Kikuyu, also known as Gikuyu, is a language spoken in Kenya by the Kikuyu people and other related ethnic groups. It belongs to the Bantu family of languages and is closely related to Meru, Chuka and Embu. Kikuyu has been used for centuries as the main language of communication among members of the Kikuyu community. Kikuyu is estimated to have over 5 million native speakers, making it one of the most widely spoken African languages. The language uses a Latin script system for writing and was first standardised in 1922. This form of written Kikuyu has become increasingly popular since then thanks to its extensive use in literature, newspapers, radio broadcasts and more recently on social media platforms such as Twitter and Facebook.
Kikuyus speak the Kikuyu language as their native tongue, which is a member of the Bantu subgroup of the Niger–Congo language family. Additionally, many speak Swahili and English as lingua franca, the two official languages of Kenya.
Kikuyu is spoken in the area between Nyeri and Nairobi. Kikuyu is one of the five languages of the Thagichu subgroup of the Bantu languages, which stretches from Kenya to Tanzania.
The Kikuyu people usually identify their lands by the surrounding mountain ranges in Central Kenya which is called Kĩrĩnyaga by the Kikuyu.