KACAANKII 21kii OKTOBAR 1969.
Jeneral Maxamed Siyaad Barre iyo koox askar ah ( 25 ) ah oo uu hogaaminaya ayaa wadanka inqilaabay, iyaga oo nimankii Baarlamaanka hore ugu jiray badankoodi xidhxidhay. Muddo yar dhexdeedna waxa ay ku dhawaaqeen inaan dastuurkii hore ee wadanka lagu dhiqi jiray la tirtiray , waxayna kala ahaayeen;
Wednesday, December 12, 2018
1969kii Gollihii Kacaanka Somalia Waxaa Ciise Madoobe Dir Ugu Jiray : Faarax Wacays Dhuule Oo Horoone Ciise Ahaa
Daawo: Madaxweynaha KGS Iyo Beesha Biimaal Oo Caawa Kullan Xasaasi Ah Ku Dhexmarey Madaxtooyada On Oct 23, 2016
Saturday, December 8, 2018
A Bravan Account of their History
( INTERESTING CALI MADAXWEYN DIR ACCOUNT OR NOT )
( INTERESTING CALI MADAXWEYN DIR ACCOUNT OR NOT )
Brava is an ancient city on the southern coast of Somalia. The town progressively prospered and became one of the Major Islamic centers in Horn of Africa. Many people considered the city to be the trade center of the whole region at the time, with farming and fishing being the leading resources of the area.
Chinese sailors and historians recorded a brief history about the coastal cities of Somalia such as Adale, Brava, Kismayo, Merca, and Mogadishu. The historians undeniably confirmed that in or around the beginning of 1400 A.D., a fleet of vessels used to visit and dock at the southern coasts of Somalia, particularly the harbor city of Brava
According to the Chinese travelers, a structured barrier surrounded the city on all sides. The architects used stone and bricks to construct the houses of this town. The primary economic resource of the region was from farming and fishing. The Chinese traders use to bring many goods such as Silk clothes, kitchen utensils, rice, and various textiles. In exchange, the sailors extracted profitable materials that consisted of Tiger skins, Lion skins, elephant tusks, fracases, myrrh, and other wild life coats.
Although there were many uncertainties from number of historians about the establishment of Brava city, the oral history transmitted from one generation to another recounts that Aw-Ali and his family to be the first group from the interior to settle in the area. Aw-Ali inhabited in a wooded area between Aro Gaduud and Deeho (The red sand and the white sand).
In early 900 A.D., before Aw-Ali settled in Brava, he observed large area between Goobwayn and Brava. Aw-Ali was looking for a place that best suited his family needs. One fact Aw-Ali could not resist was the freshness of the ocean breeze and immediately asked the collaboration of his people. With the help of his fellow clansmen, Aw-Ali cleared a wooded area in which he built several homes. Oral history relates before Aw-Ali moved into the city of Brava, most of the Tuni population and their livestock resided in an area that surrounded Brava and the surrounding vicinity. In fact, the Tuni presence in the territory played a big role in Aw-Ali's decision to choose Brava as his place of residence. Most historians believed that Aw-Ali himself to be from a Tuni clan. After Aw-Ali set the groundwork to his new residence more Tunismoved in to the area, most of them migrated from inland and ocean shores. Oral history recognizes that this group to be the first inhabitants to live in the city of Brava.
Gala Warday who was under King Brawt is the second group to move into the town of Brava. Many historians believe the name Brava comes from the Gala Warday's king Brawt. The Tuni clan and Gala Warday lived together and made a peace treaty that lasted 300 years.
Based on the oral tradition Tunis were the first to reside in Brava. However, the Tuni people themselves traveled from Adar through Qaraw near Ganaane River; this is the area, which is now known as Juba River. Around 891 A.D., before relocating to Brava Tunis resided in a place called Koyaama near Kismayo on southern region of Somalia. Soon after that, the tribe started their migration towards Brava. Although; some historians believe the Tuni people were living in Brava long before the year 800 A.D.
Half way into their trip toward Brava the Tunis halted in an area called Jamboo and broke into two groups. The first group consisted of the Goygaal and Dakhtira Sub clans opted to maintain their journey through the ocean shores. Second group consisted of Daafarad, Werile, and Hajuwa sub clan choosing a passage through the inlands.
