One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A stringed instrument resembling a guitar, formerly played by the Khoikhoi people of southern Africa.
- ‘A similar instrument, the Ramkie, has existed in South Africa since the early 18th century.’
- ‘The earliest description of the ramkie came from O.F. Mentzel (1733) who witnessed Khoikhoi makers and players of the instrument.’
Early 19th century: from Afrikaans, from Nama rangi-b, perhaps from Portuguese rabequinha, diminutive of rabeca ‘fiddle’.
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