onsdag 18 maj 2016

Moses ancestors came from Eastern Europe

The name of the young bedouin is Moses. I met him when he guided me to the top of Mount Sinai (Horeb) in Sinai, Egypt. His main occupation is to guide tourist to the top. Moses belongs to the Jebeliya Bedouin tribe (The People of the Mountains) who lives in the surroundings of St. Catherine Monastery. According to the Jebeliya they are of Romanian and Greece origin and they were brought to Sinai by the Byzantine emperor Justinian to build, protect and serve at the Monastery that was finished in 565 AD. 

There are 34 different Bedouin tribes in Sinai. 33 of them immigrated from the Arabian peninsula between the 14th and 18th centuries. Every tribe on the Sinia Peninsula has it own special dialect which differentiates them from the other tribes. There are around 300 000 bedouins on the Sinai peninsula and 4600 of them belongs to the Jebeliya tribe. During the centuries the Jebeliya tribe intermarried with Arab Bedouins and became Muslims. They have since long lost most of their old traditions and their life is now quite similar to other Bedouins in the area. But they are aware of their origin and has kept some unique features.

Text and Photo: Mikael Good

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