Ammarin Bedouin Camp

The Bedouls of Petra

the bedouls TRibe

The Judeilat

The Judeilat, whose name in the Bedouin dialect means savage people, stubborn people, or simple people, claim to be the original Bedouins. They are said to be so poor that they wear very few clothes. Physically, the Judeilat are characterised by their weak physique, small heads and noses, and their frail bone structure. Communities of this branch live in Subeira, Humeimah, Mada’en Saleh (from where they are believed to have come to Petra), the edges of Wadi Araba, and Jabal Haroun (Mount Aaron, named after the brother of Moses who is buried on top of this mountain) to the West. In this location, the Bedoul border the deereh of the Saidiyin, for whom they worked as shepherds.

It was probably upon an encampment of the Judeilat that Burckhardt stumbled when he first arrived in Petra. He gives the following account of his encounter:”At the end of three hours, after having turned a little more southward, we arrived at a small encampment of Djaylat, where we stopped to breakfast. The Bedouin tents which composed a great part of this encampment were smallest I had ever seen; they were about four feet high, and ten in length. The inhabitants were very poor, and could not afford to give us coffee; our breakfast or dinner therefore consisted of dry barley cakes, which we dipped in melted goat’s grease.”