The Chronicles of a Traveller: Or, A History of the Afghan Wars with Persia


Father Tadeusz Judas Krusiński (also seen as Tadeusz Jan Krusiński, 1675‒1756) was a Polish Jesuit priest who spent nearly 20 years in Persia (Iran) at the court in the Safavid capital of Isfahan. In 1722 he was an eyewitness to the siege and conquest of Isfahan by an invading Afghan force. Krusiński wrote an account in Latin of the war and its immediate aftermath, which included the extirpation of the Persian royal family by the Afghan commander, Mahmud Ghilji. Krusiński left Persia in 1725. Passing through Constantinople (present-day Istanbul) on his way back to Europe, he gave a Turkish translation of his narrative that he himself reportedly had made to Ibrahim Padshah, vizier of Sultan Ahmed III. In 1729 the vizier had the work published at the newly established Ottoman press. John Christian Clodius, professor of Arabic at the University of Leipzig, re-translated this work from Turkish into Latin and had it published in Germany in 1731. The book presented here is a translation into English of Clodius’s Latin translation. The English translator was George Newnham Mitford, about whom little is known. Another version of the narrative, a translation into French of Krusiński’s original Latin text, was made by another Jesuit, Father Du Cerceau, and published in The Hague in 1725. Mitford’s objective in translating Clodius’s translation was to point up major differences between passages in this text and those describing the same events in Du Cerceau’s version. In his introduction Mitford contends that Du Cerceau introduced major inaccuracies, and that these later were repeated by early British writers on Persia such as the merchant Jonas Hanway. Mitford’s translation appeared in London in 1840, a time of heightened public interest in Afghanistan as a consequence of the First Anglo-Afghan War (1839–42).

Date Created

Subject Date

Publication Information

James Ridgway, London


Title in Original Language

The chronicles of a traveller: or, A history of the Afghan wars with Persia, in the beginning of the last century, from their commencement to the accession of Sultan Ashruf

Type of Item

Physical Description

206 pages : tables ; 23 centimeters

Last updated: September 30, 2016