The Al-Khalifa Dynasty


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1869 – 1932 H.H. Shaikh ‘Isa I bin ‘Ali al-Khalifa, Ruler of Bahrain, KCIE (3.6.1919), CSI (22.6.1914). b. at Rifa’a Fort, 1848, eldest son of Shaikh ‘Ali bin Khalifa al-Khalifa, Al-Shoyoukh and Joint Chief of Bahrain and Al-Zubarrah, by his wife, Shaikha Tajba bint Ahmad al-Khalifa, daughter of Shaikh Ahmad bin Salman al-Khalifa, educ. privately. Proclaimed as Ruler on the deposition of their cousin, 1st December 1869. He lost Al-Zabarrah and all remaining possessions in Qatar in 1871, when the al-Thani seized the whole of the peninsular with Turkish help and then ceased paying the tribute in the following year. Concluded an Agreement with Britian abstaining from making any treaties or engagements with any other foreign power or state without British consent, 22nd December 1880 (confirmed and extended 13th March 1892). Became sole ruler on the death of his brother, October 1888 (when his title was altered from Chief to Ruler of Bahrain). Granted a personal salute of 11-guns together with the style of Highness, 22nd September 1909. He lay the foundations of a modern state, regulated the laws of the country and the affairs of the ruling family, established a stipendiary judiciary, promoted agriculture in different parts of the country, placed the ports and pearl fisheries on an organized footing, and promoted medical facilities including the establishment of the first clinic at Samuail in 1892, the first modern hospital in the Gulf region in 1902 and later the Queen Victoria Memorial Hospital in 1905. He was induced to hand-over administrative affairs to his eldest surviving son as Deputy Ruler, by the British authorities, 26th May 1923. Thereafter, he lived in semi-retirement at Muharraq, continuing to enjoy his styles and titles as ruler. m. (first) Shaikha Haya bint Muhammad al-Khalifa, daughter of Shaikh Muhammad bin Salman bin Ahmad al-Khalifa, the divorced wife of his younger brother, Shaikh Ahmad bin ‘Ali al-Khalifa al-Haj. m. (second) Shaikha Maryam bint Hamad al-Benali (fl 1951), daughter of Shaikh Hamad bin ‘Ali al-Benali. m. (third) Shaikha Munira bint ‘Abdu’l Razak al-Khalifa. m. (fourth) Shaikha Aisha bint Muhammad al-Khalifa (d. at Muharraq, 26th December 1943), daughter of Shaikh Muhammad bin Khalifa al-Khalifa, Ruler of Bahrain, by his seventh wife, Aisha al-Jalhama. He d. at the Beit al-Shaikh Isa bin Ali al-Khalifa, Muharraq, 9th December 1932 (bur. Al-Rifa’a Cemetery), having had issue, five sons and four daughters:
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Copyright©Christopher Buyers
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Copyright© Christopher Buyers, May 2001 - April 2011

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