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  1. 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 ...

  2. The Forgotten War against Locusts that Helped Win the War

    ... John Hayhurst Gulf History Specialist, British Library During WWII food shortages in the Middle East caused by locust swarms were tackled by a largely forgotten, but ultimately successful war supported by British administrators in the Gulf. On 26 April 19 ...

  3. 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 ...

  4. al-Bīrūnī: a high point in the Development of Islamic Astronomy

    ... Prof. Julio Samso Emeritus Professor of Arabic and Islamic Studies, The University of Barcelona al-Bīrūnī’s Qānūn is the most complete astronomical encyclopedia of the Middle Ages. It represents the most successful attempt to correct and rewrite Ptolemy’s ...

  5. Oil for Military Protection between the Wars: Qatar’s Request for Weapons and the British Response

    ... Valentina Mirabella Archival Specialist, British Library By offering military protection to Qatar, the British tried to ensure access to Qatari oil in the run-up to the Second World War. But why did Qatar need weapons and armoured cars in 1935? By offerin ...

  6. Priority Air Freight to Serve Bahrain’s First Cinemas

    ... Valentina Mirabella Archival Specialist, British Library With the oil industry booming in Bahrain in the early 1930s, BAPCO oil workers, amongst others, lobbied for the first cinemas to be established. With the oil industry booming in Bahrain in the early ...

  7. The Brutal End of Persia’s Zand Dynasty

    ... Louis Allday Gulf History and Arabic Language Specialist, British Library The Death of Karim Khan Zand, ruler of Persia, in 1779 marked the beginning of a bloody period lasting 15 years and culminating in the rise to power of the Qajar dynasty. In 1779, t ...

  8. Britain’s Ineffectual Efforts to Suppress the Slave Trade

    ... Dr Mark Hobbs Gulf History Specialist, British Library Great Britain abolished the slave trade in its Empire in 1807, yet not only did it persist in the Gulf into the latter half of the nineteenth century, it flourished amid ineffectual British efforts to ...

  9. A Strategic Position: British Seizures of the Island of Kharg

    ... Valentina Mirabella Archival Specialist, British Library The British Government had a strong interest in Kharg, a small, strategically placed island in the Gulf. The small island of Kharg, situated in the Gulf just off the coast of modern-day Iran, played ...

  10. Economy in Turmoil: Gulf Trade Hit by Piracy and Famine

    ... increasingly calling at the Gulf and Aden en route to and from India. With many more steamers calling ...

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