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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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appeared to allow of a reduction of the Indian garrison in
Hong Kong, and it was decided to ask the War Office to let
any troops that could be spared return to India * In con
sequence of these potential reserves, the Viceroy agreed, on the
15th January, to a brigade of infantry being mobilized in
readiness to proceed to Basra. In a letter to Sir T. Holderness at
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. of the 20th January, Lord Hardinge stated how
unwillingly he had done this in view of the situation in India,
on the frontier, and in Persia. If Persia joined the Turks
in the Jahad it would be very difficult, the Viceroy said, for
the Amir to keep the Afghans quiet.
On the 15th January, Sir Percy Cox telegraphed that the
political situation in Mesopotamia had taken an unsatisfactory
turn. This he attributed to our standing fast at Qurna instead
of advancing to Nasiriya and Amara as expected and desired
by the local Shaikhs. In consequence some of them, abandon
ing their overtures to us, had joined the Turks, who were thus
able to utilise the factor of Jahad with more effect. At Basra,
Amara, and in Arabistan this factor was producing some
results and the Shaikh of Mohammerah was becoming per
turbed. Sir P. Cox gathered that H.M. Government contem
plated Qurna as the final limit of our advance. He urged
strongly, on political, administrative and commercial grounds,
a reconsideration of any such idea in favour of an advance to
Nasiriya and Amara. Our occupation of these two places
would not in any way oblige us, he said, to advance farther.
The Government of India gave this telegram careful con
sideration. Sir Beauchamp Duff considered that Force “ D ”
was too weak and lacked sufficient river craft to carry out
an advance to Nasiriya or Amara and to hold the line of
communication. Sir Percy Cox was, therefore, informed by
the Government of India that our policy for the time being
was to consolidate our positions at Basra and Qurna and to
await developments ; that it had not been finally determined
that Qurna should be the limit of our advance ; but that any
further advance was not yet desirable. These instructions
received the approval of the Secretary of State.
On the 16th, Sir P. Cox received a letter from Major
Shakespear, dated the 4th, reporting his arrival at the head
quarters of Ibn Saudf and describing the situation there. Ibn
Saud had some time previously assured Sir P. Cox that he was
* In this way a mountain battery and two Indian infantry battalions were
added to the strength in India two months later.
f Amir Abdul Aziz ibn Abdur Rahman ibn Faisal (ibn Saud).

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.' [‎92r] (188/454), British Library: India Office Records and Private Papers, IOR/L/MIL/17/15/66/1, in Qatar Digital Library <> [accessed 26 August 2019]

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