Xitsonga is the home language of more than 2,2 million South Africans, who live mainly in Limpopo and Gauteng.
The pioneer translators of the Bible into Xitsonga were Paul Berthoud, his brother Henri, and Ernest Creux; missionaries of the Swiss-French Mission who came to South Africa in 1875.
In 1892, the first two books of the Bible – Gospel according to Luke and the Book of Acts – were translated into Xitsonga and published by the British and Foreign Bible Society. The first New Testament appeared in 1894 and the first complete Bible – printed in two volumes – in 1907. This translation was revised in 1929 and in 2012 it was published in a new orthography. A new translation in Xitsonga was published by the Bible Society of South Africa in 1989.