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Author Topic: MODERN EGYPT  (Read 6774 times)
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« Reply #105 on: May 01, 2009, 09:40:42 pm »

The Nubian Studies Research Centre, now relocated to Khartoum, carries out some of the services that the Nubian Museum in Aswan, and its new counterpart in Wadi Halfa, provide or are supposed to provide. Foremost among these are those pertaining to the preservation and propagation of the Nubian tongues. Two courses entitled "How to Speak Nubian" are currently taught.

"We've no lexicons, no Rosetta Stone," the director of the Aswan Nubian Museum notes. He adds that in 2012, the Nubian Museum, in conjunction with the Supreme Council of Antiquities, will host yet another conference on the Nubian cultural heritage. "The question of language will be tackled more systematically. Some 35 per cent of the vocabulary of the Nubian language of Faditcha and 20 per cent of Kenuz have Meroetic origins," he says. Accordingly, there are also Meroetic connections with a number of African languages including the Fur of Darfur, and certain languages spoken in Kordofan in western Sudan, Chad and Ethiopia. "There is a strong connection," he insists between the contemporary spoken languages of Nubia and those of Africa south of the Sahara.

With racism to the fore and religiosity lurking in the background the subject of Nubia's heritage is always going to be contentious.

However, polemics aside, Meroetic declined with Christianity and Old Nubian developed influenced by Coptic, Greek and Latin and written in Coptic and Latin script. However, it was the same language spoken in the pre-Christian Meroetic kingdoms of Nubia. "The Nubian Christian Church and kingdoms had strong affiliations with the Ethiopian Church. Nubia, however, had the upper hand at first. It was in the 14th century that the Ethiopian Church became more prominent and the Nubian Church declined. Nubia was Christian before Ethiopia." Yet, he notes that the conversion of Nubians to Islam was a peaceful process and was pre-empted by trade. "There are Nubians, certain tribes, with Arabic origins. They are a mixed race people not of pure Nubian stock."
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