Not including dynastic Egyptians, which I have on a separate page, here.
Saharan rock art.
Two pictures from Tassili, then a few from Uan Fathi, hair-washing scene from Uan Amil and finally the Tassili ladies. At least two of the images seem to depict blondes and red heads, hair colours uncommon but not unknown in North Africa. The black ladies are examples of Roundhead art from the central Sahara about 9,000 BP-possibly a Nilo Saharan speaking people ethnically quite different to the coastal Capsian culture who were Eurasian in ancestry. The rest are examples of Neolithic art from the Pastoral era.
Egyptian depictions of North Africans
From various sources. The last image is an illustration copied from a now badly damaged wall painting in the Tomb of Ramses depicting the races as the Egyptians knew them. I have an image of the damaged frieze stored, and it’s a faithful reproduction. The pasty face third in is a Libyan’s head from the crook of Tutankhamen. The two in the same picture are Libyan ambassadors.
Roman era mosaics from North Africa
The first two are ‘the goddess Africa’.These are crops from many mosaics, mainly from North African museums like El Djem. Some of these are deities, but since they don’t appear to be depicted any differently to the general population I’ve included many of them here, although I’ve omitted the mermaids and centaurs. The slaves, nobles, dancers, gladiators and gods are all depicted similarly, so I’m assuming this is pretty close to the norm for North Africans of the era.
Mostly from Carthage
Byzantine images from North Africa
This is the post-Roman Christian era, for about 200 years prior to the arrival of Islam.
Moorish Era depictions of the Moors
These are taken from the tale of Bayad and Riyad, a book written in a North African dialect. It’s unclear whether it is North African or Spanish in origin.
These are from ‘the Book of Games’, commissioned by King Alfonso X. In this book Moors are also referred to as Arabs on occasion. A look at one of the lady’s hands shows the use of henna, and c couple of the white beards look suspiciously red tinted too; dyeing beards with henna happens too.
From Cantigas de Santa Maria, 13th century, reign of King Alfonso X
From the 12th century Skylitzes Chronicle
Other Moorish portraits.
This is meant to be a contemporary image of the Moorish leader Tariq Ibn Ziyad, after whom the rock of Gibraltar is named. I’ve been told that others exist, but I’m having a hard time locating them!