The Monumental Tomb of Queen Tin Hinan, Ancient Ancestress of the Tuaregs
Other jewelry, including beads of turquoise, garnet, amazonite and cornelian, were also found in the tomb. It has been suggested that these prestige items came from Carthage in the north. The dating of the tomb, however, was made possible by analyzing the pottery located among the artifacts.
When the wooden platform was carbon dated years later, the results suggest the woman was buried there sometime between the third and fifth century, which agreed with the dates gained through the analysis of pottery typology.
The wealth of objects in the grave indicates that the woman buried there was almost certainly someone of high status in her society. Yet, apart from local tradition, some argue that there is nothing else to prove that the skeleton belonged to Tin Hinan. Regardless of the woman’s identity, this would probably not affect the respect that the Tuaregs hold for their great ancestress.
One of the ways Tin Hinan is honored today is the celebration of the Tin Hinan Festival, a tribute not only to this queen, but also to the role that women play in Algerian society today.
Featured image: An oil painting of Queen Tin Hinan. Wikimedia Commons
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