After 300 years of living together in peace, the Tuni and the Gala Warday also clashed. The battle between these two tribes carried on for a long time. The fight finally ended with another alliance that was signed in Jumbo the place we now know as Goobwayn, between the Tuni and the Gala Warday. After the treaty was signed, the Tunissettled on the west bank of the river, and the Gala Warday settle on the opposite side of the river, which was the east bank. These two zones were known as KHAD TUNI AND KHAD GALA (Tuni limit and Gala limit). The land was also divided into three sections. One portion for the Tunis, another section for the Gala Warday and third portion was designated no man's land and was left for the livestock. No groups were allowed to go beyond their boundary; both clans lived that way until the Colonial Era.
According to Italian historian named Gerullo who wrote several books about the History of Banadir Region, acknowledged in his book the Tunis to be the largest population in Brava and the areas that surrounded Brava for ages.
In early 1281 A.D., the Biidda clan who were ethnically Middle Eastern relocated to Brava. This group arrived with boats from Arabian Peninsula, both the Tuni and the Gala accepted the new arrival. To communicate these groups developed a joint language called CHIMBALAZI. The vocabulary consisted of Tuni dialect, Maay dialect, and Mahaa dialect. This language is along the lines of the Swahili language spoken on the northern parts of Kenya.
The Biidda was accompanied by the Hatimi clan who appeared around 1481 A.D., the Hatimis emigrated from Yemen. This group was originally traveling to the Andulus Strip in Spain, where their famous Sheik Muhidiin Bin Arabi Tai was born. Later on, Mohamed Bin Sa'eed Bin Muslim who was Sheik Muhidiin's son and his children moved to Brava around 1481 A.D.
In the year 1506 A.D., the historians reported that a group of Portuguese Army came offshore and attacked the city trying to seize control of the town. Some people believed close to a 1000 men participated in the attack. The Bravanese and the people from surrounding villages defended the community from the Portuguese aggressors. The Historians also reported that the fight only lasted three days. Despite the horrendous act by the Portuguese army, the Bravanese people still dominated their attackers, even thought the Portuguese troops were using the most sophisticated weapons at that time.
Many people noted that the courageous Bravanese men and women used their conventional weapons such as knifes, arrows, bows, and slingshots to fight the invaders. The Historians believed people of Brava lost close to 1500 men in that battle; Portuguese Sailors raped the women and looted many valuables.
In early 1673 A.D., there was another party called Asharaf or Shariifs (the descendants of Prophet Mohamed SAAS) also moved to Brava. The Asharaaf clan moved out from Mogadisho, the modern day capital of Somalia about 250 km north of Brava. Besides the Hatimi there was also another group of Arabs called Omar Baa Omar, who emigrated from Yemen and moved into the already over congested city. On top of the above-mentioned groups, there was small Africana group, who to this day still live on the banks of the Shabele River.
The Hatimi and The Biidda who are called Laba Tol (The two kin) were fully accepted by the Tunis. They established a strong relationship that was by virtue of a mutual respect. The groups eventually became so close to one another which resulted on the inter marriage among the clans. The Biida clan allied with the Goygaal sub clan and the Hatimi allied with Daktira sub clan. Some people claimed that the Hatimis paid large amount of gold to settle in to the city, an account that was later dismissed.
There were unfounded reports that implied the Arab Descendants were given a piece of land that was measured with a cowhide. Apparently, the clever Arabs expanded the hide throughout the darkness of the night. Shariif Aydrus a Somali historian later dismissed this report and described the content of this report to be false and unjustified. This report is beyond anyone's imaginations that someone will treat guests like that. The Tunis will never let such act to occur in their soil.
Shariif Aydrus later ended in his report with the following quote "If Arabs would have done what they were accused of doing, the Tuniswould not have allow them stay in Brava a day longer. The people who were behind this rumor were exactly the same people who tried to drive a wedge between the groups." Another report revealed that the Hatimi use to be known as Dahab Soore (Gold Givers), the report advocated that this was because the Hatimi purchased the land with gold. This is clearly one of the other idiotic and unfounded reports, the oral history shows the Hatimis were named Dahab Soore merely because they did not have any currency to purchase food and the daily household needs, instead they traded gold for whatever needs they had at the time.
One significant element of this history is that Brava is not a Clan nor an ethnic group, Brava is simply a city that unites many migrant communities from different ethnic backgrounds. These individuals were clever enough to formulate a common language CHIMBALAZI to converse. These groups together they are called WAATU WA MIINI (People of Brava).
