Moroccan, an adjective that harbors within it a long history of struggles and a fine bridge between West and East. Hence the imposing beauty of Moroccan style, Moroccan nature, Moroccan essence and spirit.
Moroccan … what is behind this adjective ?
Before there was Morocco, on the lands of present-day Morocco there was Mauretania, the country of the Moors or Maurussi. The latter was an ancient African region that stretched between the Mediterranean Sea and the Atlas from the Atlantic Ocean to present-day western El-Kebir, the front Ampsaga whose course separated it from Namibia.
The Moors or the Maurussians supplied the Carthaginians with animals and animal skins such as crocodiles or elephants.
After an extension of territory that the Moors or the Maurussians gained after the war against Jugurtha, Mauretania began to extend over a large part of present-day Algeria.
In the year 25 BC, Augustus transferred the king of Numidia to Mauretania. The king of Numidia married the daughter of Antony and Clepatra VII, Selene. Ptolemy was born from this marriage. He reigned before being killed on Caligula’s order. Claude then reduced Mauretania to a Roman province and divided it into two prefectures: Mulucha Mauretania Tingitana and Mauretania Caesariensis.
Moroccan … what is behind this adjective ?
In cosmovisions.com, the diversity of the tribes who lived on the lands of Mauretania is well presented: “Ptolemy enumerates in Mauretania the following tribes: going from the East to the West: in Mauretania Cesarienne Toducae, bordering the Ampsaga. Mucuni and Chituae, to the north on the coast. West of which the Tulensii lived, Baniuri. To the south of these, Machure, Salassii, Malchubii.
Northwest of the Tulensii, on the coast, the Macchurebi. East of Mount Zalacus (Ouarsenis). North of it, the Machusii. At the mouth of the Chinalaph (Chélif) and west of the Zalacus, the Mazices. In the South, towards Mount Garaphi (Djebel Amour), the Bantuarii. Further south, between the Garaphi and Cinnaba mountains, the Aquensii, Myceni and Maccurae.
On the northern slopes of Cinnaba, the Enabasi. To the west, between the Garaphi and Dardas mountains (Ksoar mountains), the Nacmusii, Elulii Tolotae. To the north of these, the Dryitae and Sorae. West of the Machusii, the Taladusii. On the Mulucha, the Herpeditani which also extended into Tingitane.
In this province lived there: to the south of the Herpeditani, the Maurensii; then to the southwest, the Vauratae and Baniubae. Towards the north, along the coast, the Zegrensii, Nectiberes, Jangaucani, Volubiliani Verves, Socossii. In the west, the Metagonitae. To the south of these, the Masices and Verbices. To the south and west of the Volubiliani, the Salinsae and Cauni. Further south, in the Little Atlas, the Bacuatae and Macanitae “.
History of Morocco, Moroccan tale
Morocco therefore occupied the former Mauretania Tingitane and part of Mauretania Caesarean. The lands were under Roman rule from 33 BC until 44 AD. Around the 5th century, the land was occupied by the Vandals. Then the Greeks and Bysantines occupied them. From the 8th century, the Arabs settled on these lands. Here is what Cosmovisions.com writes about the history of Morocco:
“The Edrisites (Idrissites), founded, in 788, a state independent of the caliphs of Baghdad, of which Fez was the capital, and which was overthrown in 925 by the first Fatimid caliph of Egypt. While the Fatimids and the Ommeyads of Spain fought over the possession of the remains of the kingdom of the Edrisites, the Almoravids created, in Morocco, from 1051, a new state, which extended its conquests in Spain to the Tagus and the ‘Ebro.
The power of the Almoravids collapsed as quickly as it had risen, and was replaced, between 1120 and 1145, in Africa and Spain, by that of the Almohads, who themselves succumbed in Spain in 1212 and in Africa in 1218. The Almohads were supplanted by the Mérinites or Mérinides (1270), to which succeeded from 1550 the Cherifs, who said they were descended from Mahomet ”.
The defeat of the Merinids and the beginning of the Saadians
The Merinids were weak against the Portuguese who occupied the port of Ceuta, near the Strait of Gibraltar. As early as 1415, the Portuguese began to seize the Moroccan coast. At the beginning of the 16th century, the Saâdiens, Berbers from the Draâ valley, revolted against the Merinids and drove them out of power..
