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Collection: nationalrecordsoffice.mahdia
Description: Twelve leaders of one of the banners of ʿUthmān Diqna, led by Shāʾib Aḥmad, sent from Abū Qarja (ʿUthmān Diqna’s main deputy) a letter complaining of the treatment they received from their amīr. They accuse him of having appropriated the booty, seized their first petition to the Khalīfa, and having confiscated most of the property of one of them, Faḍl ʿAbd Allāh, he was imprisoned (letter 1). The Khalīfa sent the petition to his four deputies in Tūkar, whom had been sent to the Eastern Sudan to find a solution to the conflict which opposed ʿUthmān Diqna to Abū Qarja (who resented being under the authority of the former) (letter 2). The deputies ask the twelve petitioners to give details as to their accusations against Shāʾib Aḥmad (letter 3). The petitioners state that they will comply with the request of the deputies (letter 4). The deputies inform Shāʾib Aḥmad of the order of the Khalīfa and inform him of the original petition (letter 5). Shāʾib Aḥmad presents his defence (letter 6). The deputies communicate to the petitioners Shāʾib Aḥmad’s response their accusation (letter 7). The petitioners develop and refine their argument against Shāʾib Aḥmad (letter 8). The deputies confirm having received the petitioners’ response and ask for further details on one of the central points of the dispute, namely the status of a horse which one of the petitioners claims to have bought from the provincial treasury in Tukar, whereas Shāʾib Aḥmad claims that it was wrongfully appropriated and that he was in his right to seize it (letter 9). The petitioners respond to the deputies new enquiry and expand their accusations against Shāʾib Aḥmad by claiming that he also never distributed salaries due to the fighters and their families (letter 10). The deputies sum up the accusations of the petitioners to Shāʾib Aḥmad (letter 11). Shāʾib Aḥmad answers the accusations of the petitioners by claiming that they are fabricated and that the secretary of the treasury could prove that there was no wrongful appropriation (letter 12). The deputies ask the representatives of the shariʿa to investigate the matter (letter 13). The representatives of the shariʿa have heard from all those involved (letter 14). The deputies communicate to ʿUthmān Diqna the latest developments regarding the representatives of the shariʿa and ask him if he authorised Shāʾib Ahmad to confiscate Faḍl ʿAbd Allāh’s property (letter 15). ʿUthmān Diqna confirms that he gave Shāʾib Aḥmad the authorisation for this confiscation (letter 16). The deputies ask ʿAbd Allāh Abū Bakr Yūsuf, the secretary of the treasury, if the allegations of the petitioners against Shāʾib Aḥmad are true (letter 17). ʿAbd Allāh Abū Bakr Yūsuf replies to the deputies enquiry about the accusation of appropriations against Shāʾib Aḥmad. He writes that, during that period, the secretary of the banner of Shāʾib Aḥmad was Aḥmad [Qubajī] and that the record of the expenses of this banner in Kasalā could be found in notebooks there (letter 18). The deputies take note of ʿAbd Allāh Abū Bakr Yūsuf answer and emphasise the importance of getting the amounts spent by this banner for general expenses and compensation (letter 19). ʿAbd Allāh Abū Bakr Yūsuf replies that he finally found the records and they show expenditure in money, grain (dhura), clothing and perfumes. The expenses for the banner of Shāʾib Aḥmad were 5766 riyāl, 638 ardābb of dhura and 423 pieces of clothing (letter 20). The deputies ʿUthmān Diqna for the records of the expenses occurred by the banner of Shāʾib Aḥmad in Handūb (the former Mahdist centre in the Eastern Sudan before its being moved to Tokar in early 1890) (letter 21). ʿUthmān Diqna declares that there is no record for the period 01/04/1305 to 21/04/1306, due to the lack of notebooks. However, records are available from 21/04/1306 to 29/06/1306, when they were moved from Handūb for Tukar, and are attached to his letter (letter 22). 18/02-21/04/1889 17/06-20/08/1306
Collection: nationalrecordsoffice.mahdia
Description: On the situation in Eastern Sudan; no new developments in the regions of Sawākin and Kasalā; the fields have received some rain, but not enough to start cultivation, except for the fields next to the river. - This text has been edited in Muḥammad Ibrāhīm Abū Salīm, Muḥarrarāt ʿUthmān Diqna, Khartoum, Markaz Abū Salīm li-l-dirāsāt, 2004. See letter 434 05/03/1314
Collection: nationalrecordsoffice.mahdia
Description: This index was published in Wingate’s “Report on the Dervish Rule in the Eastern Sudan” (May 1891) as Appendix IV entitled “Index to a manuscript letter book from Tokar, referring entirely to the doings of the Mahdi”. This report can be found in Durham (SAD 253/1) and in the NRO (CairInt 3/03/46). The letter-book (“al-Majdhūb Abū Bakr letter-book) is kept at Durham (SAD 99/1) and available online. 14/04/1891
Items: 31


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