Sunday, January 30, 2011

Egypt People

Modern Egyptian(Today's Egyptian)

Egyptians are a nation and ethnic group of Mediterranean North Africans indigenous to Egypt. Most modern Egyptians are of a complex ethnic mixture, being descended from the ancient Egyptians, Berbers, sub-Saharan Africans, Arabs, Greeks, and Turks. Arabic is the official language.

Egyptian identity is closely tied to geography. The population of Egypt is concentrated in the lower Nile Valley, the small strip of cultivable land stretching from the First Cataract to the Mediterranean and enclosed by desert both to the east and to the west. This unique geography has been the basis of the development of Egyptian society since antiquity.

The daily language of the Egyptians is the local variety of Arabic, known as Egyptian Arabic or Masri, Also a sizable minority of Egyptian speak Sa'idi Arabic in Upper Egypt . Egyptians are predominantly adherents of Sunni Islam with a Shia minority and a significant proportion who follow native Sufi orders.[8] A sizable minority of Egyptians belong to the Coptic Orthodox Church, whose liturgical language, Coptic, is the last stage of the indigenous Egyptian language.

Ancient Egypt People

Egypt has an early civilization, just like the Chinese, Indian, Persian; but like Persian, the civilization had disappeared from the earth. Better than Persia, Egypt managed to retain the famous monuments, the Giza pyramid complex and Great Sphinx, to remind the glory of its early civilization. The history of Egyptian is very complicated, history of occupation by foreign forces, from countries with strong culture, whatever traces of ancient Egyptian was slowly faded away in time. It was a sad chapter of human history, an ancient civilization and the identity of its people left without any traces....

Egypt & Christianity

The history of Christianity in Egypt dates to the Roman era. Alexandria was an early center of Christianity, and from the 4th century until the Islamic conquest of Egypt in AD 640, Egypt was predominantly Christian. Egyptian Christians believe that the Patriarchate of Alexandria was founded by Mark the Evangelist around AD 33. The historian Helmut Koester has suggested, with some evidence, that originally the Christians in Egypt were predominantly influenced by Gnosticism until the efforts of Demetrius of Alexandria gradually brought the beliefs of the majority into harmony with Nicene Christianity. With the Edict of Milan in 312, Constantine I ended the persecution of Christians.

The history of Christianity in Egypt dates back verily to the beginnings of Christianity itself. Many Christians hold that Christianity was brought to Egypt by the Apostle Saint Mark in the early part of the first century AD. Eusebius, Bishop of Caesarea, in his Ecclesiastic History states that Saint Mark first came to Egypt between the first and third year of the reign of Emperor Claudius, which would make it sometime between AD 41 and 44, and that he returned to Alexandria some twenty years later to preach and evangelize. Saint Mark's first convert in Alexandria was Anianus, a shoemaker who later was consecrated a bishop and became Patriarch of Alexandria after Saint Mark's martyrdom. This succession of Patriarchs has remained unbroken down to the present day, making the Egyptian Christian, or Coptic, Church one of the oldest Christian churches in existence. Evidence for this age comes in the form of the oldest Biblical papyri discovered in remote regions of Upper Egypt. These papyri are written in the Coptic script and are older than even the oldest Greek copies of the Bible ordered by Constantine in AD 312.

Egypt & Islam, Arab

Under Muslim rule, the Egyptians came to be known as Copts, a derivative of the Greek word Αἰγύπτιος, Aiguptios (Egyptian), from Αἴγυπτος, Aiguptos (Egypt). The Greek name in turn may be derived from the Egyptian ḥw.t-ka-ptḥ, literally "Estate (or 'House') of Ptah", the name of the temple complex of the god Ptah at Memphis. After the majority of Egyptians converted from Christianity to Islam due to the Islamic takeover, the term became exclusively associated with Egyptian Christianity and Egyptians who remained Christian, though references to native Muslims as Copts are attested until the Mamluk period

The assimilation and Arabization that took place, left little of the original Egyptian culture, the only remain is the area around Alexandria, the Coptic Christian. The Coptic from majority become minority....

Egyptian become Arabs, culturally....

The Native Egyptian - The Coptic Christian
The Copts are the native Egyptian Christians,a major ethno-religious group in Egypt. Christianity was the majority religion in Roman Egypt during the 4th to 6th centuries and until the Muslim conquest,[12] and has remained the faith of a significant minority population until the present day. Their Coptic language is the direct descendant of the Demotic Egyptian spoken in the Roman era, but it has been near-extinct and mostly limited to liturgical use since the 18th century.

Copts in Egypt constitute the largest Christian community in the Middle East, as well as the largest religious minority in the region, accounting for an estimated 10% of Egyptian population. Most Copts adhere to the Coptic Orthodox Church of Alexandria. The remaining (around 800,000 are divided between the Coptic Catholic and various Coptic Protestant churches.

As a religious minority, the Copts are subject to significant discrimination in modern Egypt, and the target of attacks by militant Islamic extremist groups.
(source: wikipedia)

Who is Egyptian?

