Eritrean Afars, also known as Dankils, live mainly along the south-eastern sea coast and on the offshore islands in a high-segmented, patrilineal society. Afars inhabit one of the least hospitable terrains on earth and are renowned for their prowess in battle. They have a long history of independent sultanates and strong warrior traditions. Many of their songs and much of their oral literature is built on this, and it is still common to see Afar men wearing the jile or curved knife. Today, most are herders, traders or artisanal fishers.Pastoral Afar families typically live in large hemispherical house of hides and woven mats stretched across a framework of wooden poles that can be carried by camel over long distances. In the few oases in Afar territory, the people cultivate maize and tobacco. Traders carry slabs of salt on their camel to the highlands from long-dried salt pans by the sea.