Role Of Geography In The History Of Maghreb
The history of the Maghreb has been largely affected by the geography of the place because of its excellent harbors and because of their strategic position on the Mediterranean coast; the coastal plains have often been subjected to foreign invasions.
First, the Phoenicians came and built Carthage near the present day Tunis. They supplied Western Europe with Tunisian Olive and Corn oil.
However, after sometime, the Romans conquered Carthage and brought much of Northern Africa in to the Roman Empire and left. The Berbers resistance to the official Catholicism brought into being an unorthodox sect of Christians. The Roman rule was brought to an end by the Vandals. The Vandals were a Germanic tribe that ended days of the Roman empire.
The Maghreb was taken over by the Byzantine by the 6th Century A.D. They came from the east Roman empire. Their empire had its headquarters at Constantinople. By the second half of the second century, The Byzantine occupation was brought to an end by the Arabs.
With the Arabs came Islamic religion in the Maghreb. Resistance against the Arab among the desert and nomadic tribes of the Maghreb saw the emergence of movement spearheaded by the Berbers. Such movements were the Almoravid movement of the 11th century and the Almohad movement of the 12th and 13th centuries.
These movement were the unifying factors for the Berbers of the Maghreb. It was out of this movement and provincial administration of the Almohad that political entities such as the Eastern, Central, and Western Maghreb began to emerge and adopt the name of Tunisia, Algeria and Morocco.
In conclusion, it is obvious therefore, the role of geography in the historical development of the Maghreb. A good deal of the history of the Maghreb concerns the struggle for the control of the water of the Mediterranean sea. The conquest of Algeria and Tunisia by the Turks and the later arrival of the western powers in the Maghreb were all for this purpose. The character of the history of the Maghreb right from the earliest time therefore has been determined by the geography nature.
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