The Author is bound to express his obligations to the following writers, from whose published works he has drawn freely: Mm. Botta and Flandin, Mr. Layard, Mr. James Fergusson, Mr. Loftus, Mr. Cullimore, and Mr. Birch. He is glad to take this occasion of acknowledging himself also greatly beholden to the constant help of his brother, Sir Henry Rawlinson, and to the liberality of Mr. Faux, of the British Museum. The latter gentleman kindly placed at his disposal, for the purposes of the present work, the entire series of unpublished drawings made by the artists who accompanied Mr. Loftus in the last Mesopotamian Expedition, besides securing him undisturbed access to the Museum sculptures, thus enabling him to enrich the present volume with a large number of most interesting illustrations never previously given to the public. In the subjoined list these illustrations are carefully distinguished from such as, in one shape or another, have appeared previously.
Oxford, September, 1862.
In preparing for the press, after an interval of seven years, a second edition of this work, the author has found it unnecessary to make, excepting in two chapters, any important or exensive alterations. The exceptions are the chapters on the History and Chronology of Chaldaea and Assyria. So much fresh light has been thrown on these two subjects by additional discoveries, made partly by Sir Henry Rawlinson, partly by his assistant, Mr. George Smith, through the laborious study of fragmentary inscriptions now in the British Museum, that many pages of the two chapters in question required to be written afresh, and the Chronological Schemes required, in the one case a complete, and in the other a partial, revision. In making this revision, both of the Chronology and the History, the author has received the most valuable assistance both from the published papers and from the private communications of Mr. Smith—an assistance for which he desires to make in this place the warmest and most hearty acknowledgment. He is also beholden to a recent Eastern traveller, Mr. A. D. Berrington, for some valuable notes on the physical geography and productions of Mesopotamia, which have been embodied in the accounts given of those subjects. A few corrections have likewise been made of errors pointed out by anonymous critics. Substantially, however, the work continues such as it was on its first appearance, the author having found that time only deepened his conviction of the reality of cuneiform decipherment, and of the authenticity of the history obtained by means of it.