Languages Spoken in Brava
The main language is CHIMBALAZI also called CHIWMINI, a Bantu language that is only spoken in Brava. This is very similar to the SWAHILI (Swahili is widely spoken in Eastern African countries and parts of central Africa). Besides the CHIMWINI, there is the Somali language and the original Tuni Dialect.
The Tuni dialect is also widely spoken in the city of Bravaand the vicinity. The lingo is the same family of Maay, a language spoken in the southern parts of Somalia. The Maay alone has 17 different dialects, mainly the same with a few minor differences.
Close to 800 years, Brava was under the Tuni jurisdiction. The Egyptians, British, and Italian historians all agreed Brava to be a TuniLand without any uncertainty, as reported in the following history books:
The Modern History of SomaliLand by I.M. Lewis
The Shaping of Somaliaby Lee V Cassanelli
The Story of Somaliaby Shariif Aydrus
In 1873, Brava became under the Sultan Barqash Bin Said's regime. This was because the customary Tunis elder's acceptance of Said's Barqash's government and control over Brava. Many people recognized the city of Bravaas the Center for Islamic Studies. The Sultan summoned a native of Brava Sheik Mohidin Bin Sheik Abdullah to visit Zanzibar. The sultan talked to the Sheik into becoming the Magistrate of Zanzibar province and asked to share his Islamic Shari'a knowledge to the people of Zanzibar. The Sheik finally accepted the invitation knowing the people of Brava will not suffer in his absence.
Even though, Sheik Mohidin decided to move to Zanzibar, the Islamic practice and the following of the Shari'a in the city got stronger at the schools and the mosques. This is due to the students of the Sheik implementing his legacy and his teaching role. There were also other proud Muslim scholars emerging. They were courageous people who strongly believed in Islam and were never afraid to reveal the truth and most of all they were very powerful leaders.
In 1874, the Khidwiyin of Egypt took over the city without any bloodshed. However, the Khidwiyin rule lasted for three months and ten days, the beginning of the months of Ramadan through the tenth of Dul Hajj. This was an effort promoted by the British government to demolish Sultan Said Barqash's involvement in the slave trading from the Eastern region of Africa. After Eid-Al-Adha Said Barqash recovered control of the town again, this was due to Khidwiyin deserting the city.
In 1893, Brava fell under the Italian Fascist rule after a lengthy discussion with Banadir Elders and the Sultan of Zanzibar. This was the same year Sheik Faqi Bin Haaji Awisa Hassan Al-Dacfaradi traveled to Zanzibar, to sign an agreement that authorized Italians to take over the Brava Region. The Tuni elders made unanimous decision empowering the take over. The Banadir elder also came to the same conclusion of entitling the Italians to take over. This was not an easy decision but rather, an effort to safeguard lives and not fight the militarily powerful Italians.
After the Zanzibar treaty was signed, the Bravanese and the Italians maintained a good relationship that was based on a mutual respect. Italians did not try to interfere with people of Brava's religion and culture. The fact of the matter is the Italians helped the Bravanese build more mosques and extended facilities to those who wanted to go to Hajj (The pilgrimage to Mecca). Brava became the center of Islamic Studies for the whole region. Brava is also known to be a home for number of Muslim Scholars their knowledge reached beyond the limits of Brava. The scholars were very popular in and around the region. Many people distinguish the people of Brava to be very religious and peace loving, the Bravanese believe in the fine manners they inherited from their religious leaders such as Sheik Aweys Al-Qadiri the great Islamic Scholar, who many religious people knew him to be a Brava native. The other well-known and respected scholars include Sheik Nuurani Bin-Ahmed Sabir, Sheik Kassim Al-Barawa, Sheik Hajji Sadiq, Sheik Moalin Nur Hajji Abdulkadir, Sharif Mubiidi, Akhwaan Cabdow Munye, Sheik Omar Hiraale, Sheik Mohamed Gaduudow and many more whom cannot be descried in a single story. These scholars were all born and raised in city of Brava.
Not only many well-respected religious scholars came from the Brava Region, there were also several well-respected politicians. These Native Politicians included Abduikadir Sheik Saqawadiin and Mohamed Osman Baarbe, who were among the 15 founding fathers of Somali Youth League, the SYL. These politicians fought for the Independenceof our country.
