Muhammad I ar-Rashid

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Muhammad I ar-Rashid (Arabic: أبو عبد الله محمد الرشيد باي‎‎; 1710 – 12 February 1759) was the third leader of the Husainid Dynasty and the ruler of Tunisia from 1756 until his death.


Muhammad had been named heir apparent by his father, Husayn I, Bey of Tunis, in 1725. In 1735 his father was ousted by his nephew Ali I Pasha, who in 1735 named Muhammad as governor of Sousse.

With the help of the dey of Algiers, in 1756 Muhammad attacked Tunis and overthrew Ali. The division of the booty caused however strife between Muhammad and the Algerian commander, the dey of Constantine. Muhammad fled to the fortified city of Bardo, while brother Ali went to Sfax to raise troops. In the meantime the Turkish garrison of Tunis, with the support of the Algerians, set up a revolutionary government, establishing a terror regime which lasted for several weeks.

The rebellers, backed by Algerian troops, besieged him, but were defeated by Ali's disciplined and better organized forces. The Algerians were convinced to return to their homeland after the payment of a large indemnity and of a yearly tribute.

Thenceforth Muhammad and Ali reigned jointly, the latter succeeding to the throne after Muhammad's death in 1759.

Preceded by
'Abu'l Hasan 'Ali I
Bey of Tunis
Succeeded by
Ali II ibn Hussein