They started a holy war against the Portuguese, they were so exasperated by all the Christian offensives. Agadir was taken over in 1541 by them. The Saadians also allied with the Spaniards to confront the Turkish threat.
He is the heir to the Alaouite dynasty who now rules Morocco
Under the dynasty of Alaouite sherifs (Saadians) of Tafilet, the Moroccan empire acquired its greatest extent, and victoriously resisted the Portuguese armies which attacked in the 13th, 14th and 15th centuries. Morocco ceased to be threatened after the bloody battle of Alcacar Quivir (near Ksar el-Kébir), where King Sebastian perished (1578).
(It was the Battle of the Three Kings). It grew so much thereafter that at the beginning of the 18th century, it further extended its authority as far as Timbuktu “.
The throne was left to a dynasty that left Tafilet in 1648. Chérif Moulay was the founder of this dynasty. But he died in 1652. Moulay Ismaïl, contemporary of Louis XIV, took over the reign from 1672 to 1727.
He was brilliant, energetic but ruthless. He moved the capital to Meknes, 60 km from Fez and not far from Volubilis, the ancient city. It is to him that we owe the construction of the famous monumental Bab el Mansour gate. He repelled various European offensives and fought against the Berber tribes.
Then Moulay Abderrahman ascended the throne. He was worried about the ambitions of the French in North Africa who took Algiers in 1830. He joined in the holy war of Abdel-Kâder. But his army suffered defeat. The defeat as well as the capture of Mogador by the French forced him, that same year, to give up supporting the emir. He died in 1859.
His eldest son who must have succeeded the throne, but a war soon broke out over the dispute over the throne, as well as between Morocco and Spain. As early as the 16th century, several Moroccan towns on the coast were taken. During one of the last battles, Tetouan was taken by the Spaniards in 1860. At the end of the war, Morocco had to cede part of its territory to the Spaniards in addition to a high war indemnity which it received. had to pay.
Moroccan time under European power
The European powers and especially France, already present in Algeria and Tunisia, have come together to give France control over Morocco. The then Foreign Minister, Delcassé, had negotiated and concluded a secret agreement with Spain for the joint conquest of Morocco. In 1904, the Entente Cordiale between England and France neglected Germany. On March 31, 1905, the result was quick. The Emperor of Germany visited Tangier to threaten France.
Rouvier, then president of the Council, called a conference in Algeciras in January 1906 in which all the major European powers would be represented. Delcassé has resigned. There, at this conference, the great European powers gave a solemn act which settled the conditions for French intervention in Morocco..
The solemn act gave France and Spain the right to police through training officers that the two countries would provide to Moroccan troops. Equality for trade and the economic regime of Morocco, as well as the exploitation of the country’s wealth between France, Spain and Morocco was absolute.
The French stranglehold on Morocco and the Moroccan response
Shortly after the Conference of the Great European Powers and the resulting solemn act, an assassination of a Frenchman, Dr Mauchamp, occurred in Marrakech. Then, two Europeans were murdered in Casablanca. These murders led France to launch military operations in the great West African Empire. These have never ceased to expand. We ended up bombing and taking Casablanca.
Meanwhile, Sultan Abd and Aziz, who had dealt with the French, saw his brother, Moulay Hafid, be proclaimed Sultan in his place. France did not defend Abd and Aziz. To gain recognition of his authority by Europe, Moulay Hafid accepted the treaties concluded between the European powers, including the act of Algeciras.
In the meantime, German discontent …
The capital of the Empire at the time was Fez. She was in the midst of an insurrection. In 1911, Colonel Gouraud was attacked and had to endure furious fighting. Germany has started to cause incident after incident, chicane after chicane, for the French operations in Morocco. In 1908, Casablanca incidents took place.
Gendarmes arrested deserters from the Foreign Legion whom a junior agent of the German Ambassador was accompanying and trying to protect.
It was necessary to resort to arbitration which Germany did not accept without difficulty. It all ended in November with a compromise signed in Berlin. Morocco thus became a protectorate of France, then a colony, until independence gained in 1956..
Route of Morocco to describe the Moroccan landscape by Carlos Freire
“No ethnographic, philosophical or sociological intention in my approach”, declares Carlos Freire at the end of his 8,500 kilometers traveled in Berber land. “A passing glance. Premises. Faces. The Berbers of Morocco were settled in this territory before the arrival of the Arabs. These people from the Atlas, Rif and Middle Atlas plateaus are our contemporaries.
