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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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Mosul moving towards Erzerum, and there were left at Baghdad
fourteen guns of the 37th Artillery, thirteen model battalions,
five hundred men of the 114th Infantry and nine thousand
reservists, of whom four thousand were without rifles. This
meant that, excluding gendarmerie and new and partly armed
organizations, there was only one regular division, the 38th,
left in Mesopotamia.
On the 31st, General Delamain received from India the news
of the Turkish attack on Odessa, and was warned to be ready
to move at the shortest notice ; and next day there reached
him the Secretary of State’s telegram of the 31st, saying that
war had broken out with Turkey. At this time, the Espiegle
was still at Mohammerah and the Odin was off Fao, outside
the three-mile limit. The orders for the actual operations in
Mesopotamia were despatched by the Admiralty and the India
Office on the 31st. The telegram from the Admiralty w^as
addressed to the Commander-in-Chief, East Indies, and the
Senior Naval Officer, Persian Gulf Historically used by the British to refer to the sea area between the Arabian Peninsula and Iran. Often referred to as The Gulf or the Arabian Gulf. , and ran as follows : “ Com
mence hostilities against Turkey. Espiegle to deal with the
guns posted opposite the oil-works and to prevent any attempt
to damage them and generally to protect British interests up
the river. The expedition has been ordered to proceed from
Bahrein to the bar. Odin to await the arrival of the expedition
at the bar and to accompany it into the river, first dealing
with the guns at Fao. Dalhousie should remain at Bushire to
maintain communications by wireless until Fao is captured
and the telegraph cable is working again. Steps should be
taken to obtain all the steam tugs in the river and mount small
guns so as to assist the troops. The armed launches should
be concentrated in the river as soon as possible. Ocean to
assist in landing the expedition and to supply small guns for
the tugs. Although it is not probable that mines have been
laid, every precaution should be taken to guard against them.’ 1 '
The Shaikh of Mohammerah must be reassured as to our pro
ceedings and informed that the main object is to keep the river
open and trade free to his towns and territories. That his
position will be amply secured as we have no quarrel either
with him or with any of the Arabs.” The Dalhousie acknow
ledged receipt of this order on the 1st November and reported
its transmission to the Ocean, Odin and Espiegle.
The telegram from the 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. was addressed to the *
* On 1st November, however, the Political Agent A mid-ranking political representative (equivalent to a Consul) from the diplomatic corps of the Government of India or one of its subordinate provincial governments, in charge of a Political Agency. , Kuwait, reported that
the Shaikh had received reliable information from his man at Fao of the
arrival of mines there intended for the mouth of the river.

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.' [‎62v] (129/454), British Library: India Office Records and Private Papers, IOR/L/MIL/17/15/66/1, in Qatar Digital Library <> [accessed 2 July 2020]

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