I just wonder how many original Egyptian still around in Egypt? Some said Egypt being located between Africa and Asia, with the north facing Europe; are not white, but of African stock. The migration, the war, the capture of the country by foreign forces, the natural disasters, adversely affected the population of ancient Egyptian, not many left; those left are facing Arabization after the country had captured by the Arabs.

Nubian from lower Nile region have very cultural relationship and inter marriage with Egyptian....they even have pyramids in North Sudan...may be from them, you can see the images of ancient Egyptian...

University of Chicago Egyptologist Frank Yurco confirmed this finding of historical and regional continuity, saying:

Certainly there was some foreign admixture [in Egypt], but basically a homogeneous African population had lived in the Nile Valley from ancient to modern times... [the] Badarian people, who developed the earliest Predynastic Egyptian culture, already exhibited the mix of North African and Sub-Saharan physical traits that have typified Egyptians ever since (Hassan 1985; Yurco 1989; Trigger 1978; Keita 1990; Brace et al., this volume)... The peoples of Egypt, the Sudan, and much of East Africa, Ethiopia and Somalia are now generally regarded as a Nilotic (i.e. Nile River) continuity, with widely ranging physical features (complexions light to dark, various hair and craniofacial types) but with powerful common cultural traits, including cattle pastoralist traditions (Trigger 1978; Bard, Snowden, this volume). Language research suggests that this Saharan-Nilotic population became speakers of the Afro-Asiatic languages... Semitic was evidently spoken by Saharans who crossed the Red Sea into Arabia and became ancestors of the Semitic speakers there, possibly around 7000 BC... In summary we may say that Egypt was distinct North African culture rooted in the Nile Valley and on the Sahara

The earliest examples of disagreement in modern times, regarding the race of the ancient Egyptians, occurred in the work of Europeans and Americans early in the 19th century. For example, in an article published in the New-England Magazine of October 1833, the authors dispute a claim that the Ancient Egyptians “were adduced, affirmed to be Ethiopians.” Among other things, they point out (at pg 275), with reference to tomb paintings: “It may be observed that the complexion of the men is invariably red, that of the women yellow; but neither of them can be said to have anything in their physiognomy at all resembling the Negro countenance.” And (at pg 276) they state, with reference to the Sphinx: “The features are Nubian, or what, from ancient representations, may be called Ancient Egyptian, which is quite different from the Negro features.”

In his Principes Physiques de la Morale, Déduits de l'Organisation de l'Homme et de l'Univers, Constantin-François Chassebœuf writes that "The Copts are the proper representatives of the Ancient Egyptians" due to their "jaundiced and fumed skin, which is neither Greek nor Arab, their full faces, their puffy eyes, their crushed noses, and their thick lips."[11]

Just a few years later, in 1839, Champollion states in his work "Egypte Ancienne" that the Egyptians and Nubians are represented in the same manner in tomb paintings and reliefs and that "The first tribes that inhabited Egypt, that is, the Nile Valley between the Syene cataract and the sea, came from Abyssinia to Sennar. In the Copts of Egypt, we do not find any of the characteristic features of the Ancient Egyptian population. The Copts are the result of crossbreeding with all the nations that successfully dominated Egypt. It is wrong to seek in them the principal features of the old race."[

Egyptian Diaspora
Historically, it was rare for Egyptians to leave their country permanently or for an extended period of time—it was not until the 1970s that Egyptians began to emigrate in large numbers.
Egyptians emigrated from Egypt for many centuries, mainly to Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Qatar, the United Arab Emirates and Iraq, this happened under different circumstances but mainly for economic reasons. A sizable Egyptian diaspora did not begin to form until well into the 1980s and today it is estimated that 2.7 million Egyptians live abroad.

(extract from wikipedia)

Historically, it is sad; Egyptian civilization like Persian, faded in history.....and what we see the Egypt today is unlike the ancient Egypt, their glory, their greatness in the ancient era. Like Persia who become Iran, Egypt followed the similar steps, without traces of their cultural past. We can only find them in museum and historical books.....

The modern Egyptian is distinct and difference....from ancient Egyptian...Egyptian today is the name for people under a nation called The Arab Republic of Egypt, a modern national identity, not ethnic or even racial identification with the early Egyptian identity/civilization.

The debate is still going on, is modern Egyptian an Arab? Is ancient Egyptian a black? will remain a national myth?....

Related articles

1. Copts, wikipedia
2. Egyptian diaspora, wikipedia
3. Persecution of Copts, wikipedia
4. Catchpenny Mysteries & Ancient Egypt,
5. Origins and identity of the Egyptian people past and present, youtube(This series of videos will examine the origins of the Egyptian people, their civilization as well as the origins of the Modern Egyptian people, their identity and their relationship to the Ancient Egyptians.)
6. Ancient Egyptian race controversy,
8. Egyptian not Arab,
9. Egyptians are not Arabs, they are Egyptians,
10. Egyptian Intellectual speaks about Arab Culture ,
12. Coptic identity,
13. Pharaonist movement,
14. Why does Egypt speak Arabic today and not Egyptian?

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