Wednesday, January 20, 2016

FEAR OF BLACKNESS SERIES: PART I - Guide to the Ethnic Origins of the Infernal Black Saracen - republished

Afro-Asiatica: An Odyssey in Black: FEAR OF BLACKNESS SERIES: Guide to the Ethnic Origins of the "Infernal" and “Black Saracen”


Saturday, January 17, 2015

FEAR OF BLACKNESS SERIES: Guide to the Ethnic Origins of the "Infernal" and “Black Saracen”

 By Dana Reynolds -  January 17, 2015


Guide to the Ethnic Origins of the "Infernally" "Black Saracen” of Medieval European Manuscripts and Iconography

Agoulant, "Sultan of Sicily" and his Moors attack a Castle in the "Grandes Chroniques de France" Most of its illustrations were thought to have been made for King Charles the 5th of the 14th century. 

"The giantess, blackness, and bestiality are typical medieval attributes of the Saracens.  'Saracens are often portrayed in the epics and in later romances', we are told by Lasater, ‘as tall, hideous, huge, often misshapen, frequently as black moors or Negroes, and usually with eyes as red as glowing coals associated with ferocity’" (Nizar F. Hermes, King Arthur in the Lands of the Saracens Nebula, Dec. 2007).
“ is perhaps not so generally known that a tribe of Bedaweens, called the Dowaser Arabs found in the land of Omar, are also black. Their gigantic forms and sable features distinguish them from their Shemite neighbors and point them out as most likely the Sabeans, men of stature…” (Charlotte Elizabeth Tonna, 1884,  The Christian Lady's Magazine, p. 136).

      The documented ethnic and historical background of Europe's first "black peril" - the “monstrous race” of the Saracens encountered by Christian crusaders - will be discussed in this posting. In the forthcoming posting (Part II) we will again have a chance to address the part of the black Berber settlements in Europe. Most people have little acquaintance with the theme of the black bedouin first called Saracens, let alone the ethnic groups both living and extinct, once comprising the men (and apparently women at times) the European armies fought in Palestine and Europe. Yet, these interactions both good and bad assisted in crystallizing views of black-skinned peoples, and Muslims and Jews in general in Europe.
     Just as the Saracens mentioned above are described as black and giantesque and red-eyed, in many narratives and poems in the Middle East of several hundred years ago, similar people are described by writers. Among the giant black men of the ancient world were certain tribes of the Arab peninsula known as Kayla or al-Ansar, the latter being the majority of “the companions” of the Prophet.  Thus, in the 14th century Syrian Ibn Kathir’s Al-Sira al-Nabawiyya, we find the description of Nabtal-el Harith of the Aus tribe as “a very tall black man with a mass of hair red eyes and flushed cheeks” (Le Gassick, Trevor, 1998, p. 229)  The Aus (or Aws) tribe then based in the region of Hijaz along with the Khazraj (Ghazaraj or Khazaras)  were called al-Ansar, or “the companions”.
       In other proper translations Nabtal is simply described as a huge man of “deep black” complexion with a mass of unkempt hair (though some have attempted to translate it as "flowing hair"). The description of Nabtal is relevant as it supports the numerous other assertions made in the commentaries about the Banu Khazraj and Aus, that the tribal members were often unusually tall or huge in stature and of an extremely black in color. These tribes are relevant to the discussion of Saracenic conflicts in Spain especially, where early epics describe the Saracens similarly as huge, black men.   
     But, before we get started, I must confess, this posting, one of several I have written on the early Berbers and Arabs, was inspired by a youtube video I first saw a few years ago with men of the Adrar area of Algeria.
      The men in the video were very dark, near black in color, singing a simple melody accompanied by canastas they were playing. The melody of the song was familiar, but I couldn’t put my finger on where I had heard something similar before. Then while listening to the television one day perhaps some few months afterwards I heard a song that I knew I’d remembered from childhood on one of my mother’s favorite albums. It was similar to the one I’d heard in the youtube video. I looked for and found the old album  discovering the name of the recording had been appropriately entitled, “Andalucia,”  today better known as, “The Breeze and I”. The orchestra was Mantovani. New Link
     Since childhood I had looked at this song as quintessentially Spanish and presumed the Cuban big band that had playing the song must have adapted it from an older Spanish tune. It had been written by a man born in Cuba, whose father was from the Canary Islands. This same man had incidently also written a song called “Malaguena”, another popular favorite on the album. Malaguena sound
       A few years ago when I saw the youtube video I was still not truly aware of the connection of the group of men featured therein with other still present very dark-skinned Berbers of oases throughout Algeria and Tunisia called Zanata who’d once been a considerable portion of the Moors of ancient North Afric (Byzacium, Tripolitania,  Carthage, Zeugitana, Mauritania), and Iberia. But, discovering the influence on music now viewed as Spanish I almost grew physically sick at the thought that once again something that Africa had given to humanity had been so thoroughly extracted from its roots. As with the music of the Tihama region of Arabia and Khaleegy, the background harmonics and tune shared so much fundamentally in common with music from other parts of Africa of the Sahel and Sudan.
      I thought to myself upon this discovery, “this was the last straw” (as I had probably said to myself many times before). I was absolutely done with the historical hogwash so prevalent in the books I’d been reading that have attempted to dismiss the influence of these men in the invasion of Spain and southern Europe - solely on the basis of their complexions. 


Spanish rendition of the 1237 Battle of Puig  - Valencia (Balensiya) Spain (Period of the Almohad "Moors" and Spaniards). Painted by Marsal/Marcelo de Sajonia (Saxon) between 1393 and 1410 AD. The Masmuda Berbers ruled Andalusia during this period.  They shared Valencia with the Arab Hawazin bin Mansur. Judging from the photos below we can say the dress of "the Moors" hasn't changed much. Immediately below is a photograph of men from the Bechar district of Algeria.  

Men of the Algerian desert, Timimoun - "an old Berber center".  In the 6th century AD Isidore of Seville described the "Mauri" further north as "black as night", while Corippus also mentioned some as being "the color of crows".

      As you can see from this blog I have also come to discover that it was these exceedingly dark and often quite literally black kind of “Moors” that once populated and influenced North Africa, Portugal, Spain, and in fact, much of the Sudan even before the coming of  Islam to that region. Berbers (or Baribari) were at one time by far the vast majority of the Muslims in Spain, far outnumbering even the “Moorish Arabs” or black bedouin called “Saracens”, as well as the Syrians, Turks, Slavs and Persians that also came to dwell there with them in “Moorish Spain.” And as we have seen, in that era Berbers were in fact primarily “black Africans” in almost every sense of the phrase.
       I can no longer find that video anymore, although I see these same men of the Adrar region in other videos.  I believe the person that posted it was North African and may have taken it off for whatever reason. But, today the simple tune of those men of Adrar oasis still rings in my head and I know just by the fact that the musical contribution of these Saharans has not been acknowledged to this day that music must have been just a minute part of their contribution to the “Moorish” world of Spain and that Islamic civilization and culture there that sparked the European “renaissance”.
       It was probably also due to some of J.A. Rogers books I had perused in the 1970s that I first started really looking into the documented history of North Africa and perceptions of the early “Moors” in European and Near Eastern texts and contexts. I was rather amazed as well as baffled to find that the number of ancient writers referring to Moors and Saracens as Ethiopians or blacks was about equal to the number of modern historians proclaiming early Moors and early Berbers were in fact “not really black in an African sense”. And the “Moors” when considered black in these books even today are somehow turned into slaves (especially in books of English-speakers), or their descendants.
       Back in the 1980s I had begun researching my article on the Berbers and Moors, which was afterwards published in 1991 in Dr. Van Sertima’s, Golden Age of the Moors. Since that time and up until now one can still see downright silly statements – not infrequently diametrically opposite of the historical documentation - made with regard to the early Moors - aimed at denying their blackness. This can be seen in passages such as the following I recently read in a travel guide:
     “Incidentally, the word Moor derives originally from the Greek for ‘black’, but the Berbers (unlike Othello) are white when not descended from black concubines”(Lowe, A. and Seymour-Davies, 2009, p. xiv).
      Also, common among European scholars is the inclination to rationalize away the predominance of blackness in conventional artistic and literary depictions of the Moors and Saracens. Thus, the art historian and author of a book called, Christians, Blasphemers and Witches cites a paragraph of an 11th century Christian that speaks of how " the whole black Ishmaelite people followed their whole accursed and senseless religion" then proceeds to make the highly improbable assertion that,  “Christian Iberians would have known that Iberian Muslims were not ‘black’ in the manner of sub-Saharan Africans” (Bristol, Joan Cameron, 2007, pp. 28 and 29). ( One must wonder if the author is referring to culture when she says “’black’ in the manner of sub-Saharan Africans".)

Medieval period painting of "Saracens" or "Moors" and heavily armored European Crusaders in battle.  Some Moors appear to have been decapitated with heads rolling.  Moors or Saracens were typically depicted with headbands as is still commonly worn by modern Yemenites, Tihama people in Arabia and certain African tribes.  
Men of the Yemen, modern Arabia. Even the knots tied on the head bands remain the same. Some things never change I guess.: )
      And, in another work of a literary scholar we have the following text - “… when the word Moor came into currency as a term to describe Muslims, those very Muslims had already been misrepresented as blacks.  As we have seen, in Spain moro and moredo appeared almost simultaneously. Perhaps the physical blackness of Moors was originally meant only as a metaphor for their alleged spiritual blackness ” (Barthelemy, Anthony,  1999, p. 11-12).
       Ironically, while the author may have had good intentions in trying to dissociate blackness with evil and show the folly of early European thinking, his own perhaps romantic and unrealistic notions of whom the early North African were and what they looked like appear to have gotten in the way of his-story.
      The fact remains (and as we have seen) there are many eyewitness accounts of what the Mauritanians looked like, and “Mauri” were most for the most part in these accounts first, a black people in the literal sense for most eyewitnesses of various nations throughout history up until about the beginning of the 14th century. Judging from some of their present descendants and colonial descriptions there is little reason to doubt the depictions of near and absolutely black and even bluish-black men were in part inspired by living Saracens of that age –  however “hellish” their color may have seemed then and now.

Saracen Giants: The Historical Banu Azd in early Muslim Armies

"Issoire" or "Ysore" was Black Saracen Giant dated to around 1250,  He is a semi -legendary Saracen, "ruler of Portugal", said to have terrorized Paris, who was fought and slain by the 9th century monk and former prince William of Orange.

      Geraldine Heng in her article “Jews Saracens, Black Men and Tartars” states “In cultural depictions of Saracens as black (not only giants, but sultans, warriors and other Saracens are singled out for identification in various contexts of medieval English culture as black or bluish-black, in skin colour) we see how an important discourse on colour, at work in the description of the races of the world is in the process of stabilizing in England and Europe in the thirteenth to the fifteenth centuries”  (Geraldine Heng, (2009),  p. 260).
      Many have written about the representation of black Saracens and Muslims in the medieval period of Europe suggesting the Saracen in particular became black or blue-black and an iconic representation of evil during this time when enemies of European Christians viewed Muslims and Jews as diabolical. That blacks came to epitomize evil in Europe can not be questioned, hence such phrases as “black as the devil” or “diabolical blackness” are frequently used in the medieval texts as in relatively modern Western parlance.
      Apparently black demons are said by the 6th century Pope Gregory to have carried off wicked souls to hell (Arjana, Sophia Rose, 2014, p. 49), just as “black Peter” of the Germanic countries was traditionally believed to have been originally a Moor of Spain who used to kidnap European children. Peter, who had apparently converted to Christianity and became Saint Nicholas’ helper in his early folkloric depictions  “frequently held a sack which was supposed to be used to carry bad children off to Spain, once a stronghold of the ‘Moors’” (Sexton, 1999). The custom of blackening the face at festivals to represent Peter is found not only in Europe, but in Dutch and German communities in America as well. 
        The use of Moorish heads in heraldry developed in Germany through the direct contact of the Germanic rulers of Italy with the Saracens. Says the website of the Victoria and Albert museum in London, “The king of Sicily Frederick II born in 1194 in fact took a keen interest in the black Muslim population that had remained in Sicily after the island's return to Christian rule in 1061. He established an enclave for these Muslims near his palace in Lucera in southern Italy, and recruited his musicians and elite bodyguard from the community.” It is the Hohenstaufan dynasty to which he belonged that actually used the Moors or Saracen head as a symbol of their dynasty. Hohenstaufen or Stauf Castle of southern Germany was built by these “Saracens” under Frederick I.

Omar Agoulant "Sultan of Sicily" and ruler of all North Africa, defends his castle from the Europeans. From the Grandes Chroniques de France 13th -14th centuries
     Frederick had spent his childhood in Palermo when Christians had regained control of the city from the Saracens. The city had been known as the "Gate of the Blacks" or Bab es-Sudan. He possessed a Saracen bodyguard of 5 to 6,000 archers, some of whom had traveled with him even to Jerusalem on a crusade (Abulafia, David, p. 147-148). He and his family were fully aware of what Saracens looked like.

Stauf castle built by the Moors under the Hohenstaufen ruler Frederick II

      According to the museum, “The moor's head device was also used in Italian heraldry, especially by families in the north and centre of the peninsula. The earliest known example appears in the 11th century.”  It was used by the Saraceni family of Siena, the Morandi of Genoa, the Morese of Bologna, the Negri of Vicenza and the Pagani of Saluzzo” to name a few. The museum suggests that it may have been used as a pun and that the families were founded by crusaders. It may be also that the Saracens who fought with the Christians and/or Muslims that served Frederick who was Holy Roman Emperor founded such families as well. It is of course well- known that some of the earliest black Saints in European history were Muslim Moors that had turned Christian.

Sir Morien or Moriaan, black knight  of the King Arthur romance was supposed to represent one of the Saracens turned Christian. His mother was a "Moorish princess", whom one of King Arthur's knights had fallen for in his travels.  

Painting of St. Moritz (Maurice) "the Moor" Painted mid-1300s by Meister Theodoric of Prague.) 

      The Saracen colony at Lucera was “composed of rebellious Musulmans of Sicily” who “became, soon after their settlement, the most faithful subjects of Frederick and the chief support of the imperial throne” (Scott, Samuel Parsons, p. 52; Kaplan, Paul H. D.,  p. 21).  Moors had rebelled against Christian rule there.
     According to a recent book about 15 to 20,000 Muslims arrived in Lucera when Frederick was the Holy Roman Emperor. Paul Kaplan in his article "The Calanberg Alterpiece" calls them "black Africans” which would make it likely they were Berbers, but it is far from certain if they were African at all. The idea that the Saracens at Lucera were of mainly black African descent would be just be speculation on Kaplan’s part, as Saracen had been commonly used for early Arabs in that era though it also came to be used for both Mauri, i.e. Berbers and for "Turks" and others, later. Charles II of Naples in 1300 expelled the black Saracens from Lucera. Most were slaughtered or sold into slavery, although some escaped to Albania (Hunt, Janin and Carson, Ursula, 2013,  pp. 54-55).
      In any case the fact that the usage of the Moorish or Saracen head dates back to the exact time the Moors were in Italy and Corsica, rules out the idea that the first Germanic peoples who used them just imagined Moors and Saracens were jet black.
      Writes Sophia Arjana,
Dark-skinned Muslims found in medieval psalters, paintings, poetry and romances are not always monstrous, but their blackness indicates that they are evil…The monster that encapsulated all three of these entities – Saracen, Jew, and black African – is the Black Saracen. This is a hybrid monster, an African (implicated as Satan by his dark skin), Jewish (depicted executing a saint), and Muslim (by the monker “Saracen” as well as by the turban he often wears)”(Arjana, 2014, p. 49). 
       From the above passage and others, it is probably safe to say many of those studying early texts dealing with Saracens have never suspected that blackness was in reality, and not just in imagination, a dominant characteristic of many of the people the early Muslims crusaders encountered. Literary criticism of medieval texts regarding Saracens in recent times has tried to deal with how blackness of the devil came to be associated with Saracens due to imagination and religiousity, rather than vice versa. What the author might also consider is that the Saracen blackness was also indicative of the fact that the Saracens the crusaders often encountered were black – if not always directly out of Africa.
      In a poem called Coeur de Lyon dealing with the Third Crusade of Richard  “the Lionheart” against Saladin’s forces in the late 12th century Levant the king is fed the head of a fat “Saracen”. According to Geraldine Chen author of “Empire of Magic” at one point in the first chapter of “the Coeur”, while the king is being fed the narrative “zeroes in on the black face and black beard of the detached head set off against white teeth that are bared by widely grinning lips” .
      The “romance” of Richard, the Lion-Heart (or “Coeur de Lyon”) is thought to date from between 1250 to before 1300. One of the historical sources for the romance is the narrative entitled, Itinerarium Peregrinorum, which speaks in its 18th chapter in detail of  the battle against the Kurd Saladin and his forces comprised of Turks, Berbers (“Mauri”) and Arab bedouin near Aker (or Acre) in Palestine.
      The name of the chapter starts with the words How Our Armies were Harassed much by the Turks….
     Part of it has been translated as follows:
It was now nearly nine o'clock, when there appeared a large body of the Turks, 10,000 strong, coming down upon us at full charge, and throwing darts and arrows, as fast as they could, while they mingled their voices in one horrible yell. There followed after them an infernal race of men, of black colour, and bearing a suitable appellation, expressive of their blackness. With them also were the Saracens, who live in the desert, called Bedouins: they are a savage race of men, blacker than soot; they fight on foot, and carry a bow, quiver, and round shield, and are a light and active race. These men dauntlessly attacked our army.” From the Itinerarium Peregrinorum et Gesta Regis Ricardi) (a Latin narrative of the historical events in Palestine during the Third Crusade,1189-1192)
     The historical events here narrated of a battle against Saladin’s army takes place in the Levant of northern Palestine (now Israel) near Acre. The chapters are thought to have been compiled between 1217 and 1222, which is not long after the battle was chronicled in the 1190s by a soldier or crusader (it is believed) in King Richard’s forces. The “infernal” black men named after their color or whose name was “expressive of their blackness” are of course the Moors whose name is related to the word “maurus”, meaning “black” in the Latin dialects. These Moors are the same as the Berbers who along with other “black Africans” made up “the backbone” of the Fatimid army under Saladin (Lev, Yaacov, 1999, ).  They are men of Masmuda (whom are called black Africans by Nasir Khusrau) and of Kutama stock (the once Christian ancient Mucateni or Ucutamani Mauri) now known as Imakitan Tuareg.

    The other group, however, are black bedouins originating in the Arabian peninsula better known as the Saracens. In this early period Berbers and Arabs are distinguishable and therefore distinguished in name from each other.

Members of the once powerful "blacker than soot" Tarabin (or Terabeen) tribe still roam the desert of Negev and Sinai, their ancient homeland.

Members of the Hanajira bedouin clan of Beersheba (Israel/Palestine) pose with a Palestinian leader in European attire. Circa 1920.

Photo of an Arab man of "Old Iraq"  -   The Arab Press service in 2008 posted an article entitled "Iraq's Blacks", which says, "There are two main categories of blacks in Iraq, mostly in the south, who total about 300,000: those of whom are East African in origin and number about 100,000 and those of whom are Arab and originate from the Hijaz... The latter are mostly from the Muntafek tribe... Many of them having inter-married with the locals and thus the colour of their skin has been changed..." APS DIPLOMAT Redrawing the Islamic Map, 2008.
     Several centuries ago the lead Arab grammarian wrote “…the Arabs describe their color as black and they describe the color of the non-Arab Persians as red. Assertion of 13th c. grammarian Ibn Manzur (or Mandhur), in Lisaan al Arab, Vol. 4.

     The Arabs and Berbers when they weren’t in conflicts amongst themselves were often in power struggles in various places with Kurds from Iraq, the Seljuks, Turks, Tartars and other Central Asians who in fact also held the reigns of power in places often thought of as Persian and Middle Eastern at various periods. Certainly most of the paintings depicting so-called Arabs were actually of these non-Arab people who for good reason bear resemblance both physically, but culturally not only to Central Asians, but sometimes populations of Far Eastern extraction.

Because of the Arab script used by peoples of Iraq, historians are inclined to call the people depicted herein "Arabs". A Baghdadi named Yahya ibn Mahmud painted this group of people of obviously Turkman or Turkoman origins, probably his own people then in control of Iraq and Syria.  This is the Abbasid period when people of Turkish and Turko-Persian origin had taken over control the former Arab caliphate of the Ummayads. As is obvious from the painting the people depicted probably have of Turkoman or "Mongol" origin in Central Asia. From the Turkoman rulers of Central Asia issued many of the early Moguls of India and Shahs of Persia and the ruling class of the Abbasids - former slave-soldiers of the Arabs.

The above painting of a slave market in Zabid in Yemen was produced in Iraq by the same person that painted the one above it. It  may suggest many people north of Arabia including Yahyah, the painter himself, didn't know what Arabians looked like, or else it may have been meant to reflect the Persian presence in the region of Yemen. 

  Young  children in Zebid in the Tihama of Yemen do traditional Arab dance with customary headbands which appear in European depictions of the Saracens. The Yemen was once referred to as within the 1st and 2nd zones of the Sudan. 


A painting again with Arabic script from Tabriz (Persia) depicts angels helping at the birth of the Prophet Muhammed of the Quraishi. Countless Central Asian depictions appear in books on the Middle East purporting to show Arabs. Almost all of them look like the Central Asians who produced them, but the early Arabs were people of AfroAsiatic origin, not Central Asians, nor even Syrians. 

    The people who were genuine Arabs themselves rarely depicted the human figure as it was considered taboo among the early true semitic bedouin especially to depict the human image. Most of the paintings like the above that are supposedly of Arab events or individuals for the most part were not Arabs, but depictions of the peoples in charge that authorized them in a period where Arabs had already lost control and influence in many parts of the Middle East.

Some modern bedouin boys of Israel/Palestine, probably remnants of the original bedouin Arab peoples

     The Arab tribes in Palestine for example the Kilab of the Beni Amer bin Zsa Zsa were often the sheiks or chiefs from the bedouin tribes that were vassals of the Turks carving out their own principalities. They had taken over Aleppo in 1060, but lost it to the Turks in 1079 for example. The Turks however were coming from another part of the world, and certainly not from the deserts of Syro-Arabia. They are also evidently not characterized as either Moors and Saracens in this period as were Muslims in general in a later period.
     Until the 13th century not all but numerous texts speak of  Saracens as black, and they are depicted as such in paintings. And, these portrayals can’t be simply regarded as the result of the widespread belief that blackness was the equivalent of evil.   Geraldine Heng presumes, “Saracens are depicted as black because of their infernal religion…” (Heng, 2009, p. 260). But this obviously is only partially true.
       Debra Strickland writes of certain Saracen depictions “if the implications of the argument for a Saracen/Ethiopian hybrid are carried to their extreme given the general prevalence of dark skin and distorted features in pejorative representation, there must also be many Jew /Ethiopian and Tartar/Ethiopian hybrids (figs. 39, 41/plate 10, 43, 16, 1100). So unless we are to consider all of these portraits as representatives of persons who are ‘‘part Ethiopian’, which would be unjustifiable on contextual grounds, then this concept must be abondoned…. I suggest that what representations of Saracen/Ethiopian “ hybrids” actually reveal is the extent to which a common pejorative visual vocabulary is applied across different enemy types: this is why demons, Jews, Ethiopians, Saracens, and other negative figures are all at various times portrayed with dark skin as well as with a number of other physiognomical features which are the ongoing concern of this study.” (p. 173)
      Though it is not certain that an Ethiopian, Saracen or even most Jews in the earliest period could have logically been portrayed other than dark, at the same time it can be understood why the enemies of Christianity and their color could have come to conceive such people as “negative”, demonic or monstrous.  
      In any case it is clear seemingly elaborate depictions were in fact just a reflection in many cases of the enemy people as they were  - black in color and frequently “giants” in stature. The literary trope, or motif of gigantic black Saracens and even Jewish black Saracen giants is doubtless based largely on fact, on empirical or eyewitness observation that began early, even before the period of the neo-Roman or Byzantines like Corippus who in the 6th century spoke of Antalas, leader of the Mauri or “Berbers”of  Tunisia (Byzacena) “and his gathered warriors in similarly infernal terms: 'black faces filled up the tents –just as they say Dis, provoking a battle with the gods …” (Conant, S. 2012,  p. 271).
      This “Dis” was Dis Pater a Roman God deity associated with the underworld. As Encyclopedia Britannica on-line puts it, a God of the “infernal regions”, similar to Hades. 
      Another author has commented on old texts. In The Old English "Lives of St Margaret" we read “vidit alium diabolum sedentem ut homo niger habens manus suas ad genua conligatus.: … Although Seynt Mergrete itself does not explicitly state that Sarracens are black, black skin is an attribute of Saracens in texts surrounding the saint’s legend.  Thus, a readerly context of black Saracens has been established by the manuscript. Imaginary devils and racial characteristics are thus separated out from each other in Auchinleck, and skin color marks human rather than supernatural enmity to Christianity”(Calkin, Siobhain bly, 2013, p. 141).
     Calkin in fact asserts that a number of texts regarding the Saracens clearly point out the fact that the Saracens as not just monstrous demons, but human enemies with black skin.

