News archive
Zondiwe Kadango recommends Online Dictionary Print
Friday, 19 August 2011 00:24

Under "Recommendations", we added the recommendation letter of Mr. Zondiwe Kadango. Click here to read it directly.

Announcement Rebmann Biography Print
Thursday, 28 July 2011 13:39

Rebmann Biography We are happy to announce the publication of our Rebmann Biography, entitled, Johannes Rebmann: A Servant of God in Africa before the Rise of Western Colonialism. As the author I share this feeling especially with with the Johannes Rebmann Foundation in Gerlingen and with the Publishers, Verlag für Theologie und Religionswissenschaft (VTR) in Nürnberg and Verlag für Kultur und Wissenschaft (VKW) in Bonn, Germany. ISBN 978-3-941750-48-7 (VTR) / ISBN 978-3-86269-029-9 (VKW). The book has 274 pages and the retail price is €19.80. For information on how to order the book, visit VTR online or

Johannes Rebmann played an important role in the history of dictionaries of Chichewa or Chinyanja. Rebmann’s collection of Chichewa-English vocabulary in the 1850s, was printed in 1877 as the Dictionary of the Kiniassa Language. He shares his place in history with Salimini, a Malawian slave who served him as informant. Rebmann and Salimini belong to the earliest fathers of Chichewa Lexicography. Apart from the linguistic aspect of Rebmann’s work, I am impressed by his spiritual characteristics. As a missionary in the Mombasa area from 1844 to 1875, he was instrumental in founding the Church in East Africa and in preparing mission to Central Africa, including Malawi. I am convinced that we all can profit from taking away the veils of history that have hidden Rebmann.

The study is meant as a scholarly presentation of facts and aspects of Rebmann’s life and work. As such it is a monograph and a biography. It taps not only the German literary sources, but also the more numerous Rebmann documents in English.

We trust that the Rebmann Biography will throw more light on the missionary, his spiritual and linguistic work, and his place in the pattern of 19th century relationships between Europe and Africa. Chapter 1 is an introduction, surveying available literature. Chapter 2 pictures the setting of German Pietism that fed Rebmann. Chapters 3-8 describe the course of his life. Chapters 9 and 10 deal with his work as a linguist, particularly as a lexicographer. The two Appendices to the book are especially related to these chapters on Rebmann’s linguistic significance. Chapter 11 reviews the various aspects of his work as a missionary. Chapter 12 is an evaluation of the impact Rebmann had on developments after him.

Online Dictionary celebrating it's first birthday Print
Saturday, 28 May 2011 11:33

May 27th, 2010 was a big day for the dictionary project, because the CE-EC Dictionary went online. Years of hard work were finally disclosed not only in books, but also on the internet. One year later, let's take a short moment to look back.

During it's first year online, the dictionary received a total of 20,232 visits. That's more than 55 visitors each day on average! During these visits, the dictionary was consulted 23,441 times, more than 64 consultations every single day. These are only the successful consultations of course, meaning the input of the user was recognized as an actual entry in the dictionary and the translation was presented to the user.

The online dictionary attracts people from all over the world; visitors have visited the dictionary site from about 100 different countries. Sorting the list to the amount of visitors from each country results in the following top three:
- United States
- United Kingdom
- Malawi

About two third of the consultations are done from English to Chichewa/Chinyanja, the remaining third the other way around. One half of the visitors visit the online dictionary by entering it's web address directly in their browsers (or choosing it from their list of favourite websites). The other half reached the dictionary by means of other sites, the project site about the dictionary (this website) being the most important referer, the Google search engine second best.

That's enough statistics for now. Please note that we celebrated the first birthday by updating the online dictionary to it's newest version, adding thousands of new entries!

If you haven't already, please consider a licence for the online dictionary. The advantages are twofold: first there are no restrictions in terms of usage anymore, so you can consult the dictionary as often as you want to and always receive a full translation. Second, your payment will be used for financing free distribution of hard copies of the Dictionary to pupils in Malawi and Zambia. Click here if you are interested.

Text lecture Dr. Paas about Johannes Rebmann (EN/DE) Print
Tuesday, 12 April 2011 13:42

Last week Dr. Paas gave a lecture at the Johannes Rebmann Stiftung in Gerlingen (Germany).

Click here for his lecture in English
Click here for his lecture in German

Click here for some pictures

Lecture Dr. Paas at Johannes Rebmann Stiftung (Germany) on 08.04.2011 Print
Wednesday, 30 March 2011 08:59

Dr. Paas ist aktiver Rebmann-Forscher. Wiederentdecker des von Rebmann zusammengestellten Wörterbuchs der Kiniassa-Sprache, die als Chichewa/Chinyanja noch heute von mindestens 15 Mio. Menschen, z.B. in Malawi, gesprochen wird. Dr. Paas ist Verfasser des neusten Wörterbuchs dieser Sprache.

Für die Arbeit an seiner Rebmann-Biografie hat er die Archive in Birmingham und Basel besucht und in akribischer Arbeit das Wissen über Johannes Rebmann erweitert und ergänzt. Dieses Wissen teilt Dr. Paas am 8. April mit allen Teilnehmern. Die Johannes-Rebmann-Stiftung lädt herzlich ein.

Eintritt frei. Über Spenden zugunsten der Johannes-Rebmann-Stiftung freut sich der Veranstalter sehr.

08.04.11   19:30 Uhr

Ev. Gemeindezentrum Petrushof
Kirchstraße 42
70839 Gerlingen

Click here to display the location on Google Maps.


Talk at Johannes Rebmann Stiftung

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