Funtumfunefu Denkyemfunefu icon

How to pronounce Funtumfunefu Denkyemfunefu

The meaning and philosophical significance of Funtumfunefu Denkyemfunefu

Funtumfunefu Denkyemfunefu represents two mythical crocodiles (or one, depending on how one looks at it) with one shared stomach. It is a symbol of unity in diversity given a common destiny; sharing. The proverb from which the symbol is derived is “Funtumfunafu Denkyemfunafu, wowo yafunu koro nanso wonya biribi a wofom efiri se aduane no de no yete no wo menetwitwie mu,” to wit, Funtumfunafu and denkyemfunafu share a stomach but when they get something (food) they strive over it because the sweetness of the food is felt as it passes through the throat.

A note on the name and its spelling

Willis calls this symbol Funtummireku-Denkyemmireku. Rattray calls it (by extension from the proverb from which the symbol is derived) Funtumfrafu-Denkyemfrafu. It is not clear where the spelling Funtunfunefu-Denkyemfunefu which MacDonald uses comes from but it is probably meant to be more phonetic than accurate. However, since that has become the most popular spelling, we have also adopted a similar spelling so the majority who are used to it can find it.


  1. The meaning of the symbol was taken from The Adinkra Dictionary by W. Bruce Willis.
  2. The reference to Rattray regards Ashanti Proverbs by R. S. Rattray.
  3. The reference to MacDonald regards
  4. The image of the symbol was taken from the Kasahorow Adinkra Library.

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