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The dramatic encounter between Muhammad ‘Ali Pasha, Ottoman governor of Egypt, and his vanquished Saudi foe, Imam ‘Abd Allah, in Cairo in November 1818 marks the symbolic end of the First Saudi State. ‘Abd Allah was in transit to public execution in Istanbul, the pasha on his way to becoming a major regional force and founding a local dynasty. The meeting was witnessed by an English Whig, John Bowes Wright, Fellow of Jesus College, Cambridge, whose previously unpublished account throws new light on the exchanges, and the surrender by ‘Abd Allah of the remaining treasures taken by his late father Sa‘ud from the Prophet’s tomb in al-Madina.