Algeria, the largest country in Africa and the Arab world boasts of a rich cultural heritage as it has known many empires and dynasties in the ancient times, and was once a part of the French colonial empire. Berber King Masinissa who lived in ancient Algeria is still viewed as an icon and an important forefather among modern Berbers. During the Middle Ages, the country was home to many great scholars, saints and sovereigns including Judah Ibn Quraysh, and the great Sufi masters Sidi Boumediene (Abu Madyan) and Sidi El Houari.
For a period between the 16th and 19th century, a region of Algeria was partially ruled by Ottomans, and Hayreddin Barbarossa is credited to have played a major role in bringing about Ottoman dominance over the Mediterranean during the mid 16th century. The French invaded Algeria in the 19th century and Algerian military leader Abdelkader ibn Muhieddine led a valiant but unsuccessful struggle against the French colonial invasion. The country finally became independent in mid 20th century with socialist soldier and revolutionary Ahmed Ben Bella taking over as president. This section provides you information about the life and works of famous Algerians.