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‘Report on the administration of the Persian Gulf Political Agency and Muscat Political Agency for the year 1883-84.’ [‎42r] (23/166)

The record is made up of 1 volume (87 folios). It was created in 1884. It was written in English. 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 Documents collected in a private capacity. .

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EESIDENCY AND MUSCAT POLITICAL AGENCY An office of the East India Company and, later, of the British Raj, headed by an agent. FOE 1S83-84.
21
Khalfan-bin-Ahmed, having refused to surrender the fort, Seyf laid siege to it and would pro
bably have compelled it to yield, had not Hamed, who had been despatched by his father, Sa eed>
on an expedition to extend and consolidate his African possession, arrived in time to raise the
siege. Seyf then retired to Lamoo, where he died. Bedr appears to have inherited his father's
stem and ambitious character. No sooner had he reached manhood than he imitated his
schemes. In 1803, while Sultan was absent on pilgrimage, Bedr entered Muscat in disguise,
and endeavoured by stratagem to get possession of Fort Jelali: the plot, however, was discovered
by a Baman, who reported it to the Wali, and Bedr fled to Zobara, where he put himself under
the protection of the Wahabees and embraced their tenets. He proceeded subsequently to
El-Derayeh to obtain aid from the Amir against Sultan, and, on his return from Nejd with a
promise of support, heard of Sultan's death and received the invitation from Salim and his ad
visers to join them at Muscat. Bedr, feeling confident that if he could once make good his foot
ing in Muscat he would be able, eventually, to supplant his cousins, and secure the supremacy
without incurring the risk and unpopularity of an open contest for power under Wahabee auspices,
eagerly accepted the proposal and set out for 'Oman. He arrived at a critical juncture. Kais
was strengthening his position, and the hopes of Sultan's sons were growing fainter and fainter^
when Bedr's energy came to their aid and reversed the situation. Bedr at once called in his friends
the Wahabees, and the Wahabee leader, willing to facilitate the accession to power of Bedr in the
hope that he would thus become bound to them more closely, despatched a force against Sohar.
This diversion had its intended effect. Kais was compelled to make terms with Bedr and
hasten home. The conditions were that Kais should withdraw his claims to sovereignty and
retain as his share Khaliooreh and part of the Batineh as additions to his appenage of Sohar.
The peace proved a hollow affair, and was but of short duration. A month later Kais found a
pretext to renew hostilities and marched on Muscat, which he captured and plundered. He was
unable, however, to retain his position there, and, fearing the approach of Ghaffiree reinforce
ments to Bedr, was glad to retire with the addition of Mattrah to his former acquisitions, and
an allowance of one thousand dollars a month. By this time the rivalship of the other uncles
and cousins had melted away before the vigorous measures of Bedr, and Kais alone remained
to contend with him for supremacy in the field. Before a year had elapsed Bedr had clearly
made himself master of the situation in 'Oman and had begun to show his hand as regards
his designs against his young cousins, Salim and Sa'eed, whom he had in fact already excluded
from Muscat by sending Salim as Wali to Mesna'ab and Sa'eed to Barka. Bedr's designs in
all probability were not penetrated by Salim, who seems to have accepted his position con
tentedly enough, but the more subtle and ambitious Sa'eed winced at the way in which he had
been set aside and harboured revenge.
On the death of Sultan advantage had been taken of the general confusion occasioned by
the disputed succession by Moolla Hoossein-el Maeeni, Shaikh of Kishm, to assault and
capture Bunder Abbass, and, his hands being free for the time, Bedr now sailed for that port
with the object of recovering it. Captain Seton, the British Resident in the Gulf, who had
been engaged in blockading the Kowasim pirates, accompanied him with two armed vessels,
and succeeded in re-establishing Bedr in possession of the place, in return for which service
certain concessions were granted by Bedr to the English.
This happened in the autumn of 1805, and Bedr had no sooner returned to 'Oman than
he found himself again involved in hostilities with Kais. In making his third and final
attempt on Muscat Kais procured the support of Moolla Hoosein of Kishni and of the
Kowasim, and was allowed to occupy and plunder the outskirts of the town unopposed.
Bedr pursued his old tactics of inducing the Wahabees to threaten Sohar, while the young
Sa'eed raided and recovered Bidbid and Fauja. The result of the campaign was disastrous to
Kais' hopes; he found he had miscalculated his strength and had no alternative but 10 purchase
peace by surrendering Mattrah and his allowance, and retreating to Sohar.
Since the death of Sultan, who alone had offered anything like a successful resistance to
them, 'Oman had fallen into a state of subjection to the Wahabees, whose preponderating
influence in the country was now complete. The payments of tribute had been forced upon
Sultan, but Bedr had for his own aggrandisement submitted to further humiliations, and the
'Omanis were galled at witnessing his submission to the dictation of the Wahabee Agent at
Muscat. A force of 400 mounted Wahabees had been stationed at Barka in the time of
Sultan to overawe the neighbouring country, and was still maintained there, whilst, in addition,
the observance of the Wahabee tenet and strict attendance at prayers were now everywhere
enforced.
The growing strength, pretensions, and aggressive behaviour of the Wahabees had created