 "Four Auchinleck texts, Pe King of Tars, Seynt Katerine, Guy of Warwick (Couplet Version) and Guy of Warwick (stanzaic continuation) explicitly identify Saracens as black-skinned people. Thus, in Auchinleck, an association of Saracenness with black skin color is found at a number of points.  These identifications help to show how the Saracen persecutors in Seynt Mergrete rewrite other tales of the saint that link black skin to the supernatural and the fantastic.  …What we see in Auchinleck, then is a movement away from a depiction of black men as supernatural, hellish persecutors of Christians and towards a depiction of black men as human, earthly persecutors of Christians.  This is completely understandable in a post-Crusade western manuscript. As narratives of the crusade had made clear in the centuries preceding Auchinleck’s compilation, earthly, black-skinned enemies of Christians did exist.  Accordingly, the rewriting of the devil found in the Auchinleck Seynt Mergrete asserts that black-skinned opponents of Christianity are not fantastical imaginings on the level of dragons, but rather historical facts...                                                                                                                       Geographic locations also link the Saracen persecutors in these hagiographic legends to historical Muslim-Christian conflict.  The two saints in these Auchinleck tales are persecuted in Alexandria and Antioch, places that evoke crusading events and contexts” (Calkin, Siobhain Bly, 2013, p. 151).
The Saracen Arabians in Antioch (12th century) are besieged by crusaders in this medieval depiction.         In Sicily an army of “Saracens” had arrived directly from the Iberian peninsula in the year 831 capturing various locations including Palermo. By the 860s they were ravaging other towns in southern Italy. The 9th century Celtic monk Sedulius Scotus penned a letter to an early southern Italian ruler speaking of how in their battle against the "black" faced Saracens that “in their black mouths”, their tongues were "stuck" in their throats out of fear. Clearly the black–skinned Saracens of this period were a historical people, and not looking very much like southern Italians or other modern Mediterraneans either. : )
      It is perhaps the ignorance of the historical and empirical bases of such depictions of Saracens, like the narratives surrounding the curse of Ham and Canaan, that appears to have blemished the study of iconic images of the Saracen. As we have seen and shall see again it is very likely the outward physical appearance of the early Berber and Arab tribes that fought against the Franks or Normans in Spain and Italy, the Levant and North Africa, which played the primary role or influence in this portrayal of the Saracen.
     We can end this portion here with a reference to the writer of a book quite appropriately and ironically entitled, European History “for Dummies” a book apparently that is part of the "For Dummies" series commercially promoted in the United States and Britain. It has the name Dr. and Ph.D. as part of author’s name on the front cover. In it a passage explains Who were the Moors? typed in bold. Below this bolded question is the following.
The Romans called the sallow-skinned people of North Africa Mauri and named their homeland ‘Mauretania’. The Mauri were conquered by the Arabs in the seventh century, became Muslim, invaded Spain and turned it into an Islamic caliphate. .. The Europeans called all these people ‘Moors’, just as the Arabs called all Crusaders ‘Franks’, whatever their nationality. Some of these ‘Moors’ had black skin, and soon the Europeans began to connect all “Moors’ with black skin. Shakespeare’s Othello, the Moor of Venice, is constantly described as a black man, even though that meant he probably wasn’t actually of Mauri ‘Moorish’ stock at all.
       The passage above speaks for itself. Usually, one can find Europeans with “Ph.Ds” in literature just trying to suggest that Othello in Shakespeare’s mind wasn’t really dark in the “black African” sense of the word at all, but sallow i.e. pale tan or yellowish. But in this case the author is supposed to be a historian and is saying Othello is definitely black, and thus probably wasn’t a Moor after all!?
      And one definitely has to be a dummy to believe that. : (
      At times such statements from established scholarship in the West make me ponder a character in an old popular fairy tale by Hans Christian Anderson (b. 1805) called the Emperor’s New Clothes. In the tale an emperor didn’t want to believe he wasn’t wearing clothes and sometimes strode pompously through his kingdom in front of his subjects thinking he was in his finest habits. Nobody wanted to tell the emperor that he wasn’t wearing any clothes and was in fact completely naked. The emperor however was just so certain he was looking wonderful, only to find out he’d only been living a lie he’d accepted to make himself look better than everyone else in his kingdom. : (

Saracens and Black Giants: Banu Tayye and the people of Azd in Muslim Armies

Some of the lesser modified still lightly-built Banu Tayy' bedouin of the Arabian peninsula. Brethren of Madhhij and other of the original Yemenites (Qahtan). Most Arab tribes of the present day display mixture with the "red" or fair-skinned people they have lived amongst and intermixed with. However Ibn Manzur and the Chinese manuscripts inform us that most Arabs in the time up until the early Middle Ages, unlike today, were  "kinky haired" and near black (akhdar or sumra), when not blue-black. 

      In order to understand exactly where the conception of giant black men on horseback that appear so frequently in medieval iconography originated, again one has to refer back to peoples of the Arabian peninsula, and the true roots of the people presently represented in least modified form mostly by the Dawasir or Dosari (Dhu Shari) in Yamamah, Wadi Baish and Kanawna. These are the remnants of the people in the peninsula early on known in history as the Azd.
      The European perception of black and monstrous giants may partly be a reflection of their history long before the Muslim prophet Muhammed arrived on the historical scene. They figure in the the texts previous to  the birth of Islam of Middle and Near Eastern and Persian authors, which speak of Philistines, Emim, Amalekites and the Anakim of Canaan as giant ancestors of accursed blacks.
        In this blogspot we have spoken over and over again of the historical Arabian Azd clans of the Tihama, Asir and Wadi Kanawna or Qanawna (valley or lowland of the Kana’ani) and about the documented appearance of their later descendants further north in the Tihama Hijaz (or region of Mecca and Medina) who figure as black people, huge in stature.
     This Kanawna area was as shown in this blogpost and as first pointed out by Kamal Salibi in his Bible Came from Arabia, the probable region referred to in the Torah or Pentateuch as “Canaan”, a land that was next door to “Kush”.  It has been shown that both of these regions were historical places in the southwest of the Arabian peninsula, which like much of the rest of peninsula, was still considered by some writers part of “Bilad es-Sudan” in the Middle Ages due to the complexion of its people.*
      In fact in an earlier part of the blog at the beginning of 2012, I mentioned that according to Jan Retso, Ibn Mudjawir of the 13th centry claimed part of this same southwest region was called Kush. Retso in footnotes to a chapter entitled, The Old Testament noted “the southern Tihama (from Mecca southwards) was called Kus (Ibn Mugawir, Tarikh, 83) by some (the inhabitants of Amran =Jews?). It is likely that Kush, Ham, Lud and other names were originally names of rather small areas…” (Retso, J., 2013, p. 231). (The parentheses are the author Retso’s, not mine)   
       Since that blogposting I’ve discovered this name Kush has in fact remained the name of the area. We may note here that the al-‘Amran tribe in the region apparently still “gives the name of Cush to the region of Zebid” (Schoors, Anton, 1973, p. 73, fn. 1) and “thus it would be preferable to understand Cush as the territory on both sides of the southern part of the Red Sea." Charles Forster also once suggested the Zebida of Stephanus known anciently as Sabota or Sabatha was the biblical Sabtah, son of  Kush  (Forster, Charles, 1844, p. 57).

Young girls with skin of "black gold" of Zebid (Sabtah) a land of Kush,   Ghassan or Kushan, i.e. "Jokshan", brother of Midian
      This mention of the Amran tribe by Retso and Schoors is even more fascinating for the fact that Amran or Imran was the name of the son of Muzaikiya of Marib in Arab tradition, while he appears as the father of Moses and Aaron in the tradition both the Quran and Torah.  Clearly some of the descendants of Moses kin the tribe of Amran must have remained in their ancient homeland confirming once again that Ziphorah “the Kushite” of the Old Testament is actually Zarifa or Tarifa “the diviner” wife of Muzaikiyya, otherwise known to Muslim historians as Zarifa al-Khair al-Himyari (the Himyarite).
      According to al-Hariri after the death of Amr Muzaikiya, the husband of Zerifah, “the emigrant families who went with him divided and settled in various countries.  The family of his son Jafneh established itself in Syria.  Ows and Khazraj, sons of Tha’labeh, fixed themselves at Yathrib, afterwards called Medina. Malik settled in Irak. The tribe of Tay went to the Nejd. The history of these emigrations is very obscure; but it is sufficiently established that many of the most powerful tribes of Arabia and the northern country, including the royal race of  Ghassan and the Khoza’ah at Mecca, came from Yemen” (Chenery, Thomas, 1867, p. 426).
     Furthermore, tradition has it that the followers of Musaikiya and Amran ended up in the plain of Ash’ar or "the Esh’arites", who must be the Ashhurites of the Song of Deborah of Judges 5 in the Taanakh or Hebrew Bible with the Ghasan and Barik or "Cushan" and "Barak". It says -   

At the sword of Jerahmeel and the Ashhurites.
King and princes shuddered
At the host of Jerahmeel and the Arabians.
11. Loudly praise ye the righteous acts of Yahwè,
His righteous, gracious acts in Israel.
12. March on, march on Daberath;
March on, march on into Asshur.
Arise, Barak, and take captives,
Subdue the sons of Arabia…

“19 The host of Cushan and Jerahmeel,
20. Ishmael and the folk of Asshur;
22. The Asshurites were panic-stricken, they perished.
21 In the stream of Cushan were their corpses”

      The Ash’ar or Ash’ariyyin tribe is said to descend from  Ash’ar, son or brother of  Madhhij, lived south of the Akk between Zebid and Mokha (Donner, Fred M., 1993, p. 20, fn. 120).  In the time of Muhammad the Prophet they were based in Zebid. They were also one of “the very oldest inhabitants of Yemen”  (Khazraji, Ali ibn Al-Hasan  Redhouse, James, William and Rogers, Alexander, 1908, p. 189).
     According to Hamdani, the Ash’ar had been associates of Banu Akk (whose name is that of Akk son of Adnan) and lived just north of Ash'ar and Zebid and Ash'ar lived between Zebid and Mokha (Bosworth, 1987  p. 131, ff. 387)
      Unfortunately, most historians have yet to realize that this Arabian story of Amr Muzakaiya Ma’a Sama and his wife Zarifah, and the people of Aus, Jafna, Khaza’a, Bariq, Akk and Gassan is also the story of biblical personnages Moses and Zipphorah "the Kushite (Gassan/Cushan/Jokshan)" of the Exodus, and Uz, Jephuneh, Hazo, Barak, Og and “Jokshan” all people that figure as Israelite and Midianite personnages of the Old Testament or Hebrew bible. The brook of “Zerid” or Zebid (Sabta) near the Ghassan is at the same time the  “brook of Kishon” where Barak belonging to the tribe of  Naphtali (Bilha's/Bahila's son) fought Sisera.  Yet, historians have tried to relate the Arab veersion of these stories to historical happenings centered around the first few centuries before Christ.  But, if Moses and descendants Jephunneh and Aaron ever lived at all, this region of the Yemen is where they once lived, and it couldn’t have been in the first few centuries before the birth of Christ. 
     As mentioned previously in this blog saying “son of” or “father of” in the ancient tradition of the semitic i.e. Afroasiatic- speakers, could signify a number of generations between parent and child. Abraham is said to be the father of David and Jesus is son of David - a king that lived a thousand years previously - only because it was symbolic of their tribal lineage, not necessarily the literal genealogy.
      When the Ghassan ( Kushan of Habbakuk) whom moved to Syria from the region of Marib in the few centuries before Christ spoke of Jafna b. Amr Muzaikiyya or Jephunneh being their ancestor (Ball, Warwick, 2002, p. 101), they were obviously speaking of a chief who lived many centuries before that time in the region of Yemen.  If Jafna was the biblical Jephunneh it refers to an ancestor living at least 10 centuries before they left Yemen.
      Thus again, unless the whole of Israelite and Biblical chronology is profoundly off course (and I wouldn’t be too surprised if it was discovered to be partly so in the coming years), and unless the Arabian peoples all decided to name themselves after dozens of ancient peoples living 1,000 years earlier in Syria, we are led to believe the figures of Muzaiqiya or Ma’as-Sama and Zarifah were identifiable as the two semi-legendary figures of the Exodus - Moses and Zipphorah. The tribal confederation of Azd among whom were Gassan or Ghassan, Mayda’an, Ash'ar, Lakhim were understandably called “cousins of Keturah” in later Medieval texts because they are in fact Yokshan or Kushan, Madan, the Ashurites and Lehumim, children of  Keturah from the mountains the Bayt Kathir - people of Hadramaut in the southern part of al-Yaman. In the book of Genesis of the Hebrew Bible it is written "Now Abraham took another wife, whose name was Keturah. She bore to him Zimran and Jokshan and Medan and Midian and Ishbak and Shuah. 3Jokshan became the father of Sheba and Dedan. And the sons of Dedan were Asshurim and Letushim and Lehummim" (Genesis 25).
      Josephus replaces the word Yokshan or Jokshan with Jazar that is to say  “Gezer” or “Ghazraj” and makes Keturah’s children the peoples who crossed over to settle in the trogodyte part of “Ethiopia”. Thus trying to pretend the Azd and other such Arabian people were somehow different then the Kushites of Africa is again probably wishful thinking on the part of modern scholarship.
      Sa’id of Andalusia was probably close to the truth in saying the age of “glory of the Kahtan’s” kings (Kahtan = biblical Joktan, son of Shem) ancestors of the Azd, was the time of the third dynasty of the semi-legendary rulers of Persia (like Kay-Kaus) and to David, son of Solomon. Alternative theorists like Imanuel Velikovsky considered this to be after the start of the 1st millenium B.C., but certainly not a few centuries before Christ.
       The suggestion that the Arabian fable refers to rulers that emerged in the period just before Christ is likely in part due to the semimythical Arabian figure Dhu-al Qarnein who is often mistakenly believed to be Alexander the Great. Dhu’l Qarnein according to some traditions was one of the titles of Alexander. In any case, if Amir Muzaykiyya only lived a few centuries before Christ we can rest assured the biblical Moses never existed.
     In "Constructing of the Azd Identity", Brian Ulrich mentions the documented clans of Banu Masikha, Daus, Lihb, Shanu’a, Bariq, Ma’add, Buqayla and Hanaish (Ulrich,  p. 71 and 87) pinpointed by various Arabic sources in locations throughout the Asir Tihama and Shahra or Shawarat region,. Some of the names are those mentioned by John Gordon Lorimer and others colonial period geographers as tribes of modern Dawasir confederation.
     Sa’id of Andalusia, Ibn Rabbihu and other Arab historians in fact mention the Azd as comprised of Masihah or Masikha ibn abd-Allah, Daws ibn Udthan, brother of ‘Akk, Khuza’a and Myda’an (Mayda’an or Meda’an). Sa’id speaks of Lahaba or Lihb which was a celebrated tribe of astronomers (Sprenger, p. 151 fn. 1), and Bariq another direct descendant of Amran ibn Amr or "Muzaikiya".
        As for the historical Buqayla mentioned by Ulrich, one author says, “It is not entirely ruled out that behind the term Buqayla may stand the name Banu Qayla, that is ‘the sons of Qayla,’ the mother of the two famous Azd tribes of Medina, al Aws and al-Khazraj, who were related as Azdites to the Ghassanids” ( Shahid, Irfan, 1989, p.. 63, fn 21).  The Buqayla were found at al-Hira as Christians, along with other Ghassan.
      As mentioned previously in this blog, Kayla or Kaila is an old name for the Azd clans that moved to the region of Mecca and Medina – the Khazraj, Khuza’a, and Aus - descendants of Amr Muzaikiyya (the legendary Moses of Marib) amd his father - and remained so for the Jews of Ethiopia called Beta Israel (formerly known as Falasha). By tradition, the Khazraj were from the ancestor Tha’laba ibn Amr Muzaikiyya. That is to say, from Dthu’laba son of “Moses”.
        Among the written testimonies of the early Islamic era regarding the Azd tribes are those which speak of the Ansar or companions of the Prophet - Khazraj and Aus, Khuza’a and Gassan. In Futuh es-Sham “Conquest of Syria” in Part I entitled Damascus, the author writes “Next came an enormous contingent of the tribe of Azd under the command of Jundub bin 'Amr ad-Dawsi. Amongst them was Abu Hurayrah and carrying a bow and quiver.”
      A little further down the author writes “the children of Katura are their cousins”, a reference to Keturah of the Midianites (Jokshan).

    The tribe of Bait Kathir (Keturah) belongs to the Harasis tribe. (See Harasis girls above). According to the book Emergence of States in a Tribal Society (2007)  p. 10, the modern Bait Kathir "identified themselves as a group of the Harasis, the core descent group ... to which they belong. "  Such tribes have always controlled the trade of frankincense and myrrh along the Red Sea.  'Keturah" is a word that means incense.

          The Ad-Daws or Daus are a tribe presently among the Dawasir traditionally descended from a tribe called the Sanua (or Azd Sanua). In another text incidentally, the complexion Abu Hurayrah of the Daws is described as black or very dark (adam) as is still common to his Dawasir people.
      As noted by Tariq Berry and explained by Wesley Muhammad, the early Arab definitions of words are dissimilar to those used by many modern Arabic speakers in the Middle East.  Al-Thalabi speaks on the meaning of Adham being darker than Samar or as-Sumra. Fiqh al-lugha [82-82] and so does al-Asyuti in his Jawāhir al-‘uqud wa-mu’īn al-qudāt wal-muwaqqi’īn wal-shuhūd [II: 574].
    While in bedouin dialects or Negev Arabic the variants the word asmar, samar or sumra still connotes a complexion nearly black. As some observers of Sinai bedouin dialects note,  “In NA the terms azrag and asmar can be used interchangeably with asmar in general contexts, but as in other Arabic vernaculars asmar is the usual designation for dark skin short of black. A black person of African ancestry is ordinarily Azrag” (Hare, Paul and Kressel, Gideon M., 2009, p. 98).
     Whoever saw Abu Huraira also took the time to describe as wide-shouldered, wearing his hair in two braids, and possessing a beard hennaed red. As mentioned in previous blogposts, a notable group of Arabians probably best representative of these early Azd are the modern Dawasir, still noted for being very tall and very black (although many in the Persian Gulf especially like so many tribes are of mixed Persian and Turkish and other ancestry).
      The term giant is still in use for the pure Dawasir well into relatively recent times. Victorian author Charlotte Elizabeth Tanna speaking on their “giant forms” also wrote “It is perhaps not so generally known that a tribe of Bedaweens, called the Dowaser Arabs found in the land of Omar, are also black” (Tonna, Charlotte E.,  1848, p. 136).

Dawasir peoples of Yemamah, still black as their Azd ancestors ( Nejd,  Central Arabia)

          In the time of the Prophet among the first tribes to arrive in Hijaz was that of Ubada bin al-Samit, a man of the Auf clan of Banu Khazraj, traditionally descended from Tha’laba the brother of Jafna. The Khazraj were one of the first of Arabia’s clans to rule Palestine after the birth of Muhammed and this Ubada was the first Muslim qadi or “judge” of Palestine.
    There is still every reason to believe that many of these black men of the “Banu Qayla” were of giant stature or “huge” in build.
       According to Moshe Gil, Ubada was historically described as “very tall, ten spans in height (2.40) meters”. This is well over 7 ½ feet tall, and closer to 8 feet in height (pp. 117-118). He is also documented as looking ‘shadeed al-udma” (or extremely black) and “as if he is from the tribe of Sanua” the latter being a major portion of the people called Banu Azd.*  The author of Al-Israa Wa Al- Mi'raaj, a Quranic commentary or ahadith is said to have used the phrase “very black-skinned as if from the tribe of Sanua”.
      Ubada also led a conquest of Alexandria in Egypt. As mentioned previously, more than one early historian has asserted that when a Byzantine (Greco-Roman) ruler in Egypt saw Ubada, he cried out “take this black man away” as  “I am in dread of your blackness”!
"When Ubada b. al Samit got on the ship to speak with Muqawqas and approached him the Muqwaqas felt dread for his blackness […He] said to ‘Ubada, “Advance, black man and speak to me gently to m for I am in dread of your blackness.”  (Ibn 'Abd al-Hakam, Futuh Misr, 66, cited in Daniel Pipes, "Black Soldiers in Muslim Armies", International of African Historical Studies, 1980)
 After this Ubada supposedly threatened to bring to his aid one thousand of his troops, which he claimed were every bit as black and even blacker than himself.
     ScholarThomas Szigorich has said the Byzantine ruler “screeched ‘Save me from this black!’”.  He adds:
 "It is difficult to discern whether Muqawqis's reaction to 'Ubada's black skin reflects some early Muslim knowledge about late Roman and/or Christian attitudes to skin color, or whether it simply reflects certain attitudes toward black-skinned persons common among Abbasid-era Arabs (Szigorich, T.,  p. 1007, p. 56). 
        And in fact it must be that Ibn Abd al-Hakam who was born in Egypt and lived near Fustat where thousands of Khazraj were settled was well aware of what Byzantines felt about black skin, and of what the Khazraj and Azd, Quraysh and in fact Arabian tribes in general looked like in that period. Al-Hakam was after all a Qurayshi by lineage himself.
     As well the Abbasid era non-Arab Middle Easterner did have certain prejudice against a black skin common to the indigenous inhabitants of the peninsula of Arabia, as much as they did to inhabitants of the blacker parts of Africa.
     According to Timothy Powers in his  The Red Sea from Byzantium to the Caliphate, the Khazraji leader Ubada b. Samit responded to the Byzantine ruler saying “I have heard your speech.  Among those I command are a thousand men, all of them black, every one blacker than I and yet more hideous to look at.” (Powers, T., ). But, Powers, like Pipe’s tries to make Ubada’s people into non-Arabs and in fact some sort of mixed people claiming that the bulk of these troops were partially interbred with Africans. Pipes asserts “while 'Ubaba b. as-Samit [sic] is quite clearly an Arabian, the thousand blacks he commands must be African.” Pipes article on Blacks in Muslim Armies
     Powers writes, "According to al-Quda'i, Ethiopian soldiers were involved in the conquest and settled in Fustat" (Powers, 2012 ).(Pages are unnumbered in Power's book) Further down he adds these "blacks" were likely "subject to all of the prejudice visited upon Antara ibn Shadad al-Absi", the said half-Ethiopian slave of the Banu Abs. And then we read "The social context of the black troops implies that they were slaves or mercenaries..." and so on.
      But, in fact, the word that 11th century Al-Quda’i (whose name means the man of the Quda’a) used was “Ahabish”, which according to Arab scholars is different then the name of the Abyssinians or modern Ethiopians.  Another historical observer was forced to address the issue. Even Pipes contradicting himself added in a footnote - “Ahabish derives not from the Arabic for Ethiopian (Habashi), as Lammens thought, but from the word "ally" (uhbush). The most complete discussion of this is found in M. Hamidullah, "Les 'Ahabish' de la Mecque," Studi orientalistici in onore di Giorgio Levi della Vida (Rome, 1956), I,434-437” (Pipes, D., 1980)
       More accurately, the word seems to have been specifically used originally for four perfectly or purely Arab tribes of  Kina’ana affiliation. We are told it in fact referred to tribes of the Banu Mustalik, al-Harith bin Abd Manat b. Kinana, al-Hayya and al-Hawn ibn Khuzaima including the Qara and Adal from the valley and mountainous region called “Hubshiyy” southward of Mecca (Ibrahim, Mahmood, 1990; Jwaideh, Wadie, 1959, p. 9, fn. 1).
       Ironically all of the tribes just listed have been shown in this blog to have been described in Middle Eastern sources as "blacks" at one point, which illustrates how deep the level of misunderstanding has been, entrained or brought about by the West's misinterpretations of Arabic terms for ethnic groups and skin color.

