Central Maghreb

in the early 7th century - Died in 698 or 702

Dihya – Commonly known as Al Kahina

*Photo Source: Wikimedia Commons

A Berber leader who was the Queen of the Aures Mountains located in southeast Algeria, whose armies successfully resisted Arab Muslim armies, halting them temporarily from further expansion. Her significant accomplishments included her victory over Hasan ibn Al-Numan’s army in 692 and the wide expansion of her armies into various territories across North Africa. Following a battle where many prisoners were taken, Dihya adopted one of the prisoners named Khaled ibn Yazid. After she was killed in a battle in 698 or 702, some sources suggested that her death was a result of her adopted son’s betrayal. Her death and her army’s consequential defeat in the final battle facilitated the Arab invasion of Spain.