PEAL, Samuel Edward. 31.12.1834 — Moran, Sibsagar 29.7.1897. British Lay Ethnographer and Botanist. Originally an artist, in 1862 went to India and became a tea-planter in Sibsagar, Assam. As a planter he did not succeed well, but gained some fame with his biological and ethnographical studies. Like many of his time, he was very fond of racial arguments.
Publications: Scientific articles and travel reports in JASB and ProcASB, some republished in Selections of papers regarding the Hill tracts between Assam and Burma and on the Upper Brahmaputra.
– “Vocabulary of the Banpará Nágás”, JASB 42:1, 1877, Appendix xxx-xxxvi.
– “On a peculiarity of the river names in Asam”, JASB 48:4, 1879, 258-270; “Fading Histories”, JASB 63:3, 1894, 10-20; “Table of Comparison of selected Words and Numerals in the several Assam Languages”, PrASB 1895, 170-175; “On some Traces of the Kol-Mon-Anam in the Eastern naga Hills”, JASB 65:3, 1896, 20-24.
Sources: Stray notes, especially in T. Ballantyne, Webs of Empire: Locating New Zealand’s Colonial Past. Vancouver 2012, 193ff. (much on his ethnographical studies, not much on biography); obituary in *Calcutta Englishman 12.8.1897.
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