        Kara Arapi - the Black Arab or “Moor” in Eastern Europe

      In Europe although blackness had long been associated with evil, it is the true original Saracen or unmodified Arab bedouin that came to epitomize or be characterized, for reasons that may have been at least partly warranted, by a diabolical, lascivious and ravenous nature.

"The Black Arab is a figure frequently represented in the heroic songs of the South Slavs. He is an antihero, an evil Muslim opponent of the Christian hero, primarily of the ideal hero Marko Kraljević, and also of the ill but honourable Dojčin (Bolen Dojčin, Bolan Dojčin). His most prominent marker is that he is a sexual monster and rapist. He requires a pretty girl for every night and even presumes to appear before the Sultan demanding that he bestow his daughter in marriage to him … A comparative analysis shows the historical, mythical and legendary roots of the figure of the Black Arab and of the epic song dealing with Marko Kraljević and the Black Arab. In some respects it follows the fairy-tale of the Dragon-Slayer, in others the legend of St. George. The Black Arab is a substitution for the Dragon. He represents the principles of earthly power and sexual desire. His unusual physical strength breeds fear. Marko Kraljević, on the other hand, substitutes for St. George. He is shaped in the same way as St. George: He fights for Good against Bad in this world, i.e. the violation and degradation of the Sultan’s daughter by the Black Arab. His fight bears a Christian meaning."

      The figure of Marko of the Serbian ballads is in fact based on a historical ruler of a principality in Slavic Macedonia that lived in the 14th century. He fought against and with the Ottomans and their Arab armies. He is credited with preventing the movement of Muslims further into the Europe’s Balkan region.
        Ballads concerning him are filled with phrases “black Arab” (crni arapina) and “black Moor” which are used interchangeably. One tale speaks of how a black Moor came to Kossovo and installed himself as a tyrannical ruler, perpetuating “shameful outrage on maid and wife” and imposing marriage taxes until Marco smites him.(See  p. xxxii of D. H. Low's Ballads of Marko Kralyevic, 1922).
     The tale entitled Marko and the Moor starts with, “A Black Moor builded him a manor, He builded a manor of twenty storyes, By the wide blue sea. And when the Moor had finished his manor, He set glass in the windows thereof, And spread therein silk and velvet …” (Low, 1922, 112)
     The Moorish “henchmen” and their ruler are said to live in tents and in a white manors or towers by the sea.  In another tale, Marco, in order to achieve one of his heroic deeds at one point when he is in the accursed dungeon of “Azak”, takes black dye “and dyed black his white face, he made of himself a black Arab, and let out his good brown steed”.  (p. 111).
     One passage in a story published reads,  “A greater shame the Moor hath put upon us, For each night he will have a young wife, and a maiden also, And the Moor embraceth the maiden, And his servants take the young wife. And all Kossovo must send him in appointed turn, Their young wives and their maidens also, And behold, wretched that I am, mine own turn is come,  And this night I must thither to the Moor, That he may lie with me this night.” 
     The maid had complained to Marko that her family had nothing to pay the Moor who had 9 years previously come “from across the sea”. She asked him if she should jump in a river or hang herself, and Marco convinces her not to and vows to seek him out in his manor and take care of things.
     In still another ballad, "Marko Kraljevic and the daughter of the Moorish king", Marko tells his mother that he was once in the land of the Moors where he smote many of them, but at one point he was cast into a dungeon where he was desired by the daughter of the Moorish king. He says he was tormented by the daughter of the king who would come to him morning and night calling through the dungeon window, telling him not to cry, but begging and bribing him to give her his solemn word that he will marry her and she would see that he go free from his prison. Then Marko agreed and she let him out giving him back his sword, and they went away “through the land of the Moors on horseback.”     
     Marko then tells his mother that when one day at dawn “the Moorish maiden took me, Encircling me with her black arms”, and when he looked upon her  -“On her black face and white teeth” a “loathing” took hold over him and and he “drew the rich-sabre and smote her on the silken girdle.”  After this the severed head of the Moorish woman had the audacity to call out to him in desperation  "‘Brother in God Kraljevic Marko! Leave me not ! Leave me not!" (p. 106)
     So as we can see it is not only the Moorish or Arab men that lust for white bodies, in the east European traditions, but Moorish womanfolk, too.: )
     In Bulgaria, as among the Roma, black face is often used for the Arapi, i.e. Arabs, in mumming or mummers parades. In certain villages “entire faces are blackened, and not just with soot but with a dark-black greasepaint or polish” (Creed, Gerald, 2011, p. 190).  And as pointed out previously in this blog the word variants of the word Arab such as 'arapi' or 'arapina' is virtually a synonym for black man in such places. “This view of the Arab as dark-skinned is also found among other peoples, as is indicated by the term arap (i.e., Arab) meaning 'black African' in modern Turkish, Greek, and Russian, as well as in Yiddish” (Goldenberg, 2009, p. 124).
       The idea of the early semitic bedouin of Arabia and Palestine as fair-skinned is a product of the viewing modern media and scholarship which has conceived of populations of the Levant and the Near East as unmodified through time, and all dark-skinned Arabs or semites as the product of slavery. Various nationalisms have also contributed to this distorted conception of the early Arab. Such a thought as shown by some early statements would probably have been considered ridiculous in the earliest period of Islam, not only by Arabs, but by the Europeans and Syrians who before the Abbasid power and well afterwards were intimately familiar with the appearance of Arabians. Arabs of the past could hardly have been the half-imaginary and half-white men they’ve come to be looked upon by modern historians and glamorized in film industry as, nor do they appear to have been a "race" separate from the earliest Jews, Hebrews and Israelites.
      Though after centuries the word Saracen came to refer to any Muslim tribe that appeared in the early Crusader narratives they are originally almost exclusively Arabians and mainly those in desert encampments.  They included such peoples as the Himyarites (Homeritae), Gassan or Kassanitae (Kassandreis or Gasandioi), Kinda, Maddeni or Ma’addei, Tayy’ or Tayyaye, Palmyreni and Scenitae, whom when they are described at all are in fact described  as black or near black “akhdar” and as “kusim” the latter word being derived from the indigenous name of the black Gassan/Kushan.
    Even Zainab or Zenobia, the Saracen queen who claimed descent from the Greek Cleopatra (or mostly Greek) is said to have been very dark in color.  She had “black eyes and dark skin and teeth so white that many believed she wore pearls in her mouth”.
     A book called Conquest of Syria or “Futuh es-Sham” famed in the Muslim world attributed to an al-Waqidi, but thought to have been written or copied in the later Mamluk period (Rihan, Mohamed, p. 176) states that Ubada was called in to lead troops by a “cousin” who was a King of the Gassan tribe. His name was Jabla or Jabala. 
'Ubada ibn Al-Saamit set out towards him on his horse until he stopped in front of Jabla ibn Al-Ayham. Jabla looked at a tall, very black complexioned as if he was from the tribe of Shanua. Jabla stood in awe of him because of the grandeur of his appearance. 'Ubaada ibn Al-Saamit was one of those who was so tall that when he sat on his horse, his feet could touch the ground.
        Another translation by a Mawlana Sulayman al-Kindi says that the Gassanite king  Jabalah with the complexion of the Azd Shanuah. The Islamic Conquest of Syria translated by Mawlana al-Kindi

“Jabalah saw this tall man, deep-brown in complexion as if he was of the Yamani tribe of Shanuah. 'Ubadah  was extremely tall and his enormous physique frightened Jabalah.
Jabalah : Boy, from which nation are you?
'Ubadah : I am of the descendants of 'Amr bin 'Amir.
Jabalah : That is good. What is your name?
'Ubadah? 'Ubadah bin al-Samit, Sahabi of Rasulullah S. What do you want?
Jabalah : O my cousin, I came because I know most of you to be my relations.”

    The 9th century Baladhuri makes the point that Jabalah from the Gassan tribe of the Azd who had been a former Christian working with the Byzantines against the Sassanid Persians had come to side with the Azd of the Ansar (“companions”) from Medina saying, "You are our brethren and the sons of our fathers".
        But the later translator of al-Waqidi’s account in the Mamluk period appeared to think the complexion of Ubada’s was something different then Jabalah of the Ghassan.
      Although we can assume not all tribes of the Azd were the same height as the Khazraj, it is fairly certain that like nearly ALL of the Arab tribes of that period, including the complexion of Banu Gassan, and in particular their nobles, was black - “khudar” until a fairly late period. Al-Jahiz spoke of the khudr or nobles of the Gasan and of the Muharib. He says they were called Khudr because of their blackness. One specialist on Arab myth has expounded on this in the past saying khudar/khidr/akhdar signified someone of noble and especially "pure Arab" status with the connotation of blackness (Stetkevych, Jaroslav, 1996, p. 73).   Stetkevych cites the remarks of early Arabs like the poet al Lahabi al-Fadl a relative of the Prophet who said I am the black skinned one”and "from the noble house of the Arabs" making use of the word akhdar (Stetkevich, p. 73).
     He also writes,  “From the Arabic side within this etymological expansion of Qedar/khidr, we shall, for the sake of further illustration, attend especially to the Arabic root kh-d-r, as in akhdar (‘of a dark, ashy, [dar] dusty color’ as well as  ‘of a blackish hue inclining to green’ and ‘black, black –complexioned’, for these meanings of akhdar shall guide us back most directly to the phrasing of the topos in Song of Songs 1:5."( p. 73)
      In other words dark and "dusty” or like soot as in the “blacker than soot” skins of the Saracens in the crusader narrative Itinerarium Peregrinorum. 
      According again to Harold MacMichael a “medley of tribes” had sojourned in Egypt, “Among the former group the greatest tribal names were , perhaps those of the Beni Quda’a, who included, theoretically, the Beli, the Beni Kelb, and the Guhayna and Tai who included theoretically, Gudham and Lakhm, el Azd, ‘Aus and Khazrag ( the Ansar” or Helpers” of the Prophet)’. …(Norris, H. T., 1996, p. 95).
        Many Azd people were present in Egypt when European crusaders arrived. Banu Ghafiq from Udthan bin Hazzan b. al Azd had at one time settled “35,000 strong” in Egypt. Fustat for example which was invaded by Amalric, the European Count of Anjou (in France) in the 12th century in the time of the crusades was occupied by settlers of the Azd tribe from the clans of Ghafiq and 'Akk. There were four thousand of their clans, along with the Baliyy (Beliyya) from the Himyarite tribe of Quda’a (Athamina, Khalil, 1997, p. 108).
     Most had entered into their principle settlements in Spain early on and were in the region of Seville, Cordoba, and to some extent Toledo, Elvira, Granada and Al Sharaf west of Seville before the 10th century.
     The tribe of 'Akk from Azd had been located in Yemen in the Tihama area. Abd al-Hakam had recorded that the troops of Amr al-As, the Qurayshi in charge of the conquest of Palestine consisted of several thousand members of the tribe of Akk in Tihama part of Yemen. “The Banu 'Akk were an old-established South Arabian tribe, dwelling to the north of Zabid, according to Hamdani”. Ghafiq was mentioned as a batn or sub-clan of  Banu ‘Akk of the Yemen in early sources. And we have seen previously in this blog the name of ‘Akk is almost certainly the same as the semilegendary ruler Og mentioned in Deutoronomy 3:11, "a remnant" of the giant “Rephaim” who fought against Moses’ in Canaan.
     " The Ghafiq clan of the Azd  living in ‘Asir contributed a unit to Musa ibn Nusayr’s army, which had invaded the Iberian peninsula by the year 712 AD. Many of the same people then settled in al-Andalus (the Islamic region of the Iberian peninsula)…” (Nicolle, D.  p. 12). The appearance of these people who were pure Arabians and thus black, as well as the unusual stature or height of many of these Muslim tribes could easily have given rise to the depictions of the black and giant Saracens.
      Musa ibn Nusayr himself belonged to the Azd tribe of Lakhym. The Azd clans were thus in the front lines of the early battles fought against the Franks both in Spain and Palestine and these “Saracens” described in the Middle Eastern sources as "khudar" and “shadeed al udmah” (signifying extreme or jet blackness) are undoubtedly among those memorialized in passages of the “Chanson de Rolande” like the often cited one below.
“When Rolande sees that race of infidels, Each one of them blacker far than ink. Their teeth the only feature that shows white,  The count concludes, “now do I know in truth, That we shall die today; I know it well.”  Chanson de Rolande, 12th century (cited in Barthelemy,  1999, p. 11)

The Bedouins encountered by Richard “the Lion- Heart” 

      As Moshe Gil has pointed out that “….most of the Umayyad army in al-Sham (and one should bear in mind that army meant tribes) were the Yamaniyya, the southerners.”   This includes the tribes who occupied Palestine by the 9th century. He writes, “The following are the ‘southern’ tribes whose offspring we find among the inhabitants of Palestine during this period: Khath’am; Judham (I have already elaborated on this tribe); Amila; Ghassan; Khawlan; Madhhij, and the clan within it, Zubayd; Himyar… and the Sayban clan; Kinda, and the clan of Banu Amr.  Khuza’a; Azd; Quda’a and the clan of Juhayna within it; Ash’ar’ according to Ya’qubi, writing in 892, this southern tribe were the majority (evidently among the Bedouin) in Tiberias (probably meaning the Tiberias region); Lakhm, as the Judham, was to be found on the Palestinian border before the advent of Islam.”  ( Gil, 1977, p. 132-133)
       A few centuries before the early Christian era a new wave of Arabian peoples from Yemen had brought into Syria and Iraq the Tayy - Madhij people. The Tayyi or Taiy were a typical Arab bedouin population of that time, with some tribesmen being pagan, others Jewish and still others Christian. One early writer asserted the people who invented the characters or Arab script were three persons from the tribe of Bulan "from the race of the Banu Taiy" (Hughes, Thomas Patrick, 1895, p. 270).
    The Tayyi were from the Kahlan and thus of Himyarite affiliation, thus MacMichael writes that  “The Kahlan branch also contained several famous tribes. The best known of these were Tai, including Gudham and Lakhm, el Azd, ‘Aus and Khazrag ( the Ansar” or Helpers” of the Prophet)’ …”(MacMichael, Harold, 2011, 131).
     They were considered to have encompassed a large part of the Syrian desert. The Taiy had also traditionally been settled in Djebel Tayyi or the mountains of Tayy called Ashja’a and Salma in the Nejd of Central Arabia. There they venerated a deity or idol named al-Fulus worshipped in the guise of one of the cliffs of Ashja’a. They had also been situated north of Khaibar oasis and east of Teima, and extended to the upper Euphrates in the early Islamic period.
     By the time the prophet of Islam was born they “roamed the large expanses between Egypt, Palestine and southern Syria.” Supposedly when Ali, a relative of Muhammed came to destroy its temple the tribe converted to Islam.
       According to Retso the entire region of Singar in Mesopotamia once “ was considered to have been inhabited by the Yamanites called Tayyi or Taieni.  The presence of people with that name in Mesopotamian Arabia would explain why the word in Syriac became the general term for inhabitants in the Syrian desert.  There is an isolated saying going back to al-Qatada describing the situation of ‘this tribe of al-Yarab’ before Islam when they were ‘confined on a top of a rock between Faris (=Iran) and Rum …. According to Pliny, Mount Singar was a centre for the Praetavi Arabs, i.e. Mesopotamian Arabia, which was a border country between Iran and Rome for several centuries. The saying would thus have preserved a memory of the situation of the Taieni/Tayyi? During a long period of their history.  The Tayy? later had a traditional centre around the two mountains Salma and ‘Aga…” (Retso, p. 521, fn. 4)
     Tayy were found in various parts of the Syro-Palestinian region. “In the half-deserted area between Gaza and Hebron were branches of the Banu-Taiy, namely the Jarm Quda’ah and, on the coast to the south of Gaza and Darum, the Banu-Ghaur (suggesting the valley of the Jordan) and Banu-Buhaid. Other clans of Tayyi were found between Transjordan and Sinai and in the Hauran or Hawran….”
        It was these “Yemenites” called Tayyi who led by their chief Mufarrij bin Daghfal in the 10th century A.D. had come to control Central Palestine (with Ramla as capital) under the name Banu Jarrah. Due to the presence of this group in the Syrian steppe the terms Saracen and Tayyaye (Shahid Irfan, 1989, p. 117) had already become synonymous and words commonly used for Arabian bedouins (Hoyland, Robert G.,  p. 220 and 226).
      It has been noted more that more one commentator spoke disparagingly of these Tayyi or Banu Jarrah bedouin who committed atrocities on non-Muslim Syrians, especially its Jewish or Judaized inhabitants. (There were already many Jews from other countries and nationalities calling themselves Jews in Syria by this time.)
        In certain Jewish literature thus the Tayyi are chastized or maligned as “black slaves”.

      A Spanish Rabbi Ibn Abitur wrote a poem called, “A Lament for the Jews of Palestine During the Bedouin Rampages of 1024” one translation reads:

“Weep, my brothers, and mourn
Over Zion, all of us together,
Like the mourning of Hadadrimmon
And Josiah the son of Amon.

Weep for those tender, genteel ones
Who barefoot tread on thorns.
They draw water for Black slaves,
And they hew wood for them.

Weep for the man who was forced into slavery,
But was not prepared for it.
They told him “Suffer and bear it!”
But he could not shoulder the burden.

Weep for men who must see
Their praiseworthy sons
Who are like fine gold
Desecrated at the hands of Black slaves…”

Cited in Norman Stillman’s The Jews of Arab Lands (1979)  p. 205.

    According to Stillman, such atrocities “did occur during the Bedouin uprisings 'which began in 1024 under the leadership of the Banu Jarrah…”

      David Goldenberg also speaks of other Jewish poems regarding the Tayy:
 “A Hebrew poem found in the Cairo Genizah records the Fatimid campaign against the Banu Jarrah in the early eleventh century. Written by Meham be Tabbi Yom Tav [sic] he-Hazzan shortly after the event, it refers to the Banu Jarrah, who were from southern Arabia and had very dark skin, as kushim.  According to Ezra Fleischer who published the poem, a contemporaneous source, the poem Bekhu Ahay Vegam Sifdu by Joseph ibn Abitur, also refers to the Banu Jarrah in this way, calling them kushim, while a letter from Sadoq Halevi ben Levi in Israel calls them shehorim 'blacks'. “ (Goldenberg, 2009, p. 124).
      In fact Taiyy or Tayyaye though originally the name of a clan of Arabs had among the "white Syrians" (a Greek phrase) become a generic name for Arab bedouins of the Syrian desert and Arabs in general, who had before the rise of Muhammed been vassals and clients of the Persians, which may or may not partially account  for the use of the word "slaves" for these bedouin.  The Tayyi were originally from the Kahlan or southern Arabs and thus of Himyarite affiliation perhaps among the best known of these in Northern Arabia were the Quda’a (of whom the Mahra of Hadramaut are among the best living representatives.)

A group of Mahra in southeastern Arabia. Mahra, Shahra and Bahra were said to be related clans of Quda'a Himyarites. "MAHRA, or Ahl al Hadara Mahra is the Arab name for those Bedouin tribes who are different in appearance to other Aarabs, having almost beardless faces, fuzzy hair and dark pigmentation, - such as the Qarra, Mahra and Harasis, along with parts of other tribes." (David Phillipson (2001) Peoples on the Move, p. 250.) 

