Totems play a huge role in the culture of the Zimbabean people. They identify the different clans that exist among the Zimbabwean people. Most of the totems are derived from animal names (one exceptional one is the heart totem), which is not an animal but the heart itself. Totems form the pride of each clan.

It is there are about 25 totems, but I managed to find only found 15

  • Moyo (Moyo Chirandu, ,Moyo Sinyoro, Moyo Dhewa)
  • Shumba (Nyamuziwha, Mhazi, Samaita)
  • Nzou (Samanyanga)
  • Shava (Mwendamberi,Shava Nyakudirwa, Shava Museyamwa, Shava MufakoseShava Mutenhesanwa.)
  • Soko (Wafawanaka (aka Ncube, Phiri, Mukanya) Soko Kumene, Soko Murehwa, Soko Vhudzijena)
  • Gushungo or Ngwenya (This is the totem of the current president of Zimbabwe – President Robert Mugabe)
  • Nyati found in Mutare, Rusape
  • Gwai or Chuma
  • Mbano vaera Bere
  • Maphosa/Nungu/Ngara
  • Mbeva
  • Shiri (Nyoni, Hungwe)
  • Hove (Save), Siziba
  • Mbizi/Tembo – Zebra
  • Dziva- Hippo

Myths and truths about totems

*I chose to call them myths and truths because I don’t know which ones are true and which ones are false.

  • People of the same totem should never get married
  • You can’t eat your totem. If you eat unodonha mazino For instance if you are of the lion totem you cant eat a lion

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