Indigenous Berber, the Blue men, with the eponymous blue cloth veil
One of the most misrepresent people in North Africa are the indigenous Berber people. These beautiful women are not shown on mainstream television, movies and rarely in print. These are the descendants of the ancient Berbers that the ancient Romans spoke of and wrote about.
The original indigenous Berbers were the North African ancestors of the present day dark-brown peoples of the Sahara and the Sahel, mainly those called Fulani, Tugareg, Zenagha of Southern Morocco, Kunta and Tebbu of the Sahel countries, as well as other dark-brown arabs now living in Mauretania and throughout the Sahel, including the Trarza of Mauretania and Senegal, the Mogharba as well as dozens of other Sudanese tribes, the Chaamba of Chad and Algeria.” The Westerners have chosen to concentrate on the most recent world of the Arab and Berber-speaking peoples and present it as if it is a world that has always been. “It is like comparing the Aztecs of five hundred years ago with the ethnic mix of America today,” wrote Reynolds. “The story of when North Africa was Moorish and Arabia, the land of Saracens, has yet to be told.”
– Dana Reynolds, Anthropologist
Anthropologist, Dana Reynolds traced the African roots of the original North African peoples through a dozen Greek and Byzantine (neo-Roman writers) from the first to the sixth century A.D. “They describe the Berber population of Northern Africa as dark-skinned [modern Europeans call dark brown skin color, as black-skinned] and woolly-haired.” Among these writers who wrote about the Berbers were Martial, Silius Italicus, Corippus and Procopius.
Saint Augustine was a dark-skinned Berber and many of the later Roman emperors would have trouble getting citizenship in some of today’s European states.
– Professor Mikuláš Lobkowicz, the former rector of the Munich university and current director of the Institute of Central and East European Studies in Eichstätt.
There are those who say that the Berber is part of the African story of Ham, from the land of Ber, the son of biblical figure Ham.
The original inhabitants of Ireland before the Celts invaded were Berber people who stretch all the way from Saharan Africa to Western Ireland. In North Africa they are known as Berbers, the original people before the Arab invasion of North Africa, they were known to the ancient Greeks and Romans as “barbarians,” the Tuaregs of Nigeria, Niger, Chad, etc. are a Berber people.
[Editors note: the Kanuris of North-Eastern Nigeria are known as the Iberi-beris. They are Berbers originally from Fezzan Libya]
In Spain and Portugal they were known as “Iberians,” which is the name of the Peninsula. In Ireland the Berbers are known as “Hibernians.” The Celts and later invaders pushed them back to the West of Ireland, where you most commonly see the “black Irish” with black hair and brown eyes. The most popular recreational organization of Irish Americans is the Ancient Order of Hibernians (AOH).
Modern Berber family having a traditional meal
The images that are shown in mainstream television, movies and in print are of the lighter skinned people that are also referred as Berber. Modern north Africa has changed a great deal, from waves of invasions such as the Persians, Greeks, Romans, Germanic tribes, Arabs, Turks and the French have led to the amalgamation in the region. The role of literally millions of enslaved Indo-Europeans and concubinage in the creation of admixed populations in cities like Tunis, Tripoli, Fez, Sale and Algiers are well documented. This is the formation of populations in north Africa today. These now lighter skinned people do not call themselves African. In fact, the term “African” is a very demonized term to many, more than likely because of the modern European invasion into Africa, Europeans had to justify their behavior (some still do), and the term African is the object of ridicule and humiliation. The term Berber is now a regional word to apply to these people that now share many common cultural ideas and customs. “