      The name of Tayyaye had thus become the generic name for Arabs because of the widespread expansion of the Tayy, Lakhm and other Azd into and across Syria, Iraq and Iran or Persia. In Persia and Central Asia, the term was Tazi or Tazik (related to the name of the modern Tadjikistan).
    Thus, the Chinese word for Arab, Ta-shih or Dashi (Da-shi), was in turn derived from the Persian word for 'Arab', Tazih. Chinese texts record the Tazih or Ta-Shih as people the Persians had used as slaves after which time they became the rulers of all of the territory of Persia. This is a reference to the pre-Islamic period when Arabs were largely subjects to the Sassanid Persians.
     “Starting in 705, the great Arab general Qutaiba ibn Muslim marched east from Khorasan into Central Asia and in the next 10 years, in a series of brilliant campaigns, conquered Tukharistan, Bukhara, Khwarizm, Samarkand, and finally, reached Fergana in today's Soviet Central Asia.” (Paul Lunde, July/August 1985 issue of Aramco World Magazine)
      A text known as the Wang wu Tianzhuguo zhuan (Notes of the Road to Five India Regions) was written by Hui Chao, a Korean Buddhist monk around 726 or 727 CE. It is translated as follows,
 “The King of Persia previously ruled the Dashi, who had previously been slaves tending to the King‘s camels. After the betrayal and murder of the King, the Dashi took the throne and ruled Persia. The men in the area at the time had long, large noses; they were thin, dark-skinned, and wore full beards. They looked Poluomen (Indian)( 2010, p. 314). 
      Here we should keep in mind the word Indian was used for Arabians and Abyssinians and sometimes Africans in general at this period, as much as for the inhabitants of India.
      According to the Xin Tang Shu supposedly written in the Song Dynasty the territory taken over by black men or Arabs called Ta-shih (or Dashi, originally belonged to the Pos-shi (Bosi) or Persians :  Of the Dashi it is said “the men have long noses, they are black and have beards” (Schottenhammer, Angela  p. 124).
     Another manuscript also described the Tayy or Tazi and their land.    
      “Later, during the second year of Yonghui (651 CE), the Dashi began to send envoys to pay tributes. The King, Mimo Muni. 19 Dashi had ordered these envoys out, after the establishment of the Kingdom by roughly thirty four years (during which time the crown had been passed down to three Kings). The people of the land religiously worshipped the God of heaven, but the men were dark-skinned and bushy-bearded, with big, long noses lending them the appearance of Poluomen (Indians) while the women were fair. The Dashi had their own scripts. The land held an abundance of camels and horses, bigger than those of other countries; their weapons were sharp, their warriors brave.  From the (2012) p. 317
     Many legends and manuscripts claim that it was a Quraysh delegation that first brought Islam and that relatives and companions of the Prophet came several times during the Sui dynasty.  Traditions based on old manuscripts say that the delegations bearded black men to China were coming directly from Mecca. More than one manuscript mentions a Quraysh general named Sa’d ibn Waqqas, a grandson of the uncle of the Prophet’s mother Amina. His clan was called Banu Zuhra. Syrian al-Dhahabi apparently records that he was a kinky haired man with a very dark skin and flat nose. Seyar al Nubala’a Vol. 1.
       It was under Sa’d ibn Waqqas that "the Tazi" or early Arabs defeated the Sassanid Persians in a battle at Al-Qadisiyya (or Al-Ghadesiyya). This conquest led them to move on to capture Ctesiphon the Persian capital, after which time there was a massive movement of Arabs into Persia. This part of Persia was a province called Khvarvaran (also comprising eastern Iraq.)
      As we have seen a few of the stories bring up the fact that these “black” men brought with them white or fair-skinned women, which would not be astonishing. The Arabians had already brought many of the captured Byzantines (Greco-Romans) into Mecca,  Thaqif (a Hawazin town) and other towns as slaves and concubines even before that period. One of the concubines of the Prophet, was said to be a Byzantine named Maria, a former Christian (Byzantine) from Egypt. According to one tradition she was given as a gift by Muqawqis (the Byzantine ruler I mentioned above.)
     Interestingly in a letter that sounds straight out of a news report in our present times the Sassanid ruler of Ctesiphon, a Shah named Yazdegird III wrote a probably well- deserved, angry, insulting and sarcastic letter describing the atrocities to the Ummayad Khalif Omar (Umar) ibn Khattab “the Tazi”. The letter was sent after the Khalif warned that the Persians or “Ajam” must convert to Islam, or else, face the consequences.
      The Khalif Umar’s huge son is said to have said “we inherit our black complexions from our maternal uncles” (From El-Tabaqaat el Kubra’ of Ibn Saad.)  Khalif Umar was of Quraysh lineage on both paternal and maternal sides.
     Yazdegird wrote to Umar a passionate letter in which Umar’s Arab people are described as lizard-eating merciless, desert savages, who had committed many horrendous atrocities, including mass murder, beheading of people, and raping of women.  He also said he prayed to God not to let these Tazi capture the daughters (of Persians) and take them back to Mecca, as they had done to daughters of the Byzantines.
       Wesley Muhammad quotes from an article called  Muslims in China,” Paul Lunde published with Saudi Aramco World 36, July/August: 12-19, 1985. The article recalls a legend among the Muslims of China that they use to explain the coming to Islam to China.
      A Chinese Emperor once had a dream of a holy man. “The man was pursuing monsters To look on, he [had] indeed a strange countenance, totally unlike ordinary men; his face was the color of black gold…his clothes were white and powdered… he wore a cloth turban like a coiled dragon…His presence was awe-inspiring…. When he entered he knelt towards the West, reading the book he held in his hand. When the demons saw him they were at once changed into their proper forms, and in distressful voices pleaded for forgiveness. But the turbaned man read on for a little, till the demons turned to blood and at last to dust, and at the sound of a voice the turbaned man disappeared. Now,” the Emperor continued, “whether this be a good or an ill omen I’m sure I don’t know. (Lunde, P.  ). The legends say the emperor was then told by a dream interpreter this man was an Arabian who was a great ruler and Prophet that was capable of ridding the world of evil.
     (In some legends the turbaned man is purported to be tall and graceful as well.)
     It is possible that these early Arabs had some connection to the tribal dynasty that became known as Kara Khitai or “the black Cathay”, as their founder was known as Yeh Lu Ta-Shih (Dashi). Ta-Shih as mentioned above, was the name of the black “Ta-Zih” i.e. Taziks,  the Tayy’ or  Arabs that had settled in, ravaged and ruled Persia (including Central Asia). Kara means “black” in the Turkic and Tartar dialects.
      One British author cited from the compilation of a Turkish Khan named Abu al-Ghazi living in the 17th century who had gathered together documents of his family on the genealogy of the Turkic Khans and information on the various regions of the Mongols and Turks extending to China.  The author writes about the Khan:
His father’s people and other neighboring tribes were now converted to his own faith. He then proceeded to attack the Tatars, who lived near Jurjid (i.e. Manchuria). He defeated them and captured great quantities of booty. ‘For sixty-two years he fought against the Tatars, and subjected,’ says Abulghazi, ‘Khitai (i.e. China), Jurjid (i.e. Manchuria), Tangut (which, he adds, the Tajiks call Tibet), and Kara Khitai, a vast country extending from Hindostan to China, whose inhabitants were black.” 
    To the south of that country was another land of “black barbarians” called Kara Jang with its capitol of Yach’i.  Kara Jang came to be called Gandhara and Kandahar. But that is history which is the subject of a later post.: )

“Saracen Bedouin” of the Crusades in Palestine

With them also were the Saracens, who live in the desert, called Bedouins: they are a savage race of men, blacker than soot; they fight on foot, and carry a bow, quiver, and round shield, and are a light and active race…” narrative account of the Saracens in Palestine  (Third Crusade) Itinererarium Perigrinorum

     As to be expected little is known about the movement of Arab bedouin tribes in the Crusader period of the Levant. At that period there was fighting between the Qays Arabs or Arabs of Kedar (Ishmaelite) descent and the Arabs of Yamaniyya descent  (Qahtan/Joktan or southerners), both of whom have been spoken of more than few times in this blog. At the time the Crusaders from Europe attacked the eastern Mediterranean the Tayyi had already become the most powerful confederation  in southern Palestine (Van der Steen, Eveline, 2013) under clans like the Banu Jarrah mentioned previously.
     In Transjordan the Rabi’a clan of the Tayy were in control as well (Van der Steen). An Ibn Qalanis of 12th century Syria mentions the Taiy in league with the northern Arab Kilab and Khafajah, clans of Hawazin b. Mansur (from Mudarites), invading Tiberius next to the sea of Galilee in the 12th century.  This is also the century that the Kurdish leader Saladin destroyed the Crusader army there.
      During the 11th century the Banu Numayr of the Hawazin took control of northern Mesopotamia extending into Turkey assuming power in the Diyar Mudar (western Al-Jazira, Mesopotamia) during the 11th century. Al-Baladhuri, said the Hawazin clans of Bakr, Mudar, and Rabi’ah had been settled in the region of Upper Mesopotamia (Jazira) since the time of the Muslim conquests of the 7th century. The Hamdanid dynasty was founded by the Taghlib tribe from south Central Arabia.
      Beginning in 1090 and for most of the 12th century the Muslims and Crusaders whom were called al-Ifranj or Ifrangi (“Franks”) and the Turks had frequent skirmishes with the Arabs.  The Fatimids dynasty held the Palestinian town of Ascalon, while the Frankish Crusaders had already taken control of Jaffa and Jerusalem in Palestine after a certain point. Around 482/1089 the Fatimids under Saladin had repossessed the towns of Acre, Tyre, Sidon and Jubayl from the Seljuk Turks.
            The Banu Uqayl bin Ka’b from the Hawazin branch of the Qays or Qays ibn Ailan (Mudar) had been battling with the Tayy since the 10th century, when the leader of the Banu Jarrah led an ally of the Uqaylid chief through the streets of Ramla tied to a camel before beheading him.  The Uqaylids are among the Arabs that ruled the region of Mosul further north in Syria. 
      The Fatimids of North Africa with the help of the Qays rousted the Tayy from their seats of power in southern Palestine before the entry of the Crusaders. By the time of Nasir Khusrau Persians, Kurds and Turks were present but are said to make up a smaller part of the army than the Berbers and other Africans. Thousands of  Persians were already present in Palestine that had come to Palestine as Daylami and along with the Qarmatians some had been transferred from the Yemen. The Turks and Kutama (Tuareg) were considered higher status than the rest of the groups. The offspring of Egyptians with the Persians and Turks settled in Egypt. Nasir refers to as muwalladin (mulattos) or “half-breeds”. Khusrau reports the bedouins Arabs to have been 50,000 strong.
      The latter had been mainly sent westward from Egypt before the year 1050AD, long before the coming of the “Ifrangi” or Franks whose crusaders arrived approximately 50 years later.
      We are told that a Saracen Prince named “Caysac” had urged Saladin to send scouts to the plain of  “Ramula” (Ramlah or modern Ramallah) in Palestine. The name Caysac may betray his affiliation with the Qays confederation, then again Qays appears in the names of many Palestinian leaders of that era. In any case the Qays were most likely the Saracen bedouin among the Fatimids. 
      In Syria in this period the Mamluk Sultans were paying a kind of protection money to the most powerful bedouins like the Tayy, who were in actuality in control of not only Transjordania but the entire area extending between Hama (in Syria) and the Euphrates. The al-Fadl clan of the Rabi’a Tayy was especially powerful in Transjordania.
     Along with the Tayy, there were a number of other Saracen and bedouin people that this blog has already shown were documented in texts as black or “the complexion of Abyssinians” even in recent times. They were from the Qays, Hawazin, Kinanah and Ghatafan and had come to administer Palestine in the early period after Islam.
      Moses Gil expounds on the various Qays and Kinanah related tribes from North and Central Arabia in Palestine. They had once been called the confederation of Kedar or Qidar, but were generally  called “Mudar” or “Muzir” in the Islamic period. Gil says “Thaqif, ” a Hawazin tribe “ whose centre was Ta’if in the Hijaz, was certainly represented in the administration of Palestine during the time…; but we know that members of this tribe also lived in Trans-Jordan, in the Balqa; Banu Ghatafan and the clan of Murra within it; Kilab, and Banu Uqayl within it from the federation of  tribes Amir b. Sa’sa’a, Tamim, Taghlib…Hudhayl…..” (Gil, 1997, p. 132)
      For those unfamiliar with this blogspot, the Hudhayl bin Mudrika were people near Mecca akin to Kinana about whom explorer Charles Dougherty said “their skins were black and shining” (Doughty, Charles, 1988, p. 535). The Kilab and Uqayl were Hawazin belonging to the Ka’ab or Cha’ab branch of Beni Amer bin Za’a Za’a. They are the people George Rawlinson in his 1865 book, Five Great Monarchies of the Ancient Eastern World described as “nearly black” and having complexions similar to   “Abyssinians” (Rawlinson, George, 1865, p. )And more recently they are noted as today making up the majority or 2/3rd of Iraq’s “blacks”. 

Black Saracens as Jews:  Never Lost but Forgotten Full-Blooded Tribes of Israel

      The Saracen is often portayed as Jewish, or the murderer of Christ, which is something that is also partially explainable by the Judaean ethnicity of certain bedouin groups coming from the Hijaz that were part of the Ansar and Tayye. Many of the Saracens - the Kayla or Ansar in particular were still Jewish at the time Muhammad the Prophet was born. The Kayla included the Khazraj, Aus and Khuza’a or Khaza’a. Nabtal of the clan of Aus spoken of above as “tall huge and black” mentioned above was known to have been Jewish. How the Khazraj and brethern Aus came to be called the companions or Ansar is described here: His mother Salma was said to be a Khazraji from the clan of Najjar Ibn Rabbih as others mentions that of the clans of al-Khazraj are the al-Najjar ibn Th’laba bin Amr ibn Khazraj. It is said that when  “the prophets father died she took him with her to Medinah to take refuge with his maternal uncles.  Later the Prophet’s mother took him on a journey to Meccah where he proclaimed his message and was persecuted by his uncles. He fled back to Medinah where his Khazraj uncles protected him and became known as his companions or el Ansar”, (Gibb, E. W. 1907,p. 7 -8.)
     It is also interesting that according to certain sources. “The Bani Najjar were followers of Judaism” (See the Encyclopedia of the Peoples of Africa and the Middle East, 2009, p. 99) and the first Caliph of the Umayyads wrote that while the Quraish had become patriarchal, the Khazraj or Ansar were still under the control of women. In truth texts are often in conflict with the history of Jewish origins, because “Jew” in the West has come to stand only for set of religious practices, while in the early pre-Islamic world before the time of Christ  it referred to the people from the habitat of Judaea, i.e.  the Yehud. Thus, before Christ and up until the middle of the 1st century s all of the Greek authors who spoke of the Yehudi or Ioudaioi referred to an ethnic group or “the ethnic inhabitants of Judaea”, the Solymi-Minaeans (Salma and sons). After the birth of the man thought to have embodied the Christos, the man that was called Jesus “the Nazarene”, people like Strabo began to apply the name Yehudi or Judaean not only to a priestly section of Judaea worshipping Yahwe/Yahu Nissi with a set of rites practices, but the people they had converted in the Roman world (Cohen, Shaye J. D.,  p. 93-94).
     It has been said at least 10 percent of the people of Rome had been converted to Judaism. The early Judaioi or Minaeans belonging largely to the Kenites or al-Ka’in of the Quda’a and Jodham and Lakhm branch of the Azd were the vehicle by which Christianity, Islam and Judaism spread to Europe. And this religion  had deep theological roots in the monotheistic beliefs and astronomical knowledge of the Sabaeans of Yemen who had derived largely from the African Nile valley.
       A European Christian missionary named Dr. Joseph Wolff met people from tribes claiming to be descendants Hobab and of Rechab through “Jonadab” (that is to say Banu Jundub) in Arabia.  He claimed they were the descendants of those who are called Yehood Khaibar by the Mohammedans’ and who at last were defeated by Mohammed; and that in their company there were “Children of Israel, of the tribe of Dan, who reside in Hatramawt.”
     Ibn Rabbih and other early Arab historical commentarists spoke, “Of the Yemeni clans of Tayyi are Jadila, who are the Banu Jundub and Banu Hur.” We have already discussed already the name “Jundub” or “Gundub” is none other than Jonadab, the Israelite son of Rechab, son of Hammath “the Kenite”.  The name Gindibu incidently is the name of an Arab chief mentioned by the Assyrian king Shalmanezzar in the 11th century B.C..            
       Several early European visitors to Arabia aside from Wolff have spoken of the true tribes of Khaibar (Heber) – the “Kenites” or “Rechabites” of Arabia. Another individual wrote that there were also Rechab living near the Dead Sea and deep in the desert who had never come anywhere near Palestine (Bowden, Ernest M., p. 179) and on the shores of the Arabian sea some of the Yehud Chaibr  or Arab Sabth (who kept the Sabbath) “were to be found labouring at smith’s work, which is, perhaps, slightly significant, if the ancient Kenites were a guild of wandering ironsmiths” (Bowden, p. 178). ). The word Qa’in or Qayin means smith.
       Banu Laith were still found in the colonial period in large numbers around Mecca and Medina apparently wearing their hair in side ringlets of the Habbaniyya and Hasidic Jews of Europe. Speaking of the tribe of Laith of Petra in addition the author says “These Rechabites, if such they are rightly called, were possibly connected with the fellahin of Petra, of whom Professor Palmer saw something in 1870.”  The clan of Laith was originated  from the Abd Manat tribe of Tabikha or Tabaykh, a well-known clan of Banu Kinana. They are those whom Al-Tabari had equated with “Tahba (who is Tahab who is al-'Ayqan) bin Jamah” and the biblical Tebah, brother of Gaham (and Tahash) of Genesis 22: 24.
       We know that like Tabikha or Tabakh, the name of the Jamah or Jaham is also the equivalent of the Kinanah clan of Juhma. Just as Dahash and Qainan remain the name of the Dawasir clans of the Nejd (Lorimer, G., 1908, p. 393-394).
       In addition the perennial enemies and neighbors of the Dawasir are known as the Tebah or Ateiybah. Dhu al-Rumma the Ummayad poet was among the notable members of the Abd Manat clan of Tabikha. Ibn Rabbih. 2014, 255). According to Al Esfehani of Persia (Central Asia) he was “black-skinned” and “unattractive”.  As for the Ateybah (or Uteibah) of more recent times in the Holy Land “they wore their hair in long curly plaits” and their skin was still “a dark brown”. (Hamilton, J. 1857,  p.  )
       As we mentioned earlier in the blogspot the Kenites are the historical Ba’l Qayn of the Qudha’a Himyarites who were the miners of the Sulaym or Soleymi Arabs. Thus we can see why the biblical Zipphorah a“Kushite” from the Kenite clan of the Midianites is called Zarifa al-Himyari in Arabian tradition. And these Kushi or Kushan Midianites or Ghassan from the Tihama were ironically enough “the Kushites dwelling in the tents of Kedar”.


      As we can see there is no escape from the actual historic Arabian heritage of the Bible. It would be illogical to assume that the Arabs took all of their names from some ancient Israelites, Edomites and Hebrews imagined in Syria and somehow remained in the same area with the identical “biblical” placenames that were mentioned in the Torah. The Jews, the Himyarites, Canaanites, the Israelites, were at one time a small group of Yemenite people ancestral to the earliest Jews, Christians and Muslims alike.
      As for the “Children of Israel, of the tribe of Dan” son of Bilha from Hadramaut living amongst the Yehud Chaibr observed by Joseph Wolff. These have been already identified as the Habbani of Hadramaut spoken of previously in this blogspot.  This is the tribe whom texts claim descend from Bahila and Dan. They claim descent from Dan and some textual sources say from Bahila b. Assur who was considered from Ghatafan and otherwise from the Azd tribe related to Suham and Ghunay.

Three young men brothers from the same Habbani family stand guard over the 20th century fair-skinned ruler of Jordan. Arabic texts claim they are from the "Bahila" branch of the Azd. They claim descent from Dan who was "Bilha's" son in the Torah/Bible.( Habbani are from the Hadramaut part of the Yemen and should not be confused with other Yemeni Jews, later comers of mixed Persian and Syrian descent.)

      As Ibn Rabbih noted, “Sahm was in Quraysh; and Sahm was in Bahila” (2012, p. 269).  Just as Tebah or Tabikh was in Quraysh, and Tebah was in the Azd called Jodham. Most importantly it has elsewhere been shown that the name Bahila was none other than the Israelite ancestress “Bilha”,  “mother of Dan” (Genesis 32:25). 
     Many of the Hadramauti Jews or “Habbani” are almost identical in appearance to the Kayla or Beta Israel of modern Ethiopia (formerly known as “Falasha). It is thus not by coincidence that Banu Kayla is also the name of the tribes of Azd (Khazraj and Aus) who descended according to Arab tradition from the ancient followers of Muzaikiyya and Zarifa al Himyarite (“Moses” and “Zipphorah”) in Marib (Meribah) in the Torah (Exodus 17:7 and Numbers 20:13).
     In the 12th century the European Rabbi Benjamin of Tudela (in Spain) visited the region of Khaibar and mentioned their capitol at Thema (or Teima?) northwest of Khaibar. He said the towns inhabitants were called the Beni Rechab and that no less than 50,000 inhabitants lived in the area. Interestingly the town of Teima or Teyma was said to have been founded by the Tayy. This adds to the plausibility that the Rakibiyya (Rechab) and Khaibar (Heber) inhabitants in general descended from the Tayyi through the clan of Jundub or “Jonadab”, son of Rechab. 
       Tudela also wrote that these Kenite Rechabites or descendants of Heber had large and strong cities from which they would undertake warlike expeditions. “Among them were scholars maintained by tithes who spent their lives in studying the law.”  They also had ascetics living in caves who abstained from wine, ate no meat and dressed in black. Finally Benjamin also claimed they were pruported descendants of the clans of Reuben, Gad and Manasseh (Bowden, Ernest, 1891, p. 174).
       Also confusing matters is the fact that Israelites were not the same thing as the people later to be called Judaeans, let alone Jews, which by the 1st century was only a religious category strictly speaking, a term not necessarily encompassing either Judaean nor Israelite peoples.
       Judah or Judaea however was originally the geographic area where many of the people followers of Muzaikiya the people of Yemenite Azd origin who came to be called “Israelites” (or Yashir-el being a name for Saturn)* in the Asir and Minaeans (Ma’an, Mehunim and Ma’on) or Midianites further north. They settled around the Dead Sea (the Assyrian Lake of Josephus, or the lake of Ashir?) under such names as Soleimi (who became Shallum, Shulamites or Salma) and Banu’l Qa’in (Kenites) in regions extending up to Sinai.  As we have shown their numerous clans are mentioned in the Torah/Bible as the inhabitants of “Judaea” (See King Solomon's miners Part II and III on this blog).
       The Khazraj originally venerated the female deities Manat and al-Sa’ida located on a mount called Uhud, as well as the male deity al-Khamis. Manat was the Manawat of the Nabataeans their near relations. She was wife of Hubal, whose center of worship was at Kaaba in pre-Muhammedan times. Hubal son of the goddess Al’lat was the head of a hierarchy of 360 divinities which the later Arab writers called idols.
     He was also the brother of Wadd (Udda) or Aoud, (named from the sound of the lion) who was represented by a lion, and al Uzza (Aziz-lat) worshipped by the Quraysh represented by a vulture. Thaqif a center of the Hawazin bin Mansur were accustomed to worship of Al-Lat.  As mentioned previously the Afro-Arabs like their African kinsmen had a totemic basis for their spiritual beliefs so names of Arabian tribes are often associated with animals.
       Being affiliated with Africans, many bedouin tribes were once matrifocal in societal structure. Manat, Uzza and Al-Lat were three “daughters” and "protectors" of Allah, worshipped by the black peoples or Arabs then the exclusive inhabitants of Mecca and Medina or Hijaz.  They came to be portrayed as wicked idols symbolizing the period of ignorance rightly destroyed by followers of the Prophet. Like the Moors in this period, Arabians like the Moors still had priestesses who were oracles (Kahina in Arabia and Abyssinia) considered adept at prophesizing, diplomacy, magic and rainmaking. Thaqif a center of the Hawazin bin Mansur were accustomed to worship of Al-Lat.
     The Central Asians and Middle Eastern commentarists who came to write about the early life of Muhammad created folktales about how the Arabians came to destroy the indigenous matrifocal cults. “The goddesses Manat and Na'ila were also portrayed as naked black women, pulling out their hair in grief when Muslims destroyed their sanctuaries.” (Knight, Michael, 2009, pages not numbered ). The same stories are told about the temple of al-Uzza said to have been destroyed by Khalid ibn Walid.
      A Michael Knight in his Journey to the End of Islam wrote of in his words a  “Somewhat creepy story from the past, still printed as accepted history in the Saudi books -
     “During the waves of idol-smashing after Islam’s triumph in Mecca, the prophet sent Khalid bin Waleed to nakhlah, where the idol of al-Uzza was stationed. Accompanied by thirty horsemen, Khalid destroyed the idol and thenr reported back to the Prophet.
     When the Prophet asked if Khalid had seen anything unusual, Khalid answered that he had not. The Prophet told him that the job was unfinished.
    Khalid went back to Nakhlah, and spotted an angry black woman with dishevelled hair running naked among the people. Ignoring pleas for mercy from those around her Khalid drew his sword and killed the woman. According to one account, the sword blow caused her to become a pile of ashes. ‘That was al-Uzza,’ the Prophet told Khalid. ‘She has now lost hope of ever being worshiped in this peninsula.’” (Knight, p. 2009)
              The written traditions that speak of the early Quraysh generals destroying temples in the Hijaz where black women are venerated, but they say more about the people that were created them than they did about the black people living there. The story has been aptly summed up in a book recently published book by a Muslim,  “Khalid bin al-Waleed went at the head The of thirty horsemen to a spot called Nakhlah where there was a goddess called al-Uzzza venerated by Quraysh and Kinanah tribes.  He destroyed the idol and the structure around it.” But was sent back again to complete his task  “Seeing him again, the custodians of al-Uzza ran to nearby mountains screaming, “O Uzza, drive him mad. O Uzza, make him blind in one eye.’ Much to his surprise, Khalid found a black woman, naked with torn hair. Khalid struck her with his sword into two parts and returned. (Jaleel, Talib, 2014, p. 507)

