x Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 25 July 2017

The 18th-century ruler Abu Dhabi never knew

A document shows that Sheikh Hazza bin Zayed ruled Abu Dhabi from 1793 to 1795.

ABU DHABI // History books will have to be rewritten after a remarkable discovery in the run-up to the Qasr Al Hosn festival.

Researchers preparing for the celebration of 250 years of Emirati heritage in the capital's oldest building uncovered an official British government record that referred to a previously unknown 18th-century ruler of Abu Dhabi.

"After Sheikh Dhiyab bin Isa, who discovered Abu Dhabi in 1761, we always had this idea that his son Sheikh Shakhbut ruled Abu Dhabi from 1793 to 1816," said Dr Abdulla El Reyes, director general of the National Centre for Documentation and Research.

"But we discovered in this document that Sheikh Hazza bin Zayed ruled from 1793 to 1795. This is a new discovery for the history of the UAE. The festival made us look in more detail into these documents."

ecleland@thenational.ae