The other known Bravanese figures who always stood up for their people, fought for peace, justice, and equal rights are Sultan Aw Faqi Hajji Awiis, Hajji Omar Shegow, Hajji Abdulkadir, Hajji Beytula and many more.
Many people in the region give consideration to remember the experience of Aw Munye Hajji Abdulkadir, his leadership and trusted judgments. When there is a dispute, the Bravanese still remember Aw Munye because he was a firm believer of justice and equal rights. The people of Brava and the surrounding cities still use his excellent ideas to resolve disagreements and other issues.
When Somaliaacquired their independence, Adda Munye who is from Brava was one of the first people who took over the front offices from the colonist. Mohamed Hajji Mumin is another citizen of Brava who became the first commander of the first police station. The Brave people have a long tradition of developing and becoming national and regional leaders. The people of Brava continue to lead the country despite the current difficulties that are facing our nation.
The many reasons why the bond between Italians and the people of Brava achieved that level of respect were that the Italians encouraged them to keep their own Islamic rule of law.
(Some of the above paragraphs were the script of Sheik Mo'allim Nur Al-Dacfaradi)
Of particular importance for historical, ethnic, and linguistic knowledge of the populations of Somalia — and in general of the countries of East Africa, is the study of the ‘low castes’: that is, of those stirpes that are, or better were, in a condition of social and juridical inferiority and lived among tribes from whose patronage they benefited. In the following I shall publish some texts on the low castes among the Hawiyya tribes on the middle Webi, texts, of course, collected from the Somalis, patrons of these stirpes considered inferior, and which thus reflect the point of view and the customs of the Hawiyya tribes of high caste.
First it is necessary to list here the peoples of low caste, who are called:
- Gabalollay: living with the Badi ‘Adda rer Waber and with the Hawadla Adan Yaber;
- Gaggab: with the Badi ‘Adda Illabe and with the Hawadla; they are tanners;
- Habeso-‘ad: with the Badi ‘Adda Illabe;
- Eyla Halawo: with the Badi ‘Adda and with the Galgael ‘Alofe; they are hunters;
- Eyla Gambaye: with the Badi ‘Adda and with the Galga‘el Abtisama; they are hunters;
- Bon Marrehan: with the Badi ‘Adda;
- Garyala: with the Hawadla rer Ugas;
- Ukkuray: with the Hawadla;
- Geymala: with the Hawadla; they are blacksmiths
- Angallaye: with the Hawadla; they are blacksmiths;
- Barbaro: with the Galga‘el
- Yayla: with the Hawadla Adan Yaber;
- Gaboya: with the Abgal; they are tanners;
- Dardo: with the Abgal; they are weavers
The low castes are generically indicated among the Hawiyya with the name of “Bon,” which is the name of an ancient people of hunters whose remains are found along the lower course of Giuba /Juba/ and on the coastal border with Kenya, where they are mixed with the Wa-Sanye.
The peoples of low caste in turn give the Hawiyya, their patrons, the name of “Gabar,” which is also a ‘relic,’ because it is the name with which the Galla designate the peoples conquered by them and adopted into their tribes which poses an interesting historical problem.
Finally, I should like to underline how, at least among the Hawiyya tribes of the Badi ‘Adda and the Hawadla, we find a strips of low caste which is under the direct patronage of the hereditary tribal leader: the waber (Badi ‘Addä); the ugas (Hawadlä). This situation also reminds one of interesting comparisons of analogous stirpes of low caste, such as the Manna, the potters, the tanners, and the storytellers of Caffa /Kaffa/, who were directly protected and were at the disposal of the King of Caffa.
1) The low castes among the Badi ‘Addo
Some Bon live with the Badi ‘Ádda. The Gabalollay live with the people of the Waber. They are his ‘gourd carrier.’ The other men called Gaggab live with the Illaba and thus the ‘white freed.’ What are the ‘white freed’? They are men that, if you pay attention and look at their face, seem noble. But if the generations are counted, they are to be included with the freed. (Like the major part of the stripes of low caste listed here, these ‘white freed’ were not known until now. I have not had an occasion during my stay on the upper Scebeli /Shebeli/ to meet them. But it is permissible to suppose that this is a matter of freed originating from Galla and non-Suahili slaves and thus of superior race and akin to the noble Somalis. They and the Gaggáb marry each other. They and the freed do not marry each other. They and the rêr ‘Isa those of the north, marry each other. The Gabalollây and the blacksmiths marry each other. The Gabalollay and the Gaggáb do not marry each other. When the Waber is crowned, a cow is given to the man who carries his gourd. *
It is interesting to know the bonds of matrimony between the peoples of low caste and between them and the freed. (It is known how the prohibition of marriage is the highest and most observed sanction of the nobles against the inferior peoples.) From the information in the text we have this situation:
–Gaggab: they marry the ‘white freed: they do not marry the Gabaloll[unknown]ay.
