Ludwig Deutsch: A Nubian Guard
In ancient times Nubians were depicted by Egyptians as having very dark skin, often shown with hooped earrings and with braided or extended hair. Ancient Nubians were famous for their vast wealth, their trade between Central Africa and the lower Nile valley civilizations, including Egypt, their skill and precision with the bow, their 23-letter alphabet, the use of deadly poison on the heads of their arrows, their great military, their advanced civilization, and their century-long rule over the united upper and lower Egyptian kingdoms.
Nubians are the people of southern Egypt and northern Sudan, settling along the banks of the Nile from Aswan. Their Nubian language is an Eastern Sudanic language, part of the Nilo-Saharan phylum. The Old Nubian language is attested from the 8th century, and is thus the oldest recorded language of Africa outside of the Afro-Asiatic group.
Ancient Egypt conquered Nubian territory in various eras, and incorporated parts of the area into its provinces. The Nubians in turn were to conquer Egypt under its 25th Dynasty. Relations between the two peoples however also show peaceful cultural interchange and cooperation, including mixed marriages
There were a number of small Nubian kingdoms throughout the Middle Ages, the last of which collapsed in 1504, when Nubia became divided between Egypt and the Sennar sultanate resulting in the Arabization of much of the Nubian population. Nubia was again united within Ottoman Egypt in the 19th century, and within Anglo-Egyptian Sudan from 1899 to 1956.