Narrative of the Residence of Fatalla Sayeghir Among the Wandering Arabs of the Great Desert
Alphonse de Lamartine
Garnet Pub., Jan 1, 1996 - Travel - 204 pages
From 1809, Fatalla Sayeghir accompanied, or claimed to have accompanied, Napoleon's secret agent, M. Lascaris de Ventimiglia, on an extended mission travelling amongst the Bedouin tribes of Mesopotamia and the Euphrates valley. Lascaris's brief was to infiltrate these tribes, make contacts within them, and by gaining their trust, encourage them to unite in support of France. Sayeghir's "diary" of their journey contains vivid descriptions of Bedouin lifestyle, their many adventures and the successful completion of their mission.
Lascaris, discouraged by Napoleon's overthrow, died without divulging the great store of information he had acquired. The notes he left were allegedly destroyed by the British, but Lamartine, the French orientalist, acquired Sayeghir's written account or purported account of the travels. It first appeared in a French translation in 1835, and was later published in English in 1836.
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