The Tigray-Tigrinya (ትግራይ - ትግርኛ) or Biher-Tigrinya or the Kebessa people or simply Tigrays are culturally dominant and politically powerful agriculturalist and Semitic-speaking ethnic group of the larger Afro-Asiatic language inhabiting the southern and central parts of Eritrea and the northern highlands of Ethiopia's Tigray Region. The Eritrean Tigrinya constitutes the largest ethnic group in the Eritrea nation.
Tigrinya people at their traditional wedding at Asmara, Eritrea
The Tigray-Tigrinya shares common ancestral imperial heritage with the Amhara people of Ethiopia and the two together built the powerful ancient Kingdom of Aksum in Ethiopia. Though, the seat of the ancient Aksumite Kingdom resided in Tigray territory, but the Tigray have not been as thoroughly studied as their culturally similar neighbors, the Amhara.
Tigray people of Ethiopia
In Ethiopia, prior to 1995, Tigray-Tigrinya lived in the former provinces of Tigray, Begemder (Gonder), and Wollo, with the regions within these provinces that they inhabited (e.g. Wolqayt, Tsegede, Tselemti, Raya, Humera) later incorporated into the modern Tigray Region. The Tigray people, eponymous with the name of their territory, make up approximately 96.6% of the inhabitants of the Tigray Region, and comprise 6.1% of Ethiopia's total population, numbering a little over 5.7 million.
In in Eritrea where they are the largest ethnic group, the Tigrays are simply known by the name of their language, as the Tigrinya. Officially and collectively they are also referred to as the Biher-Tigrinya, roughly meaning "Tigrinya nation". Since they primarily lived in a region of Eritrea known as the Kebessa, which was within the former awrajas of Hamasien, Seraye, and Akele Guzay, and are now incorporated into Eritrea's present-day regions, they are also called Kebessa people. Most of them live in rural areas in the highland administrative regions of Maekel (Central), Debub (Southern), the eastern fringes of Anseba and Gash Barka regions as well as the western fringes of Semenawi Keyih Bahri (Northern Red Sea). They are small holding farmers largely inhabiting small communal villages. The Tigrinya constitute around 50% of the Eritrean population, at about 3.4 million people.
It must be emphasized, however, that a significant number of Muslim Tigrinya speakers refuse to identify themselves as Tigrinya and consequently constitute a separate ethnic group known as the Jeberti. These Jeberti people trace their origins in early Muslim migrants from the Arabian Peninsula to Tigray; they make up about 5% of the Eritrean population.
Asmara, as well as Mendefera, Dekemhare, Segeneiti, Adi Keyh, Adi Quala and Senafe. There is also a significant population of Biher-Tigrinya in other cities, including Keren and Massawa.
Geography and Climate
The terrain is high plateau, cut through by deep ravines. Nearly all the land is either under cultivation or in pasturage, although reserved areas that surround churches suggest that the climax growth of much of Tigray is cedar forest.
The average annual rainfall hovers around the 50 centimeters required for cereal agriculture. Droughts are frequent. Rainfall concentrates in two periods: the "large rains" fall for three months beginning in mid-June and the "small rains"—if they come—fall in January or February. Most Tigray live in the highlands, where daytime high temperatures are relatively cool (21° to 27° C); nighttime temperatures occasionally plunge below freezing in December.
Beautiful Ashenda girls in Tigrai state Northern Ethiopia Ashenda is a unique beautiful Tigraian traditional festival where young ladies and girls enjoy Ashenda music
The mother tongue of the Tigray-Tigrinya is the Tigrinya language or Tigrigna or simply as Tigray. Tigrinya language belongs to the Ethiopian Semitic sub-group of the the larger Afro-Asiatic language family. Tigrinya is descended from an ancient Semitic language called Ge'ez, which the modern Ethiopian and Eritrean Orthodox Churches officially use as a liturgical language. The Tigrinya language is the direct descendant of Ge'ez, unlike Amharic (thought to be descended from a specific dialect or cluster of dialects of Ge'ez) and other southern Ethiopian Semitic languages, though Tigre may share this distinction with Tigrinya (its status is uncertain).
