Nubia (Egyptian for ‘gold’, due to the abundance of this precious metal in their lands)was also called - Upper & Lower Nubia, Kush, Land of Kush, Te-Nehesy, Nubadae, Napata, or the Kingdom of Meroe. The region referred to as Lower Egypt is the northernmost portion. Upper Nubia extends south into Sudan and can be subdivided into several separate areas such as Batn El Hajar or "Belly of Rocks", the sands of the Abri-Delgo Reach, or the ﬂat plains of the Dongola Reach. Nubia, the hottest and most arid region of the world, has caused many civilisations to be totally dependent on the Nile for existence.
Historically Nubia has been a nucleus of diverse cultures. It has been the only occupied strip of land connecting the Mediterranean world with "tropical" Africa. Thus, this put the people in close and constant contact with its neighbours for long periods of history and Nubia was an important trade route between sub-Saharan Africa and the rest of the world. Its rich material culture and tradition of languages are seen in archaeological records.
The most prosperous period of Nubian civilisation was that of the kingdom of Kush, which endured from about 800 BC to about 320 AD. During this time, the Nubians of Kush would at one point, assume rule over all of Nubia as well as Upper and Lower Egypt.
The regions of Nubia, Sudan and Egypt are considered by some to be the cradle of civilisation. Today the term Nubian has become inclusive of Africans, African Arabs, African Americans and people of colour in general.