's arbitrary colonial borders.’
    • ‘The larger mode is the size of very tall populations such as Tutsi or Nuer, and the middle mode is approximately Khoisan-sized.’
    • ‘That sustenance most frequently takes the form of animal sacrifice. Cattle constitute the base of the Nyangatom economy and, as with the Nuer, all of the cattle are ultimately destined for ritual sacrifice.’
  • 2[mass noun] The Nilotic language of the Nuer, with about 840,000 speakers.

    • ‘However, some contrary evidence is provided by the failure of the Nilotic language Nuer to become more popular.’


  • Relating to the Nuer or their language.

    • ‘An estimated 40 per cent of the southern Sudanese are Dinka, while 20 per cent belong to the culturally and linguistically related Nilotic Nuer and Shilluk ethnic groups.’
    • ‘Other, much smaller ethnic groups include Southeast Asians, African Americans, and Nuer refugees from The Sudan.’
    • ‘Akol ran unsuccessfully for governor in Upper Nile; a Shilluk, Akol was defeated by a Nuer rival and later accepted a ministerial post in Khartoum.’
    • ‘After meeting McCune, Machar told his supporters from the powerful Nuer tribe of southern Sudan that his aim was not to control Khartoum.’
    • ‘In 2003, he fought against pro-government Nuer factions for control of Wahdah province, but lost.’
    • ‘He had to overcome intense heat, inhospitable conditions and disease in his pursuit to make lasting records of the lives of the Shilluk, Dinka, Nuer, Nuba and Jur peoples.’
    • ‘Evans-Pritchard's ethnological work on witchcraft among the Azande and on Nuer politics and religion - both East African tribal cultures - was pathbreaking.’
    • ‘These often degenerated into inter-tribal warfare: Nuer raids on Dinka civilians devastated the countryside and undermined Machar's claim to uphold human rights in his area of operation.’
    • ‘Nearly all the payams have Nuer athletes on their teams.’
    • ‘Scroggins chronicles Riek's personal history, including his decision to refuse Nuer initiation rites, and relays the opinions of numerous Riek observers.’
    • ‘As we walked to the open-air worship area, one class after the other sang a psalm or hymn in the Nuer language.’
    • ‘The chorus trades Nuer lines with Arabic affirmations, something that would have been next to impossible only a year ago.’
    • ‘Sudanese tribal language gospel radio has already been going out from the new facility, bringing God's Word to many thousands in Dinka and Nuer villages.’
    • ‘Garang and Reik Machar, his erstwhile Nuer rival, for years locked horns in a furious struggle for supremacy.’
    • ‘The force employed was the local Nuer militia, backed by government troops and aircraft.’
    • ‘After the initial male speakers, she and a Nuer female delegate addressed the meeting, emphasizing that ‘we must go out as brothers and sisters from this conference.’’
    • ‘It would not be inappropriate here to invoke Evans-Pritchard's perception that it was the depth of Nuer commitment to a patrilineal ideology and to lineage models that enabled their mobility and their honouring of matrilateral links.’


The name in Dinka.