Eritrean Tigrinya woman with her traditional hairstyle, Asmara, Eritrea
Tigrinya is closely related to the Tigre language, another Afro-Asiatic language spoken by the Tigre people as well as many Beja. Tigrinya and Tigre although close are not mutually intelligible, and while Tigrinya has traditionally been written using the same Ge'ez script (fidel) as Amharic, Tigre has been transcribed mainly using the Arabic script. Attempts by the Eritrean government to have Tigre written using the Ge'ez script has met with some resistance from the predominantly Muslim Tigre people who associate Ge'ez with the Orthodox Church and would prefer the Arabic or the more neutral Latin alphabet.
Holly wood Stars Will Smith and his wife Jada Pinkett Smith wearing traditional dress of Tigray people in Tigrai state in Ethiopia.
It has also met with the linguistic difficulty of the Ge'ez script being a syllabic system which does not distinguish long vowels from short ones. While this works well for writing Tigrinya or Amharic, which do not rely on vowel length in words, it does complicate writing Tigre, where vowel length sometimes distinguishes one word and its meaning from another. The Ge'ez script evolved from the Epigraphic South Arabian script, whose first inscriptions are from the 8th century BC in Eritrea, Ethiopia and Yemen.
Historically, the province of Tigray and central Eritrea was where Ethiopian and Eritrean civilization had its origins. The first kingdom to arise was that of D`mt in the 8th century BC. The Aksumite Kingdom, one of the powerful civilizations of the ancient world, was centered there from at least 400 BC to the 10th century AD. Spreading far beyond modern Eritrea and Tigray, it moulded the earliest culture of Eritrea and Ethiopia and left many historical treasures: towering finely carved stelae, the remains of extensive palaces, and the ancient places of worship still vibrant with culture and pageantry.
The Tigray-Tigrinya people are descendants of early Semitic-speaking peoples whose presence in the region spanning central Eritrea and northern Ethiopia, is postulated to have existed from at least 2000 BC, based on linguistic evidence (and known from the 9th century BC from inscriptions)
According to Ethiopian traditions, the Tigrayan nobility; i.e. that of the Tigray province of Ethiopia, trace their ancestry to the legendary king Menelik I, the child born of the queen of Sheba and King Solomon as do the priests of the Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church (Ge'ez ካህን kāhin). Menelik I would become the first king of the Solomonic line of rulers of Ethiopia that ended only with the deposing of Emperor Haile Selassie in 1974.
The first possible mention of the group dates from around the 8th to 10th centuries, in which period manuscripts preserving the inscriptions of Cosmas Cosmas Indicopleustes (fl. 6th century) contain notes on his writings including the mention of a tribe called Tigretes. This writing clearly proves that the Tigray have been in their present location since before the time of Christ and began converting to Christianity in the fourth century. Some of the population may have migrated from the Arabian peninsula. There seems to be a long-term process of migration south, with Tigray imperceptibly "becoming" Amhara as they marry into Amhara communities. The Tigray, with the Amhara, are the coinheritors of the Aksumite Kingdom, which later become the Ethiopian Empire. Tigray as well as Amhara were eligible for the emperorship, the last Tigray emperor being Yohannes (1872-1889).
The Tigray living in Tigray Province experienced a relatively short colonial period (1936-1942) compared to that of their Eritrean neighbors, who were dominated by the Italians from the 1890s until 1942. The heavily Tigray-influenced Eritrean Liberation Front (ELF, now the EPLF) led a separatist revolt through the 1960s until it was joined by the now-stronger Tigray People's Liberation Front (TPLF) after the 1974 overthrow of Haile Selassie. Most Tigray are rural; Asmara in Eritrea and Maqelle in Tigray are the only urban centers. War, drought, and international relief agencies have played a major role in this region since the mid-1970s.
Young Eritrean girl from Kebessa - 1936
Tigray "parishes" equate with local communities and are the smallest units of administration for both the state and the Ethiopian Orthodox church, having a chief appointed from above. Priests and deacons are responsible to church authorities. Parishes range in population from 500 to 4,000 people. There is regional variation in settlement pattern: climatic conditions favor dispersed settlement of small hamlets across parishes where rainfall is relatively constant from year to year, and nucleated villages, one per parish, where rainfall is less predictable. Villages go through a process of dividing into quarters, which reunite when new, more powerful quarters try to dominate them. Depending on the phase of their life cycle, villages have two or three quarters. Houses range from wattle-and-daub huts to impressive masonry lime-domed or zinc-corrugated roofed edifices, depending on the family's economic success.
Holly wood Stars Will Smith and his wife Jada Pinkett Smith were welcomed by Tigray people to Tigrai state in Ethiopia.
