Rise to Glory: North Africa
Maghrib and the Berbers
North Africa has been inhabited since paleolithic times by the
ancestors of what were to become the Berbers (from the Latin word
barbar, or barbarian) and is was also known as the Barbary Coast.
The ancient Numidians of Libya who had dealings with the
Phoenecians in Carthage were also Berbers.
Most are sedentary people who live off the land, moving to the
mountains in summer with their flocks, but some, such as the
Tuaregs, are nomadic. They grow wheat, barley, fruit, vegetables,
nuts and olives, and keep animals such as cattle, sheep, goats and
They live in stone houses or in tents made of goats hair. While
some have adopted Arabic as their language, others still speak
Berbero-Libyan languages which include Tamashek or Tuareg. These
dialects are spoken all over North Africa, from the Niger river to
the Mediterranean and from the Atlantic to Egypt.