Mohammed Awzal is the most important author in the literary tradition of the Berber Shilha language. He was born around 1680 in the village of al-Qaṣaba in tribal territory of the Indouzal, in the region of Sus in Morocco and died in 1749, his full name in Arabic is Muḥammad ibn ʿAlī ibn Ibrāhīm al-Akbīlī al-Hawzālī al-Sūsī.. He is the author of several works in Arabic which are preserved in manuscripts. There are few hard facts about Awzal's life, he may have killed somebody from his tribe when he was young and this may have been the reason for him to seek refuge in Tamegroute, a village known for an ancient sanctuary, where he started his religious studies. It was towards the end of his studies that he wrote in Arabic, as an essay, his first work, Mahamiz al-Ghaflan. After some time he came back to his place of origin, putting himself at the disposal of the family of the murder victim, they could have taken revenge on him but instead, convinced of the sincerity of his conversion and of his new choice of life, they forgave him.
Life, was not always easy in his village as his preachings were not popular. It seems that in reaction to such resistance he composed his second work, in the Tanbih; when he returned to Tamegroute his master, Sheikh Ahmad, recognising his talent as a poet, supported the writing of his first work in Shilha, entitled Al-Ḥawḍ "The Reservoir". This work, divided in two parts like other works on Islamic law, is a complete legal manual according to the Maliki school, its main sources are two classical texts, the ʿAqīdat ahl al-tawḥīd by Muḥammad ibn Yūsuf al-Sanūsī, the Mukhtaṣar by Khalīl ibn Isḥāq al-Jundī. His following work, Baḥr al-Dumūʿ "The Ocean of Tears", an exhortation in verse and treatise on eschatology; this is the best known text by Al Awzal and a masterpiece of Berber literature. It can be found as a manuscript in private collections; the text has been translated into French by B. H. Stricker and Arsène into English by N. van den Boogert. At the time of writing "The Ocean of Tears", 1714), the poet had returned for a last time to his village of birth, where he worked as a teacher and a mufti until his death.
He left a son, Bṛahim. The dating of his last and shorter work in Berber is uncertain, al-Naṣīḥah "The Advice", is an ode in praise of Sidi Aḥmad ibn Muḥammad ibn Nāṣir, Awzal's spiritual guide and grand master of the Nāṣirīyah Sufi order inspired as a funeral eulogy by his death, around 1708. A third of all known Shilha manuscripts contain parts of his works, the largest Berber text in existence is a commentary by al-Hasan al-Tamuddizti on Awzal's al-Hawd. Awzal, in his honor, is the name of rhymed couplets and long poems that Ishilhin women chant daily or weekly, between the afternoon and sunset Islamic obligatory prayer times, in the tomb complexes of local holy figures. Hemmou Talb Awzal interprété par Ali Chouhad One of these poems translated into French Boogert, Nico van den. Berber Literary Tradition of the Sous — with an edition and translation of'The Ocean of Tears' by Muḥammad Awzal. Leiden: NINO. ISBN 90-6258-971-5 Jean-Dominique Luciani, El H'aoudh: Texte berbère par Meh'ammed ben Ali ben Brahim, publié avec une traduction française et des notes, Algers 1897 Bruno H. Stricker, L'océan des pleurs: Poème berbère de Muhammad al-Awzali, Leiden 1960 Stroomer, Two projects concerning Shilha Berber in Leiden Leiden contains one of the world's best Shilha and Awzal collections KANSAS AFRICAN STUDIES NEWSLETTER Kansas African Studies Center, University of Kansas, Vol. XI, No.