Subsistence and Commercial Activity. The Tigray practice plow cultivation of primarily cereal crops: wheat, barley, t'af (Amharic: tyeff; Eragrostis abyssinica ), and sorghum. A second crop per year is risky or impossible in most areas. Legumes, primarily garbanzos, are included in the croprotation cycle. After several years, weeds become too strong for competition, and the field is fallowed until grasses choke out the weeds and the turf can be removed again, bringing the field into cultivation. Flax is grown for linseed oil.
In some zones, frankincense figures prominently. For those living near the eastern escarpment, transportation of salt from the Danakil Depression for sale in the highland markets is an important source of income. In addition to the salt trade, individuals earn some cash by purchasing cattle and small animals in the lowlands and selling them further into the highlands. Cattle are important as plow animals. When population density is high and pasturage is in short supply, plow animals are the most critical variable in the agricultural process.
Industrial Arts. Crafts are associated with pariah "castes" of artisans who are believed to be witches. Blacksmithing, pottery making, tanning, weaving, and music making fall under this stigma. A person with a physical disability, however, can engage in weaving without being regarded as a witch.
Trade. Markets, shops, and mills are associated with towns. Shops are often run by Arab merchants. Products of artisanry (pottery, hides, metal tools), herbs and spices, coffee, salt, and bread are sold. Towns, especially those associated with administrative offices, have mead houses; each quarter of a village has at least one beer house.
Division of Labor
For nonartisans, sex and age account for most of the division of labor. Men are responsible for nearly all agriculture and husbandry. The sole exception is weeding, which is done by women. Once the grain has left the threshing floor, its storage and processing into injera (the crepelike staple) and bread is also the province of women. Boys, after the age of about 12, begin herding and helping with plowing and planting. Girls help with food preparation and child care. At least one herd boy is needed if a household is to be independent. If there are more herd boys than necessary, some may go off to study the Bible to prepare for careers as deacons, with the eventual possibility of joining the priesthood. Priests, like other male heads of households, are farmers. As many as 10 percent of a parish's households may be headed by priests. Most curing, which depends heavily on ecclesiastical training, is done by defrocked priests and deacons; most treatment of spirit possession is done by women. Artisans sometimes form their own villages, where they also practice agriculture; however, in other villages, they are found interspersed in individual households with nonartisans. Elders and powerful men are designated as "recognized men" and "big-men."
Land tenure is complex and governed on a parish-by-parish basis. Each parish chooses from permutations of two basic forms: ristî (hereditary) and igurafgotet (communal). To make a claim under ristî, a person must trace descent from a parish founder through any combination of males and females. The system has inherent contradictions: all plots of land potentially have multiple claimants, giving rise to a political as well as a genealogical component to land claims. igurafgotet land tenure, unlike ristî—which can be used to restrict the inflow of new farmers—encourages newcomers and becomes salient after a drought depopulates an area. Because the choice of land-tenure systems affects the size of the holdings of many people, parishes switch from one system to the other only under extreme ecological and demographic conditions. The two land-tenure systems are not associated with settlement patterns; nucleated and dispersed forms of settlement are found with both types.
Kin Groups and Descent. Descent is omnilineal or ambilineal. Descent groups form and disperse depending upon the particular land claim that is being prosecuted. Persons who are allies for one purpose are enemies for another. This does not follow the familiar pattern of "fission and fusion" described by Evans-Pritchard for the Nuer ( 1940), in that groups are not segments of larger groups but are based on a particular individual's genealogical relations in a particular parish. He or she will be brought together with a distinct collection of people in each parish and at each genealogical level. These associations do not achieve the kind of solidarity that would make them useful for purposes other than land claims. Kinship is bilateral and, like descent, is traced through any combination of males and females. The importance to each household of having at least one herd boy leads to boys often being brought up in the household of a father's or mother's brother or sister, as adjustments to household work forces require.
Kinship Terminology. Tigray kin terms reflect their bilateral kinship and omnilineal descent. Generation and linealtty are distinguished. Sex is distinguished only in Ego's generation and for parents. Kin types are grouped as follows: son and daughter, brother, sister, father, mother, father's and mother's brother, father's and mother's sister, and father's and and mother's father and mother. All eight great-grandparents are referred to by a single term.
Eritrea Tigrinya mothers
Marriage and Family
Marriage. Marriages are monogamous and "contractual." First marriages involve a dowry, usually of animals, given by the bride's family to the couple. Second marriages usually require equal contributions from both parties.
