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Ch. 12: Persian Gulf & Red Sea Pearl Fisheries

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Pearls.
proof which can be given of the insignificance of this trade is that it has escaped the notice, or is deemed unworthy the attention of the pasha's officers. A few boats are occasionally despatched by the Jeddah merchants to search for Pearls, but the precarious and ill-paid task of collecting them is left mostly to the Tuwal and Huteimi tribes. The former have about forty boats engaged in the trade, which are mostly employed upon the Abyssinian coast. Their mode of collecting Pearls differs en­tirely from that adopted in the Persian Gulf, where they are found in nine or ten fathoms of water. The fishermen wait for a calm day, when they pull along the outer edge of a single reef, until they discover the oyster from the boat in three or four fathoms."
The ,Pearl-shells from the Red Sea were for­merly sent to Alexandria, and.being shipped thence to Europe were known commercially as " Egyptians,"— a designation which they still retain. At one time large supplies were sent to Trieste, and thence by rail to Vienna, where the Mother-of-Pearl was worked into a variety of ornamental objects, chiefly for the American market. A good deal of the Red Sea produce also finds its way directly to London. The little Pearl-fishing that is still pro­secuted in the Red Sea is not now a government
Ch. 12: Persian Gulf & Red Sea Pearl Fisheries Page of 341 Ch. 12: Persian Gulf & Red Sea Pearl Fisheries
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