Henry Rawlinson is known as the 'father of cuneiform' because he managed to work out how to decipher the script.
He worked for the East India Company and spent many years exploring the Near East and learning local languages.
He visited a cliff face at a place called Bisitun which was carved with a long cuneiform inscription.
In 1835 he made a copy of the inscription and managed to decipher the name of the king who had it carved.
Later he deciphered the cuneiform tablets from Layard's excavations at Nimrud and Nineveh.