– ‘White freed’ ( Habeso-‘ad ): they marry the Gaggab, the Rer ‘Is; they do not marry the freed.
–Gabalolläy: they marry the blacksmiths; they do not marry the Gaggab. Eylä: they marry the freed. Bon Marrehan: they marry the blacksmiths.
* The Eylä and the freed marry each other. The Eylä are those of the woodland who hunt the dig-dig. They hunt them with snares and with the net. The Eylä eat unclean meat. The Eylä are two, the Halawo and the Gambaye: the ones who eat the unclean meat and become hyenas. The Bon Marrehân are the ones who kill the oryx and giraffe and make the shields. The blacksmiths and the Bon Marrehân marry each other. To insult an Elyä one says: Eylä ‘white chest.’ When God created all men, there appeared in the plain a dog and a boy. Then it was said: this one is to be called ‘dog’ that one is to be called Eylä (‘the one of the dog’).
2) The low castes among the Hawâdlä and the Galga‘ál.
“The Garyálä, who stay with the ugâs, are Bon of us Adän Warsáma. They hunt dig-dig, antelopes, oryx, and sew sandals. The ugâs, who now has power over them, said ): ‘You will stay with me where I live. The one who will come to fight with me will come to fight with you.’ They do not know fear, they are brave. They said: ‘Provided that we are satisfied in what we desire, we shall go where we are sent. And, O ugâs, we want some land.’ ‘The land’ was said to them ‘work!’ But they said: ‘We fear that the Adän Warsáma may take the guns,The ugâs answered: ‘Were not the Adän Warsáma Dervisci/Dervishes. Now they are of the Government. They will not take them. An ‘Ala Madahwena killed a Garyala. They said: ‘Let the blood price be paid.’ The ugâs said: ‘I consider the blood price six guns.’ When ‘I consider the blood price six guns’ was said, ‘Take them from us! Let it be so!’ was replied. “A Garyala went out, he killed one from the stirps of that one an ‘Ali Madahwena. The blood price of that one [the Bon killed] had not yet been paid. The blood price of the noble was paid with ten head of livestock. It was said: ‘We shall kill an Adän Warsama. That a Bon has killed one of us is a disgrace.’ It was replied: ’You can not kill him.’ [The matter] was taken to the Government. The lands that were given to the Garyálä belong to the [unknown]ugâs. They have arrows and guns. A Bon does not take a lance, it would be a disgrace. Their speech is different, their walk is different: quick, quick. It is understood that they are Bon. A Bon said: ‘May a beast bite me! May the viper bite me!’ Another replied: ‘When the viper bites you, will you rest your feet on the ground or rather will you raise them in a hurry [again].*
The noble jokes this way with a Bon who took an oath — according to the Somali custom — assigning to himself as punishment for perjury the bite of a viper. The skipping gait of the Bon is the very one of a person who fears serpents
* They are Mussulmans, but they pray now and again. These Garyálä and we were born together. They were born together with the father of the Adän Warsáma. They were two born together. When they were still two boys, they remained in a place from which people had emigrated. They were sought. The Garálä who carried the arrows was seen. The quiver on his shoulders was seen. The other one was seen carrying a lance and a white shield.Their father said: ‘This has to be a Bon!’ Then his walk became ugly, and he did not have shoes. The walk of the other one is nice. This one is a noble, that one is Bon. When the Garyálä became separated [from the nobles], it was said: ‘Do not marry the daughter of a Garyálä! They are Bon. And if you see a noble girl staying with one of them, let [the Bon] be killed!’
