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How 19th-century soldier, adventurer and scholar Henry Rawlinson deciphered cuneiform, the world's earliest writing, and rediscovered Iraq's ancient civilizations. * Revealing, well-researched and intriguing history of the decipherment of cuneiform from the author of The Keys of Egypt. * The Keys of Egypt sold over 30,000 copies in paperback. * Illuminating PS section to be written by the author
Lesley Adkins, an archaeologist and Fellow of the Society of Antiquaries of London, is the author of several reference books on archaelogy and ancient history, as well as The Keys of Egypt: The Race to Read the Hieroglyphs, the account of the decipherment of Egyptian hieroglyphs by Jean-Francois Champollion, which was published to great acclaim in 2000. She lives in Devon, and is married to Roy Adkins, also an archaeologist and writer.
Praise for Empires of the Plain: 'A colourful account of a fascinating and little known story. It combines scholarship with high adventure, and is enlivened by the larger-than-life character of Henry Rawlinson.' Sunday Times 'A welcome addition to history writing on the archaeological exploration of the Near East.' The Times Praise for The Keys of Egypt: 'A fascinating and elegantly written biography of Champollion, doing justice to one of the great stories of academic heroism.' Simon Singh, Sunday Telegraph 'A first-rate blend of high scholarship and great narrative pace, this is one of those rare, wondrous books which turns an intellectual adventure into high drama. It deserves a huge audience.' Douglas Kennedy, The Times 'A fascinating account of the race to unlock the cryptic language of the pharaohs' Giles Milton, Daily Mail