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الإفرنيون (ar)
Ifranid dynasty



The lands ruled by the Ifranid dynasty.
Capital Tlemcen
Language(s) Classical Arabic (predominant), Berber , Mozarabic, Hebrew, Ladino, African Romance, Andalusian Arabic
Religion Sufri
Government Monarchy
President Abu Qurra
 - Established 790
 - Disestablished 1066

Banu Ifran or Ifran or Ifranid (Arabic: بنو يفرن‎), a Berber tribe, prominent in the history of pre-Islamic and early Islamic North Africa. Tlemcen in present-day Algeria was a capital of the Kingdom of Banu Ifran (790 - 1068).

Banu Ifran, the children of the Afri resisted or revolted against the foreign occupiers of their Africa -(Romans, Vandals, Byzantines). In the 7th century, they sided with Kahina in her resistance against the Muslim Umayyad invaders. In the 8th century they mobilized around the dogma of sufri in revolting against the Arab Umayyads and Abbasids. In the 10th century they founded a dynasty opposed to the Fatimids, the Zirids, the Umayyads, the Hammadids and the Maghraoua. The Banu Ifran was defeated by the Almoravids and the invading Yemeni Arabs Banu Hilal and the Banu Sulaym - Hammadid [1] to the end of the 11th century. The Ifrenid dynasty was recognized as the only dynasty that has defended the indigenous people of the Maghreb, by the Romans referred to as the Africani[2].

In the 11th century Iberia, the Banou Ifran conquered and built the city of Ronda in Andalusia and governed from Cordoba for several centuries.

The Roman name Africa means Land of the Afri, the indigenous inhabitants of North Africa. Ifran is a plural for Afar, Efri or Ifri, and ifri means cave in Berber and was also the name of a cave goddess.[3]



Tlemcen, it was a capital of Banu Ifran

They were one of the four major tribes of the Zenata or Gaetulia [4] [2] confederation. Their name probably derives from ifri, a Berber word meaning cave. It has been suggested they were originally troglodytes. Another possibility is that their name relates to one of the major gods of the pagan Berbers, Ifrou (with a similar derivation of his name).

They first come to notice when their chief Abu Qurra rebuilt the city of Tlemcen in Algeria in 765 (formerly it was a Roman city named Pomaria). They opposed the Egyptian Fatimid Caliphate, aligning themselves with the Maghrawa tribe and the Umayyad Caliphate of Córdoba, although they themselves became Kharijites. Led by Abu Yazid, they surged east and attacked Kairouan in 945. Another leader, Ya'la ibn Muhammad captured Oran and constructed a new capital, Ifgan, near Mascara. The Fatimids struck back hard. Their able general Jawhar killed Ya'la in battle in 954[5] and destroyed Ifgan, and for some time afterward the Banu Ifran reverted to being scattered nomads in perpetual competition with their Sanhaja neighbours. Some went to Spain, where they settled in Malaga and other places. Others, led by Hammama, managed to gain control of the Moroccan province of Tadla. Later, led by Abu al-Kamāl, they established a new capital at Salé on the Atlantic coast. During this period they began conflict with the Barghawata tribes on the seaboard.

During the 11th century the Banu Ifran contested with the Maghrawa tribe for the sovereignty over the former Idrisid Kingdom of Fes. Ya'la's son Yaddū took Fes by surprise in January 993 and held it for some months until the Maghrawa ruler Ziri ibn Atiyya returned from Spain and regained control after some bloody battles.

In May or June of 1033, Fes was recaptured by Ya'la's grandson Tamīm. Fanatically devoted to religion, he began a persecution of the Berber Jews[6] [3] , and is said to have killed 6000 of their men while confiscating their wealth and women . Sometime in the period 1038-1040 the Maghrawa tribe retook Fes, forcing Tamīm to flee to Salé.

Soon after that time, the Almoravids began their rise to power and effectively eliminated and exterminated both the Banu Ifran and their brother-rivals the Maghrawa.


The Banou Ifren or Ifren, in Arabic أَو يفرن, أو إفوراقس, أو إفوراغس, أو إفورن, was a tribe of the indigenous Amazigh from North Africa and especially Maghreb (Algeria, Tunisia, Morocco, Libya), and possibly the Berber tribe that gave rise to the Ihag'garen, the Iasgueren, and other Berber tribes.