Should the potential wife not have capital comparable to her potential husband's, an arrangement is made in which she is "paid" and her accumulated shares are eventually converted into community property. Only older couples and deacons intending to become priests are married before the church.
The "life expectancy" of a marriage at the time it is contracted is between seven and twelve years. Marriage contracts incorporate the potential of divorce. At marriage, a guardian is selected to help reconcile difficulties and to aid in division of property in case of divorce. Elders are called in to oversee the process. After the wedding, for a first marriage, there is a period of bride-service during which the couple goes back and forth between the two parental households, spending time in each. Once bride-service has been completed, there is no formal rule of postmarital residence. Practical considerations of joint herding often lead to a period of viripatrilocal residence.
Domestic Unit. The nuclear family is the most common domestic unit. Youngest children may remain with the family homestead to take care of aging parents. A small number of economically successful households retain their own sons and daughters and draw in their mates, thus forming large multifamily households. Partition takes place in stages: separation of hearths, separation of grain bins, and final separation.
Inheritance. Inheritance rules distinguish between land and household property. If the parish is ristî, each child, regardless of gender or marital status, inherits an equal share of the land of his or her dead parent. Domestic equipment tends to remain with the child who took care of the aging parent. Other property (principally livestock), if not consumed in the funeral commemoration a year after death, may be divided.
Socialization. Small children are indulged, particularly boys. Girls begin helping their mothers earlier than boys begin helping their fathers. Girls gradually take on domestic chores. At about age 7, boys must begin to learn to obey, which involves a period of apparent trauma. Children are baptized. A series of vertical scars to the outside of either eye, found on most adults, is regarded as "medicinal" rather than "ritual" and is done on the occasion of eye infections.
A cross is often made by tattoo or scarification in the middle of the forehead. Movement from minority to adulthood is not dramatic. Boys move to the adult part of the parish meeting when they become married or when they become deacons. Women tend to act in political contexts only in the absence of their husbands but have the rights of jural majors after marriage.
Social Organization. The most significant unit beyond the household is the h'agareseb (lit., "farm people"), which is the parish or local community. It is at the parish meeting, held on Sunday mornings after church services, that all important community decisions are made, whether they be religious or civil, whether to add a new saint to the local church calendar or to repair a path. Parish meetings are presided over by a secular community leader, or "manager." In nucleated parishes, village wards are significant and have informal leaders. Neighbors participate in one another's life-cycle ceremonies and have the legal duty to respond when a neighbor raises a hue and cry. Descent groups have little relevance outside of land-tenure issues. Most adults belong to "twelve apostle" eating clubs, consisting of men or women or couples who meet once a month for feasting and discussion.
Political Organization. When the Ethiopian state was functioning well, the Tigray of Tigray Province were full participants in politcal life and on several occasions provided emperors. This relationship was interrupted in Eritrea by the long Italian colonization. After the 1974 Revolution, many of the Tigray in both areas rose in rebellion. Nowadays the state organization involves provincial, district, and subdistrict governors. Each parish has an official, appointed from above, who owes loyalty to the subdistrict governor. The official at each level of government owes loyalty to the official immediately above him, not to the central government. Parish priests are responsible to the bishops.
Social Control. In native theory, people are "good" because they fear what their neighbors will think, what the courts will do, and what God will do. Beyond this, the parish chief is an officer of the court and has the responsibility to handle minor cases and to carry more serious ones to higher courts. The institution of awu ha h requires all members of the community to assemble for three days or until someone confesses knowledge of a crime.
Young Tigray girl in a field with her traditional hairstyle. Tigray. Ethiopia
Conflict. The Tigray see conflict as a natural consequence of weak authority. Conflicts occasionally transpire, ranging from those at the the intervillage level to rebellions against the state, as happened in the 1940s and again since the Revolution. Outlaws with a large following are sometimes later made part of the state, and state officials sometimes become outlaws.
Tigray woman from Ethiopia
The Tigray recognized three categories of belief as "religion" (haymanot): Christianity, Islam, and Judaism. In Ethiopia, the Tigray Region is 95.6% Ethiopian Orthodox, 4% Muslim, and the remaining 0.4% are mostly Catholic and Protestant. In Eritrea, the Jeberti are Muslim and account for about 10% of the Tigrinya people there. The remaining 90% are Christians, so divided: 73% of the Eritrean Orthodox faith, 10% Roman Catholic and Eastern Catholic (whose mass is held in Ge'ez as opposed to Latin), and 7% belonging to various Protestant and other Christian denominations, the majority of which belong to the (Lutheran) Evangelical Church of Eritrea.
