Well versed in oriental languages and antiquities, and possessed of an 'insatiable thirst for seeing new countries', Claudius James Rich (1786/7-1821), the East India Company's resident at Baghdad, set out for Kurdistan in 1820 despite his delicate health. Before he succumbed to cholera the following year, he had visited and described many historic locations in present-day Iraq and Iran. His written account has long stood as an important early record of the region's geography, culture and archaeology. This two-volume work was edited by his widow and published, with maps and other illustrations, in 1836. Rich's Narrative of a Journey to the Site of Babylon in 1811 (1839), including his two archaeological memoirs, is also reissued in this series. Volume 1, including a biographical sketch of the author, covers the journey to and time spent in Kurdistan, closing with the author's 'sorrow at bidding adieu to its interesting people'.