JOHNSON, Francis. 1795/96 — Hertford 29.1.1876. British Orientalist and Indologist. In his youth spent several years in Italy, where he learnt Arabic from an Arab. Also said to have studied Sanskrit there (from whom?). In 1818 visited Athens from Rome. In 1824-55 Professor of Sanskrit, Bengali and Telugu at Haileybury. Married 1857.
He wrote mainly on Sanskrit and Persian, but was at his best as Arabic scholar. Assisted Wilson in his Sanskrit grammar.
Publications: New, revised and enlarged edition of Richardson’s Persian Dictionary. L. 1829; much rev. 2nd ed. under his own name. 4+1419 p. L. 1852.
– Edited: Hitopadêsa. The Sanskrit Text of the first Book, or Mitra-Lábha, with a grammatical analysis. L. 1840; Hitopadêsa. The Sanskrit Text with a grammatical analysis. 17+202+6+28 p. L. 1847, 2nd ed. 1848, 3rd 1864; Selections from the Mahábhárata. With a glossary and with notes by H. H. Wilson. 13+265 p. L. 1842; The Gulistan (Rose-Garden of Shaiḵẖ Sádi of Shirāz). 313 p. Hertford 1863.
– Translated: Hitopadesa. Revised and partly rewritten by L. D. Barnett. 19+222 p. L. 1928.
– New edition with notes of H. H. Wilson’s Meghadūta or cloud messenger, ed. and translated. 6+151 p. L. 1843 (pp. 101-150 by Fr. J.).
Sources: C.B[endall], D.N.B. 30, 1892, 11, *rev. by P. Loloi, Oxford D.N.B. 2002; Buckland, Dictionary; JRAS Proc. 1876, xif.; briefly Wikipedia.
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