The name Sudan came from the term "Bilad-al-Sudan", meaning "Land of Blacks".The term is a mere derivation of Arabic word "Saoud" which mans "Blacks" representing the skin color of the inhabitants. The Arabs travelers, geographers and historians first wrote the historyof this region.In ancient history Sudan is referred to the area lying from Ethiopia in the east where the kingdom of Iksum used to dominate , stretching to the region off the current Republic of Sudan where the Nubian Kingdom used to dominate.
The period prior to Islamic contact with this reegion, is largely unknown though archaeological remins indicate existence of inhabitants thousands of years ago.About 750 BC , a Kushite king called Kashta conquered upper Egypt and became ruler of Thebes until 740 BC . His successor reunited Egypt and founded a line of kings who ruled Kush and Thebes for about hundred years.
In 590 BC an Egyptian army sacked Napata, compelling the Kushite court to move to Meroe near the sixth cataract.The Meroitic kingdom subsequently developed independently of Egypt and then extended upto third cataract near present day Khartoum.