|ብሄረ ትግርኛ (Tigrinya)|
Quicksort keys in Tigrinya, the mother tongue of Tigrinyas.
|Regions with significant populations|
|Southern, Central, Northern Red Sea and Anseba Regions|
|Predominantly Christianity (Orthodox Church, Catholicism, P'ent'ay); also Islam (Sunni)|
|Related ethnic groups|
|Agaw · Amhara · Beja · Beta Israel · Bilen · Gurage · Harari · Oromo · Saho · Somali · Tigrayans · Tigre|
The Tigrinyas (also referred to as Biher Tigrinya, Kebessa, and Bihere-Tigrinya) are an ethnic group inhabiting central Eritrea. Their traditional area of inhabitation spans the Southern and Central, as well as the Northern Red Sea and Anseba Regions, which are mostly part of the Eritrean highlands (hence the name Kebessa meaning 'highland' in the local language). Tigrinyas are related to the Tigrayans of Ethiopia by language, both of whom speak Tigrinya, an Ethiopian Semitic language belonging to the Afroasiatic family. Most are followers of the Eritrean Orthodox Tewahedo Church. They make up roughly 55% of Eritrea's population numbering 3.4 million people. They are not to be confused with the Tigre people who speak Tigre, a closely related Afroasiatic language.
Native Tigrinya speakers in Eritrea are known as Bihére-Tigrinya (or simply, Tigrinya), while in Ethiopia, they are called Tigrayans. Tigray-Tigrinyas of Muslim faith are commonly referred to as Jeberti. Historically, the people who live in the highlands found between Red Sea and Tekezé River were referred as Tigré people by foreign scholars who traveled in the region like James Bruce and Henry Salt (Egyptologist).
The explorer James Bruce reported in 1770 that the Medri Bahri kingdom centered in a small region of present day Eritrea was a distinct political entity from Abyssinia, noting that the two territories were frequently in conflict. The Bahre-Nagassi ("Kings of the Sea") alternately fought with or against the Abyssinians and the neighbouring Muslim Adal Sultanate depending on the geopolitical circumstances. Medri Bahri was thus part of the Christian resistance against Imam Ahmad ibn Ibrahim al-Ghazi of Adal's forces, but later joined the Adalite states and the Ottoman Empire front against Abyssinia in 1572. That 16th century also marked the arrival of the Ottomans, who began making inroads in the Red Sea area. Bruce noted "They next passed the Mareb, which is the boundary between Tigre and the Baharnagash". 
James Bruce in his book published in 1805 located Tigré(a region based arbitrarily on the Language of Tigrinya) between Red Sea and the Tekezé River and stated many large governments, such as Enderta and Antalow, and the great part of Baharhagash were part of Tigré region based on the language of Tigrinya.[dubious ] 
Tigrinyas predominately belong to the Eritrean Orthodox Tewahedo Church. However, a minority are members of the Eritrean Catholic Church or go to P'ent'ay (Protestant) churches, the former having been introduced by the Italians near the end of the 19th century. There also is a Muslim minority.
Tigrinya cuisine characteristically consists of vegetable and often very spicy meat dishes, usually in the form of tsebhi (Tigrinya: ጸብሒ), a thick stew, served atop injera, a large sourdough flatbread. As the vast majority of Tigrinyas belong to the Eritrean Orthodox Church (and the minority Muslims), pork is generally not consumed because of religious beliefs. Meat and dairy products are not consumed on Wednesdays and Fridays, and also during the 7 compulsory fasts, thereby explaining the popularity and wide array of vegan dishes. Other dishes include Ga'at (ገዓት), Shiro (ሽሮ), Fit-fit (ፍት ፍት) and Tibsi (ጥብሲ). Tihlo (Tigrinya: ጥሕሎ, ṭïḥlo) is also eaten in parts of Akele Guzai around Senafe and Shimezana.
Notable people of Tigrinya origin
- Isaias Afwerki - President of Eritrea 
- Aman Andom - first post-imperial President of Ethiopia
- Yemane Ghebremichael (Baria) - Eritrean revolutionary national singer
- Bahta Hagos - 19th century Dejazmach of Akkele Guzay
- Helen Meles - Eritrean popular singer
- Woldemichael Solomon - 19th century governor of Medri Bahri and Hamasien
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