In 1881 Mahommed Ahmed ibn Seyyid Abdullah, a Dongolese, proclaimed himself al-mandi and founded in the eastern Sudan the short-lived empire overthrown by an AngloEgyptian force at the battle of Omdurman in 1898.
The mandi's successor, the khalifa Abdullah, was a Baggara, and throughout his rule the tribe held the first place in his favour.
Ptolemy were translated into Arabic, and in 827, in the reign of the caliph Abdullah al Mamun, an arc of the meridian was measured in the plain of Mesopotamia.
This mullah, Mahommed bin Abdullah by name, had made several pilgrimages to Mecca, where he had attached himself to a sect which enjoined strict observance of the tenets of Islam and placed an interdiction on the use of the leaves of the kat plant - much sought after by the coast Arabs and Somali for their stimulating and intoxicating properties.
Abdullah established himself under Italian surveillance, and by an agreement dated the 5th of March 1905, peace was declared between the mullah, the Italians, British and Abyssinians, and all other Somali tribes.