The Frontier as a Measure of Modern Power: Local Limits to Empire in Yemen, 1872–1914


in The Frontiers of the Ottoman World

Published by British Academy

Published in print December 2009 | ISBN: 9780197264423
Published online February 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191734793 | DOI:

Series: Proceedings of the British Academy

The Frontier as a Measure of Modern Power: Local Limits to Empire in Yemen, 1872–1914

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The negotiations with the Ottomans over how exactly to define the boundary separating each party's domain were largely confused by a completely different set of criteria. The Ottomans constantly argued that the areas they claimed (large areas of which the British contended existed within Dali territory) had historically and thus always formed part of the Ottoman territory. They installed troops in the areas in dispute and actually started to collect taxes, in part thanks to Muqbil's aggressive alliance-building. The longer this physical presence was maintained, the more difficult it was for the British to argue that these areas were actually Dali. It was largely the growing insurgency in Ottoman Yemen, in some respects a product of British machinations, that ultimately led to the 1903 capitulation by the Ottoman authorities to British demands for formal control of the Dali plateau.

Keywords: Yemen; imperial statecraft; Ottoman; Britain; Muqbil; Dali plateau

Chapter.  8207 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Asian History

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