In 1609 Lithgow set out on the first of three voyages: to Palestine and Egypt via Greece, the Aegean, Crete, Constantinople and Syria. His Discourse is one of the world’s great travel books: for much of his journeys Lithgow travelled on foot, and thus he had a much greater knowledge of the countries he visited than his contemporaries.
The Totall Discourse, Of the rare Adventures, and painefull Peregrinations of long nineteene yeares Travailes from Scotland, to the most famous Kingdomes in Europe, Asia, and Affrica. Perfited by three deare bought Voyages, in surveying of forty eight Kingdomes ancient and modern; twenty one Rei-publicks, ten absolute Principalities, with two hundred Islands ... Wherein is contayned an exact Relation of the Lawes, Religions, Policies and Governments of all their Princes, Potentates and People. Together with the grievous Tortures he suffered by the Inquisition of Malaga in Spaine: His miraculous Discovery and Delivery. And of his last and late returne from the Northern Isles, and other places adjacent. By William Lithgow. Imprinted at London by I. Okes, 1640.