2, Fall 2004 Contains “Islam and Politics in Southwestern Morocco: Ishilhin Women's Religious Ritual Chants,” article by Margaret Rausch, citing'awzal' chants
Morocco the Kingdom of Morocco, is a country located in the Maghreb region of North West Africa with an area of 710,850 km2. Its capital is the largest city Casablanca, it overlooks the Mediterranean Sea to the Atlantic Ocean to the west. Morocco claims the areas of Ceuta, Melilla and Peñón de Vélez de la Gomera, all of them under Spanish jurisdiction. Since the foundation of the first Moroccan state by Idris I in 788 AD, the country has been ruled by a series of independent dynasties, reaching its zenith under the Almoravid and Almohad dynasties, spanning parts of Iberia and northwestern Africa; the Marinid and Saadi dynasties continued the struggle against foreign domination, allowing Morocco to remain the only northwest African country to avoid Ottoman occupation. The Alaouite dynasty, which rules to this day, seized power in 1631. In 1912, Morocco was divided into French and Spanish protectorates, with an international zone in Tangier, it regained its independence in 1956, has since remained comparatively stable and prosperous by regional standards.
Morocco claims the non-self-governing territory of Western Sahara Spanish Sahara, as its Southern Provinces. After Spain agreed to decolonise the territory to Morocco and Mauritania in 1975, a guerrilla war arose with local forces. Mauritania relinquished its claim in 1979, the war lasted until a cease-fire in 1991. Morocco occupies two thirds of the territory, peace processes have thus far failed to break the political deadlock; the unitary sovereign state of Morocco is a constitutional monarchy with an elected parliament. The King of Morocco holds vast executive and legislative powers over the military, foreign policy and religious affairs. Executive power is exercised by the government, while legislative power is vested in both the government and the two chambers of parliament, the Assembly of Representatives and the Assembly of Councillors; the king can issue decrees called dahirs. He can dissolve the parliament after consulting the Prime Minister and the president of the constitutional court.
Morocco's predominant religion is Islam, its official languages are Arabic and Berber. E; the Moroccan dialect of Arabic, referred to as Darija, French are widely spoken. Moroccan culture is a blend of Berber, Sephardi Jews, West African and European influences. Morocco is a member of the Union for the Mediterranean and the African Union, it has the fifth largest economy of Africa. The full Arabic name al-Mamlakah al-Maghribiyyah translates to "Kingdom of the West". For historical references, medieval Arab historians and geographers sometimes referred to Morocco as al-Maghrib al-Aqṣá to distinguish it from neighbouring historical regions called al-Maghrib al-Awsaṭ and al-Maghrib al-Adná; the basis of Morocco's English name is Marrakesh, its capital under the Almoravid dynasty and Almohad Caliphate. The origin of the name Marrakesh is disputed, but is most from the Berber words amur akush or "Land of God"; the modern Berber name for Marrakesh is Mṛṛakc. In Turkish, Morocco is known as a name derived from its ancient capital of Fes.
However, this was not the case in other parts of the Islamic world: until the middle of the 20th century, the common name of Morocco in Egyptian and Middle Eastern Arabic literature was Marrakesh. The English name Morocco is an anglicisation of the Spanish "Marruecos", from which derives the Tuscan "Morrocco", the origin of the Italian "Marocco"; the area of present-day Morocco has been inhabited since Paleolithic times, sometime between 190,000 and 90,000 BC. A recent publication may demonstrate an earlier habitation period, as Homo sapiens fossils discovered in the late 2000s near the Atlantic coast in Jebel Irhoud were dated to 315,000 years before present. During the Upper Paleolithic, the Maghreb was more fertile than it is today, resembling a savanna more than today's arid landscape. Twenty-two thousand years ago, the Aterian was succeeded by the Iberomaurusian culture, which shared similarities with Iberian cultures. Skeletal similarities have been suggested between the Iberomaurusian "Mechta-Afalou" burials and European Cro-Magnon remains.
