The Sudan and The Sudanese

Who Are The Sudanese

من هم السودانيون

The name Sudan has its roots in the Arabic word سود (Black) and it is an adjective describing the physical appearance of groups of people who live in a certain geographical location in a continent now known as Africa.

The term BILAD ELSUDAN بلاد السودان are two arabic words joined together…Bilad (which is plural for Lands) and سود Suwd which means BLACK. There were many tribes and ethnicities who occupied these lands….and Bilad is referring to the tribal lands of these various ethnic groups. This description Bilad elSudan existed before the name AFRICA was given to the continent.

The correct meaning for Bilad elSudan is LANDS OF THE BLACKS and these Lands started in the West Coast of Africa as far as Senegal across to South Libya South Morocco South Algeria Mali Ghana Niger Nigeria Chad Cameroun Chad Ethiopia and the place now called Sudan in East Africa. This was the original Bilad elSudan.

It included 100’s of various ethnic groups from West to East Africa. All of these original tribes had various shades of Dark skin (from jet Black … to medium Brown …… to a Wheat/Caramel complexion) …….with WOOLLY…CURLY and almost STRAIGHT hair textures. Collectively they were called Sudanese from ارض السمر.

The Bilad elSudan stretched from East Africa to the southern tips of Arabia where you will still find original very dark skinned Afro-Nomadic tribes today even though the popular media rarely pays much attention to them. You will find these Afro-Arab tribes in Saudi Oman Kuwait and Yemen….they too were called Sudanese.

The Arabic speaking people you see today in the Gulf who have an ‘Indo-Asian’ appearance including Saudi Syria Iraq Lebanon Jordan are not original occupants but rather a mixture of several generations of  migrants from Turkey Persia Indian and from the ancient Romans who mixed with some of the Ethiopians Sudanese and the people once known as Zinj and then adopted the language and some of the customs of the original Arabs and then later on claimed Arab origin.

Original Afro-Arabs of Oman…..their tribes are original to the region but also related to the Sudanic peoples

The nation today known as The Republic of the Sudan kept its name because the British/Turkish/Egyptian colonisers decided to keep it and did not rename the region after creating its borders.

Before the Europeans colonised The Bilad elSudan and renamed it ‘Africa’ there were no borders passports immigration birth cetificates etc etc and Tribes were free to move from place to place region to region. For more information on this please read the book PRE-COLONIAL BLACK AFRICA by Chaik Anta Diop.

قال الجاحظ  في كتابه فخر السودان علي البيضان الجزء : 1 صفحة ٥٤٨ رحمه الله
قالوا: وقال النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم: «بعثت إلى الأحمر والأسود» .
وقد علمت أنّه لا يقال للزّنج والحبشة والنّوبة بيض ولا حمر، وليس لهم اسم إلّا السّود.
وقد علمنا أنّ الله عزّ وجل بعث نبيّه [إلى الناس] كافة، وإلى العرب والعجم جميعا. فإذا قال: «بعثت إلى الأحمر والأسود» ولسنا عنده حمر ولا بيض، فقد بعث إلينا، فإنما عنانا بقوله «الأسود» . ولا يخرج الناس من هذين الاسمين، فإن كانت العرب من الأحمر، فقد دخلت في عداد الرّوم والصّقالبة، وفارس وخراسان. وإن كانت من السّود، فقد اشتقّ لها هذا الاسم من اسمنا. وإنما قيل لهم وهم أدم وسمر سود، حين دخلوا معنا في جملتنا، كما يجعل العرب الإناث من الذكور ذكورا.
وإذا كان النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم يعلم أنّ الزّنج والحبشة والنّوبة ليسوا بحمر ولا بيض، وأنّهم سود، وقد بعثه الله تعالى إلى الأسود والأحمر، فقد جعلنا والعرب سواء، ونكون نحن السّود دونهم. فإن كان اسم أسود وقع علينا فنحن السّودان الخلّص، والعرب أشباه الخلّص. فنحن المتقدّمون في الدّعوة. وإذا كان اسمهم محمولا على اسمنا؛ إذ كنّا وحدنا يقال لنا سود، ولا يقال لهم سود إلّا أن يكونوا معنا.

فخر السودان علي البيضان الجزء: 1 صفحة:

The origin of the word ‘AFRICA’ was from the Romans, who named the area of modern-day North Africa (around the area now known as Tunisia) IFRIKA in honour of the victories of The Major General Scipio Africanus in the Second Punic War versus Carthage and Hannibal. It was later on extended to define the whole continent and the all people residing there became known as Africans.

South Morocco
South Libya
Darfur West Sudan
Somalia

BILAD EL SUDAN: THE SAHEL

The Sahel region is the long savannah area immediately under the Sahara that connects North Africa to West Africa and Sub Saharan African. The area touches the countries of Northern Nigeria, Chad, Mali, Senegal, Burkina Faso, Niger, Northern Ghana, Mauritania, Southern Libya, Southern Algeria, Southern Morocco, Eritrea and Sudan.

The Sahel belt is often referred to as the ‘transitional zone’ between the desert and Sub-Saharan Africa, and this transition is also reflected in the physical characteristics of the people who live there. The people who live on the Sahel are called ‘Sahelians’ and genetics commonly found in North Africa, West Africa, East Africa, Southern Africa, Middle East and even Central Asia and Europe (Ottoman Turks), can be found amongst these people.

There are many tribes local to this region such as the Tuaregs, Fulani, Hausa, Basara Arabs, Shuwa Arabs, Tebu/Toubou, Kanuri, Sanhaja, Zenagha, Zaghawa, Soninke, Mandinke and much more. Most (if not all) of these tribes in the Sahel region are part of the ‘Afro-Asiatic’ linguistic group, and many are sometimes mistaken for East Africans due to their physical characteristics and ‘Arabic’ names.

Sahelian women of Chad
Shuwa Arab women from Northern Nigeria
Shuwa Arabs of Chad
The Tuaregs are located across several countries including Mauritania Mali Nigeria Niger
The Sahara Desert and its Peoples and Cultures


Durbar is an annual equestrian event, particularly in the Hausa communities, in several towns in northern Nigeria (notably Kano, Katsina, Bida, Bauchi and Zaria), on the occasion of the end of Ramadan (Eid al-Fitr ) and Eid al-Adha. Horsemen and soldiers on foot, under the leadership of the traditional chiefs, parade before the political authorities.