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The First Sultan of Zanzibar: Scrambling for Power and Trade in the Nineteenth Century Indian Ocean – Beatrice Nicolini

July 16, 2016

The Indian Ocean was long one of the world’s most important trade zones, controlled by Arab and Indian merchants. But in the 19th century, the British-French rivalry spilled over into the Indian Ocean, and pirates looted, adventurers sought their fortunes, and Italian spies and American whalers got in on the action. Meanwhile, the Omanis consolidated their empire, and Sa’id bin Sultan moved the imperial capital to Zanzibar and manipulated the British-French rivalry to his advantage, with the slave trade playing a critical role. Nicolini provides a colourful portrait of a turbulent time.

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