Online Encyclopedia

BISHARIN (the anc. Ichthyophagi)

Online Encyclopedia
Originally appearing in Volume V04, Page 1 of the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica.
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BISHARIN (the anc. Ichthyophagi), a nomad tribe of African " Arabs," of Hamitic origin, dwelling in the eastern part of the Nubian desert. In the middle ages they were known as Beja (q.v.), and they are the most characteristic of the Nubian " Arabs." With the Ababda and Hadendoa they represent the Blemmyes of classical writers. Linguistically and geographically the Bisharin form a connecting link between the Hamitic populations and the Egyptians. Nominally they are Mahommedans. They, however, preserve some non-Islamic religious practices, and exhibit traces of animal-worship in their rule of never killing the serpent or the partridge, which are regarded as sacred.
End of Article: BISHARIN (the anc. Ichthyophagi)
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