Their life, different from ours, in the magnificent landscape that frames their daily lives, exists in a slower, more contemplative time. The common point that enabled our meetings was mutual curiosity around the Other, the visitor in their case, the master of the house, in mine.
It is these men and women of the valleys and mountains of Morocco who generously and graciously granted me a viewing permit during my travels through Berber time. Time is what we offer readers of this book, with my photos, traditional Berber poems and the text of the writer Driss Benzekri, himself of Berber origin, and my companion in this book: a journey through Berber time woven of encounters and looks in reversed mirrors ”.
Moroccan culture, Moroccan look, Moroccan values
This agro-pastoral company puts honesty at the top of the list in communication and human relations. The relationship between men is close, it is sacred. These people are honest negotiators who like to get the job done..
“Honesty is elevated to the rank of virtue. Work and honesty are horizons to which we must constantly strive. The reality of social relations shows the fallibility of humans in this register; but it is always good to remind even the most honest people of the right path.
The religious preaching, the hagiographic narrative, the moralistic tale, the proverb, the adage, the poem, among others, serve to support the words of the preacher, the troubadour, the storyteller, the ade or the simple prose writer. In infinite repetition, we seek less to convince than to recall. A supreme morality, diffuse and immanent, ends up tainting social relations, behavior, language, polite formulas, attitudes and conveniences ”. (In www.e-taqafa.ma)
In Morocco, hospitality is also a characteristic of society. These are people to whom the nuances between nomadism and sedentarism belong to them.
The Moroccan sacred
Much broader than religion, the sacred includes all forms of religiosity and sacredness characterizing Moroccan society. It is located at two levels: at the horizontal level and at the vertical level.
The sacred at the horizontal level is found throughout the territory. No matter the altitude or latitude, the sacred is in the desert, in the mountains, on the coast, etc. The sacred at the vertical level, anything can be the source of the sacred. A tree or a rock, the top of the mountain, the city, the mosque, etc..
Moroccan dances and songs: the dakka marrakchia
Dakka marrakchia is a combination of male song and dance. What matters above all is the well-deserved rest after a job well done. We close our shop on Fridays and we purify ourselves and we enjoy the well-deserved rest. Moroccans know how to take advantage of it.
The art of negotiating, the beauty of awarding the right price to everything
It’s about art. It is an effort of pure beauty. To argue, discuss, sell and buy after having embellished the product of the work or the quality of the service and unearthed the right price. Negotiation is one of the “poems” of fallibility and a reminder of the straight path of honesty which, in the infinite repetition of relations between salespeople, cramped, tries to preach the moralist tale of any societal relation.
Moroccan solidarity: Moroccan sharing and Moroccan union
It is called the complex “social scaffolding” of social relationships and ties that exist between members of the Moroccan community. It is based on the family, but the genealogical links can be real or fictitious. What matters is sharing, mutual assistance.
Hospitality is a duty, the “tada” pact of alliance is sealed between different groups in society. At the sacred level in sharing is brought the sharing of food. This is explained historically, demographically, meteorologically, geopolitically, culturally, etc..
Belligerence, misalliances, weakness, fears, betrayal, the desire to enrich oneself
In the range of human qualities and faults, these states do indeed enter into its characteristics, but also those of an entire people. This is not to deny something that characterizes many humans, it is to remind us of the struggle we all have to not succumb to evil and to strive to always resist and act appropriately as much as that. may be.
As for the urge to get rich, it is legitimate. However, it must be free from blame. Showing off, bragging, showing off, it’s honest but only if the enrichment process has respected upstream regulation and downstream redistribution.
“Between tradition and modernity, Morocco is a kingdom with great potential which has all the assets to appeal to lovers of grandiose. Welcoming people and authentic culture intermingle in a friendly setting and a breathtaking landscape. Discovering the land of the extreme sunset remains an enriching experience full of surprises. Discover Morocco between culture and tradition ”! (In www.etapes-marocaines.com)
Marrakech and its surroundings: What to visit ?
