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‘Report on the administration of the Persian Gulf Political Agency and Muscat Political Agency for the year 1883-84.’ [‎42v] (24/166)

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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a wide-spread feeling of discontent and consternation in the country, and Bedr, who was looked
upon by all as the chief cause of their humiliating prostration before the invaders, was very
unpopular. The young Sauced had long cherished feelings of envy and resentment against
Bedr, and, prompted doubtless by his associates, he resolved at length to make an effort to
recover possession of Muscat and to rid himself and country of one who was now a rival and
an enemy. To oppose his cousin in the field, however, was out of the question; it offered no
prospect of success, and no alternative appeared to remain but assassination. Mohammed-bin-
Nasir El Jabri was the person to whom Sa'eed naturally turned for aid in the affair, and it
was proposed that Mohammed should proceed to Muscat and dispose of Bedr as he best could.
Mohammed, however, was fearful of incurring the vengeance of the A1 Bu Sa'eedis, and
declined the enterprise, but he did not refuse to assist in arranging the plot that led to the
tragedy of Bedr's death. There are four or five versions of this transaction, and no two Arabs
agree in the details, but it seems clear that Bedr was enticed to Barka, and was attacked by
Sa'eed during an interview at Na'aman, a village about 4 miles distant. Supported by
Mohammed Nasir and his guard, Sa'eed stabbed Bedr, who defended himself bravely and
managed to escape from the house, but was overtaken and slain. The Wahabee force at Barka
were indignant at the murder and demanded the punishment of the offenders, and Sa eed was
mean and ungrateful enough to throw the blame on Mohammed Nasir. The Wahabees,
however, were in danger of being attacked by the excited people, and deemed it prudent to
quit the country and retire to Bereymee. Sa'eed immediately set sail for Muscat, sending word
of the occurrence to his brother, Salim, who had remained quietly at Mesnaah, and had not
been concerned in the murder. This event, which occurred in March 1807, was the turning
point in Sa'eed^s career, and placed him at once above all competitors. The deed, so far from
being reckoned a crime and reprobated, was applauded throughout 'Oman ; Sa^eed was recog
nised and acknowledged on all sides as gifted with true Arab courage and instincts, and as one
well fitted to hold the reins of power; he was hailed as the deliverer of his country from the
hand of one who had turned renegade and who had been in league with their invaders.
Among the first to approve the deed and acknowledge Sa^eed^s fitness to govern was Kais, who
henceforward admitted his supremacy. Sa'eed was soon joined by Salim, and it was arranged
that the two brothers should rule conjointly—an arrangement that was carried out with
fraternal affection and without rivalry until Salim's death. Salim was now 18, having been
born in 1789 ; he was of a mild and studious disposition and had little energy, but was not
wanting in courage and capacity; Sa'eed was a year younger; his mother was Ghanee, a
daughter of Khalfan-bin-Mohammed El Wahull Ab Bu Sa'eedi, and, besides his having thus a
better title by descent than Salim, whose mother was of a different tribe, his high spirit and
energetic character indicated him as more peculiarly fitted to take the lead. This he did from
the first, as we shall see, and he must be looked on hereafter as the ruling spirit in the
government.
The first act of Sa'eed, who dreaded the vengeance of the Wahabees for the murder of their
ally, was to write to the Amir Saood and exculpate himself from the suspicions that attached
to him. He accused Mohammed Nasir of the crime, declared him a rebel, and requested the
Wahabees' aid in attacking him. Sa'eed promised to fulfil all the engagements entered into
by Bedr as to tribute, &c., to receive again the Wahabee guard of 400 men at Barkah, and to
observe the Wahabee tenets. This letter, which was accompanied with handsome presents, was
despatched by a special messenger. The Amir Saood was not deceived by Sa'eed's words. He
had been fully apprised by his agents at Muscat of the particulars of the transaction and of
the part that Sa'eed had played in it. Saood, however, to conceal his intentions wrote
a pacific reply, apparently accepting Sa'eed's excuses and deprecating action against Mohammed
Nasir.
The dynastic change and the conduct of Sa'eed appear to have been viewed with disfavour
by the British authorities, and Sa'eed began to dread lest he should be left alone in the encounter
which he knew was to come with the Wahabees. Sa'eed, who had been impressed by the Na o
leonic wars and successes in Europe, was thus led to turn his attention to the renewaUf
political relations with the French, which had been relinquished by Sultan at the request of the
British Government. Since the futile mission of M. Cavaignac in the Atalanta frigate in
1803 the only intercourse had been the occasional purchase by Sultan and Bedr of En 1' h
prizes captured and sold at Mauritius by the French. Sa'eed, determined on seeking French
alliance, now despatched Majid-bin-Khulfan as envoy on a mission to that island to renew the
relations which had formerly existed. This mission resulted in a treaty bein- concluded
between Sa'eed and General DeCaen on the 15th June 1807. French influence wa" now in th«
ascendant at Muscat for a brief period. In July 1808 a fresh treaty was concluded the first

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Content

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.’ [‎42v] (24/166), 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_100023580328.0x00001a> [accessed 12 April 2024]

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