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Administration Report on the Persian Gulf The historical term used to describe the body of water between the Arabian Peninsula and Iran. Residency An office of the East India Company and, later, of the British Raj, established in the provinces and regions considered part of, or under the influence of, British India. and Muscat Political Agency An office of the East India Company and, later, of the British Raj, headed by an agent. for the year 1883-84, by Lieutenant-Colonel Edward Charles Ross, Political Resident A senior ranking political representative (equivalent to a Consul General) from the diplomatic corps of the Government of India or one of its subordinate provincial governments, in charge of a Political Residency. in the Persian Gulf The historical term used to describe the body of water between the Arabian Peninsula and Iran. , published by Authority by the Superintendent of Government Printing, Calcutta [Kolkata]. A copy of a letter from Ross to Charles Grant, Secretary to the Government of India (Foreign Department), dated 17 July 1884, is included in the report (folio 33), the original of which submitted the report to Government, under the following headings:

Part 1 ( General Report ), written by Ross (folios 34-39), containing summaries of local political affairs, and incidents or events of particular note for: Oman and the Pirate Coast; Bahrain; Nejd, El-Hasa [Al-Hasa] and El-Katr [Qatar]; Fars, including Lingah [Bandar-e Lengeh] and Bunder Abbass [Bandar-e ʻAbbās], and the coast between Bushire and Bandar-e Lengeh; Persian Arabistan; Persian Beloochistan [Baluchistan] and Gwadur; and Bassidore. The report also contains summaries of changes in official personnel (referred to as political establishment); British naval movements in the Gulf; and a summary of meteorological events observed at the Bushire observatory. Appendix A contains tabulated and graphical meteorological data for the year, supplied by the Bushire observatory.

Part 2 ( Administration Report of the Muscat Political Agency An office of the East India Company and, later, of the British Raj, headed by an agent. for the year 1883-84 ), submitted by Lieutenant-Colonel Samuel Barrett Miles, Her Britannic Majesty’s Political Agent A mid-ranking political representative (equivalent to a Consul) from the diplomatic corps of the Government of India or one of its subordinate provincial governments, in charge of a Political Agency. and Consul at Muscat, dated 9 June 1884 (folios 40-50), containing a summary of affairs at Muscat, including raids and fighting around Muscat in October 1884, between rebel forces and those allied to the Sultan of Muscat. The report also records changes to British official personnel at Muscat, and notes recent shipwrecks on the Muscat coast. Appendix A is a biographical sketch, written by Miles, of Sayyid Sa'eed-bin-Sultan, the Imam of Muscat.

Part 3 ( Report on Trade for the Persian Gulf The historical term used to describe the body of water between the Arabian Peninsula and Iran. for 1883 , folios 50-105), comprising a short summary of the year’s trade, and followed by two appendices, labelled A and B, but arranged in reverse order: B) Supplementary notes on the care and culture of date trees and fruit, written by A. R. Hakim, Assistant to the Political Resident A senior ranking political representative (equivalent to a Consul General) from the diplomatic corps of the Government of India or one of its subordinate provincial governments, in charge of a Political Residency. in the Persian Gulf The historical term used to describe the body of water between the Arabian Peninsula and Iran. ; A) tabulated data on trade, including data on imports and exports into and out of the Gulf ports of Bushire, Lingah [Bandar-e Lengeh], Bunder Abbass [Bandar-e ʻAbbās], Bahrain and the Arab (Oman) coast. An index to the trade tables can be found at folios 53-54.

Part 4 (

[at Muscat]), submitted by Miles, dated 9 June 1884 (folios 105-12), comprising a short summary of the year’s trade at Muscat, and an appendix containing tabulated data on imports and exports at Muscat (listed by commodity), and the nationality and average tonnage of vessels visiting Muscat.

Extent and format
1 volume (87 folios)
Arrangement

The report is arranged into four numbered parts, with lettered appendices containing further reports and statistical data after each. Two appendices following part two of the report are labelled in reverse order (B then A, instead of A then B).

Physical characteristics

Foliation: There is a foliation sequence, which is circled in pencil, in the top right corner of the recto The front of a sheet of paper or leaf, often abbreviated to 'r'. of each folio. It begins on the first folio, on number 32, and ends on the last folio, on number 112.

Pagination: The volume contains an original typed pagination sequence.

Written in
English in Latin script
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‘Report on the administration of the Persian Gulf Political Agency and Muscat Political Agency for the year 1883-84.’ [‎42r] (23/166), British Library: India Office Records and Private Papers, IOR/V/23/45, No 198, in Qatar Digital Library <https://www.qdl.qa/archive/81055/vdc_100023580328.0x000019> [accessed 14 April 2024]

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