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Hadhrami people

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Title: Hadhrami people  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
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Subject: Arab Indonesians, Arab diaspora, Azmatkhan, Hyderabadi Muslims, Arabs in India
Collection: Arab Diaspora, Arab Groups, Hadhrami People, Yemeni Diaspora
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

Hadhrami people

Hadhrami people
Regions with significant populations
Hadhrami Arabic,
Islam (Sunni, Shafi'i, Sufi Islam), Judaism
Related ethnic groups
Arab people, Arab Singaporean, Sri Lankan Moors, Chaush

The Hadhrami (Arabic: حضرمي‎, sing.) or Hadharem (Arabic: الحضارم‎, pl.) are people inhabiting the Hadhramaut region in Yemen and their descendants in diaspora communities around the world. They speak Hadhrami Arabic, which belongs to the Semitic branch of the Afro-Asiatic family.

Among the two million inhabitants of Hadhramaut, there are 1,300 distinct tribes. Historically, antagonism between townsfolk and wandering tribesmen had been so bitter that the towns are surrounded by stone walls to protect them from attack by their tribal countrymen.

Few Hadramis still practice the nomadic lifestyle of their ancient ancestors. Today, approximately half of the Hadramis live in the towns and villages scattered through the deep valleys of their region. Among these settled peoples, there are sharp distinctions, the highest social prestige belonging to the wealthy, educated Sadahs, who claim to be direct descendants of Muhammad. In the past, Hadramis rarely married outside their own social level, and often lived in segregated groups in separate parts of town.


  • Distribution 1
  • Language 2
  • Diaspora communities 3
  • Hadhrami people 4
  • See also 5
  • Notes 6
  • References 7
  • Further reading 8


The Hadharem have a long seafaring and trading tradition. Hadhrami seamen have navigated in large numbers all around the Indian Ocean basin, from the Horn of Africa to the Swahili Coast to the Malabar Coast and Hyderabad in South India to Maritime Southeast Asia.[1]

There are Hadharem communities in the trading ports of the Arab States of the Persian Gulf and the Red Sea. The money changers in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia have usually been of Hadhrami origin.[2]

The Hadhrami have long had a notable presence in the Horn region (Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia and Somalia). Hadhrami settlers were instrumental in helping to consolidate the Muslim community in the coastal Benadir province of Somalia, in particular.[3] During the colonial period, disgruntled Hadhrami from the tribal wars additionally settled in various Somalian towns.[4] They were also frequently recruited into the armies of the Somali Sultanates.[5]

Some Hadhrami communities also reportedly exist in Mozambique and Madagascar.[6]


The Hadhrami speak Hadhrami Arabic. It belongs to the Semitic branch of the Afro-Asiatic family.

Diaspora communities

Hadhrami people

See also



  1. ^ Ho, Engseng. 2006. Graves of Tarim. University of California Press. Berkeley. passim
  2. ^ Jean-François Seznec The Financial Markets of the Arabian Gulf, Routledge, 1987
  3. ^ Cassanelli, Lee V. (1973). "The Benaadir past: essays in southern Somali history". University of Wisconsin. p. 24. 
  4. ^ Gavin, R. J. (1975). Aden under British rule, 1839–1967. London: Hurst. p. 198.  
  5. ^ Helen Chapin Metz, Somalia: a country study, (The Division: 1993), p.10.
  6. ^ Francoise Le Guennec, Changing Patterns of Hadhrami Migration and Social Integration in East Africa in Hadhrami Traders, Scholars and Statesmen in the Indian Ocean, 1750s-1960s, Edited by Ulrike Freitag and William G. Clarence-Smith, BRILL, 1997, pg 165
  7. ^


