Gabriel Camps

Gabriel Camps (May 20, 1927 – September 7, 2002) was a French historian, founder of the Encyclopédie berbère and considered a prestigious scholar in Berber historical studies.[1]

Gabriel Camps
20 May 1927

Died7 September 2002(2002-09-07) (aged 75)


Gabriel Camps was born in Misserghin, French Algeria. He studied first in Oran later in Algiers and graduated as PhD at Algiers University with a research about Massinissa, called Aux origines de la Berbérie (To the origins of the Berbers).

In 1959, Gabriel Camps entered the French National Centre for Scientific Research (CNRS). From 1962 to 1969, he worked as director of the Centre de recherches anthropologiques, préhistoriques et ethnologiques (CRAPE) and of the National Ethnographic and Prehistoric Museum of Bardo at Algiers. He also directed the Institut de recherches sahariennes and the magazine Libyca.

In 1969, he moved to Aix-en-Provence, where he worked as professor of the University of Provence. There he founded the Laboratoire d'anthropologie et de préhistoire de la Méditerranée occidentale (LAPMO), frequented by numerous students, mostly from Maghreb countries.

Gabriel Camps studied the pre-Roman epochs of North Africa, but also the Berber kingdoms, the African tribes, the Libyan scripts, and the Punic world. Most of this work focussed on Berber history and in 1984 he was the founder and first editor-in-chief of the Encyclopédie berbère, launched under the aegis of UNESCO.

The biggest part of Camps's research was done in Algeria, although he worked also on Corsica.

He died in 2002 in Aix-en-Provence; on his death, the Algerian Minister of Culture expressed his condolences to the University.[2]


  • Afrique du Nord au féminin, Perrin, 1992.
  • Encyclopédie berbère, Édisud, 1985-2002 : 25 sections and more than 4,000 pages, half of them written by Camps.
  • Berbères, mémoire et identité, Errance, 1987. Republished in 2007, at Éditions Actes Sud
  • Préhistoire d'une île. La Corse des origines, 1988, Errance, 1991.
  • Introduction à la Préhistoire, Perrin, Collection Point Histoire, 1982.
  • Atlas préhistorique du Midi méditerranéen français, 1978-1981 (a joint work directed by Camps)
  • Les Berbères, aux marges de l'Histoire, Hespérides, 1980.
  • Épipaléolithique méditerranéen, 1975 (a joint work directed by Camps)
  • L'Homme de Cro-Magnon, 1970, Faton, 1992 (a joint work directed by Camps)


  1. Bibliomonde
  2. "Provence University" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2009-03-05. Retrieved 2009-02-07.
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