to Glory: North Africa
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 camels.
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