ROBERTS, Emma. Methley near Leeds 1793? — Poona 16.9.1840. British Journalist and Poet in India. Daughter of Captain William R., who died before her birth, grew up with her mother in Bath. Moved in literary circles and studied historical material in British Museum. In 1828 went to India with her sister and brother-in-law, R. C. McNaghten, who served in Indian army, and proceeded to upper provinces. After sister’s death in 1831 lived in Calcutta and returned to England in 1832. In 1839 again to India, now to Bombay. She was not a scholar, but wrote vivid descriptions of life and scenery in India and defended people’s, especially women’s, rights.
Publications: Edited Oriental Observer 1831-32, wrote articles for it; then also wrote for Asiatic Journal.
– Oriental Scenes, Dramatic Sketches and Tales, with other Poems. 1830, new ed. as Oriental Scenes, Sketches and Tales. 11+204 p. L. 1832.
– Scenes and Characteristics of Hindostan with Sketches of Anglo-Indian Society. 1-3. L. 1835.
– Text in Views in India, China, and on the Shores of the Red Sea: Drawn by Prout, Stanfield … from Original Sketches by Commander Robert Elliott. 1-2. L. 1835.
– The East India Voyager; or, Ten Minutes Advice to the Outward Bound. 63+263 p. L. 1839.
– Notes of an Overland Journey through France and Egypt to Bombay. 28+333 p. L. 1841.
– Hindostan: Its Landscapes, Palaces, Temples, Tombs; the Shores of the Red Sea; and the Sublime and Romantic Scenery of the Himalaya Mountains. 1-2. L. 1845-47.
Sources: Buckland, Dictionary; A.G. Gorman, Literature of Travel and Explor. 3, 2003, 1012-1014.