Ifren was also the name of a Berber king. The Berber kings of Numidia had names ending in "n", as Medghassen in Batna in the Aurès, Msnsn (Massinissa), Mkwsn (Micipsa), Ygwrtn (Jughurta), Ifren, Ygmrsn (yaghmorasen) Maghrawa, Mdghasen, etc.. [4] [7]

The name of the Ifren tribe, has been referred to in many alternative versions, as Ifuraces or Afar in Latin, Ifrinidi, Iforen, or Fren or Wafren or Yefren or Yafren or Yafran. The names all mean simply The Sons of Ifri. The banu- was added by the Arab writers, they named them as 'ben ifren' or 'Ifrinid'.

Ifren's brother tribes, the Maghra (Maghraoua) and the Irnyan, were also descendants of the Isliten. They are all of the Zenata branch of Berbers. The Banou Ifren was a nomadic Berber tribe, and during the Middle Ages, they roamed the plains and in the mountains in the outskirts of the Sahara. Ibn Khaldun, Mokadima

Africa as used by the Romans was the name of the region adjacent to Carthage, in present-day northern Tunisia, later to become Ifriquia in Arabic. As mentioned before, the name derives from the word Ifri (cave in Berber language). As a result of this region's importance to the Romans, Africa became the name of the entire continent.[8] [5][9]

Domus Africa

Of the many Amazigh tribes, they were considered warriors, and their expertise was as cavalrymen. According Ibn Khaldoun, Ifrinides or Ait Ifren were successfully resisting Romans, Vandals and Byzantines who also sought to occupy North Africa before the arrival of the Muslim armies.

According to Corripus in Johannide[10] [6], at the time of John Troglita at the reign of Justinian between 547 and 550, The Beni Ifren (Iforen) challenged the Byzantine armies to war.[11][12][13][14] [7] [8]


Before Islam

As d'Hadrien (136), représent Africa

Among the Ifran, animism was the principal spiritual philosophy and the inspiration of this major tribe of the Zenata Berbers. Ifri was also the name of a Berber deity, and their name may have origin in their beliefs.[15] [9] [15] [10] the Plural of Ifri is Ifran.[16] [11]

The Latin translation or borrowing of this deity formed the name Africa. Africa was a Berber goddess before the Roman conquest. Dea Africa means goddess Africa and represents a symbol to the Roman era. And since Ifri is the Afers, the designation for the local non-Punic populations of North Africa, it also implies a different belief system than that of the Carthaginians. Ifru rites symbolized in caves were held to gain favour or protection for merchants and traders. There is a cave representing this rite near Guechguech and Constantine, Algeria. The myth of this protection is befittingly depicted on Roman coins.[17] [12]

Ifru was regarded as a sun goddess, cave goddess and protector of the home.[18] [13] Ifru or Ifran was regarded as a Berber version of Vesta.

Dehia, usually referred to as The Kahina was the Dejrawa Berber trub queen prophetess and leader of the non-Muslim response to the advancing Arab armies. Some historians reckon Kahina as Christian,[19] some even say she was a Berber, but follower of the Judaic faith.[20] [14] [6] [15], like Ibn Khaldun[21].

Kahina named her son Ifran. Furthermore, few of the Ifran were Christians, even after more than half a millennium of Christianity among the urban populations and the more sedentary tribes. Ibn Khaldun simply states that Ifran were Berbers, and says nothing of their religion before the advent of Islam.

Some contemporary historians, such as Emile Félix Gautier in his book "Siècles obscurs du Moghreb", state that the Zenata were a very savage people.

When the Arab armies attack to conquer 'the west', the Maghreb in Arabic, the Ben Ifran were the first tribe to mobilize under their Queen Kahina and defend their Numidia and Africa.[22] [16]

During Islam Ben Ifren was opposed to the Sunnis of the Arab armies. They eventually converted, but summoned under the Kharidjite movement within Islam. Ibn Khaldun say: Zenata people say they are Muslims but they still oppose the Arab army.[23][24]. After 711, the Berbers were systematically converted to Islam, many devout in their religious practice of Islam, and the vast majority eventually became wholly arabicized. The principal leaders of the Ifren (Abu Qurra, Abou Yazid, etc) were consistently opposed to the invading Arabs.[25]


Preceded by
Rustamid and Umayyad Dynasty
Ifran Dynasty
950- 1066
Succeeded by
Almoravides Dynasty

