The SANHAJA (Berber : AẓNAG, pl. IẓNAGEN, and also AẓNAJ, pl. IẓNAJEN; Arabic : صنهاجة, Ṣanhaja) were once one of the largest Berber tribal confederations, along with the Iznaten and Imesmuden confederations. Many tribes in Morocco and Mauritania bore and still carry this ethnonym, especially in its Berber form. Other names for the population include Zenaga, Sanhája, Znaga, Sanhâdja and Senhaja.
* 1 History * 2 Present day * 3 See also * 4 References * 5 Further reading
After the arrival of Islam, the Sanhâdja spread out to the borders
of the Sudan as far as the Senegal River and the Niger. From the 9th
In the mid-11th century, a group of Sanhadja chieftains returning from the Hâjj (big pilgrimage) invited the theologian Ibn Yâssin to preach among their tribes. Ibn Yasin united the tribes in the alliance of the Almoravids in the middle of the 11th century. This confederacy subsequently established Morocco, and conquered western Algeria and Al-Andalus (part of present-day Spain).
The Znaga or Zenaga tribes would remain in roles as either exploited
semi-sedentary agriculturalists and fishermen (Znaga tribes), or,
higher up on the social ladder, as religious (Marabout or Zawiya)
tribes. Though often Arabized in culture and language, they are
believed to be descended from the
Map of the
The descendants of the
The Zenaga, a group believed to be of Gudala (the southernmost Sanhâdja tribe) origin, inhabit southwestern Mauritania and parts of northern Senegal. However, they are a small population.
* ^ Nelson, Harold D. (1985). Morocco, a country study. Washington,
D.C.: The American University. p. 14.
* ^ Nelson 15-16
* ^ "
* John O. Hunwick (ed.), West Africa, Islam and the Arab World: Studies in Honor of Basil Davidson Paperback * John Mercer (1976), Spanish Sahara, George Allen & Unwin Ltd (ISBN 0-04-966013-6 ) * Anthony G. Pazzanita (2006), Historical Dictionary of Western Sahara, Scarecrow Press * Virginia Thompson and Richard Adloff (1980), The Western Saharans. Background to Conflict, Barnes ;background:none transparent;border:none;-moz-box-shadow:none;-webkit-box-shadow:none;box-shadow:none;">v
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