The true Arab despises agriculture; but the pursuit of commerce, the organization and conduct of trading caravans, cannot be carried on without widespread connexions of blood and hospitality between the merchant and the leading sheiks on the route.
Horses are in fact only kept by the principal sheiks, and by far the larger proportion of those now in Nejd are the property of the amir and his family.
The affairs of the tribe are administered by the sheiks, or heads of clans and families; the position of sheik in itself gives no real governing power, his word and counsel carry weight, but his influence depends on his own personal qualities.
For a time it looked as if the supremacy of the Wahhabi empire was to be renewed; El Hasa, Harik, Kasim and Asir returned to their allegiance, but over Oman and Yemen Fesal never re-established his dominion, and the Bahrein sheiks with British support kept their independence.
Bureda and Aneza were occupied without opposition, the rebellious sheiks amnestied by the sultan and loaded with gifts, and formal peace was made between the rival factions.