Dynasty Ifran [26]


Ifran in Spain

Ronda was built by Abu Nour at 1014th

The Ifren house of Corra were to rule the Andalusian city Ronda in Spain. Yeddas was the military leader of the Berber troops who were at war against the Christian king and El Mehdi. Abu Nour or Nour of the house of Corra became lord of Ronda and then Seville in Andalusia from 1023 to 1039 and from 1039 to 1054. The son of Nour bin Badis Hallal ruled Ronda from 1054 to 1057, and Abu Nacer from 1057 to 1065.[27]


  1. ^ ((fr)) Ibn Khaldoun, History of the Berbers = T9IOAAAAQAAJ & pg = PA271 & + dq yala Zirid = & lr = # PPA271, M1 version of the book online
  2. ^ ((fr)) addition to the Modern Encyclopedia, Noel Desverges, Leo Renier, Edouard Carteron, Firmin Didot (Firm), page720 to 722 [http: / / / books? 08UUAAAAYAAJ id = & pg = RA5-PA718 & dq = dynasty Ifrenides + # PRA5-PA733, M1 online version]
  3. ^ The Berbers, by Geo. Babington Michell, page 161, 1903. JSTOR:The Berbers la relation entre Africa et Ifren version on ligne
  4. ^ Recueil des notices et mémoires de la Société archéologique de la province , Société archéologique
  5. ^ So says the Rawd al-Qirtas. But according to Ibn Khaldun, Yala died assassinated by a member of the Fatimides in 958.
  6. ^ a b Relations judéo-musulmanes au Marocperceptions et réalités , Michel Abitbol
  7. ^ Mémoires de la société géographique de Genève, par société de Genève
  8. ^ The Golden Age of the Moor , Ivan van Sertima
  9. ^ Decret & Fantar, 1981
  10. ^ Corpus scriptorum historiae byzantinae , Barthold Georg Niebuhr
  11. ^ Corripus, la Johannide
  12. ^ Monographie de l'aurès , Delartigue
  13. ^ The Golden Age of the Moor, Ivan van Sertima
  14. ^ Itineraria Phoenicia , Edward Lipiński
  15. ^ a b Archives des missions scientifiques et littéraires , France Commission des missions scientifiques et littéraires, France
  16. ^ Mots, Edmond Rostand
  17. ^ Recueil des notices et mémoires de la Société archéologique, historique, du département de Constantine , Arnolet, 1878
  18. ^ Les cultes païens dans l'Empire romain , Jules Toutain, page 416, p635 and p636
  19. ^ Gabriel Camps, Berber encyclopaedia
  20. ^ The FalashasA Short History of the Ethiopian Jews , David Kessler
  21. ^ Ibn Khaldoun, Histoire des Berbères et des dynasties musulmanes de l'Afrique septentrionale, traduction de William McGuckin de Slane, éd. Paul Geuthner, Paris, 1978, tome 1, pp. 208-209 .
  22. ^ Page 193 party 3, Ibn Khaldoun, Histoire des Berbères
  23. ^ Ibn Khaldun, Histoire des berberes, Traduction Slane, édition Berti
  24. ^ La Berbérie et L'Islam et la France , Eugène Guernier, party 1, édition de l'union française, 1950
  25. ^ Ibn Khaldun, Histoire des berbère, traduit par Slane , édition Berti
  26. ^ Table made by Ibn Khaldun and translated by Slane indicating the dynasty Banou Ifran by Ibn Khaldun
  27. ^ [1] list of leaders in arabic


  • Ibn Abi Zar, Rawd al-Qirtas. Annotated Spanish translation: A. Huici Miranda, Rawd el-Qirtas. 2nd edition, Anubar Ediciones, Valencia, 1964. Vol. 1 ISBN 84-7013-007-2.
  • C. Agabi (2001), article "Ifren" in Encyclopédie Berbère vol. 24, p. 3657-3659 (Édisud, Aix-en-Provence, ISBN 2-85744-201-7)
  • Ibn Khaldun, Kitab el Ibar, French translation (ISBN 2-7053-3638-9)
  • Le passé de l'Afrique du Nord. Écrit par E.F. Gautier. Édition Payot, Paris
  • Ibn Khaldoun Les prolégomènes El Mokadima
  • Gisèle Halimi. Title: La Kahina.

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