The antiquary and artist George Petrie (1790-1866) was one of the founding fathers of Irish archaeology. Having trained since childhood with his painter father, he began to travel around the country, sketching landscapes, monuments and ruins. He later worked for the Royal Irish Academy, and then for the Ordnance Survey, organising the publication of essays on the historical monuments it mapped. His interests extended from architecture and ecclesiastical history to ancient music and Irish wolfhounds, and he was at the forefront of efforts to preserve endangered historic buildings. In particular, his studies of the round towers of Ireland successfully demolished many myths about their building and purpose. This biography, published in 1868, was written by his friend and companion on many antiquarian expeditions, William Stokes (1804-78), the distinguished physician who was one of the first to introduce Laënnec's stethoscope into the British Isles.