1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/Abbas I

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ABBAS I. (1813-1854), pasha of Egypt, was a son of Tusun Pasha and grandson of Mehemet Ali, founder of the reigning dynasty. As a young man he fought in Syria under Ibrahim Pasha (q.v.), his real or supposed uncle. The death of Ibrahim in November 1848 made Abbas regent of Egypt, and in August following, on the death of Mehemet Ali—who had been deposed in July 1848 on account of mental weakness,—Abbas succeeded to the pashalik. He has been generally described as a mere voluptuary, but Nubar Pasha spoke of him as a true Turkish gentleman of the old school. He was without question a reactionary, morose and taciturn, and spent nearly all his time shut up in his palace. He undid, as far as lay in his power, the works of his grandfather, good and bad. Among other things he abolished trade monopolies, closed factories and schools, and reduced the strength of the army to 9000 men. He was inaccessible to adventurers bent on plundering Egypt, but at the instance of the British government allowed the construction of a railway from Alexandria to Cairo. In July 1854 he was murdered in Benha Palace by two of his slaves, and was succeeded by his uncle, Said Pasha.