        The book continues. "Amr bin al-As was sent on an errand to destroy another idol, venerated by Hudhail, called Suwa, kilometres from Makkah.  The door-keeper warned Amr that he would not be able to do it.  When Amr destroyed it and the casket beside, the man immediately embraced Islaam.
      Sa’d bin Zayd al-Ashali is said to have also demolished the temples devoted to black Goddesses.  He was “at the head of twenty sahaaba, was sent to al-Mashallal to destroy an idol, Manat, venerated by both al-Aws and al Khazraj tribes. Here also a black woman, naked with messy hair appeared wailing and beating on her chest. Sa’d immediately killed her destroyed the idol and broke the casket.
      “According to Islamic tradition as the commander of the group went towards the beautifully carved statue of Manat, a naked black woman arose out of nowhere. The keeper called out to her, 'Come O Manat show the anger of which you are capable.’ Manat began to pull out her hair and beat her breasts in despair.”(Jaleel, p. 507). (As we can see the people who created this folk tradition several centuries after the birth of Muhammad had more more acquaintance with black women then they did with true inhabitants of Arabia. Interestingly, some U.S. Wikipedia commentarists have complained this as a stereotype “in the United States”. I guess this “angry black woman” stereotype has lasted for some 3,000 years in the world – for some reason. Hmmm, I wonder why? : ) 
       “All the while she cursed her tormentors. Sa’ad beat her to death.” This Sa’ad is Sa’ad ibn Zayd ibn  ibn Nufayl. He is married to his cousin who was brother of the first Ummayad Khalif.
     The latest and perhapest the weirdest reconstruction of the tale about Uzza comes out of a recent 2008 imprint from New Delhi by someone Indian Muslim socialist reformer and liberation theologian who says  “interestingly enough in charge of the temple was a black woman along with another man.  However, it should be noted that this black woman remained hidden inside the temple whereas the man acted as its trustee” (Engineer, Asgharali, 2004, p. 42). (“Interestingly enough…” lol! Yes, "interestingly", that apparently, in the Indian version of the story the black woman doesn’t get to be a goddess, but remains a sight unseen. Perhaps like an untouchable? .)
      Anyway, back to reality. Khalid ibn Walid like the other historical generals spoken about was from the tribe of Quraish, and thus couldn’t have looked much different than the anthropomorphic Goddesses he is said to have smitten. Although many Byzantine slaves and concubines had already been brought into Mecca and Thaqif and other towns in Hijaz (according to Jahiz al Dhahabi and Chinese recordings) it hadn’t done much to change the complexion of the people even by the 15th century if we are to believe Al-Dhahabi and the Chinese records which also speak of the entire region from Mecca to Jidda as occupied by "very dark purple" people.
     To make matters the most interesting, “Khaled lbn Al-Waleed was born around. 584 in Mecca to Waleed lbn Mughirah, the chief of the Bani Makhzum.” The Makhzumi (or Miqsam) tribe of the Kinanah in particular is even mentioned as one of the purer Arab tribes of the period by al-Jahiz, in his Glory of the Blacks over the Whites, being comprised of black nobles . And it is ironic that Al Jahiz mentions the clan of Mughirah as one of the Khudr or Khudar clans of his time, especially when we know that this the clan to which belonged the smiters of the enraged, naked and black daughters of Allah.
     This Sa’ad mentioned above is in fact Sa’ad ibn Zayd ibn  Nufayl. He is married to his cousin who was the sister of the first brother of the first Umar ibn khatab ibn Nufayl. The mother of Khatab ibn Nufayl who is the Khalif’s father is Hantamah bint Hisham ibn Al-Mughira. Hisham al-Mughira is from the Banu Makhzum.  That is to say these people are the black nobles or "Khudr" of Al-Mughira that Jahiz was speaking about!
     Such contradictions however are easily explainable. They testify to the fact that Arabs are not the ones who made up such folktales. They were fabricated events about historical happenings in Arabia by non-Arab people. Of course statues did not start come to life and start pulling their hair out, and of course generals were not surprised to find naked black women running around, because first of all these Arabs themselves were black ones.  And their people worshipped deities that were female, something other people, Syrians and Persians that Arabs had come in contact were quite averse to doing.   
            The name of Uzza is related to that of the planet Venus, Godess of love, but also named by the Greeks "the star of lust" called Uz in South Arabia. It was worshipped in a cave as a metaphor for "the morning star" born from darkness. We are told in several ancient Greek texts that the Saracens i.e. black bedouin people particularly in Sinai in "the period of ignorance" or Jahiliyya used to unfortunately worship al-Uzza or the Morning Star by sacrificing on a pile of stones handsome or beautiful children captured in their bandit raids (Ward, p. 95; Ward, 2014, p. 33 and 148). The God Aziz or Uz whose title was "Lucifer" or "light bearer" or "the morning star" was worshipped at Elusa and in Edessa Turkey where many Arabs, including the ancestors of Ukama "Abgar Ukama or Akbar the black", was settled (Smith, William Robertson, 1885, p. 296).
     This in and of itself was enough to of course scare the Europeans who came to view worhip as associated with the devil worship. It is how the name of Lucifer (meaning light bearer) a name for Al-Uz came to be associated with that conception or reality of the devil or Satan - a force whose first and foremost reputation was the abuse and sacrificial  slaughter of the innocent (epitomized by children or young animals in general).
      Herodotus makes Alilat another name for Aphrodite and the Nabataeans seemed to have worshipped her as Elusa (Ward p. 33) who was the  Khalusa of the Azd tribes of Umayma and Ad-Daws or Daus. As we saw above Abu Huraira - a man of the Daws clan of Azd who is described as black in one of the Central Asian al-Bukhari’s commentaries, is supposed to have spoken of the women of the tribe of ad-Daus circumambulating or making tawaf around the idol of Dhu’l Khulasa wiggling their buttocks (Felder, Christine and King, Chris, 2006, ) (Another black woman stereotype I guess? : )
      Known as the Yemenite Ka’aba the idol was in the hands of the Banu Umamah or Umayma tribe from Bahila bin A’sur (Azd) and was located somewhere on the road between Mecca and Sana’a. It was destroyed in 632AD at the command of the Prophet. (We saw in another part of this blog that these Umayma were likely the "Amim" or "Emim", giants of the biblical commentaries, also known as the Nephilim, Rephaim or Anakim of Canaan (the Kenauna lowland in Arabia.)

Spain’s “Moorish Arabs”: Early Settlements of the Saracens from Yamaniyya 

“…know, O reader! That when the island ofAndalus had been finally subdued by the setting in Andalus, Moslems, - when the news of the mighty conquest had spread over the countries inhabited bt the Moslems – great numbers of the population of Syria and other distant regions felt a strong desire to visit Andalus, and take up their abode in it.  Accordingly many individuals of the best and most illustrious among the Arabian tribes left the tents of their fathers and settled in Andalusi, thereby becoming the stock of the many noble families whose luminous traces are visible throughout the annals of that country.”  Pascual de Gayangos,  The History of the Mohammedan Dynasties in Spain by al-Maqqari, Vol. 2, p. 20  1843.
 "During the 5th century AD, Syrian writers described the Himyarites of South Arabia as Cushaeans and Ethiopians." Encyclopaedia Britannica: A Dictionary of Arts and Sciences and General Literature, Volume 6 (1868) p. 729.
       The blacker than ink Saracens Roland fought against probably included Ghafiq and other Azd under Abdu’l Rahman “the Ghafiqi”, the Governor General of Andalusia, along with the Berber tribes, themselves described “black as night” around the same period. The principle settlements of the Akk in Spain were in the region of Seville, Cordoba, and to some extent Toledo, Elvira, Granada and Al Sharaf west of Seville.
     A physician named al-Ghafiqi or Abdu’l Ja’far “of the Ghafiqi” has been described as “undoubtedly the greatest botanist and pharmacologist of the Islamic period” by the MacMillan University Ghafiqi Project.
    In fact the 16th century Algerian-born Al-Maqqari writes that the members of the Azd were “very numerous in Andalusia” and there were several famous poets among them. He asserted that most of the districts of Segura were named after the clan of Ghafiq (De Gayangos, p. 26). He also mentioned the Azd clan of Ghasan were among the “distinguished citizens” of the city of Granada.
     He notes that the Ansar tribes of Khazraj and Aus had already virtually disappeared from Medina, but that it was  “notorious” that they “abounded in most great cities of Andalus”, above all Toledo. The “family of Khazraj”, he wrote, were once the sultans in Granada.
     As for the Lakhym, Lahim of the Azd, he wrote of the conqueror of Andalus, Ibn Nusayr, as one of their number, and their clan of Beni Abbad as "Sultans" of Seville. While the Beni Hud related to the once purely Jewish Jodham brethren of Lakhym were kings and “absolute masters” of Eastern Andalus even after the time of the Masmuda dynasty of Almuwahiddun (or Almohades).
      Banu Rachid of the ‘Abs clan settled in the valley of the River Guadiana (Taha, p. 171).
      Large numbers of the Banu Gudham or Judham branch of the Azd were settled in Rayya (p. 147) while others were in Algeciras, Sidonia, Tudmir, and Calatrava (p. 146) and the Banu Hud settled in an area called the Upper March or Aragon while others lived in Elvira in the 12th and 13th centuries. Another portion of the Judham were based in Kala’h Rabah, otherwise known as Calatrava.

Al- Mokhala, port city of the Yemen (in the Gulf of Aden)
     The largest settlement of the Daws Azdite tribes in Spain was in Tudmir in the area of Murcia. (Taha, p. 119 and 120)  According to one source Tayyi were among the jund from Syria that settled in Murcia, Spain, in the period of Muslim rule there. Murcia though was according to al-Bakri in fact predominantly a Berber settlement  (Gerald T. Elmore, 1999, p. 16).
      Tayyi was according to Ibn Rabbih of Cordoba “brother of Madhhij,  and it is said the son of Madhhij” in Volume III of his book,  The Unique Necklace ( Boullata, Issa J., 2012, p. 294). The Maddhij clan called Suraj were among the “distinguished citizens” of Cordoba and their brethren Tayy living south of Murcia in the region Tudmir, and also Jaen (Taha, p. 145). As we remember it was Ibn Rabbih who also noted that a Madhhij qadi or judge of several centuries earlier once joked that an Arab with fair skin was unthinkable and as rare as one of the “seven wonders of the world”.
     Among the sub-tribes of “Madhhij” according to Ibn Khaldun were “the Banu Ju’fi, Zubayd, Hakam and Simhan, derived from Sa’d al Ashira, son of Madhhij, also the Banu Ans, Banu Murad, Banu Jald, Bani Hurab, Nakha, Munabbih or Janb and the Banu’l Harith ibn Ka’b…” (Kay, Henry, 1892, p. 217). According to the recent book , The Muslim Conquest and Settlement of North Africa and Spain detailing the locations of Muslim tribes in Spain, the Sa’d al Ashira clan of the Maddhij settled in Guadix northeast of Granada and Seville (Taha, 1988, p. 125).

Madhh'ij children.  Madhh'ij was from the tribe of Kahlan, "brother of Himyar."
      “The sources also mentioned that many people of Murad of the Maddhij lived in various places such as Granada, Seville, Makkada, …in the province of Toledo, Cabra, Huesca, Saragossa, and Alicante.” (see Taha, p. 125) And, the descendants of the Murad tribe of Maddhij had a castle which stood on the road between Cordoba and Seville (De Gayangos, p. 26)
      The Sadif or Sadaf clan also from Hadramaut are mentioned in Saragossa, Tudila and Ecija . They settled between Seville and Cordoba in a place called el Sadif (Taha, p. 142 ). The Hadrami tribe from Hadamaut at one time came to be "too numerous" in Seville to count (p. 141). The Hamdan were closely related to the tribe of Madhhij who in tradition often said to be sons of Hamdan. A few of the El Sabi or Saba’i group of Hamdan settled in Cordoba and Elvira (Taha, p. 126). Hamdan’s major place of settlement was in Elvira and in a place named iqlim Hamdan, 7 miles south of Granada (Taha p. 138; de Gayangos, p. 143).
     Hamdan was a major tribe of the ancient Sabaean kingdom and as previously stated on the blog was mentioned in the ancient Sabaean inscriptions. They were a link between the tribes of Himyar and his brother Kahlan from which the Azd tribes had and Tayyi-Madhij groups had sprung. 
    Among the other major Himyarite branches were the Banu Quda’a whose tribes include the numerous Mahra/Maheyra, Shahra/Shahara and Bahra, the first two still present in the Yaman, Hadramaut and Oman. They are those who according to British colonialist remembered in their traditions that they came originally in a remote period from Africa.

Shahara located in Yemen (once known as Kush and part of the 1st and 2nd zones of Sudan), interestingly also the current "seat of the Amran Governorate". The Afro-Arabian Himyaritic peoples of the Yemen had been building castles on mountaintops for thousands of years. And yet the Arabs who invaded Spain are said to have borrowed much of their knowledge from Greeks and others to the north of them. Something doesn't sound right. : (
       Mahra or Mahri who “son of Haydan, son of al Haf, son of Kuda’ah, reigned over the countries of Kuda’ah.” This was a land of frankincense and myrh.  A 3rd century inscription from Hadramaut mentions Shahirum, chief of the Mahri  (Newton, Lynn S., 2007, p. 47). Some of the Kuda’a in Spain had the patronymic Mahri. Al Maqqari also writes that a man called Wizir Ibn Ammar al Mahri surped the kingdom of Murcia there.
    He noted that the clan descended from Barrah (Bahra) became learned theologians in Granada and took the patronymic Barri. He also says the people who were descendants of the al-Murra had a castle called Khaulan not far from Seville.
      From the Murrah bin Udad brother of Madhij, came also the Mu’afir or Ma’afir tribe. This clan was mentioned as far back as 500 B.C. in an ancient text (Houtsma, p. 139) in Yemen and was “probably the first Arab clan to settle in Spain" (Taha, p. 122). They crossed with Tariq b. Ziyad led by Abdulmalik al-Mu’afiri and played a great role in the occupation of Algericas/Algeciras and Quarajuna and Torre de Cartagena. Later some Mu’afir entered Spain again with the Syrians settling at Losha, Luja located southwest of Granada.
      The Kuda'a/Qudha’a of the Himyar had been settled in Andalusia "‘since the Conquest, most especially near Castellon de la Plana.  Baliyy was one clan, led by Ziyad b. Udhra al-Balawi.  They settled to the northwest of Cordoba.  Some groups of the ‘Udhra settled in Jaen and Almeria, others near Algeciras, immediately facing the coast of Morocco. Juhayna another of their clans were also settled in Cordoba”  (Norris, H. T. , p. 95).
 .     According to Taha’s text, the Baliyy clan were led by an al-Balawi. Baliyy settled in localities called Mawru, Moron de la Frontera, al-Arha near Sidonia, as well as Seville and Elvira. The Udhra or Uzdra, clan of the Quda’a settled Jaen and Algericas and Saragossa. They also settled in the “Upper Marches” and in Almeria (Taha, 1989, p. 126 and 127).

A ruler of Yemen (in the Kingdom of Saba/Sheba) in Nashqum in the 6th -7th centuries B.C. (Before the arrival of the Sassanid Persians and Greek merchants around the Christian era.) The Himyarites are by tradition offshoots of the Sabaeans or people of Saba.

      Considerable numbers of Al-Kala another clan of Himyar settled in Seville and Niebla in Spain”(p. 142).
      Al Maqqari noted that the Baliyy in Spain included the Baliyyun of Seville and that the Juhaynah clan of Qudha’a were found “in great numbers” in Cordoba. Many kings of Cordoba were from the Kalb clan of Qudha’a while the Udhra were in Algesiras.
     Murad, Madhhij and Tayy were closely related to Udad and another was Al-Morra or Murra bin Udad from whom came the clans of Kinda or Thawr  and Amila and the Khawlan.  Descendants of Murra bin Udad had also castle between Seville and Algesiras.

     Kedar : Northern Arabs in Europe’s Midst

       Finally, Roberto Marin-Guzman writes in "Arab Tribes, the Umayyad Dynasty, and the `Abbasid Revolution" “Al-Maqqari (d. 1632) asserted in his Kitab Nafh al- Ti  that as the Qahtan settled in al-Andalus in great numbers they brought with them their hereditary hatred of the Mudar and other tribes from the line of `Adnan. He also asserted that the Qahtan tribes were more numerous in al-Andalus than their adversaries, and always obtained a greater share of power and influence.” (Marin-Guzman, R., 2004, p. 61)
     However the clans that were traditional descendants of Adnan and Mudar or Kedar were noted in Iberia by early Arabic historians. Hudhail was the son of Mudrika and akin to the Kinana. The Hudhail or Huthayl tribe still based near Mecca mentioned by Doughty with “black and shining” skins “fixed their domicile in the vicinity of Orihuel in the country of Tudmir.” The children of Tabikha of the Kinana also settled in Spain, but were not very numerous (De Gayangos, p. 23)
       Of the Qays Ailan some had taken patronomic of the “Sulaymi” whose unmodified descendants are still the color of lava, while others took of his brother patronomic Hawazin b. Mansur whose lesser modified descendants are still "nearly black"  “the complexion of Abyssinians”. And these were chiefly based in Valencia though many were also in Seville. The sub-tribes of Beni Amr bin Zsa Zsa  of the Hawazin including Kilab and Qusair bin Ka'ab were found in many places in Andalusia.  The Hawazin tribe of Thakif is called a remnant of the Thamud.
    As well, the sub-tribes of Ghutayf and Ghatafan known as Abs, Zubyan, Ashja’a and Fezara were in the region of Spain.
     In addition, two branches of the Rabi’a ibn Nizar from “Mudhar” settled in various parts of Spain including the An-Namar ibn Kaset and Bakr bin Wa’il allied to Banu Taghlib from the central Arabia Nejd. Other branches were settled in Guadix.
       The appearance of the Ghatafan and Banu Amir bin Zsa' zsa' and their sub-tribes of Uqayl or Ka’b Muntafiq - factions of the Amir b. Zsa’zsa’a  or Hawazin Arabs of north and central Arabia have been addressed more than a few times on this blog.  The name Kedar came to be associated with words or terms connoting "blackness" (akhdar, khudar) because of them, and their ancient tribes - the Nabataeans, Thamudenioi or  Dumah are the famous Arabs of 'Ad, or "Amalek" and Adnan, known to the ancient Greeks and the historian Josephus as “the Phoenicians” and "Danaans".

TO BE CONTINUED in PART II  (On the Moors/Berbers in Spain)

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Proceedings of the:International Symposium on the Historical Relations between Arabia the Greek and Byzantine World (5th century BC-10th century AD)
Riyadh, 6 – 10 December, 2010P. 314




qadiyr matthews said...
A good book that talks about the Saracens and Africans in Europe is ancient and modern Britons by David macritchie, talks about how the algerine pirates who were described as black as coffee would raid Europe for slaves and the tartar,Huns,picti,Danes and how they were described as moors,Indians or blackamoors. David macritchie was a mason so that's how he knew all this
qadiyr matthews said...
If you look in Oxford English Dictionary compact edition pg.2058,
It says slavery is a condition for pale skin people. So that's why they always try to make us a slaves. Because to every continent they went to they saw us because we the original people of the earth. When they got in power they successfully applied the word slave to us when we never were slaves we were indentured servants. They were slaves because it was there mere condition
Dana W. Reynolds said...
Yes Qadiyr - MacRitchie's book is a good book for those beginning to learn about the ancient widespread presence of Africans and Afroasiatics. But one has to be careful of interpretations as most Danes were not black and the earliest tartars and Huns appear to have been so but most of the later were definitely not black or dark in color.
Your second comment I regard as too silly to respond to. And for your information many that came over to America as indentured people ended up enslaved. Alnost every people have practiced slavery at one point and ended up enslaved. : )
qadiyr matthews said...
Have you ever read jack forbes book Africans and native Americans the language of red black people. It talks about the slave trade going in reverse from America to Africa, and how words evolved over time, also in a Noah's Webster dictionary of 1828, it's say the definition for american is the aboriginal or copper colored races found here by the europeans
Dana W. Reynolds said...
Yes, I have read Jack Forbes book, and their are Native Americans out West amongst the Lakota and Oglala who still are of a dark brown copper color with thick course long hair down to their waists. That is probably how most of the Natives looked as they are frequently called cinnamon colored and mahogany.

That and they, however, have nothing to do with this blog nor the people mentioned in it. Sorry for the confusion : )
House of Flying Daggers said...
Excellent work on the Saracens. I saw the part about the Berbers or the "bari bari" and that made me think of something I read on the Kanuri people of Niger whose Hausa name is "Beri Beri." Are these people also Berbers (or at the very least descendents of them)? Thanks in advance.
Dana W. Reynolds said...
Hi - yes from what I understand the term Barbari, Beriberi or Beri, Barabir has been a name for the Kanuri and Zaghawa and certain other peoples across Africa since ancient times. They appear to have initially had some connection to the peoples of Nubia and East Africa where the people were similarly designated. The name "Zaghawa" also has many variants and they were also known in various regions as Zaghai, Sughai, Songhai, Zawagha, Isawaghen and Zaghan or Izghan. They made up a good part of certain of the peoples that are called Berbers in Arabic texts - especially the Zanata, Sanhaja and Masmuda. Western writers have unwarrantedly applied this name to all those who speak an AfroAsiatic dialects in the Maghreb regardless of their culture and biological origins.

Thanks for your comment and question. :)
Ash said...
This may be off topic but, have you backed up all the info on your page?
The info on these pages are priceless.
Dana W. Reynolds said...
Hey Ash - I am glad some of the people reading this blog are realizing the importance of some of the information contained herein. Although I also realize the value of these posts I only have hard copies for now. But, do see other reposts of these pages elsewhere. Even saw some published on scribd. I've tried to say on the other pages feel free to make copies in case some this blog with its retrieved and long-suppressed knowledge disappears, as I am sure you will agree - it will be useful or of benefit for generations to come. : )
Ash said...
How would you suggest saving the info?
bru said...
This is one of..if not the best blog I have come across
dealing with history. I is well captioned and sourced, and easy to
read and to the point..
Dana W. Reynolds said...
Thanks so much for the comment, Bru. I sometimes wonder if I am making it easy enough to read.
Kofi Khemet said...
Your blog is very appealing. I haven't been able to read a full post yet, but as soon as I can print out your latest blog I plan to read it. Anxiously awaiting Part II of the Fear of Blackness Series.
Dana W. Reynolds said...
Thanks Mr. Kofi. I am trying to finish it now. Hopefully before the end of next month.
T Hammons said...
Looking forward to part II.


qadiyr matthews said...

Peace queen,the way the post words are set up is messed up,do you mind fixing it.

Dana W. Reynolds said...

Hi Qadiyr - sorry for the delay in response. Yes, I am going to try to fix it within the coming month. I had originally lost the first copy and just reposted something that was cached on line. However, I don't see where the text is messed up except for as the captions of the photos. Please use this link below if you didn't and thanks for letting me know how you are viewing the post. It may also help if you use google chrome if you are not already using it.


PropertyMang. said...

Hi Dana,
i need more information or books about Azd tribes and there relation with prophet Moses.

thank you


Dana W. Reynolds said...

