The Bedul are a small tribe of Bedouin who used to live in the caves in Petra. The Jordanian government built them a small village north of Petra with schools and modern utilities. Below are some pictures of the Bedul merchants you might meet while visiting Petra. There are five Bedul tribal lineages, but none of them goes back more than five or six generations. Some of the other tribes look down on them, as it is assumed that they were pushed into the ruins of Petra as outcasts several hundred years ago. There is no record of the Bedul being related to the Nabataean people. Today there is competition and sometimes conflict between the Bedul and the Liyathnah tibe who live in and around Wadi Mousa.


This family lived in a cave in Petra. This picture was taken by Dan Gibson in the 1970s.

This family lived in a cave in Petra. This picture was taken by Dan Gibson in the 1970s.


Another family living in a cave in the 1980s.  In the center of the photo a lady is making cheese/butter. Milk is placed in an animal skin and shaken.

Another family living in a cave in the 1980s. In the center of the photo a lady is making cheese/butter. Milk is placed in an animal skin and shaken.


Dan Gibson with a Bedul friend near the nymphium in 2001

Dan Gibson with a Bedul friend near the nymphium in 2001







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