“The Bon of the Galga‘él are the men called Barbaro. They became Bon in this way: An expedition was made. It was said: ‘The one who stays today [without coming] is to be Bon!’ Then the Galla of Abyssinia were raided. They left. When the expedition was made, the men against whom war was waged, who were Galla, arrived first at the place where they were going. Then the Barbaro slipped away. Then the Galla and the Galg‘él fought. The Galla were Waralläy, who live to the west. The Galla were vanquished. They were destroyed. Then it was said: ‘The Barbáro are not noble, today they are separate from us. Do not marry their daughters! They are not to marry ours! If they marry ours, they are to be killed. The one who marries theirs is to be killed!’ Thus are the Barbáro.
The Eylä and the Gambálä are of the Galgä‘él. The Gambay (clients) of the Abtisama. They eat unclean meat. The Eylä are of the ‘Alôfä; when they butcher livestock, they take the skin, sew the sandals; they kill the dig-dig, hunt the oryx. The Gambalolläy are Bon, descended from the Adän Yäber. The Yaylä are Bon of very short stature; their women do not marry among them; they live with the Adän Yäber. They live with the Isma‘fi Adän.
“The Gaggáb who sew the sandals and the blacksmiths feel loathing between them. The Angallaye say: ‘We do not want you.’ An Angallaye and a Gaggab girl went away together. They were pursued. People went to the one who had married her. It was said: ‘Divorce our girl! Do we Gaggab marry the Angallaye?’ There was fighting. There intervened the Hawâdlä, who said: ‘Let each one marry his girls!’
“If a noble marries a woman, the Bon come to him. If an animal is killed, some meat is given to them. Some thalers are given to them. If the lady is to give birth, she says to them: ‘Ask even three thalers, two thalers!’ Then they pray to the Lord. A child is born. When a child is born, they come. They say: ‘Give me what was told me!’ It is given to them. A child has come into the house. ‘Recite the fatiha! May God make him grow for me! When he has grown, I shall give you two thalers.’
“A noble girl, when she reaches eight years old, is infibulated. A Gaggâb infibulates her. A thaler is given. If, on the other hand, a man is circumcised, our people circumcise him.
“When there is an assembly, the Bon come. They say: ‘You are our Gabar; give us something! Be generous with us!’ It is said: ‘What do you want?’ They say: ‘We want camels and sheep and oxen; what will be given to us?’ Then it is said to the [unknown]ugâs who is in the assembly: ‘Let something be given to these people!’ Camels are brought. ‘Butcher these four head!’ They butcher the four head. The four camels are given to them; they eat them, but they speak only for food, for other things they do not speak. When expenditions are made, they are taken along. If some livestock is taken away, some is given to them.
“I have four Bon. When one of my Bon kills someone, I pay the blood price. When one of my Bon is killed, the blood price is paid to me. I take the livestock with which the blood price is paid. If one of my Bon steals something and is caught, I make restitution. If one has a Bon and kills him, there is no blood price. It is said: ‘His patron killed him.’ If a Bon kills his patron, he is killed or he is tied. In our ancient law, the man who coupled with a Gaggab was killed. The man who coupled with a freed woman was killed. If a Bon raped a noble woman, he was killed. If a child was born, it was strangled. It was thrown away. Now one is afraid of the Government. One can not make dissension. One can not kill. The wedding of a Bon is like ours. If one marries a Bon girl, one speaks with her patron. If he refuses, enough! The livestock is taken by the girl’s father.”
The historically more important datum that follows from this text is that some stripes of low caste are considered directly connected genealogically with the noble Somali stirpes. The reduction to low caste is due: to the violation of food taboo (as for the Ukkuray) or to cowardice in war (as for the Barbaro). This information, which is preserved by tradition, also attests to how pariahs of different origin have come together in the low castes, having in common only the condition of infamy in which they are kept or have fallen.
One of the stirpes of low caste under the patronage of the Galgä‘el has the name: Barbaro. This seems to be linked with Barabir, the name applied to the Somalis in the Arab Middle Ages. And remember that another trace of this name is found among the Ribi, hunters of low caste of the Rahanw[unknown]en, who in their jargon call the Somalis of high caste Beriberi ). Why was this Arab designation adopted by the Rahanw[unknown]en lower castes for the noble Somalis, and, on the other hand, among the Galgä‘el, more to the north, to name a stirps of low caste? It is difficult to say now, but it is to be noted that — according to the tradition — the Barbaro today of low caste are genealogically connected with the noble Somalis and represent only, as was said, a group of impoverished ones who were reluctant to fight against the Galla.