Hi Ali - you can read things like Al-Baladhuri's, Origins of the Islamic State, which talks a lot about the “wanderings of Azd” and Aus and Khazraj. Irfan Shahid's books, Byzantium and the Arabs might be useful if your interested in the early pre Islamic Christian Ghassan, Lakhmids, Kinda and Tanukh dynasties. But otherwise it would be best to look at earlier parts of this blog especially “Canaanites in their Lands” and “King Solomon's Miners” for the most comprehensive collection of references on the Azd in connection with biblical personnages like Moses and Baalam, etc.:)

Please remember that we are talking about an ancient people mainly known through their folk history and only later in documented history. The people derived from them include numerous tribes and clans, which began moving northward from Yemen over 3,000 years ago, as well as those which came later during the Christian era. In the Roman or neo-Roman (Byzantine histories they include the Ghassan (Jokshan) and Lakhmids (Lehumim) who ruled Hira and other places in Syria and Mesopotamia, the Tanukh confederation who included the subtribes of Ma'an and Bahilah (Bilhah). It also includes most of the Ansar, - or companion tribes of the Prophet - Aus (Uz), Khazraj (Gezer), Khaza'a (Hazo) and Ghafiq who had settled in the region of Mecca and Medina and perhaps further north as Solymians after the time of Moses/Musaikiyya and Ziphorah/Zarifeh.

Most of these groups are well-documented in history only mainly since the Christian era. On the other hand you will can find numerous and varied mentions of the Azd as varied Biblical personnages in the medieval writings of people like the Persians Al-Tabari and Ibn Rabih of Cordoba.

When the medieval historians talk of the Azd it's usually with reference to traditional genealogy. An example would be in Ibn Rabih's book the “Unique” or “Precious” Necklace (depending on the translation). Ibn Rabih, for example, speaks of the biblical Joseph being thrown into the well by a man of the clan of Lakhm. He mentions Lakhm saying - “of them is Malik ibn Dhu'r ibn Hujr ibn Jazila ibn Lakhm, and it is said that he was the one who brought out Yusuf ibn Ya'qub (Joseph, son of Jacob), God's blessings and peace be upon him, from the well”. See Boullata's The Unique Necklace by Ibn Rabih.

In other words the early medieval Arabic writers knew the relationship of the peoples originating in southwest Arabia considered to descend from the Azd to with the genealogy of the Biblical and Quranic people who left Marib and Sana'a under their leaders Ziphorah and Mosaikiyya.
As for some books that primarily concern Al-Azd there are very few that are strictly historical in content, and they are mainly focused on Islamic era movements. I know of one by Brian John Ulrich 2008 entitled Constructing al_Azd: Tribal Identity and Society in the Early Islamic Centuries.

The stories of the Azd and the Sabaeans and Adite rulers (their ancestors) being the basis of the biblical stories, were mostly passed down as fable and folklore. There is some history behind it, but one can not use this genealogy to form the basis of history unless one is linking it with biblical chronology, and at the present time this isn't being done.
Unfortunately, so called biblical archaeology is being carried on in a place far from where the biblical peoples actually existed and there is a lot of battling going on in Yemen now so it will be a long time before books will be written that testify based on archaeology to the Azd of a 1000 -2000 years BC in southwest Arabia regions like Kunauna (Canaan) and Asir and Hadramaut.

BTW – some of the Afro-Arabian tribes around Hudeida, Zabid and other places in the Yemenite Tihama and Yamamah are in large part descendants of Azd. Some tribes still claim descent from Azd in the Assir but look to have been the result of mixture with later peoples of non-Arab complexion and culture.

PropertyMang. said...

Hi Dana
I'm from Azd shanuah south Mecca , which was prophet Moh'd said when he left to the 7 skies, he saw prophet Moses, then he asked Angel Gibrael , who's this quy which looks like Azd shanua men, dark skin, curly hair.
By the way i made Dna test since April 19, until today they couldn't give the right result. .
I didn't find my tribe name at your report , but i saw strange tribes names first time i heard about, by the way our history land and people was faked by Hejaz bani israel jewish.
I knew a few bani israel from Hejaz living in Europe and Israel, they told me that our area Ghamid land tribe south of Mecca is the holy Torah land.
There's Syrian history professor " Ahmad Dawood : assures that our area is the Moses holy land , his book published in arabic.
I think you are right about the bani Israel tribes in the south Hejaz under the name Azd, and there's another branch of Zaid bin Kahlan bin Sabaa called Add, a group of tribes Khawlan,Kinda,Lakhm,Gutham,Asha'r,Murra etc..

intersting subject, good luck


Maximilian Dennison said...

Hi Dana thanks for responding. Here is my first question. The Moors are Black Africans, Berbers, Black Arabs, Saracens I think based off reading your work Tariq Berry Unknown Arabs. Can you help classify which groups were in Power and in what periods. For instance from my understanding the moors were in Spain from the 8th century. Where those moors Saracens, Berbers, Arabs or other Africans. And the same for the 9th 10th 11th so and sit forth. As much as you know with the books I can reference if possible. I'm trying to create a clear timeline for my professors that will make it as hard as possible to question. I attend a predominantly white institution and when I speak about these things. I'm looked at as crazy even to my Indian and sometimes African faculty. I want my paper to be clear and almost lamen so the simplest of people won't be able to misconstrue what I'm trying to relate. This may be impossible but I'm going to try. I have more questions but these are the first. Thank you for your information and meticulous writing. You are very inspiring.

Dana W. Reynolds said...

Hi again Ali - well that is fascinating what you say about the Beni Israel from Hijaz still claiming your land near the Zahran region is the Holy Land of the Torah or Hebrew Bible. This is where Kamal Salibi in The Bible Came from Arabia claimed was the land of Zorah and Eshtaol or Zarah and Al-Ishta in Asir where Dan or the tribes of Bahila (Bilha) once lived with other "Israelites" This seems to help confirm the tradition. I talked about this in Canaanites in their Lands part 2, by the way.

Shadeed al udmah I know means something that is very near black and that is how the Azd Sanuah were described by other Near Eastern people. I had talked about how Moses was described in the commentaries on another part of this blog. But it should be understood that that was the most common appearance of the Arabian people in that period, although other people in Syria were beginning to call themselves Arabs during the Abbasid times.
As for the name of your tribe. I think I don't mention them because I don't see much talk of them by the early writers, which must mean they are a fairly new tribe, or were known under another name. What is the genealogy of the Ghamid?

I had first learned that the idea of an Arabian homeland of the Israelites from a Murad man and that tribe belongs to the Himyar from ancient times. I am not quite sure what you are considering to be Arab genes. One thing I can say for sure is that if your genetics aren't coming out "right" it might be because many of the people the analysts are assuming are Arabs are paternally from the J1 or Syrian group and that of course had little to do with the early or original Arabs or "Khudar" Afroasiatic inhabitants of Arabia. If you are not related to the Syrian-related genetic group then you may very well have Arab paternal ancestry. I don't know what type of test you took on familytreedna. There are a lot of people in your region however who are not all Arab and in fact have much more Syrian, Persian and other blood. These are the people modern geneticists are calling Arabs. : )

Dana W. Reynolds said...

Hi Maximillian - I don't think you want to try to do a general history of the Moors unless you are able to clarify for your professors the distinction between the word Moor and the way it was used up until the period of the crusades.

There are actually many books out there on the timeline of when certain groups entered Arabia and Anadalusia, but they do not make distinctions between groups of Muslims. You can include the early Azd and Yemenite conquests in Spain as part of the "Moorish" period, but many other peoples had adopted Islam or were brought into Spain by then, included Persians, Slavs, and Franks. The people that fought Charles Martel were Azd for example. A lot of the Zanata and Masmuda Berbers also came into the Iberian Peninsula in the 8th century. You could perhaps talk about the Sulaym-Hawazin invasions into North Africa, early arrival of the black Saracens Tayyi and Jodham related peoples in Palestine, and the ALmoravid and ALmohade dynasties in your periods construct. You can also look up and at the movement of the Kab/Chub/Tsiab Uqayl and other Qays tribes from Najd into Mesopotamia and Syria. These people can be included in your Moorish category although that name wasn't really applied to them in Arabia. ("Kara Arapi" or black Arab or "Qudar" or Mudar were among the phrases frquently used.) The dynasties they founded included the Usfurid, Jarwan, Uqaylid, Jabrid and other dynasties.

All the time periods of such people can be obtained from on line, but I'm not sure how one could put together a graduate paper identifying these groups as Moors as opposed to other peoples. In general modern academia doesn't identify Moors as meaning the black people because for one thing they know little about Arab or African history. They tend to think "Moor" was a name for Muslims in general. This is why I wrote in the previous blogpost about the Saracens to attempt to enlighten people as to why Saracens were early on called the color of ink, tar, and night, etc. And I would say just absorbing that kind of info is hard enough for Western scholars to handle. After all they don't think of the early Arabs and Berbers as dark, let alone near black to jet black people they once really were. ;)

Dana W. Reynolds said...

I should have added the people that tended to use the word Moor for "black man" were mainly the Europeans i.e. people stretching from Russia to Scotland. This is not a term that was necessarily used by peoples of the Near East or Central Asia for blacks. The names Khudar, Zanj, Habesha, Indi, Kara, Sud'an or Aswadun and Nabit were commonly used for blacks according to Near Eastern writers.

Maximilian Dennison said...

Thanks for the help with my paper you gave me a direction. One more question JA Rogers in Worlds Great Men of Color vol 2. Says that Nicephorus Phocas was a black Arab. In your studies have you found this to be true. And if so would Phocas be from one of the many tribes you talk about. Thanks again for your work. I hope one day you publish you essays in a book. It's some of the best information available. Peace

Dana W. Reynolds said...

Hi Maximillian - no, I didn't know who he was. It looks like his ancestry was from Thrace in Cappadocia and Greece and although there were black Arab and "black Syrian" tribes that had once lived in that region I don't see anything saying the Phocas line was from those people.
You would need historical evidence. For example there was the tribe of Ruha an ancient clan of the Maddhij who had once settled in and named Urfa or in Edessa in modern Armenia. Some say it was a Nabataean clan. This clan is where Akbar or Abgar got his name Abgar Ukama or "Akbar, the black". Of course we know that both the original Maddhij and the Nabataeans were claimed to be people of "black complexion" in early texts. So there is evidence corroborating the fact that he was called Akbar the black because of his Arab origins. There would have to be some direct line of evidence for individuals of the Phocas family. Maybe there is. I don't know if Rogers had some references he mentioned? Maybe he read somewhere that he was dark-skinned?
I know that Phocas was a Greek-speaking Byzantine. They were generally very fair-skinned often blond people whom the Arabs called "red". I don't know which tribe of Arabs he could have come from in Thrace (Asia Minor), but I wouldn't be putting that in some kind of academic paper without some substantiated background about whom the individual was derived from.
I have never heard of the name Phocas as an Arab tribe unless it is some metathesis of the word Keftu or Kephas an ancient black Syrian people from whom the named Cappadocia (Katpatuka) was derived. It appears it may have come the name of an ancient city there in Asia Minor.

Rogers may have found something about the surname Maleinos which was connected from the Phocas family. I haven't looked it up though. BTW - although Rogers was ahead of his time you could not use him as a source in an academic paper. His works were not academic so to speak or peer- reviewed as academic works.

PropertyMang. said...

Hi Dana,
would you read this report about Pashtun tribes and ( Beluch tribe form Azd Oman ) …… … …
About my Dna still waiting for SNP , the y-haplogroup is J-M267 - and most of Alazd tribes haplogroup is J-Z644
I need to sent pictures for maps and tribes tree .
Good luck


Dana W. Reynolds said...

Hi Ali and congratulations! Your haplotype shows a close connection to the original Arab peoples or Afro-Asiatics that first colonized the Yemen and then moved into Africa. It is very ancient and highly concentrated in the Yemen while the J1-Z644 you mentioned appears to be Eurasian of Syro-Lebanese affiliation, thus, UNLIKE the ancient Arabians. See Eupedia for more on this Syrian connection to the modern J1-Z640 also called J1-Z644. Apparently many Azd have paternal non-Arab i.e. Syrian lineages.

Your haplotype appears to have it's highest concentration in Khartoum.: )

Please note even the least academic websites have rightly cited the following. “Haplogroup E1b1b is considered the prime candidate for the origin and dispersal of Afro-Asiatic languages across northern and eastern Africa and south-west Asia. The Semitic languages appear to have originated within a subclade of the M34 branch of E1b1b. One specific deeper subclade is surely associated with the development of Arabic language and with J1-FGC12, but it hasn't been identified yet. “

Of course it should be noted that one's paternal haplotype signifies only your paternal lineages or father's father's paternal line. Keep in mind the Snp or other types of autosomal dna analyses may give a more complex and wholistic view of how much of the ancient Arabian genotype you have. : )

As for the “report” you sent. I will just tell you that if you read through my blog you will discover that there are in reality no lost tribes of Israelites, Judaeans or Canaanites and they live in their purest form among the near black and blackish people of Arabia and Africa under their original and ancient names. They are found among such apeoples as the Dawasir of Yamamah, Harb, Hutheil, Murad, Sulaymiyyan of and Haweitat of Jordan and among peoples comprising the ancient Moorish Africans that I talked about in my recent blog. These are the only people or folk of Nuah mentioned in the Bible. They are -the last of the children of Ham, Shem and Japhet. They were the first Jews, Christians and Muslims.

Many Arabic-speaking people even in Arabia are unfamiliar with the names of the biblical tribes of Israel as known to the West and with the ethnic history of the Arabian peninsula and thus have not been figure out that their own folktales are the root of the Hebrew stories of the Torah or first books of the Christian Bible. : )

Yes, the Azd Uman had moved over into Baluchistan and other places of ancient Persia and Central Asia where they have for the most part have since been absorbed by other or non-Arab populations. Many of the so-called Vedic or Indo-Aryan myths are in fact nothing but the remnant of the ancient AfroAsiatic stories brought by peoples of the Yemen or “Hamavaran” - the Persian name for the land land of the Himyarites. I will be talking in depth about this in the forthcoming post on “the African Himyarites.”



PropertyMang. said...

Hi Dana,

Ishmael Issaq

Do you call Ishmael and Issaq as an Arab ?

My matched haplogroup, marker 12 Michael Benjamin
also i found one person same my result J-M267 M-267 , his lineage is Cohen.

By the way , my tribe Ghamid is brother of Zahran and they lived in the same area called
" Ghamid and Zahran land " before 35 years the government change the name to Baha region, south Mecca 150 km .

Good luck

Ali Moses

Maximilian Dennison said...

Nicephorus Phocas ca. 912-969 "Liuprand says that he was "black of skin as a Negro" and so extraordinarily ugly that "he would make one afraid to meet him at night." (Diego, C. Figures Byzantines Vol 1, p.227 Paris, 1906; Schlumberger., L Un Empereus Byzantin. 1890; Liuprand Works, tans. by FW Wright, p.236. 1930. Hey Dana this is from Rogers book world great men of color. This is the Byzantine Ruler I was asking about in some account it says he was dark as an Ethiopian. Let me know if you think there is validity to the claim. Thanks

Dana W. Reynolds said...

Hi Ali - all of the people of genesis are not always early individuals. The early names of the Hebrew books are largely or often allegorical and found in other civilizations as well. At that time Abraham was a name for Saturn, and was one of the deities worshipped in pre-Islamic times. These allegories are based on ancient astrology and cosmology. In India for example he was called Brahma and his wife Sara-isvati or Harauvati from whence comes the Greek word for Goddess Hera. Abraham's wife is also Sarah.

These names derive from pre-monotheistic practices and beliefs of the AfroArab peoples who knew a lot about astronomy and the cosmos and named themselves after stars and planets. Sabaeans or south Arabians and other African-related people venerated divine consciousnesses represented in the cosmos.

Dana W. Reynolds said...

Maxmillian if ancient works say that Nicephorus Phocas was dark as a Negro and asn Ethiopian then most probably he was and belonged to one of the "black Syrian" groups living in that area in that time. I don't know if he was descended from the Islamic Arabs though. All I know that he was a Byzantine ruler descended from other Byzantine rulers. He also may have gotten his color from his mother rather than his father.

Its too bad Rogers didn't tell where he got his information about Phocas being Arab. Its not impossible, but I wouldn't be able to tell from the name Phokas.

PropertyMang. said...

Hi Dr.Dana
Is the name Azd is fake , and there aren't branch of Kahlan Bin Sheba call Azd ?
Or Bani Israel joined Azd tribes and they became of them ( or only Azd Shanuah is Bani Israel ) as i think, because the Dna test result for Azd tribes show J-Z640/42/44 and J-M267 like me.

If Bani Israel joined the Azd bin Kahlan bin sheba tribes , what's there family tree ancestor?

thank you

Ali Moses

Dana W. Reynolds said...

Hi Ali – thank you for your question. I know the name Azd signifies for the ancient Afro-Arabians the wolf. Also the name Zauti in ancient Egyptian culture was probably related. African people were totemic so the names that also referred to stars and planets often had correlation to animals and plants. The name Azd was historically used for the group of tribes that fled one of the breakings of the dam at Marib (Meribah Exodus 17) and Amalekite (Amlik) leaders named Feruan or Pharan (from which comes the name Pharaoh). This “Aphran” was a Midianite like Moses according to the Biblical book of Genesis.

Who told you there was not a branch of Kahlan bin Saba called Azd? This name is partly legendary but would not be any more “fake” than many other groups of Arabians mentioned by many midieval writers. Early commentators mention the Azd as son of Al-ghauth, son of Thabit, son of Malik, son of Zeyd, Azd. son of Kahlan. These commentators include al-Maqqari, ibn Rabbihu of Cordoba who wrote the Unique Necklace in the 9th or 10th century, Ibn Khallikan of the 13th c. and numerous other authors.

I never said the Banu Israel or El -Yasir ever joined the Azd. The names of the groups of tribes that are mentioned as Bani Israel i.e. descendants of Bahilah (Bilha) from Ma'an bin Asur branch of Azd, Sarah, Rubayk ( Rebecca), Zilf (Zilpah), Kalb (Kaleb), Ushayqir or Yashqur (Issachar), Beni Yaman (Benjamin), Manesse'ir (Manasseh), Samhein (Simeon), Wahid or Wahdah (Yehud/Judah), Dandinah (Dan) in Zahran region etc. happen to be the same as the Israelites and clans people who traditionally descend from the groups called Qudha'a and Azd.

Please read on this blog King Solomon's Miners to learn about the original people of Judah and Banu Yisrael.

It was the ancestors of these Azd clans long established in Hadramaut, the Yemenite Tihama and the Asir that moved to northern Hijaz and the Levant at various times, and their descendants began to write anachronistically using allegory and astrological knowledge about their own history and views of God. Most Arabic speakers wouldn't recognize the names because they have been Westernized in the European Bible. Examples I gave were Bahilah which is written “Bilha” in the Bible and Yashqur or Ushayqir (written “Issachar” son of Jacob), etc. Another good example would be how the name of the Banu Shahran was turned into Sheruhen in the book of Joshua 19:6. And now is pronounced Sharon among modern Euopeans.
See also Kamal Salibi's, The Bible Came from Arabia

Unfortunately dna evidence of modern tribes in Arabia can tell us nothing of the dna of the ancient people who probably looked a lot different than many of the tribes in the Asir today. Just like the dna of modern Americans are not the same as ancient ones though many of us claim to have Native American blood. : )

Southern Arabs and Israelites, Edomites and Canaanites were all at one time one in the same people. There can hardly be doubt about this any longer. It can also be hardly doubted that these people looked much like East Africans and the Dawasir of Yamamah and al-Falaj.

Considering your people claim to be from Zahran of the Azd – you may know that Daus ibn Udthan belonged to the Dawasir. In the Hebrew Bible they are probably to be considered the names of the Israelites “Jeush” and “Ethan” of the tribe of Levi. The Banu Ghafiq also came from this clan and fought against the Franks like Charles Martel. In European epochs describing these battles these people are called Saracens and they are described black as melted pitch. ; )

BTW – I am not a Ph.D. Only have a couple of Masters degrees right now, and a certificate in teaching English as a Second Language. ; )

Dana W. Reynolds said...

Hi again Ali - You mentioned Azd Senuah but there is also the biblical Senuah I forgot to mention whom is called "the Israelite" and is from the Benjamin or "Banu Yam".

Shukran Jazeelan!

PropertyMang. said...

Hi Dana,

Some historical in Iraq one of them is the leader of Aws and Kazraj tribes said , azd shanua tribes are ( Ghamid,Duas,Thumalah,Lahab,Massekhah) theire grandfather " Nasr "
Yam tribe is from Hamdan bin Sheba (Saba) in Najran area , on Yemen border 600 km from Mecca.
Did you have family tree for azd tribes ?

thank you

Ali Moses

Dana W. Reynolds said...

Hi Ali - yes I have the genealogies for the Azd tribe. And I know Yam is from Hamdan. But all these tribes come from Saba, right? Peoplec can get a lot of genealogy for the Azd online from google books like The Unique Necklace, Ibn Khallikan, Said of Andalusia and places like that. Sa'id for example . speaking of the Azd stated that Masikhah, Myda’an, Lahab, Amir, Yashkur, Bariq, Ali ibn Uthman, Shamran, al Hujr ibn al Hind, and Daws went into al- Surat. Science in the Midieval World.
The Hamdan are mentioned in Sabaean inscriptions and mentioned as one of their tribes. It just goes to show that the Edomites, Canaanites and Israelites were ancestors to the people called Sabaeans, Minaeans and Himyarites. The folktales surrounding the Azd migrations from Marib or Maribah of the Biblical book of Exodus are brought to the Syrians and Europeans whom called it the Bible.
The Yemenite Ma'in or Minaeans are mentioned in the Bible and by the Greeks as the Maeonians and also as Ammonians who were brethren to the Mu'ab (Moabites). When they moved north as traders they founded the kingdom of Lihyan which is the name of the Hudhail tribe of Banu Lahiyyan still living near Mecca.
Thus it is clear the Bible or book of the Hebrews came from Arabia as stated by Salibi. These are the same people that founded Khaibar the Heber of the Bible.
You will have to let me know which historian spoke of the Ghamid as being brethren to the Zahran. I know they were mentioned in Muhammed's time but the name isn't very frequent otherwise.

Anonymous said...

Hi Dana,

I don't get it, Azd branch of Kahlan bin Saba , bani Israel are branch of Issaq.
Help me Dana, i want to know my origin,because in our religion every person must know his family tree.
I want to see the Azd family tree , i knew some of bani Israel Jewish from Hejaz living in England and Israel , they told me we are cousins and Ghamid / Zahran land is the torah holy land.

good luck

Ali Moses

Dana W. Reynolds said...

Hi Ali I had to delete your comment and repeat it here because you tried to post pictures from twitter and that doesn't work in this comments section. You said -

"Hi Dana , The are local historical from 30/50 years ago, some said Zaharn brother of Ghamid,others said cousins from different father , i told you before Arabian Peninsula has faked history... I found this genealogies of the Azd tribe in English. It's different from the ohters."

My answer is if they are from only 30 to 50 years ago than that is not a good way to study your history. You have to go back and look at the very early texts written by commentators of a thousand years ago. You will see that the English translations are from those writers. I am sure most of the recently written traditions are not as accurate in reporting tribal genealogies and no doubt as you say partly fabricated. The ancient ones were partly fabricated too because they were based partly on astronomical/astrological metaphysics. As I mentioned to you previously such early names like Noah Abraham or Abram, Sarah, Israel and Isaac etc are related to ancient God/planetary and star names that derive largely from Africa and places like Egypt, which already had a story of the Ark of Nuh.

I also could not see the pictures you posted because I am not on twitter.

Dana W. Reynolds said...

