Friday, April 17, 2009

A Fulani village in Algeria

Anyone acquainted with West African history will be aware of the remarkable extent of the Fulani diaspora, stretching from their original homeland in Senegal all the way to Sudan. However, I was surprised to read the following note in a history of the Tidikelt region of southern Algeria (around In-Salah):
"Le village actuel de Sahel a été créé en 1779 par Sidi Abd el Malek des Foullanes, venu à Akabli dans l'intention de se joindre à une pèlerinage, dont le départ n'eut pas lieu... Les Foullanes sont des Arabes originaires du Macena (Soudan); il y a encore des Foullanes au Sokoto; Si Hamza, le cadi d'Akabli appartient à cette tribu." (L. Voinot, Le Tidikelt, Oran:Fouque 1909, p. 63)
(The current village of Sahel was created in 1779 by Sidi Abd el Malek of the Fulani, who had come to Akabli with the intention of joining a pilgrimage whose departure never occurred... The Fulani are Arabs originating from Macina (Sudan [modern-day Mali]); there are still Fulani at Sokoto; Si Hamza, the qaid of Akabli, belongs to this tribe.)

I very much doubt there would be any traces of the language left - even assuming that Sidi Abd el Malek came with a large enough entourage to make a difference - but wouldn't it be interesting to check?


Anonymous said...

Mash'Allah Wal Hamdulil'Allah i am originally from Algeria and i never heard or new about that before which make me wonder where all that beautiful mix of color and dialect comes from that the beaut of Allah Subahnahu wa ta'ala.
thanks for the post and indeed it is worth the be more research or all the races around the whole region North, west and the Sahel of Africa.
Jazaka Allah khair.

marie-lucie said...

Lameen, it is un pelerinage, not une. Most words ending in -age are masculine.

Anonymous said...

First of all the original homeland of the Fulani could hardly have been Senegal since they are shown in full color on Old Kingdom Egyptian tomb paintings under the term Tjehenu wearing the same hairstyles and cloaks they wear today with identical designs on them. The Tjehenu-Lebou were people from the Fayum western desert of Egypt who also lived in the Sahara since the neolithic before they were invaded by "Peoples of the Isles" centuries larter. The early 20th century works of Nina Davies has these paintings and the book, Nomads of the Niger, by Carol Beckwith talks about this subject.

Bah Pullo said...

If you can post a picture of Our lost relative Si Hamza it would be greatly appreciated. We would like more information on him. Thank you.