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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:The Territorial Unification and Administrative Divisions of Turkish Sudan, 1821-1885
Author:Bjrkelo, Anders
Periodical:Sudan Notes and Records
Geographic term:Sudan
History and Exploration
Abstract:When the British assumed the administration of the Sudan in 1898, the system they adopted differed from that introduced in the rest of Africa. The reasons for this are twofold: during the nineteenth century the Sudan was ruled by Ottoman Egypt and it was administered as a Condominium, under joint Anglo-Egyptian rule. The 're-occupation' of the Sudan in 1898 had to accommodate Egypt's 'rights'. The British were prepared to make some compromises because of the strategical importance of the Sudan for Egypt. The British largely built their administration upon that of their Turco-Egyptian predecessors, which had evolved between 1820 and 1885. The administration of Turkiyya, as the Sudan was called under the Ottomans, gradually took shape as various parts of the country were conquered, beginning with the invasion of Ismail Pasha in 1820. This campaign led to the surrender of the various principalities of the sultanate of Sinnar along the Nile, which were brought under a new administrative system at the new capital of Wad Madani. After a long period of pacification and consolidation, towards the end of the 1830s the Turks were preparing for further expansion up the White Nile and eastwards into Taka (Kasala). Territoral divisions of both sedentary and pastoral societies often followed tribal lines, each tribal group being assigned a 'dar' or homeland. There was a gradual process of centralization in which the term Sudan came to replace that of Sinnar. Along with this was a whole galaxy of administrative officers and a system of finance, most of which were simply adopted by the British.