Just as also in the text published here, as we shall see elsewhere the Somalis of high caste are also called Gabaro, which is the name by which the Galla now in Ethiopia designate the non-Galla people vanquished and adopted’ into the Galla tribes.
Such an exchange of names leads one to think that in the valley of the W[unknown]ebi too, the Somali invasion and the superimposition of the conquering Somali group on the vanquished Galla and on the Negroes, earlier predecessors of the Galla, happened gradually and through various vicissitudes, not all necessarily of wars, but rather also of adoption into the tribes or by other means of infiltration into the territory and into the ancestral structure of the preceding populations. The Galla named in the text are, as usual, the Worra Daya, here adapted dialectically into Warallay (and elsewhere into Warday), that is, a Borana tribe also named in the Cronache Etiopiche /Ethiopian Chronicles.
3) The low castes among the Abgal.
The Bon live with the Abgal. The head of the animals that are butchered is given to the Bon called Gabôya. The heart belongs to the weavers, and they also have the tripe, the head, and the meat of the neck that is called gorguzzule / gullet, throat/. If an animal dies, they eat the meat. They do not eat with the Abgal. Bowls are put aside (for them). The Gabôya and his son are placed to one side, and nothing is eaten with them.
“The Gaboya make the sandals and make bags (they are the ones that are put on camels and one goes to look for durra). They make baskets (they are the ones with the tassels; they are sewed sheep skin; the women put them on their shoulders). They make girth straps for the camels. They are put under the belly. They make ‘kora-rara.’ The ‘korarára’ are ties that are put on the bags 295 with which the camels are loaded. They make the ties for the ‘h[unknown]an’ They make a thing called ‘sidda hanêd’ which is turned over. They make the skin dress (du), which is tied, and the tassels with which it is tied. The Abgal women wear it. Tassels are sewed to the skin dress for ornamentation.
The Gaboya, the blacksmiths, and the weavers are distinguished. The weavers make the clothes. The blacksmiths make the lances, make the knives, make the pincers sidibo it is a thing with which the beard is pulled out); they make that with which the beard is shaved, which is called a razor; they make the scythes with which the fields are worked and the plants are cut. They make the hoes with which the ground is hoed.
“Marriage is not contracted with the blacksmiths, with the Gaboya, and with the Dardo; there is repugnance. They marry among themselves. A blacksmith marries a Gaboya woman; a Gaboya marries a woman of the blacksmiths. They eat with the blacksmiths. They eat with the weavers. They do not eat unclean meat.
Food is eaten with a Gaboya who has fasted, who has prayed, who has given the ‘zakat.’ In ancient times he was separated (from the others) because of the unclean meat, but he was noble. If he once repents there will be eating together. In fact if the Law is considered, it is a Gaboya who was separated [from the others] because of the unclean meat. If, then, one goes on and judges, he was a noble that the occupation and the unclean meat separated [from the others]. Once he has left the occupation and has left the unclean meat and has fasted, offered the prayers, and given the ‘zakat,’ then the Law is that food is eaten with him.”
This text concerns the Abgal ‘Abdallah Agon-yär, from whose notables I collected it in July, 1919. The lower castes living with the ‘Abdallah Agon-yär are, consequently:
a) the Gaboya, who practice the occupation of tanner. The name Gaboya means ‘quiver’ in Somali, but it would perhaps be imprudent to draw consequences from this imaginative etymology, because it is also not to be excluded that Gaboya may be a popular Somali modification of an ethnic name of some other origin.
b) the Dar-do (literally ‘weave-clothes’), weavers;
c) the blacksmiths, Tumal
Our text confirms the prohibition of marriage between the Somalis and these stirpes of a low caste, and confirms also the prohibition of contact with them, such as, for example, eating from the same wooden bowl. Characteristically, because of the influence of Islamic law, the second of these prohibitions is attenuated in our text, because it is permitted for an individual of low caste who has fulfilled all his religious and ritual obligations of Islam and who has renounced the traditional occupation of his caste (occupation considered degrading) to eat with the Somalis. The double condition set for this concession (a religious one and one from the ancient customs) shows very well the intermingling, in this development too, of the ancestral social structure of the tribes, of the intensified influence of Islamic law, and, at the same time, of the ancient customs, which have evolved, but within their own forms.
References; Enrico Cerulli “How a Hawiye tribe use to live”
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