The medina: This is the historic center dating from the Berber Empire. It is made up of intertwined alleys where the souks, very lively and colorful, offer pottery, fabrics and traditional jewelry. The medina is the most touristic and the most beautiful district of this city.
This old town of Marrakech is surrounded by 19 km of ramparts, made of red earth and lime on wooden frames, and 22 gates divide them. The medina is home to most of the city’s palaces, museums, and accommodation.
Jemaa el Fna Square is a public square, frequented by locals and tourists. It is a very famous square in the medina. Merchants and artists rub shoulders there.
The Jardin de la Koutoubia is a public garden, located behind the mosque. It offers the beneficial shade of its many plants, notably orange trees and palm trees, adorned with ponds and fountains.
The Majorelle Garden was created by the French painter, Jacques Majorelle. It is an idyllic place that combines trees and exotic plants, shady paths, waterways, ponds filled with lotus and water lilies and a surprising Moorish building in Majorelle blue.
The Ourika Valley is 30 km from Marrakech. This valley, with green vegetation, is crossed by the Ourika river. It brings freshness and appeasement.
The seven waterfalls of Setti Fatma are located high up in the village. The terrain is rocky, to prepare for the hike !
On 15,000 hectares, the palm grove has 100,000 trees, mainly palm trees but also date palms. It constitutes a tourist and natural heritage of Morocco.
Lalla Takerkoust Dam is a deep water lake. The reflection of the mountains on the water is magical. Perfect place to sip Moroccan mint tea !
Fez: visit the most beautiful medina in Morocco !
This city is the city’s most steeped in history. Along with Damascus, Baghdad, Cordoba and Istanbul, it was one of the main cities of Arab-Muslim civilization. It abounds in places of cultural interest.
Listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the medina or the old town of Fez has remained almost intact since its creation at the very end of the 8th century. The monuments or places to visit are:
- Madrasa Attarine
- Madrasa Bou Inania
- Qaraouiyine district where the main mosque of Fez is located
- Tannery Chouara: the largest tanneries in Fez where you can see the different steps to go from a raw hide to a usable piece of leather
- Merinid tombs to have an overview of the medina of Fez
- Nejjarine Museum
- Seffarine Square
- Bab Boujloud district, one of the main entry points into the old town
- Mausoleum of Moulay Idriss, the founder of the city, and its surrounding alleys offering many religious products and derivatives
- Get lost in the alleys of the medina of Fez in Morocco
Outside the old town of Fez, a short stroll in the Jnan Sbil garden is a must. The garden is located a few minutes walk from Bab Boujloud towards Fès el Jdid.
Fès el Jdid is a more recent city center, founded by the Merinids in the 13th century. It is less interesting than Fès el Bali (which means old Fez).
Finally, on Fez, a quick passage through Mellah, the old Jewish quarter, may be worth a detour. We pass through the main entrance to the royal palace Dar el Makhzen, located on the Place des Alaouites. The doors are beautiful.
Ouarzazate, the gateway to the Moroccan desert
“Perched on the high Atlas plateaus, Ouarzazate overlooks the valleys. Although very close to the desert plateaus of the Sahara, the city is full of palm groves, orchards and gardens. The streets are animated by the souk or the craft center where stonemasons and copper and silver sculptors rub shoulders. Opposite, stands the Kasbah of Taourirt, a gigantic adobe building, which once served as a palace for the Pasha of Marrakech ”. (In www.etapes-marocaines)
The cities of 1001 nights
“On the road of a thousand kasbahs, which separates Ouarzazate from Goulmina, the small village of Erfoud is nestled at the foot of the High Atlas. You can visit one of the many marble factories or taste a few dates. If you want to learn more about the old legends of the gold, salt and sugar caravans of the deserts in Morocco, you have to go through Tazzarine.
Its secret gardens where henna, palm trees and aromatic plants grow only reinforce the mystery. A stopover in Mhamid will allow you to enjoy the last of the oases of the Draâ valley.
Zagora, meanwhile, is famous for the monumental Ouarzazate gate which marks the passage through the city center as well as for its sign announcing the road to Timbuktu, the gate to the Moroccan desert..
The traveler enters the heart of a universe of golden sand and dunes. The desert stretches as far as the eye can see, a veritable ocean of light. Amateurs or novices, a wide variety of treks and hikes lead on the Moroccan desert! “. (In www.etapes-marocaines)