  • Official Website of the Al-Quaiti Royal Family of Hadhramaut

Further reading

  • Leif Manger, The Hadrami Diaspora: Community-building on the Indian Ocean Rim, Berghahn Books, 2010
  • Omar Khulaidi, The Arabs of Hadramawt in Hyderabad in Mediaeval Deccan History, eds Kulkarni, Naeem and de Souza, Popular Prakashan, Bombay, 1996
  • Leif Manger, Hadramis in Hyderabad: From Winners to Losers, Asian Journal of Social Science, Volume 35, Numbers 4-5, 2007, pp. 405–433(29)
  • Engseng Ho, The Graves of Tarim: Genealogy and Mobility across the Indian Ocean, University of California Press, 2006
  • Ababu Minda Yimene, An African Indian community in Hyderabad, Cuvillier Verlag, 2004, pg 201
  • Natalie Mobini-Kesheh, The Hadrami Awakening: Community and Identity in the Netherlands East Indies, 1900-1942, SEAP Publications, 1999
  • Anne K. Bang, Sufis and Scholars of the Sea: Family Networks in East Africa, 1860-1925, Routledge, 2003
  • Linda Boxberger, On the Edge of Empire: Hadhramawt, Emigration, and the Indian Ocean, 1880s-1930s, SUNY Press, 2002
  • Ulrike Freitag, Hadhramaut: A Religious Centre for the Indian Ocean in the Late 19th and Early 20th Centuries?, Studia Islamica, No. 89 (1999), pp. 165–183
  • The Hadhrami Diaspora in Southeast Asia: Identity Maintenance or Assimilation?, edited by Ahmed Ibrahim Abushouk and Hassan Ahmed Ibrahim, BRILL, 2009
  • A Hadrami Diaspora in the Sudan in Diasporas Within and Without Africa: Dynamism, Hetereogeneity, Variation edited by Leif O. Manger and Munzoul A. M. Assal, Nordiska Afrikainstitutet, 2006, pg 61
  • Abdullah Hassan Al-Saqqaf, The Linguistics of Loanwords in Hadrami Arabic, International Journal of Bilingual Education and Bilingualism, Volume 9, Issue 1 January 2006, pages 75 – 93
  • Hadhrami Traders, Scholars and Statesmen in the Indian Ocean, 1750s-1960s Edited by Ulrike Freitag and William G. Clarence-Smith, BRILL, 1997
  • Frode F. Jacobsen, Hadrami Arabs in Present-day Indonesia, Taylor & Francis, 2009
  • Patricia W. Romero, Lamu: History, Society, and Family in an East African Port City, Markus Wiener Publishers, 1997, pp 93 – 108, 167- 184
  • Mona Abaza, M. Asad Shahab: A Portrait of an Indonesian Hadrami Who Bridged the Two Worlds in Southeast Asia and the Middle East: Islam, Movement, and the Longue Durée, edited by Eric Tagliacozzo, NUS Press, 2009, pp 250 – 274
  • Jonathan Miran, Red Sea Translocals: Hadrami Migration, Entrepreneurship, and Strategies of Integration in Eritrea, 1840s-1970s, Northeast African Studies, Vol. 12, No. 1, 2012, pp. 129–168.
  • Ulrike Freitag, From Golden Youth in Arabia to Business Leaders in Singapore: Instructions of a Hadrami Patriarch in Southeast Asia and the Middle East: Islam, Movement, and the Longue Durée, edited by Eric Tagliacozzo, NUS Press, 2009, pp 235 – 249
  • Talib, Ameen, Hadramis in Singapore, Journal of Muslim Minority Affairs, vol 17 no1 (April 1997): 89- 97 (UK).
  • Syed Muhd Khairudin Aljunied, The Role of Hadramis in Post-Second World War Singapore - A Reinterpretation, Immigrants & Minorities, Volume 25, Issue 2 July 2007, pages 163 - 183
  • Iain Walker, Hadramis, Shimalis and Muwalladin: Negotiating Cosmopolitan Identities between the Swahili Coast and Southern Yemen, Journal of Eastern African Studies, Volume 2, Issue 1 March 2008, pages 44 – 59
  • Shanti Sadiq Ali, The African Dispersal in the Deccan: From Medieval to Modern Times, Orient Blackswan, 1996, pp 193–202
  • Al-Saqqaf, Abdullah (2012) "Arabic Literature in Diaspora: an Example from South Asia" in: Rizio Yohannan Raj (ed.): Quest of a Discipline: New Academic Directions for Comparative Literature (Cambridge University Press, India) [1]. See
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