To your second comment about Bani Israel. The tradition of Israel and Isaac is not found in ancient Arabian tradition of Azd and Saba just like Azd is not mentioned in the Hebrew Torah. That is partly because Azd were largely the people that became Bani Israel. lol! The land of Asir, Zahran is that of Dawasir or Dhu al Yashir. The name of Israel Yashur el El Yashir is found throughout your region. And on one of the pages of THE BIBLE CAME FROM ARABIA - the book I told you to read (published in Arabic as well as English) - it tells that this was the land promised to Moses. That is those men told you that is the Holy Land of the Torah.

"According to Genesis it was the homelands of these ancient West Arabian tribes that were promised y Yahweh to Abram and his descendants. These same homelands were also included in the territory promised by Yahweh to Moses ( Numbers 34:1-12), which was in fact not smaller than that promised to Abram ... but actually more vast. It comprised 'the land of Canaan in its full extent (34:2) to include inland as well as coastal Asir, along with the Taif region of the Hijaz, from the Red Sea coast to the fringes of the Central Arabian desert." p. 170 published by Naufal

I think it is best to read this book by Kamal Salibi who explains how the history of the original southwest Arabians i.e. Israelites, Canaanite and Aramaeans got messed up with the Levant, Turkey, Mesopotamia and Syria as these Azd i.e Israelite people moved northward carrying their names with them.
Clearly such people as the Ghassan or Gassan of the Azd and the ancestral Sulaymiyyin or Salaimiyyans and/or their client tribes like Qa'in of the Qudha'a wrote the traditions the Torah is based on and their names and legendary leaders like Jafneh, Udthan and Kalb became translated in Greek or English as Jokshan/Kushan, Salma or Shalmai, Kenite, Kuth and Jephuneh, Othni'el and Caleb etc.
It is from the ancient Greek versions of the Torah books such as Ezdras or Ezra in fact we know that the tribes called Salamiyyan and Beni Sulaym or Solaim in Sa'ifitic inscriptions are the same as the children of Salma in the Torah. And that the latter were the same people as Tacitus claimed were believed to be Judaens (Jews) and the founders of Jerusalim which would have been the ones found in Asir in Hijaz and in the Levant. It is also through ancient commentarists that we know the Al-Qain Ba'al Kain branch of these Solaym were the biblical Kenites. You have to be somewhat familiar with the Torah and the names of the Arabian tribes to be aware of these connections. Fortunately a few scholars had caught on with this aside from Salibi and the guy you mentioned previously. They include Moshe Gil and Irfan Shahid.

Unfortunately, it is on this blog alone that you will find all of this information or the pieces of the puzzle put together. If you read through it like I had suggested you will be able to "get it". ; ) Especially the posts I put up on the "Canaanites in their Lands" and "Kings Solomon's Miners". There are three of each. I will probably have to put up a better index of links within the next couple of months so people can find these posts easier.

BTW - if you truly talked with Beni Israel that believed their true Holy Land was in the Asir. You need to find out where they got their information and if it was something they learned later, or in their youth. ;)

Dana W. Reynolds said...

Meant to say up above. That is why those men told you the Zahran and Assir region in general is the holy land of the Torah. Another way of saying the land promised to Amr Muzaikiyah and his wife Zarifah al Himyari who fled from Marib or as it is written in Exodus 17 of the Torah - "Meribah". ;)

PropertyMang. said...

Hi Dana

These Hejazi bani Israel jews there were in visit Saudi Arabia / The Torah holy land - Gahmid and Zahran land , they told me there family have many books and scripts from 2000 years ago, and they have famil tree since Adam,but don't show it to any one, it's privet for there families.
Last 50 years ago, my home people in Ghamid land always they saw foreigners from Europe/America in the region with maps

good luck

Ali Moses

Maximilian Dennison said...

Hi Dana,

Dana should Berber be used in the same way Jamaican or Haitian is used. When we use those terms we know we are talking about black people. But when reading about Berbers it's almost as if they separate them as not being black. For instance if we say South African. In today's time it could be a white or black person. But we know that the original S. Africans are black. I guess I'm asking how come the Berbers are never just called blacks. Even in books like the The Moors in Spain it always says the Berbers and the traditional blacks as if there is a difference. The Berbers at least the original ones were just as black or African or both as everybody else? Right?

PropertyMang. said...

Hi Dana

This video for some of Azd tribes war dance

good luck

Ali Moses

Dana W. Reynolds said...

Hi Ali - that's fine I watched the video in your comment. The interesting thing is the Dawasir of Yamama or Nejd and the inhabitants of Hodeida in Yemen are also Azd and their appearance is of course Sudanic or Ethiopic and their culture is completely different as well then the group of men you have posted. Your video shows how much many regions and people of Saudi Arabia and the Arabian peninsula in general has been influenced by the biology of other nations and peoples.

Since the original Azd including Sanua Dawasir Dhu Shari and Ghassan etc. are described as Shadeed al Udma and Khudar we can assume the people you posted are not very similar to their Azd ancestors. : )

BTW - I don't call that! ; )

Dana W. Reynolds said...

Hi Maximillian - this blogspot is very much concerned or focused on the problem of how names were used differently at different periods over the centuries and how this has led to the distortion of history. For example such terms as Berber and Arab are basically just linguistic terms today. They can barely be described even as ethnic terms because the many groups now being classified under such terms in many cases have little to nothing to do with each other.

Today the term Berber is being used as a term for anyone that speaks Berber. Therefore it is a different significance than it did 500 years ago when it was a term mainly for Zaghaw/Tibbu and the Tuareg. And before that it seemed to have been used mainly for the Beriberi or just the Zaghawa.

There is nothing that can be done about the fact that many names once used exclusively for black populations of African affiliation are now used for other peoples.

These as we have seen include many other names aside from Berber - including Moor, Qipt/Copt, Nabataean, Arab, Maure or Moro, etc.

For a while the word Saracen was used exclusively for the black-skinned Arabian bedouin as well but that changed pretty early on.

You just have to make sure that you are clarifying the context in which you are using such words in your research. : )

PropertyMang. said...

Hi Dana
How are you today ?
This's the Azd tribes color and some more light color, some are white . Azd tribes dance

By the way Dana, prophet Moh'd said Azd shanua only look like Moses, not all azd.
I'm waiting for Arabs and Azd ancestory tree

thank you

Ali Moses

Dana W. Reynolds said...

Salaam Ali - Anna bikhair, alhamdulillah. Hope your are well too.

Just to remind you there are many photos of people of the Zahran Azd tribes on this blog site and they are black and pitch black. As I mentioned the Dthu Shari or Dawasir are Azd, the Ghassan and peoples of Hodeidah are Azd. You claim the Ghamid are brethren to Zahran and as I said that is fine. There are many people claiming in Arabia to be members of this and that tribe. And of course none of them trace their ancestors to the Persians, Turks, Syrians and other tribes they absorbed.

Just as most of the whitish looking Native American Indian tribes in the U.S. and South America do not mention their European biological ancestors. In fact most "African Americans" are from 20 to 25% European but they don't go around proclaiming they are Europeans or that that their European ancestors looked like them. Fortunately this blog is based on scientific along with historical evidence. That evidence says that ancient Arabia in its entirety before the influx of Persians and other NON-ARAB people was occupied by people with the physiological appearance of East Africans i.e. Arabs.
That is one reason there is virtually no mention of white or light -skinned Arabians in early texts of the Arabic writers. And the few places that "red" people are mentioned they are characterized as "looking like slaves". That is why Dhahabi and Thalabi and others said the Arabs were black and proud of it and those that were not were considered descendants of their slaves ("the red" people).

Dana W. Reynolds said...

By the way which non-Arab commentarist wrote that Mohammed said the Sanua were black, and the rest weren't. Mohammed, the prophet of Islam himself was the descendant of the Azd, Qureish and Sulaym three clans of Arabians well-known as black skinned people, like many people of those clans are today. He would not have taken the concept of a fair-skinned Arab people seriously. That would have been considered ridiculous in the Arabian peninsula in that time.
BTW there was more than one commentary mentioning the Azd people as black including the "Song of Roland" in which the tribes that fought against the Francs led by Abdel Rahman al Ghafiqi (Ghafiq were an Azd tribe) are described as "black as pitch".
Today, the modern tribe of Ubadah bin Samit in the Persian Gulf claims descent from the Khazraji Ubadah bin Samit who was of course said to be as black as his Azd Sanuah ancestors. What happened with his Azd people are the same as what formed the people you keep posting, - they absorbed other people. Maybe these people you are showing claim to be Azd Sanuah as well. Do they?! Whatever, they are thus not purely descendants of Banu Azd. They were formed through MISCEGENATION like most other living Arabians, - period - case closed.
There is a phrase my friend as well that was once popular in the Arab lands and may still be for all I know. "Son of a white woman".
Being one was the pride of the Arab of medieval times and as every one can see still is today. ;)
If the 14th c. Syrian Al-Dhahabi said fair skin was rarely to be seen in the Hijaz, and that when it was it was because it was a slave descendant, how frequent would that complexion have been seen to the south of the Hijaz in Asir and the Yemen.
In the Yemen also fair-skin started appearing when the late Persian peoples (Parthians and Sassanids) and their merchants started being absorbed by the population. Later on in early Islamic times some of these foreigners even settled in those towns and kicked out the Arabs. Sana'a is a good example of this. Many of them were brought in as slaves to work the mines, and others ca,me in as mercenaries. Wahb ibn Munabbih is a good example of the who was of Persian paternal descent.
Yet in the 10th c. Ibn Hawkal and others claimed that the Beja color was similar to that of the Arabs. In the 14th century the Yemen like Hijaz and the Nejd was considered by Ibn Khaldun as within the 2nd zone of "Bilad es Sudan" along with Abyssinia and other parts of Africa (see Uthman Sayyid Bili's book, Some Aspects of Islam in Africa, pp. 15-16) This means that most of the people in those regions are still dark at that time "LIKE THE BEJA". There have been numerous incursions since then into the Hijaz down through the Asir Tihama and Yemen in general by Turks and other non-Arab Muslims.
Now do any of the people of Sana'a and Asir claim their Persian, Syrian and Turkish or white concubine ancestry? I am presuming no. But you probably would know better than me. The fact is Arabia was considered part of the zones of the Sudan until a very late period by some writers. And Arabs were generally considered to be the color of the Beja and Abyssinians except for those like the Dawasir or Dosariyya who were probably much blacker.

BTW - Moses was described as looking like a black man because he was from the Azd. Not vice versa. And, you are free to send me the information on an Azd clan that was originally described as "red" and that was not "looking like a slave" as they used to say. ;)

PropertyMang. said...

Hi Dana
Each tribe in Arabia had 5-10% negros slaves since hundred years ago, after many years these slaves join the tribe and get there name, the most tribes had alot of slaves is Dawaser tribe and Shammar north Nejd around 10% of the tribe population.

About prophet Moh'd talk about prophet Moses and Azd shanua, he said adam,tall,curly hair with strong body, that's it.

In Arabia negros married negros only, and there population of citizen around 10% .
All Arabia and Azd tribes skin color are light brown and little are white.

By the way, Hejaz mountain are upper than 2000 meter over the sea, and the weather temperture around 22C in the summer, the majority of Azd and other tribes living on the mountains.
15% living in Tihama very hot weather without rain that why there skin became dark, 10% are beduin in the east of Hejaz mountain we call it Nejd side, who's is living in the desert of them there sking became little dark brown.

Soryy Dana if i disturb you, but this's the trueth, we're not black.

god bless you

Ali Moses

Dana W. Reynolds said...

Salaam aleikum, Ali - I hope you are still well.: ) Don't worry you are not disturbing me in fact I think I am disturbing you, no? One reason I'm not disturbed is because I figured this was where you were headed in the first place, and frankly I couldn't wait 'til we got here. I'm actually having fun. I hope your are. : )lol!

I wish you again congratulations and think you should be glad to be whoever you are. But, in case you haven't noticed this blogspot is about the people that were considered black or Sudanic - tribes of people like the ORIGINAL occupants of Arabia i.e. the Azd and their descendants, Mudar or Muzir and their descendants, Qahtan, Abs, Maddhij, Ghassan, Qureish, Hudhail bin Mudrika, Nabataeans, Cha'b, Muntafiq and the other Khudar once known as "the Arabs" and how they became modified through absorbing other NON-ARABpopulations within the last several hundred years.
As I mentioned previously what I am saying on my blog is based on scientific evidence and historical documentation not just national beliefs or wishful thinking.
The evidence shows for example that the skeletons of the ancient populations of Arabians were similar to those of peoples of the Nile and not like most modern inhabitants of Arabia today. This is why the rock art OF ARABIA also shows African-looking people wearing ostrich feathers and not fair-skinned Syrian looking people with beards. (See Emmanuel Anati's text, Rock Art of Central Arabia.) This is why the culture there according to archaelogists in the Tihama was indistinguishable from that on the opposite side of the Red Sea in Eritrea, and this is why much of Eritrea and Abyssinia were also considered "Arabia" extending to Nubia by Strabo, Diodorus and other ancient Greeks around the time of Christ.
This is also why a 7th century leader of the Maddhij from Banu Qahtan according to the Ibn Rabbih said jokingly that a fair-skinned Arab was as rare as one of the 7 wonders of the world. This is not what I am making up.
Ibn Jawzi used the same word for the complexion of the Abyssinians as he did the Arabs, Ibn Hawqal said the Beja looked like the Arabs in their complexion.

Do you look like the Arabian of Ibn Hawqal's time, Ali. If not you might want to start doing some research into which people your tribe absorbed in the past several centuries, since the didn't mix with "negroes". ; )

Dana W. Reynolds said...

By the way, Ali, I do agree with you that in the past couple hundred years especially there had been an influx of central East or Bantu speaking Africans especially into the Arabian peninsula along with people from Austric India. That has little do with the reason the Azd tribes like the Ghassan, Khazraj, and Arabians in general were called blacks and why Arabs in general called themselves the blacks as opposed to the red people for a thousand years before that.
It also doesn't explain why the inhabitants of Hijaz from Mecca and Medina to Hijaz are described as all of a very dark purple color by the Chinese mariners of the 15th century now does it.
I guarantee you the black as pitch Dawasir from Udthan bin Zahran ibn Azd still living in Wadi Dawasir and Yamama (al Falaj) in Nejd are the least modified descendants of the ancient giant Azd tribes like Khazraj and Aus and in fact probably direct descendants of those elegant black people that appear in Arabian rock art in the Rub al Khali, like it or not.; ) They cannot help it if they are still black, and neither can we change history because your people wish not to recognize Arabian history and the fact that it is the peninsula is basically formed from a mixture of populations, unlike in the Prophet's time. The Arabians were called blacks by many people Ali. I have tried to explain why Russian, Yiddish and Turkish Arab or "Arapi" had or has come to mean "the black man". I could care less what the Arabians have become today. I am in fact only explaining why many of them are not black now. If you don't want to believe it then your wishful thinking and distortion of the truth is what should disturb you, not the fact that I am providing the evidence of why anciently all of Arabia and every tribe of Arabia North to South was once described as black.

May you and your people get over your fear of blackness, Ali. Those who love the Truth love God, and therefore are blessed.


PropertyMang. said...

Hi Dana
Would you please sent the Azd family tree to my email, i will pay for the cost through paypal

This's the Saba story from Quraan, it's says first people moved from Ma'rib Azd tribes, same
time bani Israel moved to Misr south Mecca with their leader Amr bin Amer Muzaigia.

By the way my Dna result have changed after the SNP test from J-m267 to J-by74 I'm sure this group is belong to prophet Moses , i need your comment mam.

thank you

Ali Moses

Dana W. Reynolds said...

Hey Ali - actually the best thing to do is go to the library and look up or order volume 1 of the book Encyclopaedic Ethnography of Middle and Central Asia by R. Khanam and look up Azd. I am sure this book in Arabic as well. That will give you a true categorization the Azd lineages and groupings of the tribes according to medieval historians or traditionalists. Otherwise if you have a problem with that, I could send you a scanned copy of Tariq Berry's mapping of the Azd family tree. He wrote the Unknown Arabs. (You wouldn't have to pay me for this - btw.:) I forget who his lineage of the Azd is derived from though it might have been al-Hamdani. I think it started with an H, but can't remember right now. I don't think it differed much from what is on Wikipedia though. :)
You can also ask him for the Azd lineage, or at least where he got it from.
There is a lot of good information about the Azd tribes in al-Makkari's, History of the Muslim dynasties in Spain, and Ibn Rabbih's the Unique Necklace by Boullata.
If you have trouble finding these texts or the info you need, let me know.:)

Maximilian Dennison said...

Hi Dana,

I have questions. I've recently started reading Black Arabia by Wesley Muhammad and Illuminating Darkness by Habeeb Akande. Have you read these books. And how do you feel about W Muhammad view of the Umayyad dynasty being mostly black. Also I want your opinion of Akande's treatment of the Berbers. He speaks about the white Berbers of North Africa.
Would you consider these scholarly books I could use for a college graduate paper? Also based off you readings the Great War general Khalid ibn Walid what did he look like. Muhammad names his tribe and says he believes he was a black Arab. But I've read othe sources that say different. If you have some insight on this. Please let me know. Thanks again everytime I read the blog it makes go out and read more to know more about the early blacks. Thanks

Dana W. Reynolds said...

Hi Maxmillian - I haven't read Illuminating Darkness. It is safe to say that he probably was not aware of how the term “white with a trace of red' was used by the Arabs to describe complexion. This phrase was mentioned at the beginning of his book. As I stated in my posts the term white as Africans and early Arabs used it wasn't usually how people in the West today use it.
When speaking of “white Berbers” he may be talking about modern fair-skinned people who call themselves "white" just as the Wodaabe or Tuareg and other darker-skinned Beri-beri Africans - the color of millions of African Americans have traditionally been described as. Of course if he is confusing these two populations Berbers of the Sahara and Sahel with Berbers along the coast of North Africa then that is an significant error that distorts the premise of his book. Like I said though, I haven't read the book.

I read Wesley's book several years ago, which is very informative. There were however also a few glaring errors that perhaps had to do with reliance on Diop's unwarranted suggestion that the “Joktanides” or Qahtan Sabaeans were “white” semites from the North that came to mix with presumably more African-related "Hamites". I talked to Wesley about this because he had cited me in the book a few times and I wanted to let him know that nothing could be further from the truth. The Sabaeans or Qahtan people were in fact the Himyarite and Minaean people whom as we have seen were and are basically Ethiopic-looking people some of whom have remained in southern Arabia having settled there in ancient times. They were largely derived in part from what archaeologists have named the Sabir or Afro-Tihama culture. Many of them later settled back in Africa where were already culturally-related people.
From the ancestors of such people came the proto-semitic cultures of the Near East – Canaanites, Hebrews, Chaldaeans, Akkado-Babylonian. Nabataeans, etc. as well as the first Arabs. They are the people whom according to tradition were Ham, Shem and Japhet. The allegory related to these brothers originally had nothing to do with people outside of Arabia, and the semitic and hamitic dialects in fact were just offshoots of an earlier east African proto-Erythraic language.
Aside from the belief in white Sabaeans impressed in his Black Arabia, Wesley is what I consider to be a very good researcher and I would recommend the book. He also has a few scholarly papers out there that you can take into account published in well-respected journals. However I'm not sure, Black Arabia, has had a scholarly review or would be considered an academic publication. If you are writing a graduate paper you need to use academically-reviewed, and preferably, relatively recent published material. You can usually find them in journals which are in places like and JSTOR.

There are a lot of great bibliographical sources on this blog by the way that are research-based and have been peer-reviewed.
You might also want to consider getting the only peer-reviewed article that summarizes the ethnic historic background of the Berbers and Arabs in relation to their black African or Afroasiatic origins and discusses how the information of their black African origins has been distorted. Its called Fear of Blackness: Recovering the Hidden Ethnogenesis of the Early African and Afroasiatic Peoples Comprising the “Moors”.
Not to be like Donald Trump here, but I have to tell you it is a one of a kind article as it is the only one I know of connecting the many groups of Berbers groups with their unmodified ancestors and least modified black or African descendants.

Dana W. Reynolds said...

I can suggest a few other books that might help you with some background, though they may be equally hard to follow if you are not a specialist of some sort, but they are those I have quoted a lot from. I will start with some of the more responsible authors and texts. There is the Curse of Ham, by David Goldenberg, along with some of his articles which I have used on this blog.
Ramzi Roughi is pretty trustworthy and his articles, such as the "Andalusi Origin of the Berbers?" and "The Berbers of the Arabs" are places to start. His work implies the Andalusian origins of modern Berbers as opposed to those eastern African ones the Arabic writers spoke of.
On the other hand such books and articles that try to paint ancient or early Berbers as non-blacks or Eurasians as opposed to blacks that all early writers refer to them as, and yet are supposedly only the slaves in North Africa are anathema to true historians. Books and texts such as Black Morocco: A History of Slavery, Race and Islam by Chouki el-Hamel, or “Blacks and Berbers: Ibadi Slave Traffic in Eight -Century North AFrica” by E. Savage may contain a host of important facts about black slavery since the 16th century, but only serve to confuse people on who the early Berbers were and just as importantly on what they looked like. : ) Such authors automatically assumed that because Berbers had black slaves they were not black. This kind of reasoning is why some tribes in black Africa became “hamites” and “half-hamites” because people like the Tibu took other blacks as slaves. Tibbu, Teda and Zaghawa people took many slaves. That doesn't mean they weren't black. The state of Bornu and other states across the Sudan took many slaves. That doesn't mean they were not black.

In the area of the Berber Ibadites of Tunisia who began importing slaves from inner Africa before the 9thth century for example there are many probable descendants of the Berbers as known to the Arabs who are now all thought of as slave-descended due to the demographical change that has taken place in Tunisia. They face much discrimination and are harassed with racial epithets. Similar changes have occurred and views are now taken in many other parts of North Africa and in Arabia. Blackness came to be associated with servitude across North Africa in general after the 15th century as has happened throughout Arabia and the Middle East. That is a fact. Nevertheless the Berbers of the time previous to that were predominantly blacks and viewed as such even in Ibn Khaldun's time no matter how much populations from Andalusia and Levant have since whitened the Maghreb. ; )
Books by Savage, el Hamel etc, can be used on the other hand to show how Sudanic, Maghrebi and West African history has been and continues to be distorted in the modern academic world. Although, it is not completely the fault of these latter authors that they don't know the Berbers were essentially or fundamentally a black-skinned people. Their unwarranted premises were largely based on colonial and post-colonial rhetoric in anthropology with its fallacious notions of a long-headed or dolichocephalic “Atlanto-Mediterranean race”, “Caucasoid hamites”, “white Garamantes”, “docile Negroes” and the like, and ignorance regarding how terms for complexion were previously or traditionally used in Arabic. That along with the anti-black sentiment prevalent in their own countries has apparently impacted scholarship on the subject significantly and until the present day.

Dana W. Reynolds said...

Probably a good overall early sourcebook is by Levtzion and Hopkins, - Corpus of Early Arabic Sources for West African History. I am not saying such sources come out and state that the Berbers were related to peoples in sub-Saharan Africa. That kind of information would only be accessible in works of earlier colonialist authors. But at least you can figure out who you are not talking about. : )
The UNESCO histories of Africa that came out in the '70s and '80s give a lot of historical background. See links on my blog for bibliographic references.

