1902 Encyclopedia > Algeria > Algeria - Inhabitants

(Part 7)

Algeria: Inhabitants

Besides the Europeans there are eight distinct races of inhabitants in Algeria - (1) The Kabyles or Berbers, the descendants of the aboriginal inhabitants of the country, constitute a large portion of the entire population. They occupy chiefly the more elevated and mountainous parts but numbers of them also inhabit the plains and valleys. They are described as an active, industrious race, living in villages, and principally engaged in agriculture and the cultivation of fruit trees. They also make their own agricultural implements, guns, gunpowder, leather, carpets, &c. (2) The Arabs are a very numerous class, and inhabit principally the southern parts of the country. Some of them are cultivators of the soil, and live in villages in the neighbourhood of the towns; but the majority of them have no fixed habitation, dwelling in tents and moving about from place to place. These are the Bedouins or nomadic Arabs, and are the most unsettled and turbulent of the Algerine population. (3) The Moors, a mixed race, inhabit the towns and villages chiefly on or near the sea-coast. (4) The Jews are also be found in the towns, and are engaged in mercantile pursuits. (5) The Turks, though long the dominant race, were never very numerous, and snce the French conquest they have nearly disappeared . (6) The Kolougis are the descendants of Turks by native women, and constitute a considerable proportion of the inhabitants of ligers and other towns. (7) The Negroes were originally brought from the interior and sold as slaves, but slavery now no longer exists. (8) The Mozabites are an African race, to be found inhabiting the coast towns, and chiefly engaged in manual labour. They are described as an honest, industrious, and peaceable people.

The European civil population of Algeria amounted to only 45,000 persons in 1840, and in 1845 it had increased to 75,867. In December 1849 it had risen to 112,607, of whom 58,005 were French, 6943 Maltese, 33,659 Spaniards, 6986 Italians 2515 Germans, 1253 Swiss, and 3246 of other nations. According to the census of 1861 the entire population of Algeria was 2,966,836, of whom 2,374,091 were nomadic native races, 112,2299 French, and 80,517 other Europeans. In 1866 the entire population was 2,921,246, of whom 2,434,974 were of indigenous wandering tribes, 217,990 Europeans and 251,050 natives settled in towns. Of the Europeans, 122,119 were French, 58,510 Spaniards, 16,655 Italians, 10,627 Maltese, and 5636 Germans. In the civil territory the entire population in 1870 is given as 478,342, of which 121,629 were French, 97,913 other Europeans, 33,117 Jews, and 225,693 Mahometans.

Read the rest of this article:
Algeria - Table of Contents

About this EncyclopediaTop ContributorsAll ContributorsToday in History
Terms of UsePrivacyContact Us

© 2005-23 1902 Encyclopedia. All Rights Reserved.

This website is the free online Encyclopedia Britannica (9th Edition and 10th Edition) with added expert translations and commentaries