The Iberomaurusian was succeeded by the Beaker culture in Morocco. Mitochondrial DNA studies have discovered the Saami of Scandinavia; this supports theories that the Franco-Cantabrian refuge area of southwestern Europe was the source of late-glacial expansions of hunter-gatherers who repopulated northern Europe after the last ice age. Northwest Africa and Morocco were drawn into the wider emerging Mediterranean world by the Phoenicians, who established trading colonies and settlements in the early Classical period. Substantial Phoenician settlements were at Chellah and Mogador. Mogador was a Phoenician colony as early as the early 6th century BC. Morocco became a realm of the Northwest African civilisation of ancie
Edmond Amran El Maleh
Edmond Amran El Maleh was one of the best known Moroccan writers. El Maleh was born in Morocco to a Jewish family from Safi, he moved to Paris in 1965, working there as a teacher of philosophy. He only began writing in 1980, at the age of 63, traveling back and forth between France and Morocco, he stated that, in spite of his long stay in France, he had devoted his entire literary life to Morocco. From 1999 until his death he lived in Rabat, he was buried, in the Jewish cemetery in Essaouira. His writing language was French. Parcours immobile In the words of El Maleh: "Ce livre reflète un désir de plus en plus affirmé d'approfondir mon enracinement dans la culture marocaine, où j'ai tenté non pas de transcrire mais de faire revivre mon expérience de jeune juif marocain ayant lutté contre le colonialisme et ensuite militant au sein du mouvement communiste." Abner, Abnour. Le café bleu. Zrirek Mille ans, un jour Le Retour d'Abou El Haki. Jean Genet, Le Captif amoureux et autres essais Aïlen ou la nuit du récit Parcours immobile: Roman La maIle de Sidi Maâchou Essaouira Cité heureuse Une femme, une mère Following his first novel – Le parcours immobile – he published seven further novels and a book about the painting of Cherkaoui.
In 1996 he received the Grand Prix du Maroc for his work. The translation of'Edmond Amran El Maleh, "Le retour d'Abou El Haki" by Hassan Bourkia received a special prize from the minister of culture Mohammed Achaari in 2005. Bou'Azza Ben'Achir, Cheminements d'une écriture. 238 pages. ISBN 2-7384-5217-5 Vogl, Mary B. 2003, "It Was and It Was Not So: Edmond Amran El Maleh Remembers Morocco," International Journal of Francophone Studies 6.2, 71–85. "Taksiat," short story from the collection Abner Abounour by Edmond Amran El Maleh, reprinted with an English translated by Lucy R. McNair, Contemporary French and Francophone Studies/Sites, April 2007, Vol. 11, Issue 2. In same issue, an interview with Moroccan painter Yamou with reference to El Maleh; the Writer Edmond Amran El Maleh: A Moroccan Jew with Arabo-Berber Roots Qantara.de El Maleh's political views El Maleh decorated by King Mohamed VI Annie Devergnas-Dieumegard,'El Maleh, un humaniste enraciné dans un unique paysage, le Maroc' "Edmond Amran El Maleh’s first work of fiction, Parcours immobile, has been well received and is considered one of the most original and valuable creations among Maghrebian and francophone literature.
In this novel can be found the basic features of his works, which belong to both the autobiographical and the historical genre, as it depicts the Jewish Moroccan society throughout the first half of the twentieth century. The theme of personal death – the memories of an unhealthy childhood – is linked to the account of the progressive disappearing of this community in the middle of the century, but it is El Maleh’s writing style, remarkable. Non-chronological, close to orality without punctuation, it gives true historical facts a puzzling subjectivity; this study seeks to show how this singular writer, whose works cannot be parted from his life, uses writing as the only way to keep alive his own past, along with the remembrance of the now-vanished Jewish community of Morocco." Minorities.org report of The Independent dubbing El-Maleh the "Moroccan James Joyce"
Virtual International Authority File
The Virtual International Authority File is an international authority file. It is a joint project of several national libraries and operated by the Online Computer Library Center. Discussion about having a common international authority started in the late 1990s. After a series of failed attempts to come up with a unique common authority file, the new idea was to link existing national authorities; this would present all the benefits of a common file without requiring a large investment of time and expense in the process. The project was initiated by the US Library of Congress, the German National Library and the OCLC on August 6, 2003; the Bibliothèque nationale de France joined the project on October 5, 2007. The project transitioned to being a service of the OCLC on April 4, 2012; the aim is to link the national authority files to a single virtual authority file. In this file, identical records from the different data sets are linked together. A VIAF record receives a standard data number, contains the primary "see" and "see also" records from the original records, refers to the original authority records.