These are the government registered (allowed) religions of Eritrea. Meanwhile there are those who profess faith to smaller Evangelical denominations whose rights to worship are currently suspended by the Eritrean government, such as the Pentecostals, Seventh Day Adventists, Jehovah's Witnesses as well as non Christian denominations such as the Bahá'í.
A number of the saints are indigenous and not shared by the Roman or Greek churches. Spirit possession, in the form of the zar cult, is prominent, but many Tigray regard it as illegitimate. Zar has special significance in empowering women.
Christianity is said to have come to Tigray with the shipwrecked Syrian Fromentius, in the third century. Each parish is associated with a church, which in most regions is built of masonry and, in some others, carved into cliffs. It is through Bible study that most young men gain literacy. The Ethiopian Orthodox church was formally affiliated with the Coptic church in Alexandria, to which, until 1954, it was obliged to turn for archbishops.
The Ethiopian and Eritrean Orthodox Churches trace their roots back to the Axumite Church founded in the 4th century by Syrian monks. Historically, the Ethiopian and Eritrean churches have had strong ties with the Egyptian Coptic church, where the Egyptian Church appointed the Abuna (archbishop) for the Ethiopian Church (which then incorporated Eritrea) until 1959. The Ethiopian Church gained independence from the Coptic church in 1948 and began anointing its own pope. The Eritrean Orthodox church split from the Ethiopian Orthodox in 1993 and reverted to having its pope in the Coptic Church of Alexandria, Egypt.
A small crowd waiting outside S. Salvatore in Campo for the final part of Michaelmas
Over 6 million Tigrayans are Oriental Orthodox, with one priest for every 92 members—the highest concentration in Ethiopia. The remainder are Muslims. There are many Muslims in Tigray Province, but they generally belong to other ethnic groups than the Tigrayans. The Tigrayans are reported to have fewer than 500 Evangelicals, but there are more Evangelicals among the Tigrinya in Eritrea.
The faith of the church is very intimately woven into the culture of the Christian members of the Tigrinya people and is central to their way of life. In the Ethiopian and Eritrean Orthodox and Catholic churches, Mary is considered a saint, and the Ark of the Covenant (tabot) features prominently in the Orthodox Church. Moreover, the Ge'ez bible preserves many texts considered apocryphal by Catholics, Orthodox, and Protestants, such as 1 Enoch, which has only been preserved in Ge'ez.
Church services are conducted in Ge'ez, the ancient language of Ethiopia and Eritrea, just as Latin once was in the Roman Catholic Church, and continues to be the liturgical language.
The Eastern Catholic Church in Eritrea was established in the 16th century by Portuguese and Spanish missionaries who had come to help the Christian Abyssinians fight off a Turkish invasion. Centered in the former Akele Guzai province (the eastern part of the Eritrean highlands) the churches maintained most of the liturgy of the already existing Orthodox Church, including Ge'ez as the liturgical language, with minor differences there-among sharing communion with, and submitting to the authority of the Vatican Pope as opposed to the Pope in Axum.
Roman Catholicism arrived in Eritrea with the advent of Italian colonialism and almost coincided with the arrival of Swedish missionaries who brought Lutheran Christianity to Eritrea at the end of the 19th century. The relationship between these two religions was especially tense as the Roman Catholic Italians resisted and discouraged the spread of Protestantism in their colony and even lay prohibitions and numerous constraints on the activities of the Swedish missionaries. The Roman Catholic Church as an instrument of the colonial authority has held mass in Latin and Italian since its inception, incorporating local languages in its missionary work throughout Eritrea. It initially sought to cater to Italian citizens as well as foster an elite of Eritreans into becoming good Italian subjects. Today the church is a distinctly Eritrean church, although masses continue to be held in Italian and Latin along with local languages there-among Tigrinya and it also caters to the very small Italian and Italo-Eritrean community mainly in Asmara. The Lutheran Church of Eritrea and its Swedish and Eritrean missionaries were the ones who translated the Bible from the dead Ge'ez language only understood by higher clergymen, into the Tigrinya and other local languages and their main goal was to reach and "enlighten" as many people as possible in the world through education. They were instrumental in raising the literacy rate of their community.
Priests and deacons, many monastery trained, celebrate the Mass. Diviners are defrocked deacons or priests. Spirit mediums are typically women, as are the vast majority of those afflicted with possession.
