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'File 61/11 VI (D 102) Hejaz-Nejd Miscellaneous' [‎55v] (131/522)

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The record is made up of 1 volume (259 folios). It was created in 2 Feb 1931-30 Aug 1934. It was written in English and Arabic. The original is part of the British Library: India Office The department of the British Government to which the Government of India reported between 1858 and 1947. The successor to the Court of Directors. Records and Private Papers.


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Hafiz Bey spent more time in Jedda in 1933 than he had done in the two
preceding years, but was little m evidence at the Butish Legation and is seldoin
met in other European circles. He is, perhaps, more restrained in his sentiments
than he was. When we do meet he evinces great anxiety to please. His wife
and family have never come to Jedda.
*M. Roger Maigret holds the position of permanent Charge d'Affaires, but
the French Government have shown unwillingness to make his post more than
a consulate, despite the conclusion of a general treaty with Ibn Saud in November
1931. He is a man of perhaps 60, and has had a long career in the French Near
East service. He was employed in Morocco for many years prior to 1921, and
appears to have had only a moderate reputation there. He was subsequently consul-
general in Iraq. He is intelligent and witty, has a considerable knowledge of
Arab countries, and boasts in his lighter moments of an equal knowledge of the
Parisian underworld, as a result of having cultivated apaches in his conscript
days. When I first knew him he was always very ready to talk about Morocco,
which we both knew, but was more reticent about affairs nearer to us, notwith
standing professions of friendship which were sometimes almost "smarmy."
I found him rather more communicative in 1932, but we met rarely during my
short stays here, as M. Maigret seldom leaves his house, except to leave Jedda,
and eschews social intercourse almost completely. His health is poor and he was
much taken up with an aged mother until her death in August 1932. He does
not appear to carry much weight with Saudi officials, whom he found incon
ceivably tiresome when negotiating his treaty. He is understood to have a
considerable book knowledge of English, and has translated Mr. Philby's
Arabia into French.
M. Maigret continues to go abroad very little in Jedda, but excited a good
deal of interest in December 1933 by visiting Riyadh ostensibly to gratify his
passion for distant travel and to obtain material for a book. He is known to
have had other objects, but himself kept up the pretence throughout a very
friendly and apparently frank conversation with me on his return.
He is a permanent grass-widower, but is understood to console himself with
the society of a permanent lady guest, who occasionally makes discreet appearances
elsewhere, e.g., at a fancy-dress ball in an English house on New Year's Eve,
whicn M. Maigret himself attended (in ordinary attire) to the surprise of all.
Ihe German consulate is to all intents and purposes vacant. The titular
incumbent M. Heinrich de Haas, an account of whom was given in previous
reports, left Jedda early m the year and has not returned. IH
I he post of C harge d Affaires continues to be vacant. The Iraq Government . ™
Hfiwlr T^ ^ ^ g reater Part of the year by Nasir Bey A1 Gaylani, fcj
0 He left in J uly and was replaced in October by M. Hamdi-
exDoripiipp a .^ oun S. llian similar status, but, I should say on a short
eniov tn™ r callb ^' , H ® C0I ? es of a Shia family of clotb merchants, who
interm-eter tn " r 1 , n , Ba g dad - .He served for some years up to 1924 as an
canacitv in t he 11.., " | n : es 111 ' ra 'l and was later employed in a simillU ,
in 1927 and ^ 0S / a( ^ mistra tion. He passed into the foreign service
of notorietv bv miarrplV where he gained a certain amount
Bagdad and "havina \ ^ a Christian colleague. Both were recalled to
had taen fiUed . ac( l m ^ ec l % a disciplinary board after their places
salary. M Hamdi wa- 6 111 • ^ actlon against the Government for arrears of ^
the same rank in Jedd/ PP TT vl ce-consul at Kermanshah in 1930, and holds ^
Mr Calvert "short nf ii -i]?™ a bout 30. "In person, he is," to quote %
anxious to stand well with the RHH W of t P u g ilistic appearance." He is very
genuinely friendlv Hp rp i s . 1 ^ e S atl( > n , and, though unattractive, seems i| lf
g [ta * y endly - He s P eaks Turkls h and passable English. He is unmarried.
last year's repor^teft Jedda Tn 0 Jim 1 0f i Whom an account was ^ iven
transfer from the post of Minicf k absent, he secured a much -desired s . ^
P0St 01 Minister here to some employment in the Italian service

About this item


The volume contains two original files bound together. The first file (folios 1A-207) has the original reference 61/11 VI (D 102) and covers the period 7 November 1933 to 30 August 1934 and relates to Hejaz-Najd affairs. The second file (folios 208-243) has the original reference 61/6 VII (D 95) and covers the period 2 February 1931 to 5 August 1932 and relates to Najd affairs. Both contain letters, telegrams, memoranda, and reports sent between the British Legation in Jeddah, the Foreign Office in London, the Political Residencies in Bushire and Aden, the Political Agencies in Bahrain, Kuwait, and Muscat, the High Commissioner in Trans-Jordan, the High Commissioner in Baghdad (later the British Embassy following Iraqi independence in 1932), the Colonial Office in London, the Government of India, and Ibn Sa'ud.

The main subject of the first file is the territorial dispute between Saudi Arabia and Yemen. Contained in the volume are papers concerning Saudi Arabian advances into the territories of 'Asir and Yemen and the subsequent Treaty of Taif that largely settled the dispute. There is also coverage of diplomatic conversations between Italy and Britain regarding the dispute, including secret talks in Rome. Included is the full Arabic text of the Treaty (folios 143-150A) and an English translation (folios 156-177).

Other subjects covered in the first file are:

  • the visit of M. Maigret, the French Charge D'Affairs, to Riyadh to speak with Ibn Sa'ud;
  • the visit of Talaat Pasha Harb;
  • a provisional agreement signed by the United States and Saudi Arabia;
  • the prospect of gold in commercial quantities in the Hejaz.

Notable documents contained in the volume are a report on the heads of foreign missions in Jeddah, and a revised (June 1934) report on the leading personalities in Saudi Arabia.

The subjects covered by the second file are:

  • details and significance of a resurgence in war dancing by the Saudis;
  • the visit of Charles Crane to see Ibn Sa'ud;
  • a request for military assistance made by Saudi Arabia to Turkey;
  • the conditions of entry into Hasa for Hindu merchants.

At the end of each file are several pages of internal office notes.

Extent and format
1 volume (259 folios)

Each of the two separate files which make up the volume is arranged chronologically.

Physical characteristics

Foliation: The sequence starts on the first folio and continues through to the inside back cover. The numbers are written in pencil, circled, and located in the top right corner of the recto The front of a sheet of paper or leaf, often abbreviated to 'r'. side of each folio. There are the following anomalies: 1A, 1B, 1C, and 1D; 11A and 11B; 24A; 30A; 132A; 143A; 150A; and 236A. There are two other sequences, both uncircled and incomplete.

Written in
English and Arabic in Latin and Arabic script
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'File 61/11 VI (D 102) Hejaz-Nejd Miscellaneous' [‎55v] (131/522), British Library: India Office Records and Private Papers, IOR/R/15/1/569, in Qatar Digital Library <> [accessed 17 October 2019]

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