The data are available for research and data exchange and sharing. Reciprocal updating uses the Open Archives Initiative Protocol for Metadata Harvesting protocol; the file numbers are being added to Wikipedia biographical articles and are incorporated into Wikidata. VIAF's clustering algorithm is run every month; as more data are added from participating libraries, clusters of authority records may coalesce or split, leading to some fluctuation in the VIAF identifier of certain authority records. Authority control Faceted Application of Subject Terminology Integrated Authority File International Standard Authority Data Number International Standard Name Identifier Wikipedia's authority control template for articles Official website VIAF at OCLC
Al-Andalus known as Muslim Spain, Muslim Iberia, or Islamic Iberia, was a medieval Muslim territory and cultural domain that in its early period occupied most of Iberia, today's Portugal and Spain. At its greatest geographical extent, it occupied the northwest of the Iberian peninsula and a part of present day southern France Septimania and for nearly a century extended its control from Fraxinet over the Alpine passes which connect Italy with the remainder of Western Europe; the name more describes the parts of the peninsula governed by Muslims at various times between 711 and 1492, though the boundaries changed as the Christian Reconquista progressed shrinking to the south around modern-day Andalusia and to the Emirate of Granada. Following the Umayyad conquest of Hispania, al-Andalus at its greatest extent, was divided into five administrative units, corresponding to modern Andalusia and Galicia, Castile and León, Aragon, the County of Barcelona, Septimania; as a political domain, it successively constituted a province of the Umayyad Caliphate, initiated by the Caliph Al-Walid I.
Rule under these kingdoms led to a rise in cultural exchange and cooperation between Muslims and Christians. Christians and Jews were subject to a special tax called Jizya, to the state, which in return provided internal autonomy in practicing their religion and offered the same level of protections by the Muslim rulers. Under the Caliphate of Córdoba, al-Andalus was a beacon of learning, the city of Córdoba, the largest in Europe, became one of the leading cultural and economic centres throughout the Mediterranean Basin and the Islamic world. Achievements that advanced Islamic and Western science came from al-Andalus, including major advances in trigonometry, surgery, pharmacology and other fields. Al-Andalus became a major educational center for Europe and the lands around the Mediterranean Sea as well as a conduit for cultural and scientific exchange between the Islamic and Christian worlds. For much of its history, al-Andalus existed in conflict with Christian kingdoms to the north. After the fall of the Umayyad caliphate, al-Andalus was fragmented into minor states and principalities.
Attacks from the Christians intensified, led by the Castilians under Alfonso VI. The Almoravid empire intervened and repelled the Christian attacks on the region, deposing the weak Andalusi Muslim princes and included al-Andalus under direct Berber rule. In the next century and a half, al-Andalus became a province of the Berber Muslim empires of the Almoravids and Almohads, both based in Marrakesh; the Christian kingdoms in the north of the Iberian Peninsula overpowered the Muslim states to the south. In 1085, Alfonso VI captured Toledo. With the fall of Córdoba in 1236, most of the south fell under Christian rule and the Emirate of Granada became a tributary state of the Kingdom of Castile two years later. In 1249, the Portuguese Reconquista culminated with the conquest of the Algarve by Afonso III, leaving Granada as the last Muslim state on the Iberian Peninsula. On January 2, 1492, Emir Muhammad XII surrendered the Emirate of Granada to Queen Isabella I of Castile, completing the Christian Reconquista of the peninsula.
