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Nilotes (nĪlōˈtēz) [key], people of E Africa who speak Nilotic languages. Among these are the Nuer and the Masai. The most prominent Nilotic ethnic groups live in South Sudan, N Uganda, and N Kenya. Originally from E Sudan, they migrated south centuries ago. Farmers and herders, they became primarily pastoralists in their new lands. The Nilotes are noted for their tall stature. Some Nilotic peoples, such as the Masai, are dedicated to their traditional life and have resisted intrusions by European culture.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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