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'Gazetteer of the Persian Gulf. Vol I. Historical. Part II. J G Lorimer. 1915' [‎2532] (1049/1262)

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The record is made up of 1 volume (1165 pages). It was created in 1915. It was written in English and Arabic. The original is part of the British Library: India Office The department of the British Government to which the Government of India reported between 1858 and 1947. The successor to the Court of Directors. Records and Private Papers Documents collected in a private capacity. .


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Epidemic of
In Turkish
'Iraq, 1867.
In Turkish
'Iraq, 1874-
In Persian
In Turkish
'Iraq, 1877.
For more than 30 years after the great Baghdad epidemic the countries
surrounding the Persian Gulf The historical term used to describe the body of water between the Arabian Peninsula and Iran. seem to have remained free of bubonic
plague, but in May 1867 the disease was again detected, under the name
of Waba in certain palustrine villages near the Shatt-al-Hindlyah
in Turkish 'Iraq : this proved to be the commencement of a prolonged
but not continuous epidemic which affected a large part of Turkish 'Iraq
and atone time extended its ravages to Persian 'Arabistan. The outbreak
was investigated on the spot by a Turkish sanitary commission presided
over by Dr. Colvill, the physician of the British Eesidency at
Baghdad, and the malady was declared to be plague ; but its occurrence
at this time was fitful and sporadic, and the total ascertained mortality
did not exceed 300. In order to protect Baghdad city, quarantine was
established at the Kharr crossing and at Qararah on the Tigris, but
almost at the same moment cases ceased to occur.
In the spring of 1874, however, the disease, which had meanwhile been
dormant or had at least escaped observation, reappeared on the Dagharah
and at' Afaj, at Diwamyah town (where it occasioned 400 deaths), at Shina-
fiyah and at Umm Nijris; during the summer following it was again quies
cent, but in autumn it broke out afresh at Umm Nijris. In January 1875
it was reported on the Shatt-al Gharaf, and in March it was present at
Fuwwar. The outbreak was still confined to a triangular block of
country, mostly marshy, of which the corners were at Kut-al-Amarah,
Suq-ash-Shuyukh and Shinafiyah, and in the rural districts it was
restricted to permanent villages situated on low waterlogged ground.
Within the limits described, however, it made serious havoc; and 13 per cent,
of the population were estimated to have succumbed in two years, the
heaviest mortality occurring at Suq-ash-Shuyukh, Qal'at Sikar and
Hai town, where the deaths from plague amounted to 200, 450 and 500
respectively. In November 1875 plague began again in the neigh
bourhood of Hillah town and, emerging at last from the region of the
marshes, attacked not only Hillah, Najaf and Karbala but eventually
Baghdad and Kadhimain as well; and this time the deaths attribu
table to plague amounted in Baghdad alone to at least 3,800.
In March 1876 the disease was carried by pilgrims, returning from
Karbala, to the village of Jallakan on the Karun river, where more than
a fourth of the population perished ; and it quickly spread to the towns
of Shushtar and Dizful, About 2,500 deaths in all are believed to have
occurred in Persian ^Arabistan, of which about 1,800 were at Shushtar.
By the end of July 1876 plague was extinct for the season both in
Turkish 'Iraq and Persian 'Arabistan; but in April 1877 the former
province experienced a fresh visitation in which Samarrah, Baghdad and
'Aziziyah on the Tigris and Hillah on the Euphrates were involved.
At Baghdad, as proved by accurate statistics obtained from the Chief
Rabbi, 1,180 Jews out of about 18,000 died in the epidemic and the total
plague mortality in the town was calculated at about 4,500. With the
advent of the hot weather the disease, as usual, again disappeared.
Preventive measures on any considerable scale do not appear to have
been introduced by the Turks in Mesopotamia until 1876. When instituted
they consisted chiefly in the isolation and disinfection of houses where
cases had occurred and in attempts to stop communication between infected

About this item


This volume is Volume I, Part II (Historical) of the Gazetteer of the Persian Gulf The historical term used to describe the body of water between the Arabian Peninsula and Iran. , ’Omān and Central Arabia (Government of India: 1915), compiled by John Gordon Lorimer and completed for press by Captain L Birdwood.

Part II contains an 'Introduction' (pages i-iii) written by Birdwood in Simla, dated 10 October 1914, 'Table of Chapters, Annexures, Appendices and Genealogical Tables' (pags v-viii), and 'Detailed Table of Contents' (ix-cxxx). These are also found in Volume I, Part IA of the Gazetteer (IOR/L/PS/20/C91/1).

Part II consists of three chapters:

  • 'Chapter X. History of ’Arabistān' (pages 1625-1775);
  • 'Chapter XI. History of the Persian Coast and Islands' (pages 1776-2149);
  • 'Chapter XII. History of Persian Makrān' (pages 2150-2203).

The chapters are followed by nineteen appendices:

Extent and format
1 volume (1165 pages)

Volume I, Part II is arranged into chapters that are sub-divided into numbered periods covering, for example, the reign of a ruler or regime of a Viceroy, or are arbitrarily based on outstanding land-marks in the history of the region. Each period has been sub-divided into subject headings, each of which has been lettered. The appendices are sub-divided into lettered subject headings and also contain numbered annexures, as well as charts. Both the chapters and appendices have further subject headings that appear in the right and left margins of the page. Footnotes appear occasionally througout the volume at the bottom of the page which provide further details and references. A 'Detailed Table of Contents' for Part II and the Appendices is on pages cii-cxxx.

Physical characteristics

The foliation sequence is circled in pencil, in the top right corner of the recto The front of a sheet of paper or leaf, often abbreviated to 'r'. of each folio. It begins on the first folio with text, on number 879, and ends on the last folio with text, on number 1503.

Written in
English and Arabic in Latin and Arabic script
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'Gazetteer of the Persian Gulf. Vol I. Historical. Part II. J G Lorimer. 1915' [‎2532] (1049/1262), British Library: India Office Records and Private Papers, IOR/L/PS/20/C91/2, in Qatar Digital Library <> [accessed 20 July 2024]

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