BROWN, Nathan. New Ipswich NH 22.6.1807 — Yokohama 1.1.1885. Rev. U.S. Baptist Missionary in India and Japan. Son of Nathan Brown and Elizabeth Goldsmith. Educated at Williams College and Newton Theological Institution. Worked two years as teacher in Vermont and from 1832 as missionary, first in Burma and from 1836 in Sadiya, Assam. In 1839-43 in Jaipur, then in Sibsagar. In 1848 or 1850 or 1855 returned to the U.S.A. and joined the abolitionist movement. In 1868 interested in the new Japan mission and from 1872 worked in Yokohama. Married 1830 Eliza Ballard (d. 1871) and 1872 Charlotte Amelia Worth Marlit, two sons and two daughters from the first marriage, one son from the second. His Assamese writings added the appreciation of the language, which was until 1873 classified as a dialect of Bengali.
Publications: “Alphabets of the Tai Language”, JASB 6, 1837, 17-21 (Ahom, Khamti, Shan, Lao); “Comparison of Indo-Chinese Languages”, JASB 6, 1837, 1023-1038; “Specimens of the Nāgā Languages of Asam”, JAOS 2, 1851, 155-165; “Comparative Vocabulary of the Sgau and Pwo Karen Dialects”, JAOS 4, 1854, 317-326; contributed vocabularities of several borth-east Indian languages to Hodgson’s articles in JASB.
– Grammatical Notes in the Assamese Language. 80 p. Sibsagar 1848.
– The New Testament in Assamese. 1849; religious writings; edited Assamese works.
Sources: Briefly in JRAS Proc. 1886, lii; Wikipedia (with photo, but also some mistakes); W.H. Bradley, Biographical Dictionary of Christian Missions. 1998, 95; further accounts in Internet, family details in findagrave.com.
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