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The Nandi Clans: Their Meaning, Totems, Description and Relationship

Talai. Talai (Kuutwo, Talai Oorgoi, and Talai Nandi) The word Talai is believed to have come from root word Tala that means meek and humble people. It may therefore be argued that the Talai are generally meek and humble.  The Talai clan is one of the most respected clans in the Nandi and other Kalenjin communities. The Talai has the lion has its totemic animal. This is the clan where the Oorgoiik family was co-opted into when they came from the Maasai community. Among the Nandi the Talai Oorgoiik are referred to as Talai Kutwo. They are distinct by various praises:

Kaap seet met komi borto gaa. ·kaap tulee kuut, kaap ya kuut. ·Kaap mabeel ame o, che ngoleen kobeel kole kaloch, ngoleen ko-oo kolekamitak ·Talai kotu-peer eng Keben, che kiitu peer chepo katutoon.

The Talai kutwo are the families of kaap Turugat, Kaapsokoon, Kaapmararsoi, Kaapsaneet and Kaapchesang’ whose forefathers are Kopogoi and Barsobotwo. Some members of this Talai community especially from the Kaapturugat sub clan moved to Kipsigis and later to Tugen sub communities. The Talai especially from the Kaap Turugat sub clan do not participate in the riikseet ceremony during initiation rite. The Talai clan normally does not intermarry with Tungo, Kipoiis and Sogoom clans.  The second sections of the Talai who are the original owners of the name are currently referred to as Talai oor mwendo. They called themselves Talai-Nandi among the Nandi community and are have no relations to the Talai Oorgoiik. These include the families of Kaap chesaniak,kaap mugunya, and kaap koiya to name but a few. Among the Kipsigis they include families who have the Lion as their totem.


The Kipkenda clan has the Bee as its Totem and their praises surrounds the product of a bee- the honey. They are praised as:

kaaptangoi boiyo taap korook komeel eei. maiimi, che ngoiim koba go.

The families that makes this clan are kaapmatelong’ among others.

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Content created and supplied by: MissRova (via Opera News )

Maasai Oorgoiik Talai Nandi Talai Oorgoi kaap Turugat


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