As for the authors that wrote voluminously about Berbers, but probably hadn't the slightest idea or interest in their connection to modern black Africans of Sahara and the Sudan we have, Richard Smith who penned, “What Happened to the Ancient Libyans? Chasing Sources across the Sahara from Herodotus to Ibn Khaldun,” Journal of World History 14, no. 4 (December 2003): 459–500. You also have highly informative things like D. J. Mattingly's (1983) "The Laguatan: A Libyan Tribal Confederation in the Late Roman Empire".
I can not leave out some of the better informed older sources like, The Eastern Libyans by Oric Bates, Eva Meyerwitz had some information worth remembering in her "The origins of the 'Sudanic' civilization", Anthropos 67(1-2) and in some books and articles by Hiernaux, Gautier and other French-speakers which give a lot of info about the rock art and ancient documents on the peopling of North Africa and Sahara.

The book Hebrewisms in West Africa though it has a lot of bias also has a lot of pertinent information on the Sudanic peoples that I talk about in my Berber blogposts. You have to remember there are very few people aside from the old colonialists and folklorists who knew much about the fact the original Berbers were comprised of mainly the original Kamnuri, Zaghawa, and Tuareg- related people. I myself was just able to keep putting two and two together – somewhat like a rubric's cube. : )

Anonymous said...

Hi Dana,
After the fall of the Islamic Caliphate in Spain has been misquoted all genealogical manuscripts and Arab heritage including Ibn Khaldun wrote.
When Constantine became a Christian, 306-337 a.d. he forged many scripts about middle east.

We don't have a real history and manuscripts flowed , some jews from Alazd tribe and Istanbol,England,and Spain museums that have some real historical information prohibited.
The Torah and the Bible and Hadiths of the Prophet Mohamed was much misrepresentation, And sourcing people from South Mecca (Yemen) and Arabs descended from Sam Ben Noah, And blacks descended from ham Ben Noah.
DNA screening proved that Arabs J strain, Negroes on the E strain.

Thank you
Ali Moses

Dana W. Marniche said...

Hey Ali - kaiyful hal. : ) Hope you are well. Actually I'm not sure why you are mentioning Constantine now as I don't use him to describe what happened to the original Afro-Asiatic peoples.
I agree that the Torah/Bible and hadiths of the Prophet Mohammed have much misinterpretation in them largely because they were recomposed by people who had little to do with the original people that wrote the Torah. Many or most hadiths about early Arabia were writtten by Persians and Syrians. However, it is also the Persians and Syrians that talk comment on the appearance of the original Arabs. The truth is the Yemen doesn't have a myth about Ham being a brother of Shem That came later in stories from Syria and Persia. What they say is that people like the Himyarites and Sabeans were the ancestors of those whom the Torah calls Ham Shem and Japhet. There isn't anybody else mentioned in the Genesis tables. Nu or Nuah is just an African deity and the folk of Noah mentioned by Bukhari were just some black Yemenites that worshipped a variety of Gods. : )
DNA screening of todays "Arabs" has very little to do with the ancient populations of Arabia. The population of much of Arabia like that of northern Egypt and Northern Africa is not the same as it was 600 years ago. We know that because of the descriptions of all the Arab tribes and the fact that the Yemen and Nejd and Hijaz were all occupied by Sudanic looking populations. Ibn Khaldun is not the only one that described the regions of Arabia.
Remember we have countless Syrian writers, Chinese manuscripts and Persian letters that tell us what the Arabs looked like aside from Arab dictionaries themselves that all say the same thing. Even Medina a little over 100 years ago is described inhabited mostly by blacks and yet today there are few there. What happened to them? There is something called misceenation that has occurred. This has happened through slavery and conquest. Remember the Syrians like al-Dhahabi said anyone in Arabia who had fair-skin was assumed to be descended from a slave.;)
So geneticists should not be taking samples from people who obviously do not represent pure Arab people and then claim a haplotype to be Arab. They tried that with the North Africans but it just backfired, in other words they tried to prove the ancient Berbers were originally palaeolithic Eurasians.

The genotype of old Arabians was probably closest to modern north Sudanese, Beja and Nubians who fit the description of ancient Arabs and are largely derived from them. But even they like the people of the Horn show a strong admixture with people from places like Levant, Greece and possibly Armenia. Remember the name Arabia in the period of ancient Greek historians referred to everything east of the Nile, and the people in the Arabian peninsula in that period were related to them, and not to Turks, Syrians and Persians and the J haplotype who have swamped the peninsula as merchants, immigrants and conquerors. ; )

Muhammed Sadiq Bey,a man of Turkish ancestry born in Egypt mentioned in 1861 the inhabitants Medina in 1861. He “described Madinah and its inhabitants… The people of Madinah were of ‘a dark, almost black complexion,’ although some were ‘light-skinned, almost white.’” See “Pioneer Photographer of the Holy Cities” by John De St. Jorre, in the magazine Saudi Aramco World, Jan Feb 1999.
Now there are no almost black complexion in Medina. Are they even ARab?! That's the demographics change in just one important town in Arabia in just 150 years! Believe it! Think of what could and did happen within several centuries.

Dana W. Marniche said...

Sorry I mispelled miscegenation - which means interbreeding of different populations.: )

Dana W. Marniche said...

BTW - since you believe in the Syrian notion that blacks descend from Ham bin Noah, we might well explain what that means, since you probably don't know it.

Masudi of Baghdad for example said in the 10th century - “The Nabataeans founded the city of Babylon and were those descendants of Ham who settled in the same province under the leadership of Nimrod, the son of Cush, who was the son of Hamm…This took place at the time when Nimrod received the governship of Babylonia as the delegate of Dzhahhak.”

After mentioning Nabit b. Canaan b. Kush b. Ham, Al-Dimashqi goes on to say the following concerning the Nabataeans.

“They had their homes in Babylonia, and their first king was Nimrod I, that is, the Great. They were known as Kaldan (Chaldeans), Kasdan (Kasdites), Janban, Jaramiqa, Kutharun, and Kan'anun; these were Nabataeans who constructed buildings, founded cities, dug canals, planted trees,...They were all Sabeans who worshiped stars and idols” (Zakeri, Mohsen, Sassanid Soldiers in Early Muslim Society, 1995, p. 148).

Not surprisingly al-Dimashqi 13th century also claimed Nabit signifies black "Among the children of Canaan are the Nabit, Nabit signifies 'black'..."

The Chaldeans, Nabataeans, Babylonians, Kasdim, the north Arabian Kedarites or Ismailites and Canaanites from whom came the Israelites Amorites and all other semitic people were all considered originated from the black Sabaean people once dwelling in Aram in Hadramaut, al Yamamah who came from African-Arabians covering the Nejd, the entirety of the Asir, Tihama and Hijaz. That was the belief of the medieval Arabic writers from around the world. Like it or not!

Thus, the sons of Ham were the builders and bringers of civilization to the Near East where they ruled for a thousand years according to the early Arabic writers from Syria and Baghdad so if that is what you are talking about when you say the tradition is that blacks were the sons of Ham ben Noah than all I can say is الحمد لله Al-Hamdulillah praise be to God! Let the light of Truth shine once more.
And, I will be posting the genetic evidence of who these BLACKS were soon.; )

Anonymous said...

HI Dana
how are you, i'm fine thank you.

If our history and heritage typeface for thousands of years, that's mean all writers for hundred of years are copying unreal facts.

These some books, i couldn't find them ;
constructing alazd: Tribal Identity and Society in the Early Islamic Centuries
Byzantium and the Arabs in the fourth century

I found and bought this book from Amazon and waiting for delivery :
ARA-KITB SHAR SHAWHID AL-TALKH28 , by Abd Al-Ram Ibn Abd Al-Ramn 1462 , Arabi

We're not black, but some beduins became dark skin of the hot sun in Arabian Peninsula in August the temperature around 55 C , but i like dark skin women.

good luck

Ali Moses

Dana W. Marniche said...

Hi again Ali - well, I am not sure about your heritage since this blogspot is not about people that are the result of centuries of miscegenation, but i am sure you have nothing to be ashamed about.

As you might have seen, this blogspot is about the original and unmodified African Arabia and African Berbers, i.e. Afroasiatics that brought the Mother Goddess civilization to the Near East, Anatolia and elsewhere, as evident from the rock art and skeletons found throughout Arabia and North Africa and the Mediterranean that predate and differ from those of present populations. Arabia in ancient times was the name for the area in Africa on the eastern side of the Nile and related people in Arabia and other places, which is why it was considered a land of Kush and Sudan. If you are from those people then be happy. If not, this blogspot is not going to help you much. : )

BTW - All people who are dark got it from "the hot sun", not just bedouin. : (

If you "like dark-skinned women" then you will love Kali, Goddess of Time - the Black ONE, who destroys all lies and enemies of the Truth - as she has through this blog. I personally love her too.: )

Dana W. Marniche said...

I am not sure why you couldn't find Constructing Al Azd, Ali, but at least you can read some of it on google books.

Anonymous said...

Hi Dana,
I couldn't find Constructing Al-azd book, out of stock all international libraries .
All Arab history books like Ibn khaldon and others are fake.
By the way , my dna final result is Jby74 branch of ( JZ644 Alzd tribes )
thank you
Ali Moses

Dana W. Marniche said...

Hey Ali - I was going to send you a link that was on Wikipedia which is where I first saw the book, unfortunately it looks like they took it off. I think we discussed your haplotypes before. I don't know what the Azd genotype of 1,000 years ago was. I just know how the different groups of al-Azd were described back then, such as the Khazraj, Ghassan, Khaza'a, Daus etc, and that the unmodified Dawasir (Dawsariyya) of al- Yamamah in Central Arabia who are described by colonialists are still black and huge like they are in medieval times have many tribal names of the original Azd people. The appearance and genes of the tribes of Azd like most tribes of the Arabian peninsula has been modified due to the large numbers of immigrants, conquerors and slaves that have been brought there that have been intermixing with them. The semitic language is an afroasiatic one and the original Afro-asiatics came from northeast Africa so they didn't look like dark Syrians. : )

Dana W. Marniche said...

Remember Ibn Hawkal said that the Arab color was much like the Beja of the Horn of AFrica and Sudan. Please note countless lineages of the Arabs have become mixed with non-Arab peoples. The tribe that claims descent from the very black and huge Ubada bin Samit of the Khazraj for example is completely fair in color. So don't worry about not being a pure Arab tribe. There are only a few of those left - probably only in Hadramaut or Sudan somewhere. :)

Anonymous said...

Hi Dana,
Are you good ?

Native Bani Israel in Yemen

thank you
Ali Moses

Dana W. Marniche said...

Hey Ali - sorry I'm very busy lately. Where'd you learn that slang!

The Banu Israel are known by their ancient clan names and some of the pure ones are still living in Hadramaut from the tribe of Dan (Habbaniyya), but most of the Israelites have long turned Muslim. Except as you well know from my blog the habbaniyya who come from Bahila (Bilha) according to Arab texts look more like Ethiopians i.e that is to say like Semites.As you have seen in this blog all of the tribes of Israel are still known under their ancient names and were never lost. The jewish people of Yemen are too mixed with Persians and other people to be considered pure semites. Remember Wah ibn Munabbih the Jewish Yemenite for example who was half Persian and that's his people you are showing.

Remember Amr Musaikiyya (Moses) and Zarifa and their followers were in the Yemen in Marib (Meribah) and are described as black by later Middle Eastern people. Benjamin for example was just another name for Banu Yam, and Yafi bin Qesed or Yahar who live in Hadramaut and Africa even today. In this blog all of the tribes of Yasir'el have been identified as ancient Arabs each of whom whom were at one time described as black 'akhdar", "samar", "al-udmah" and even "jadeed al udmah" by various writers. Kamal Salibi's book would be a big help to you. ; )

The Issachar i.e., Banu Yashkur or Al Ushaykir were originally from the Azd while the black as lava Sulaym were from Manasseh (Mansur) and their brethren Ferain bin Baliy (Ephrain/Ephraim). Al-Hamdulillah thanks be to GOD all of the true tribes of Israel and of Nu have been permitted exposure in this time. : )

If you have information showing otherwise feel free to post it, but you'll have to have more proof than a modern video. Remember the Arabs - a people with "kinky hair" and a Samar, Udmah and Akhdarcomplexion resembling the Beja and Ethiopians according to Ibn Hawqal, Ibn Mansur and others and they thus much different genetically, culturally and physically than the Syrians, Turks and Persians, Slavs and Rum or fair skinned people had nothing to do with the Arabs. The latter in fact despised the complexion of "red" or ahmar people. Arabia has been settled by many people in the last 1000 years. But' don't hate, just celebrate. : )

There are British people that think they are descendants of Israelites too, just as descendants of the converted peoples of ancient Rome and Turkey now living in Syria or the modern Israel do. ; )

BTW - I found out the Arab genes of your tribe derive from Abs bin Ghatafan and Zahran of the Azd. Your tribe lives near and in the villages founded by these two once black populations of the ancient Asir. See Near East/South Asia Report by Fu'ad Hamza published 1983.

I don't know where the white i.e. "ahmar" genes of your tribe come from. Perhaps Syria, but I'm sure you will be able to confirm that soon. Peace

Anonymous said...

Hi Dana,
About bani Israel who's in south west Arab peninsula until 4 months ago most of them Jews, they're clans of Benjamin / Dan / Joseph , and i knew many information about them but i can't say it in public .
Mean while if some of them got dark skin color, it's not mean that they're Ethiobian ,maybe there mothers African, south Arabia was kingdoms 1000's years ago including parts of east Africa and the red sea in the south is short distance people can travel from east to west in few hours for trading / work .
That why many Negros in Yemen/Hejaz

Thank you
Ali Moses

Dana W. Marniche said...

Hey Ali - as I have mentioned to you most people in Arabia are a composite mixture of many people. But the original tribe of Benjamin, Dan or Bilha/Bahila were related to the Azd and Quda'a people - two populations whom the ancients specifically described as black or Jadeed al- udmah and khudar. The Jews were described in Hijaz as "more black than any other color" 400 years ago and the Israelites in Egypt 1000 years ago were described as indistinguishable from the Nubians, Abyssinians and Copts in appearance unlike their Greek Christian enemies. Sorry the Europeans didn't like to mention all of this stuff together in their books, like I do. ; )
No Arab "got dark skin color" because they were already tar black and near to black Khudar or "akhdar" which as YOU KNOW signifies only the dark skinned and near black person.
I am not sure why you keeep bringing up "Negroes" which is just the name Europeans use for slaves from Africa. Many of the pure Arab populations of Arabia were apparently blacker than many "Negroes" later brought into ARabia and some are described as having features stereotypically said to be only found among NEGRO Africans, like red eyes, broad noses, flat noses, braids, big butts, large sexual organs and the ability to run fast (which is what the early Persians said of the Tayyi -their general name for the Arab : ). I have this information with the sources on my blog. Have you not read it!? There were no fair skinned ARABS 1000 years ago except for those that descended from slaves, i.e. Syrians, Persians and Rum (Greco-Romans) as al Dhahabi stated. That is why Ibn Rabbih in his Al Iqd al Farid the Precious Necklace said the qadi of the Maddhij said seeing a fair skinned Arab was '"inconceivable" and "as rare as the 7th wonder of the world".
The Beni Yamin (Benjamin) or Yam were according to Arab tradition related to the Hamdan who were once a Sabaean tribe. Even Wikipedia says this - which means that they were looking like "Ethiopians" which means black people in Greek, i.e. Qarra, Shahara, Habbaniyya and Hadramaut. Remember Yemen was one of the blacker zones of the Sudan even 600 years ago and such people are still looking like Somalis and Ethiopians. WHy is that Ali?!

The Harasis Beni Kathir (Keturah) were also from Hamdan and I have a photo of them on this page. They don't look like the people you are posting and I can guarantee you their genotypes are not the same as the people you posted.; )

Dana W. Marniche said...

The Himyar/Sabaeans were and are black people. Those living people who speak the ancient Himyarite-related dialects in southern and eastern Arabia are still near black in color, and look like Somali and Abyssinians. Remember? Why is that, Ali?!

They are in reality the first people to be called Zanj a word meaning "rust colored" in Persian. Such people are the last of the true Qahtan or Yarab in Arabia and all pure Arabs resemble them. : ) The haplotypes you mention are mainly of Syrian origin and thus likely not the haplotypes of the original Khudar or pure Arabs of Arabia of one, two and three thousand years ago. As well, the Amalek, A'ad, Umaymah (Emim), Akk (Og/Anakim), Wabar (Dawasir) and other populations that were said to be giants and extinct by the fairskinned non-Arabs who are your ancestors are representeed only by the blacks in the Dawasir land. The ancestors of the black Azd giants Aus and Khazraj (ansar) WHICH ARE NO LONGER IN HIJAZ OBVIOUSLY, etc. are represented by in Arabia ONLY by the black giants among the Dawasir today that is why they have names like Nifal (Nephilim), Al Ufaysan (Eliphaz ancestor of Amalek). They are only represented by the tall black and near black populations of Wadi Dawasir (Yamamah), Hadramaut and most of them left for Africa and Syria in very ancient times. Thus the ancient Shem are living peoples Ali. That is the beauty of it all. And people like yourself and Europeans have tried to bury that history.

But I am here to say this era usurpation is now out in the open. If you have Arab blood be glad, but there will never be a genetic proof that Arabs like the Dawasir, Canaanites, Israelites, ancient Egyptians or Kemitiu rather, or Berbers were fair-skinned Eurasiatic peoples unless history is turned on its head. If you or the mixed people of Arabia don't have some African genes or the genes of the Ubaid man of anthroopologists then you are likely not Arab by blood.:)

Again, I am sorry that you and many of your people (like the Europeans) don't like the fact that the ancient populations of Arabia and in fact other parts of the Near East were related to black Africans, but that is not the problem of the Africans, and it is not going to change history. BTW - the ancient Arabs worshipped blackness and were proud of their own. That is why why al Fadl ibn Abbas said "I am the black skinned one, one of the nobles" "pure of race"(Stetkevych, Jaroslav, Muhammad and the Golden Bough p. 73). That is why Miskeen said I am khudar " the color of the Arabs". That is why the phrase akhdar al-jildah was used for PURE Arabs as Stetkevych says. And that is why the Byzantines portrayed the early Umayyads the color of Nubians and east Africans, and why Ibn Hawkal said Arabs were the complexion of the Beja.

They were not mixed with the white i.e. "red" concubines or slaves yet: ) See a painting of the Umayyads by the Byzantines I recently placed in my blog AfroArabia 101. There is no escape. :(

Anonymous said...

Hi Dana,
The last two post for you, mentioned my haplogroup dna is same Abs bin Ghatafan, which one Jz644 or Jby74 ?

About Khazraj tribe , i forget to said that most of Aseer tribes are from Khazraj.

Only 35% of Dawaser are Azd tribe (Alzayed clan)

You can hear the trumpet instead of shofar in the past (Ghamid & Zahran)

Thank you
Ali Moses

Dana W. Marniche said...

Hi Ali - only the dna of the kudhar Arabs of the Arabs count today. Notice how these Arabs of the Tihama still sings like a flamenco singer in Spain.
: )

Notice that Ibn Duraid went to raid the tribe of Abs bin Ghutayf or Ghatafan - a tribe closely related to the lava-colored Sulaym ibn Mansur of Jahiz and Ibn Athir, brethren to Hawazin bin Mansur of North Arabia tribes comprised of Beni Amir bin Sa'sa'a and the Abyssinian-colored Ka'b, Uqayl, Khasafam Muntafiq (Qays Ailan). Ibn Duraid asked his companion what he saw .who said "I see black-skinned men shaking their spears and digging in the earth with their feet." Duraid said "That is the tribe of Abs'" From the 12th century work of Ibn Rabbih in Al Iqd el Farid.

Look and be amazed at how the Afro-Arabians have kept the culture of their black skinned ancestors for thousands of years, Ali. Maybe you are not one of them? : )

The men of the Arabs are still stamping their feet in the dirt, Ali. There is no escape, and the early medieval authors often carefully wrote what passed down to them. There is no escape. ; )

Dana W. Marniche said...

The descendants of the real AfroAsiatics of the Asir do AfroAsiatic things. Like this kind of dance which is thousands of years old.

What does yours do? lol! :(

Anonymous said...

Hi Dana

The emigrating septs of Kahlan can be divided into four groups:

Azd: Who, under the leadership of ‘Imran bin ‘Amr Muzaiqbâ’, wandered in Yemen, sent pioneers and finally headed northwards. Details of their emigration can be summed up as follows:

Tha‘labah bin ‘Amr left his tribe Al-Azd for Hijaz and dwelt between Tha‘labiyah and Dhi Qar. When he gained strength, he headed for Madinah where he stayed. Of his seed are Aws and Khazraj, sons of Haritha bin Tha‘labah.

Haritha bin ‘Amr, known as Khuza‘a, wandered with his folks in Hijaz until they came to Mar Az-Zahran. Later, they conquered the Haram, and settled in Makkah after having driven away its people, the tribe of Jurhum.

‘Imran bin ‘Amr and his folks went to ‘Oman where they established the tribe of Azd whose children inhabited Tihama and were known as Azd-of-Shanu’a.

Jafna bin ‘Amr and his family, headed for Syria where he settled and initiated the kingdom of Ghassan who was so named after a spring of water, in Hijaz, where they stopped on their way to Syria.
Lakhm and Judham: Of whom was Nasr bin Rabi‘a, father of Manadhira, Kings of Heerah.
Banu Tai': Who also emigrated northwards to settle by the so- called Aja and Salma Mountains which were consequently named as Tai’ Mountains.
Kinda: Who dwelt in Bahrain but were expelled to Hadramout and Najd where they instituted a powerful government but not for long , for the whole tribe soon faded away.

What're shanu'a tribles ?

Thank you
Ali Moses

PropertyMang. said...

Hi Dana,

I was waiting for your reply

Ali Moses

Dana W. Marniche said...

Ali I don't have time to keep writing back and forth about things that are already on my blog. Actually Azd Shanua was a population that branched off from tribes in the Sharawat or Sarat. THose who remained were called Azd Sarat. "Among the Azd tribes, none were as important as the Azd Shanuah, who arrived in Oman from the Yamamah..." from Joseph Kechichian Oman and the World 1995 p. 22. persian rulers recognized them as "...the 'kings of the Arabs'". The Julanda, Daws, and Aulad Shams were some of the tribes of Sanuah. They ruled Oman at the time of your Prophet.
But, the Azd were all from one people "a large group split into several sub-groups, including the Azd As- Sarat, Azd Sanua, and Azd Oman..." Araby the blessed. by Daniel Potts p. 153. Ibn Khallikan wrote in his biographical dictionary ".. people spoke of the Azd of Daba, the Azd of Shanna, the Azd of Oman and the Azd of as-Sarat, though they were all sprung from the same stock. Let no one suppose that the differences indicated by these adiditional names implied a difference of origin."
This is what scholars say and all medieval Arab writers note, but since you are telling me all of these books are "fake", I'm afraid I can't help you anymore.


You should stop asking me questions because I only rely on early sources and not what you want modern populations of Arabia to be. : (

Dana W. Marniche said...

Sorry I meant to say daniel Potts book is called ARaby the Blest.

Mike said...

Good day again Miss Marnichie, I'm not sure if this was addressed in this post or not as I read it some time ago, but may you provide me with a reference supporting your view that the Gaunches of the Canary islands were of dark complexion? Because I've noticed it's not easy to find an objective source on Berber people. I'd greatly appreciate it if you can.

Dana W. Marniche said...

Hi Mike - sorry I thought something back to you about this. Was busy posting my new blog. It took a long time for me to recover that info that I had posted on Egyptsearch forum, where I used to post long ago for fun. I'm not sure if I will be able to get to it very soon again since I've started on a new project, but maybe you can find info on Egyptsearch about the Canary Island if you google my name and some keywords. did I say Guanches were blacK? I know people on the Canary Islands were Berbers/Tuareg at one point and black people are mentioned there, but I don't remember saying it was the Gaunches.