Definition of impi in English:


nounplural noun impis

  • 1A body of Zulu warriors.

    1. 1.1An armed band of Zulus involved in urban or rural conflict.
      ‘The impi, the redcoat regiment, and commando moved to the background; conflict had its locus in the mines, the streets, and on the farms.’
      • ‘They knew, now, the Spartans at Thermopylae; and the sunken road at Shiloh; and the impis at Isandhlwana; and Chuikov's 62nd Army in the shattered factories on the Volga.’
      • ‘That is, until the early 1800s, when the warrior Mzilikazi, who was ousted from KwaZulu-Natal by Shaka and his impis, settled in the area.’
      • ‘It was here where a small garrison of 140 British troops repulsed an attack by some 3000 Zulu impis, resulting in 11 Victoria Crosses being awarded for exemplary bravery - the highest ever in a single action.’
      • ‘The crossing of the Ngoni, one of the biggest tribes fleeing from the marauding impis of Shaka Zulu, coincided with an eclipse of the sun.’



/ˈimpē/ /ˈɪmpi/


Zulu, ‘regiment, armed band’.