Although al-Andalus ended as a political entity, the nearly eight centuries of Islamic rule which preceded and accompanied the early formation of the Spanish nation-state and identity has left a profound effect on the country's culture and language in Andalusia. The toponym al-Andalus is first attested by inscriptions on coins minted in 716 by the new Muslim government of Iberia; these coins, called dinars, were inscribed in both Arabic. The etymology of the name "al-Andalus" has traditionally been derived from the name of the Vandals. In 1986, Joaquín Vallvé proposed that "al-Andalus" was a corruption of the name Atlantis, Halm in 1989 derived the name from a Gothic term, *landahlauts, in 2002, Georg Bossong suggested its derivation from a pre-Roman substrate. During the caliphate of the Umayyad Caliph Al-Walid I, the commander Tariq ibn-Ziyad led a small force that landed at Gibraltar on April 30, 711, ostensibly to intervene in a Visigothic civil war. After a decisive victory over King Roderic at the Battle of Guadalete on July 19, 711, Tariq ibn-Ziyad, joined by Arab governor Musa ibn Nusayr of Ifriqiya, brought most of the Visigothic Kingdom under Muslim occupation in a seven-year campaign.
They occupied Visigothic Septimania in southern France. Most of the Iberian peninsula became part of the expanding Umayyad Empire, under the name of al-Andalus, it was organized as a province subordinate to Ifriqiya, so, for the first few decades, the governors of al-Andalus were appointed by the emir of Kairouan, rather than the Caliph in Damascus. The regional capital was set at Córdoba, the first influx of Muslim settlers was distributed; the small army Tariq led in the initial conquest consisted of Berbers, while Musa's Arab force of over 12,000 soldiers was accompanied by a group of mawālī, that is, non-Arab Muslims, who were clients of the
Moroccan literature is literature written in Arabic, French, Amazigh languages, or Spanish by people of Morocco, but of Al-Andalus. Moroccan literature saw its first flowering in the period of the Almoravid dynasty. In this period two writers stand out: Ayyad ben Moussa and Ibn Bajja and, in al-Andalus, Al-Tutili, Ibn Baqi, Ibn Khafaja and Ibn Sahl. An impression of a number of great poets of the period is given in anthologies and biographies like Kharidat al Qsar, Al Mutrib and Mujam as-Sifr. From 1086 Morocco and Al-Andalus, with its rich tradition from the Umayyads, formed one state and the Almoravid sultans stimulated culture in their courts and in the country. Ibn Bassam dedicated his anthology Dhakhira fî mahâsin ahl al-Gazira to Abu-Bakr Ibn-Umar and al-Fath ibn Khaqan his Qala-id al-Iqyan to Yusuf ibn Tashfin; the early Almoravid movement had itself been influenced by the writings of Abu Imran al-Fasi. Under the Almohad dynasty Morocco experienced another period of prosperity and brilliance of learning.
The Almohad built the Marrakech Koutoubia Mosque, which accommodated no fewer than 25,000 people, but was famed for its books, manuscripts and book shops, which gave it its name. The Almohad sultan Abu Yaqub Yusuf had a great love for collecting books, he founded a great private library, moved to the kasbah of Marrakech and turned into a public library. Under the Almohads, the sovereigns encouraged the construction of schools and sponsored scholars of every sort. Ibn Rushd, Ibn Tufail, Ibn Zuhr, Ibn al-Abbar, Ibn Amira and many more poets and scholars found sanctuary and served the Almohad rulers. During the reign of the Marinid dynasty it was Sultan Abu Inan Faris who stimulated literature, he built the Bou Inania Madrasa. At his invitation the icon of Moroccan literature Ibn Batuta returned to settle down in the city of Fez and write his Rihla or travelogue in cooperation with Ibn Juzayy. Abdelaziz al-Malzuzi and Malik ibn al-Murahhal are considered as the two greatest poets of the Marinid era.
