HALL, Fitzedward

HALL, Fitzedward. Troy, N.Y. 21.3.1825 — Marlesford, Suffolk 1.2.1901. U.S. Indologist, in India 1846-62 and the U.K. Son of an old New English family, graduated 1842 from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. Studies at Harvard, published translations from German, but could not conclude his studies, because in 1846 he was sent to Calcutta to search for his brother, who had run away to the sea. Because of a shipwreck he had to remain longer as planned and became interested languages. He learnt Hindustani and Persian and decided to stay in India. After three years he came to Benares, where in 1850 “he was appointed in the Government College to a post, which was converted in 1853 into an Anglo-Sanskrit professorship. In 1855 he was transferred to Rajputana as Inspector of Public Instruction for Ajmere and Mairmara, in December 1856 to alike inspectorship for the Central Provinces, with headquarters at Saugor, and during the Sepoy mutiny did good service with his rifle.”

Returned from India in 1862 he settled down in London and worked 1864-69 as Librarian of India Office. In 1869 dismissed apparently because of false accusations and moved to Marlesford in Suffolk, where lived until his death. In 1864–79 Professor of Sanskrit, Hindustani and Indian Jurisprudence at King’s College in London. From 1864 also Examiner in Hindustani and Hindi in connection with the civil service commissioner, from 1880 Examiner in Sanskrit and from 1889 also in English, all until his death. In 1854 he married the daughter of an officer and had several children.

FH was a good Sanskrit scholar, epigraphist, active editor and discoverer of several texts (e.g. the Bṛhaddevatā). He was also interested in English and became the first U.S. collaborator of the O.E.D. To Harvard he presented thousand Oriental MSS. and as many books.

Publications: edited in B.I.: Sūryasiddhānta, an ancient system of Hindu astronomy, with Ranganātha’s exposition, the Gūḍhārthaprakāśaka. Edited with the assistance of Pandit Bapu Deva Sastrin. 388 p. B.I. 25. Calcutta 1854-58; Vijñāna Bhikshu, Sānkhya-pravachana-bhāshya, a commentary on the aphorisms of the Hindu atheistic philosophy. 66+233+56 p. B.I. 27. C. 1854-56; Subandhu, Vāsavadattā. A romance. Accompanied by Sivarāma Tripāthin’s perpetual gloss, entitled Darpana. 56+300 p. B.I. 30. C. 1855-59; Dhanañjaya, the Dasa-rūpa, or Hindu canons of dramaturgy, with the expositions of Dhanika, the Avaloka. 39+ 241 p. B.I. 36. C. 1861-65; Vijñāna Bhikshu, Sānkhya-Sāra, a treatise of Sankhya philosophy. 51+48 p. B.I. 83. C. 1865.

edited: The Ātma-bodha, with its commentary, also the Tattwa-bodha: being two treatises of Indian pantheism. Mirzapore 1852; translated into Hindi: The Tarka­sangraha. 1850; edited Ballantyne’s Hindi Grammar. 1868.

– “On the Árya-Siddhánta”, JAOS 6, 1860, 556-564.

Hindi Reader. 1870, 2nd ed. 1884.

a number of articles on epigraphy, etc., in JASB 1861-65, AJPh, JAOS 1860-62, JRAS 1863, etc.

Recent Exemplifications of false [English] Philology. 1872; Modern English. 1873; On English Adjectives in -able. 1877; Doctor indoctus. 18??.

Sources: Nat. Cyclop. of Amer. Biogr. 448f.; Buckland, Dictionary; Wikipedia


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