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The record is made up of 1 volume (223 folios). It was created in 1923. It was written in English. 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.


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in return for his services, received a grant of land at Fao and
an annuity. This fact—put forward by the Turks as implying
their suzerainty over Kuwait—led till recent years to various
unsuccessful attempts by the Turks to exercise pressure to
obtain what they professed to be their rights in this area.
Thus, when war broke out, his interests had forced the Shaikh
of Kuwait into a definitely anti-Turkish attitude.
To turn to the Turkish Army, the following summarised
description is based upon information collected before, during
and after the war and may not be wholly accurate. In 1914,
the effects of the Balkan war of 1912-1913 were still manifest
in grave deficiencies in organisation and equipment and added
to the disorganisation caused by the declaration of war ; during
the war many new formations were called into being, some of
them to replace others captured or decimated, and there was
often consequent confusion as to title numbers of units and
formations. The numbers and armament of the Turkish
forces at any fixed time cannot be estimated with entire
accuracy ; their own figures, obtained during and after the
war, are often unreliable ; desertions were rife, and disease
was constant and often of an epidemic nature, causing sudden
and considerable reductions; casualties were frequently not
reported ; and fraudulent returns were not unknown.
The Musalman Turk is courageous, enduring and obedient,
and makes an excellent private soldier. Although in 1914
his prestige had been somewhat lowered by the events of the
Balkan war, in the Dardanelles, Palestine and Mesopotamia he
proved to be a formidable opponent.
The reorganisation of the Turkish army was undertaken by
Germany in 1882. Colonel Kohler, who commenced the work,
died in 1883 and was succeeded by Lieutenant-Colonel von der
Goltz. The latter “was appointed sub-chief of the General
Staff as well as Inspector-General of Education, and in this
double capacity effected all that was, humanly speaking,
possible in a country like Turkey, where the reformer usually
finds more obstacles than encouragement.”*
The system introduced by von der Goltz held good, with
certain modifications, up to the year 1911, when a fresh
organisation was adopted on the advice of the same officer,
under which the Empire, excluding the Red Sea provinces
and Iripoli in Africa, was divided into four Ordus or Army
Foundations of Reform,” by the Military Correspondent of ” The Times.”

About this item


The volume is the first volume of an official government publication compiled at the request of the Government of India, and under the direction of the Historical Section of the Committee of Imperial Defence, by Brigadier-General Frederick James Moberly. The volume was printed and published at His Majesty's Stationery Office, London.

The contents provide a narrative of the operations of 1914-1918 in Mesopotamia, based mainly on official documents.

The volume is divided into two parts. The first part, entitled, 'Part I. Before the Outbreak of Hostilities', consists of the following five chapters:

  • General Description of the Country
  • The Turks in Mesopotamia
  • British Pre-War Policy
  • The Army in India and Pre-War Military Policy
  • Inception of the Operations

The second part, entitled, 'Part II. The Campaign in Lower Mesopotamia', consists of the following seven chapters:

  • The Landing in Mesopotamia of Force "D" and the Operations Leading to the Occupation of Basra
  • The Occupation of Basra and the Capture of Qurna
  • Commencement of the Turkish Counter-Offensive
  • Development and Defeat of the Turkish Counter-Offensive
  • Operations in Arabistan and the Capture of Amara
  • Operations on the Euphrates and the Occupation of Nasiriya
  • The battle of Kut and Occupation of Aziziya

The volume also includes nine maps, entitled:

  • The Middle East
  • Lower Mesopotamia
  • Map 1 - To illustrate operations described in Chapter VI
  • Map 2 - To illustrate fighting near Qurna
  • Map 3 - To illustrate fighting round Shaiba
  • Map 4 - To illustrate operations in Persian Arabistan
  • Map 5 - To illustrate operations in the Akaika Channel 27th June to 5th July 1915
  • Map 6 - To illustrate operations near Nasiriya 6th to 24th July 1915
  • Map 7 - To illustrate the Battle of Kut 28th September 1915
Extent and format
1 volume (223 folios)

The volume contains a page of errata (folio 5), a list of contents (folios 6-8), a list of maps and illustrations (folio 9), appendices (folios 185v-192), an index (folios 192v-214v), and eight maps in a pocket attached to the inside back cover (folios 217-224).

Physical characteristics

Foliation: the foliation sequence commences at the inside front cover with 1 and terminates at the inside back cover with 225; these numbers are written in pencil, are circled, and are located in the top right corner of the recto The front of a sheet of paper or leaf, often abbreviated to 'r'. side of each folio.

Pagination: the volume also contains an original printed pagination sequence.

Written in
English in Latin script
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'HISTORY OF THE GREAT WAR BASED ON OFFICIAL DOCUMENTS. THE CAMPAIGN IN MESOPOTAMIA 1914-1918. VOLUME I.' [‎23v] (51/454), British Library: India Office Records and Private Papers, IOR/L/MIL/17/15/66/1, in Qatar Digital Library <> [accessed 6 December 2019]

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