Historiographers were, among many others, Ibn Idhari. Poets of Al-Andalus, like Ibn Abbad al-Rundi and Salih ben Sharif al-Rundi settled in Morocco forced by the political situation of the Nasrid kingdom. Both Ibn al-Khatib and Ibn Zamrak and poets whose poems can be read on the walls of the Alhambra, found shelter here; the heritage left by the literature of this time that saw the flowering of Al-Andalus and the rise of three Berber dynasties had its impact on Moroccan literature throughout the following centuries. From the beginning of the 12th century the University of Fez played an important rule in the development of Moroccan literature. Among the scholars who studied and taught there were Ibn Khaldoun, Ibn al-Khatib, Al-Bannani, al-Bitruji, Ibn Hirzihim and Al-Wazzan; the writings of Sufi leaders have played an important role in Moroccan literature from this early period until now. The possession of manuscripts of famous writers remained the pride of courts and zawiyas throughout the history of Morocco until the modern times.
The great Saadian ruler Ahmed al-Mansour was a poet king. Poets of his court were Abd al-Aziz al-Fishtali. Ahmed Mohammed al-Maqqari lived during the reign of his sons; the Saadi Dynasty contributed to the library of the Taroudannt. Another library established in time, that of Tamegroutepart of it remains today. By a strange coincidence the complete library of another Saadian ruler has been transmitted to us to the present day. Due to circumstances in a civil war the sultan Zidan had his complete collection transferred to a ship; the commander of the ship stole the ship and brought it to Spain where the collection was transmitted to El Escorial. Some of the main genres differed from what was prominent in European countries: Songs biographies and historical chronicles like the "Nuzhat al-hadi bi-akhbar muluk al-qarn al-hadi" of Mohammed al-Ifrani, the chronicles of Muhammad al-Qadiri. Accounts of journey's like the rihla of Ahmed ibn Nasir religious treatises and letters like those of Muhammad al-Arabi al-Darqawi and Ahmad Ibn Idris Al-Fasi Famous Moroccan poets of this period were Abderrahman El Majdoub, Al-Masfiwi, Muhammad Awzal and Hemmou Talb.
Three generations of writers shaped 20th century Moroccan literature. The first was the generation that lived and wrote during the Protectorate, its most important representative being Mohammed Ben Brahim; the second generation was the one that played an important role in the transition to independence with writers like Abdelkrim Ghallab, Allal al-Fassi and Mohammed al-Mokhtar Soussi. The third generation is that of writers of the sixties. Moroccan literature flourished with writers such as Mohamed Choukri, Driss Chraïbi, Mohamed Zafzaf and Driss El Khouri; those writers were an important influence the many Moroccan novelists and playwrights that were still to come. During the 1950s and 1960s, Morocco was a refuge for writers from abroad as Paul Bowles, Tennessee Williams, Brion Gysin, William S. Burroughs and Jack Kerouac. In 1966 a group of Moroccan writers founded a magazine called Souffles, prohibited by the government in 1972 but gave impetus to the poetry and modern romantic works of many Moroccan writers.
Otto Zwartjes, Ed de Moor, e.a
Marrakesh is a major city of the Kingdom of Morocco. It is the fourth largest city in the country, after Casablanca and Tangier, it is the capital city of the mid-southwestern region of Marrakesh-Safi. Located to the north of the foothills of the snow-capped Atlas Mountains, Marrakesh is situated 580 km southwest of Tangier, 327 km southwest of the Moroccan capital of Rabat, 239 km south of Casablanca, 246 km northeast of Agadir. Marrakesh is the second most important of Morocco's four former imperial cities after Fez; the region has been inhabited by Berber farmers since Neolithic times, but the actual city was founded in 1062, by Abu Bakr ibn Umar and cousin of Almoravid king Yusuf ibn Tashfin. In the 12th century, the Almoravids built many madrasas and mosques in Marrakesh that bear Andalusian influences; the red walls of the city, built by Ali ibn Yusuf in 1122–1123, various buildings constructed in red sandstone during this period, have given the city the nickname of the "Red City" or "Ochre City".
