History - On This Day - 14 July 1874 - Abbas II of Egypt

Abbas II Hilmi Bey, also known as Abbãs Hilmi Pasha was born
on 14 July 1874 at Alexandria, in the Khedivate of Egypt.



Family

His parents were Tewfik Pasha, a Khedive of Egypt and Sudan
between 1879 and 1892, and Emina Ilhamy, an Ottoman Princess.

Abbas II of Egypt was thus a member of the Muhammad Ali dynasty.


Early life

Abbas II of Egypt visited as boy the United Kingdom and he had a number
of British tutors in Cairo and a governess who taught him English.

An American officer in the Egyptian army took charge of his military
training.

He attended school at Lausanne in Switzerland and later in Geneva, also
located in Switzerland. Later he entered the Theresianum in Vienna.

Abbas II of Egypt had a good knowledge of Turkish and a good
conversational knowledge of English, French and German.



Reign

On 8 January 1892, King Abbas II of Egypt succeeded his father as
Khedive (Ottoman viceroy) of Egypt and Sudan.

He surrounded himself with European advisers, who opposed the British
occupation of Egypt and Sudan. The advisers encouraged the young
Khedive to ally with a prime minister who was an Egyptian nationalist.

During his reign there were some important works as the Aswan Low Dam
and the Assiut Barrage and the reconquest of Sudan.

However the Khedive showed more interest in agriculture than in reigning.
He had a farm, which was nearly a castle, near Cairo. This became a model
for agricultural science in Egypt.

On 25 July 1914, at the start of World War I, Abbas II was in Constantinople
where he was wounded in his hands and cheeks during a failed assassination
attempt.

On 5 November 1914, when Great Britain declared war on Turkey, he was
accused of deserting Egypt by not returning home.

When the Ottoman Empire joined the central powers, the United Kingdom
declared Egypt a Sultanate under British protection on 18 December 1914
and they deposed Abbas II.

During the war Abbas II supported the Ottoman Empire, including an
attack on the Suez Canal.

On 12 May 1931, Abbas II formally abdicated. He retired to Switzerland,
where he wrote the Anglo Egyptian Settlement.



Love and Marriage

He married princess Ikbal Hanem in Cairo on 19 February 1895.
This royal couple had 6 children, 2 sons and 4 daughters.

His second marriage took place in Cubulku, Turkey on 1 March 1910.
There he married to an Hungarian noblewomen, Maria Török. The
couple divorced in 1913 without issue.

Death

Abbas II died at Geneva on 19 December 1944.



Source picture: Wikipedia