The Masmuda is a Berber tribal confederation of Morocco and one of the largest in the Maghreb, along with the Zanata and the Sanhaja.[1] They were composed of several sub-tribes: Berghouatas, Ghomaras (Ghomarids), Hintatas (Hafsids), Tin Malel, Hergha, Genfisa, Seksiwa, Gedmiwa, Hezerdja, Urika, Guerouanes, Bni M'tir, Hezmira, Regraga, Haha les Banou Maghus, Gilawa and others. Today, the Masmuda confederacy largely corresponds to the speakers of the Shilha (Tachelhit) Berber variety, whereas other clans, such as Regraga and Doukkala, have adopted Arabic.


The Masmuda settled large parts of Morocco, and were largely sedentary and practised agriculture. The residence of the Masmuda aristocracy was Aghmat in the High Atlas mountains. From the 10th century the Berber tribes of the Sanhaja and Zanata groups invaded the lands of the Masmuda, followed from the 12th century onwards by Arab Bedouins (see Banu Hilal).

Ibn Tumart united the Masmuda tribes at the beginning of the 12th century and founded the Almohad movement, which subsequently unified the whole of the Maghreb and Andalusia.[2] After the downfall of the Almohads, however, the particularism of the Masmuda peoples prevailed once more, as a result of which they lost their political significance.


The author of the book "Mafakhir al-Barbar" (roughly translates as: The prides of the Berbers), cites the sub-tribes of the Masmuda as follows:[3]


  1. Nelson, Harold D. (1985). Morocco, a country study. Washington, D.C.: The American University. p. 14.
  2. Nelson 19-20
  3. Unknown author (1312). كتاب مفاخر البربر. Hassan II university of Casablanca. p. 172.

See also

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