Priests and deacons receive a special allotment of land for their services, plus honoraria from their penitents. Diviners charge for their services, as do spirit mediums.
The most frequent ceremony is the celebration of Mass, which occurs a number of times per week, depending on the local church calendar and parish patron saints. Other important rituals are baptism and funerals. Ordinary weddings are more ceremonial than ritual. Divination and curing have a ritual character, as do ward or neighborhood dances intended to affect the weather.
Ashenda Holidays dance. Three days of women! Ashenda is a holiday celebrating women here in Northern Ethiopia mostly in the Tigray region. It corresponds to the end of a two week fasting period for Ethiopian Orthodox Christians commemorating the Virgin Mary, but the holiday has grown way beyond that now.
Arts, crafts, and secular music are primarily the domain of the pariah castes of artisans. The exceptions are sacred music, which is led by monastically trained (but not necessarily ordained) men, and icon painting, biblical illumination, and scroll making, which are undertaken by a few deacons.
Most affliction (including illness) is treated by diviners rather than by priests or spirit mediums. Affliction is attributed to transgressions against God, sorcery motivated by envy, or witchcraft unconsciously executed by artisans or others possessed by Satan. Diviners both diagnose and treat. Spirit possession by entities other than Satan and his minions primarily affects women and is regarded as outside the realm of Christian belief. Such possession may be brought under control but not cured.
Death and Afterlife
After death, people are judged, in what is popularly thought of as a setting much like a secular court, and proceed to heaven or hell.
The ancestors of the Tigrinya people
Written By Admin of madote.com on Aug 1, 2013
The Tigrinya people, who are also known as the Kebessa people, are the largest ethnic group in Eritrea. They speak Tigrinya, a Semetic language derived from Ge'ez, and largely inhabit the plateau of the country. Because of their language and script (Fidel), many colonial-era scholars assumed Tigrinya people were of a mixed Yemeni (Sabaean) and Eritrean origin. Despite lacking evidence for this claim, this narrative still persists today, albeit waning.
The ancestors of the Tigrinya people, and other groups within the Horn of Africa, adopted South Arabian derived languages, not because they were mixed with Sabaeans or colonized by them, but because they were "within the orbit of Sabaean economic and religious spheres of influence, and local African elites likely used symbolic materials to signal "Sabaean" identity for reasons of social differentiation, but the seeds of urbanism and local industry were planted locally long before.
Professor Peter R. Schmidt also adds:
"Pre-Aksumite" incorporation of such elements may have taken place over many generations rather than being the products of a limited number of South Arabian colonization or migration events, nor do they signify a dominant vs. subordinate or core vs. periphery relationship between polities. Elites of peer polities or co-evolving polities of relative parity in sociopolitical development and economy may actively appropriate symbols and objects from one another for use in internal legitimization. This is a view of active engagement and critical selection from a diverse repertoire of elements in the southern Red Sea cultural milieu, not a passive incorporation from colonizing populations; it is a perspective that promotes "Pre-Aksumite" agency and creates a more dynamic picture of cultural transformation in the 1st millennium BCE."
[To give a related example, king Zoscales of Adulis, who ruled in the 1st century CE, was known to speak and write in Greek. In fact, Hellenic influences on the region were so strong that nearly all inscriptions until the early 4th century CE were made in Greek. The elite inhabitants of the region adopted Greek for the same reasons they adopted Sabaean material culture: because they were within the economic and cultural influences of these polities. Additionally, by connecting themselves with foreign kingdoms and empires, the elites were seeking to legitimize their rule domestically.
So who are the ancestors of the Tigrinya people?
Although our knowledge of ancient Eritrea is still in its infancy, the archaeological remains found in the plateaus around Asmara indicate a pastoralist society (with some limited agriculture capacity) was inhabiting the region in the 2nd millennium BCE. These early groups of people produced Black Ware pottery, which have historically been associated with the Beja people.
"Around 2,000 B.C. pastoral people from the deserts of southern Egypt and northern Sudan entered the Barka Valley and northern highlands, pushing the first wave southwards. These people were the forerunners of the Beja tribes, who for many hundreds of years seem to have been the only independent pastoralists in Africa."
Biher-Tigrinya or Kebessa
Tigrinya (Asmara Dialect)
Tigre; also known as Tigrayit
Tigray or Tigrayans
Tigrinya (Tigray Dialect)
I Would Have Eaten