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  1. The 1940s: Perfect Peace in the Midst of War

    ... Martin Woodward Archival Specialist, British Library While much of the world was experiencing the effects of global war in the first half of the 1940s, the Gulf by contrast was an oasis of calm. While much of the world was experiencing the effects of glob ...

  2. Modernity meets Tradition: Reflections on Traditional Music in Qatar

    ... Rolf Killius Curator of Oral and Musical Cultures, British Library Though nowadays Qatar is well-known for its immense natural oil and gas reserves and the rapid modernisation of society, it has a rich heritage of music and dance intimately related to pea ...

  3. The Qatar Oil Concession Ushers in a New Era for British Relations with Doha

    ... Valentina Mirabella Archival Specialist, British Library Qatar’s exploratory wells were drilled relatively late, although Major Frank Holmes sought an exploratory lease in 1922. The first license for oil exploration was granted to the Anglo-Persian Oil Co ...

  4. The Beginnings of Science in the Islamic World

    ... Bink Hallum Arabic Scientific Manuscripts Curator, British Library When and where did the sciences practised in the Islamic world during the so-called Golden Age originate? The sciences studied and practised in the Islamic world during its so-called Golde ...

  5. Colonial Knowledge: Lorimer’s Gazetteer of the Persian Gulf, Oman and Central Arabia

    ... Daniel A. Lowe Gulf History and Arabic Language Specialist, British Library J. G. Lorimer’s Gazetteer of the Persian Gulf, Oman and Central Arabia has long been used as a central source for the study of the region. Yet, it is essential to understand the c ...

  6. Important Work: The British 1820 Survey that Charted the Gulf for the First Time

    ... Magdalena Peszko Map Curator, British Library Until the 19th century, European powers considered much of the Gulf coastline to be hazardous, but the 1820 survey recorded vital details that contributed to later British involvement in the region. Until the ...

  7. Bahrain’s Economy: Buffeted between Pearls and Oil

    ... Martin Woodward Archival Specialist, British Library With pearling in decline and oil exploitation on hold, what drove Bahrain’s economy between the World Wars? By the 1920s, the ancient trade in pearls, though still the foundation of the economy of Bahra ...

  8. Love and Separation in Baghdad: Pesta and Rifi Songs on Shellac Discs

    ... Rolf Killius Curator of Oral and Musical Cultures, British Library Pesta and Rifi Songs, which developed in the twentieth century from Iraqi maqam, became more popular because they were recorded on shellac and broadcast throughout Iraq in the mid-century. ...

  9. A Portrait of Sir Lewis Pelly

    ... Karen Stapley Archival Specialist, British Library Sir Lewis Pelly was a key figure in the history of the Gulf owing to his role, as British Political Resident, in enforcing the region’s maritime peace treaties from 1862 to 1873. Sir Lewis Pelly was a key ...

  10. Why Were So Many of the Greek-Arabic Translators Christians?

    ... Bink Hallum Arabic Scientific Manuscripts Curator, British Library An enormous effort was made to translate almost all known Greek literature into Arabic during the 8th to 10th centuries, and Baghdad was at the centre of this work. Why was it that so many ...

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