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Tacfarinas (Latinised form of Berber Tikfarin or Takfarin; died AD 24) was a Numidian Berber deserter from the Roman army who led his own Musulamii tribe and a loose and changing coalition of other Berber tribes in a war against the Romans in North Africa during the rule of the emperor Tiberius (AD 14–37). Though Tacfarinas' personal motivation is unknown, it is likely that the Roman occupation under Augustus of the traditional grazing grounds of the Musulamii was the determining factor.

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  • Tacfarinas (Latinised form of Berber Tikfarin or Takfarin; died AD 24) was a Numidian Berber deserter from the Roman army who led his own Musulamii tribe and a loose and changing coalition of other Berber tribes in a war against the Romans in North Africa during the rule of the emperor Tiberius (AD 14–37). Though Tacfarinas' personal motivation is unknown, it is likely that the Roman occupation under Augustus of the traditional grazing grounds of the Musulamii was the determining factor.
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  • Tacfarinas (Latinised form of Berber Tikfarin or Takfarin; died AD 24) was a Numidian Berber deserter from the Roman army who led his own Musulamii tribe and a loose and changing coalition of other Berber tribes in a war against the Romans in North Africa during the rule of the emperor Tiberius (AD 14–37). Though Tacfarinas' personal motivation is unknown, it is likely that the Roman occupation under Augustus of the traditional grazing grounds of the Musulamii was the determining factor. The war lasted from c. AD 15 to 24 and engaged four successive proconsuls (governors) of the Roman province of Africa (modern Tunisia), which, although a small part of the empire, was an important source of Rome's grain supply. It is unlikely that the Romans were ever in danger of being driven out of the province altogether, although in at least two periods, Tacfarinas' forces greatly outnumbered the local Roman garrison. However, the incapacity of Tacfarinas' lightly armed forces to defeat the Romans in set-piece battles or to assault Roman fortifications prevented him from achieving a decisive victory. Nevertheless, Tacfarinas' large-scale raids caused severe disruption of the province's grain production, which in turn threatened civil disorder in Rome. The Romans were for a long time unable to eradicate their enemy because of the Numidians' extraordinary mobility and their support from the many desert tribes. Tacfarinas was finally captured and killed in AD 24 by a combination of determined pursuit and a lucky break in intelligence. A direct consequence of the war was the registration of the entire Tunisian plateau for land taxation and its conversion to mainly wheat cultivation. The Musulamii and other nomadic tribes were likely permanently excluded from what had been their summer grazing grounds and subsequently forced to lead a more impoverished existence in the Aurès mountains and the arid zone. The conflict also probably sealed the long-term fate of the client kingdom of Mauretania, which was annexed in AD 44 by the emperor Claudius.
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