Marrakesh grew and established itself as a cultural and trading center for the Maghreb and sub-Saharan Africa. After a period of decline, the city was surpassed by Fez, but in the early 16th century, Marrakesh again became the capital of the kingdom; the city regained its preeminence under wealthy Saadian sultans Abu Abdallah al-Qaim and Ahmad al-Mansur, who embellished the city with sumptuous palaces such as the El Badi Palace and restored many ruined monuments. Beginning in the 17th century, the city became popular among Sufi pilgrims for Morocco's seven patron saints, who are entombed here. In 1912 the French Protectorate in Morocco was established and T'hami El Glaoui became Pasha of Marrakesh and held this position nearly throughout the protectorate until the role was dissolved upon the independence of Morocco and the reestablishment of the monarchy in 1956. In 2009, Marrakesh mayor Fatima Zahra Mansouri became the second woman to be elected mayor in Morocco. Like many Moroccan cities, Marrakesh comprises an old fortified city packed with vendors and their stalls, bordered by modern neighbourhoods, the most prominent of, Gueliz.
Today it is one of the busiest cities in Africa and serves as a major economic center and tourist destination. Tourism is advocated by the reigning Moroccan monarch, Mohammed VI, with the goal of doubling the number of tourists visiting Morocco to 20 million by 2020. Despite the economic recession, real estate and hotel development in Marrakesh have grown in the 21st century. Marrakesh is popular with the French, numerous French celebrities own property in the city. Marrakesh has the largest traditional market in Morocco, with some 18 souks selling wares ranging from traditional Berber carpets to modern consumer electronics. Crafts employ a significant percentage of the population, who sell their products to tourists. Marrakesh is one of North Africa’s largest centers of wildlife trade, despite the illegality of much of this trade. Much of this trade can be found in adjacent squares. Tortoises are popular for sale as pets, but Barbary macaques and snakes can be seen. Marrakesh is served by Ménara International Airport and the Marrakesh railway station, which connects the city to Casablanca and northern Morocco.
Marrakesh has several schools, including Cadi Ayyad University. A number of Moroccan football clubs are located here, including Najm de Marrakech, KAC Marrakech, Mouloudia de Marrakech and Chez Ali Club de Marrakech; the Marrakesh Street Circuit hosts the World Touring Car Championship, Auto GP and FIA Formula Two Championship races. The exact meaning of the name is debated. One possible origin of the name Marrakesh is from the Berber words amur akush, which means "Land of God". According to historian Susan Searight, the town's name was first documented in an 11th-century manuscript in the Qarawiyyin library in Fez, where its meaning was given as "country of the sons of Kush"; the word mur is used now in Berber in the feminine form tamurt. The same word "mur" appears in Mauretania, the North African kingdom from antiquity, although the link remains controversial as this name originates from μαύρος mavros, the ancient Greek word for black; the common English spelling is "Marrakesh", although "Marrakech" is widely used.
The name is spelt Mṛṛakc in the Berber Latin alphabet, Marraquexe in Portuguese, Marraquech in Spanish, "Mer-raksh" in Moroccan Arabic. From medieval times until around the beginning of the 20th century, the entire country of Morocco was known as the "Kingdom of Marrakesh", as the kingdom's historic capital city was Marrakesh; the name for Morocco is still "Marrakesh" to this day in Persian and Urdu as well as many other South Asian languages. Various European names for Morocco are directly derived from the Berber word Murakush. Conversely, the city itself was in earlier times called Marocco City by travelers from abroad; the name of the city and the country diverged after the Treaty of Fez divided Morocco into a French protectorate in Morocco and Spanish protectorate in Morocco, but the old interchangeable usage lasted until about the interregnum of Mohammed Ben Aarafa. The latter episode set in motion the country's return to independence, when Morocco became al-Mamlaka al-Maġribiyya, its name no longer refer