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Tuareg Leather Saddlebag

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Country: Niger
Material: Leather
Size: 43" x 38" as pictured. (53" x 38" with neck extended)
Condition: Good (some wear due to age)

The Tuareg are a berber ethnic group or nation. Tuareg is a name given to them by early explorers and historians, but they call themselves Kel Tamashek or Kel Tamajek which means "speakers of Tamashek" andImouhar, Imuhagh, Imazaghan or Imashaghen, meaning "the free people." It is believed by some that the word Tuareg was given by the French and meant "abandoned by the gods," though other sources believe it is derived from the word Targa, the name of a city in south Libya in the Fezzan region. The Tuareg of today are mostly found in west Africa, but like many in Northern Africa, were once nomads of the Sahara.

Due to the fact that they are nomadic, their art takes on forms of smaller items of utilitarian items, such as jewelry or leather work. The Tuareg also produce finely crafted swords. Fine detail is paid to the engraving of their jewelry, tent poles, bowl holders and bowls, adorning them with intricate geometric designs and patterns. It is possible that Christianity had an influence on the Tuareg in some way as the Tuareg blacksmith create some wonderful crosses.

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