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  1. Twilight of Pearl Trade Sees ‘Slave’ Divers Seek Freedoms

    ... Dr Mark Hobbs Gulf History Specialist, British Library The dramatic decline of the Gulf’s pearling industry during the 1920s and 1930s, saw increasing numbers of pearl divers seek their freedom. Throughout the first half of the twentieth century, Britain’ ...

  2. The Singing Sailor, Salim Rashid Suri: A Ṣawt Musician from Oman

    ... Rolf Killius Curator of Oral and Musical Cultures, British Library Salim Rashid Suri, an Omani ṣawt singer and oud player became famous as the ‘singing sailor’ and for developing a truly unique style, which took influence from musical sources across the M ...

  3. The Menial Establishment in Britain’s Political Agency, Bahrain

    ... Martin Woodward Archival Specialist, British Library There are numerous records relating to high-level British officials in the Gulf, but the letters in the India Office Establishment Files also reveal the working conditions of the lower-paid ranks of Age ...

  4. Passports and Politics: Britain and Persia’s Disagreements over Bahrain

    ... Dr Mark Hobbs Gulf History Specialist, British Library In 1910, British officials discovered that the Persian authorities at Bandar-e Lengeh were charging travellers a domestic rate to travel to Bahrain, reigniting a decades-long dispute over Persian clai ...

  5. 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 ...

  6. Water, not Oil, the Most Valuable Resource in the Gulf

    ... Dr Mark Hobbs Gulf History Specialist, British Library It’s hard to imagine a natural resource as important to the history of the development of the Gulf States as oil. But in the early days of oil exploration, nothing was more important than water. It’s ...

  7. British Government Resist Modernisation of the Pearling Industry

    ... Dr Mark Hobbs Gulf History Specialist, British Library Britain’s decision to prohibit the use of modern diving suits and cultured pearls on the Gulf’s pearl banks was intended to preserve the region’s pearling industry, yet ultimately contributed to its s ...

  8. U.S. Propaganda in Post-WWII Bahrain

    ... Louis Allday Gulf History and Arabic Language Specialist, British Library In the immediate post-WWII period, despite British opposition, the U.S. sought to increase its influence in the Gulf by distributing propagandistic material in Arabic. In January 19 ...

  9. Frankincense in Dhofar: An Ancient Trade at the Centre of 19th Century Tensions

    ... Dr Francis Owtram Gulf History Specialist, British Library In recognising the importance of the trade, British colonial records cast light on the state of the ancient trade in Frankincense in the Dhofar region at the end of the 19th century, as well as so ...

  10. Manumission, Not Abolition: British Mediations over Slavery in the Gulf

    ... Dr Mark Hobbs Gulf History Specialist, British Library In spite of legally abolishing slavery in its Empire in 1833, the British Government struggled to eradicate the practice in its protectorates in the Gulf. The forms of slavery that British officials e ...

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